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PUBLIC RELATIONS
AGENDA

All PDS sessions will be held at the CHI Health Convention Center at 455 North 10th St, Omaha, NE 68102

Monday, July 22 

 

5:30pm – 8:30pm                  

Vendor Meet & Greet 

Tuesday, July 23 

 

9:00am – 9:15am

Conference Kickoff 

Brian Rockey, Director, Nebraska Lottery 

 

9:15am – 10:15am

General Session – TBA 

Todd Simon, Chairman and Chief Steak Evangelist, Omaha Steaks 

 

10:15am – 10:30am

Networking Break 

 

10:45am – 11:15am

Meet & Greet and Roundtable Discussion 

Moderated by Drew Svitko, Executive Director, Pennsylvania Lottery 

This session is your opportunity to connect with fellow PR professionals and set the stage for an engaging week ahead. Share your name, position, and how long you've been in your current role. Express your expectations for PDS and what you hope to gain from the experience, and let us know what topics you're eager to explore and discuss throughout the week.  

 

11:15am - Noon

Beneficiary Messaging Campaigns 

Jennifer Mullen, Director of Communications and Customer Relations, Virginia Lottery 

Kym Gerlock, Director of Communications & Corporate Social Responsibility, Tennessee Education Lottery 

Ewa Swope, Press Secretary, Pennsylvania Lottery 

Noon – 1:30pm

LUNCH  

Lunch sponsored by Allwyn and NeoGames

 

1:45pm – 2:45pm

General Session – Lotteries in the Gaming Space 

Helene Keeley, Director, Delaware Lottery 

Matt Strawn, Chief Executive Officer, Iowa Lottery 

Senator Dan Dawson, Chair, Iowa Senate Ways and Means Committee 

Christie Carpino (CT), Vice President, National Council of Legislators From Gaming States
Michael J. Pollock, Managing Director, Spectrum Gaming Group, Executive Director, National Council of Legislators From Gaming States

2:45pm – 3:00pm

Networking Break 

 

3:15pm – 3:45pm

Responsible Gambling 

John Hagerty, Senior Public Affairs Specialist, Virginia Lottery 

Kym Gerlock, Director of Communications & Corporate Social Responsibility, Tennessee Education Lottery 

3:45pm – 4:30pm

Player Literacy Programs 

Jared Bond, Director of External Affairs, Hoosier Lottery 

Seth Elkin, Managing Director of Communications, Maryland Lottery 

Adam Owens, Communications Manager, North Carolina Education Lottery 

Leigh Warren, Corporate Social Responsibility Manager, Brand Management & Communications, North Carolina Education Lottery 

4:45pm – 5:15pm

Powers Awards and Ott Brown Scholarship Presentation 

Celebrate industry excellence with the annual Powers Awards and Ott Brown Scholarship! 

The prestigious annual NASPL Powers Awards are presented in recognition of the significant contributions lottery and vendor employees have made through exceptional job performance. NASPL also awards one lottery professional the Ott Brown Scholarship each year, enabling the recipient to participate in the NASPL Lottery Leadership Institute at no cost. 

Wednesday, July 24 

 

9:00am – 10:15am

General Session – Leadership & Overcoming Obstacles for Pioneering Innovation 

Jeff Koterba, Speaker, Author, and Creativity Coach  

 

10:15am – 10:30am

Networking Break 

 

10:45am – 11:15am

Powerball Jackpot Communications: Beyond the Boilerplate 

Anna Domoto, Director of Communications, Multi-State Lottery Association  

Thomas Nelson, Communications Specialist, Multi-State Lottery Association  

Why did the cash value drop? What state is the luckiest? Why have jackpots been so big lately? Why was the drawing delayed? They’re all questions that have hit our inbox before, so let’s lean into some of our latest Powerball jackpot FAQ’s. Along the way, we’ll cover a little MUSL 101 and share what else’s going on beyond the boilerplate. 

 

11:15am – Noon

Roundtable Discussion – Making the Most of the Big Jackpot Games 

  • Beneficiary messaging 

  • Highlighting retailer commissions 

  • Prepared b-roll  

  • Sneak peek into the process 

 

Noon – 1:30pm

LUNCH  

 

1:45pm – 2:30pm

Lottery Outreach 

Stacey Beardsley, Communications Manager, Virginia Lottery 

Jared Bond, Director of External Affairs, Hoosier Lottery 

 

2:30pm – 3:00pm

Maximizing Your Impact: Effective Social Media Strategies for Marketing and PR 

In this dynamic session, we'll delve into the intricacies of leveraging social media to amplify your marketing and public relations efforts. Our expert panel will explore various topics including: 

  • Establishing the right cadence for posting on social media platforms 

  • Crafting a compelling and consistent style that resonates with your audience 

  • Identifying what works and what doesn't 

  • Finding the balance of what type of content performs best on what platform 

  • Utilizing agencies for social media management 

  • Exploring innovative approaches and new strategies in social media marketing 

  • Distinguishing between using social media as a PR tool versus a marketing tool 

Combined session with Marketing 

 

3:00pm – 3:15pm

Networking Break 

 

3:30pm – 4:45pm

Swag Swap and Roundtable Discussion 
This much-loved tradition is a great way to see what promotional items other lotteries are using to entertain and excite their players. So pack your coolest t-shirts and tote bags, caps and koozies and other rad promotional goodies and get ready to share the fun with your PR colleagues.

Then we’ll wrap up the day with an open roundtable discussion. This session is interactive, so be prepared to participate! Potential topics include:

  • In-person events 

  • Sales tax on lottery tickets 

  • Security breaches - reach out to Arizona 

  • PR tools/AI 

  • Managing PR for organizations with multi-channel offerings (sports betting, iLottery, etc.) tie in  

  • Couriers 

  • Crisis comms strategies/plans 

  • United voice for national stories 

  • Handling bad press 

 

5:30pm – 7:30pm

NASPL Networking Reception 

The Durham Museum 

Thursday, July 25 

 

9:00am – 9:15am

Closing Remarks From Our Host  

Brian Rockey, Director, Nebraska Lottery  

 

9:15am – 10:15am

General Session – TBA 

 

10:15am – 10:30am

Networking Break 

 

10:30am – 11:15am

General Session – Identifying and Mitigating Points of Failure: Building a Business Resiliency Program 
Cathleen Atchison, Business Continuity Program Manager, Oregon Lottery 

 

11:30am – Noon

Nonprofit Journalism From a Nebraska Perspective 

Cate Folsom, Editor-in-Chief, Nebraska Examiner 

Matthew Hansen, Editor, Flatwater Free Press 

Neil Watson, Marketing and Communications Specialist, Nebraska Lottery 

The business of journalism is constantly changing. As mainstream media outlets experience declining revenue and reduced staffing, nonprofit journalism has developed as an alternative. In this panel discussion, editors from the Flatwater Free Press and the Nebraska Examiner will share how their outlets approach journalism in Nebraska using the nonprofit model, and the role of independent media in holding government programs accountable to the communities they serve. 

 

Noon – 1:30pm

LUNCH  

 

1:45pm – 2:30pm

Preparing for a Lottery Modernization 

Ewa Swope, Press Secretary, Pennsylvania Lottery 

 

2:30pm – 3:00pm

Winner Awareness 

Ewa Swope, Press Secretary, Pennsylvania Lottery 

John Hagerty, Senior Public Affairs Specialist, Virginia Lottery 

Seth Elkin, Managing Director of Communications, Maryland Lottery 

 

3:00pm – 3:30pm

Final Networking Break 

The connections made at PDS lead to new ideas, friendships and business successes. Spend this dedicated time mingling, establishing new professional relationships, and strengthening existing ones. Share a beverage, exchange contact information and connect with others before departing. 

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