ABOUT DENNIS HETZEL, FOUNDER
Dennis joined the Ohio News Media Association as president and executive director in 2010 from Enquirer Media in Cincinnati after an extensive career in the newspaper industry as a reporter, editor, general manager and publisher.
He was editor and publisher of the York (PA) Daily Record for 13 years and managing editor of The Capital Times in Madison WI for four years before moving to the Cincinnati area in 2004. In the news media industry, he has been an executive at companies such as Gannett and Lee Enterprises.
The ONMA is the trade association representing Ohio’s newspapers and local news websites. He also was a board member of the Capitol Square Foundation in Columbus, president of the Ohio Coalition for Open Government and a registered lobbyist for the ONMA where he led efforts to improve Ohio’s sunshine laws and support business issues that allow local media organizations to remain competitive in a rapidly changing world.
Hetzel has won numerous awards for writing and industry leadership and taught journalism at Temple and Penn State, where he was editor-in-residence in 2003. He’s a Chicago-area native and graduate of Western Illinois University with a B.A. in political science and minor in journalism.
He also is an author whose sports-political thriller, Killing the Curse, was released in late 2014 and has won multiple awards. The book imagines the Chicago Cubs in a World Series, but their quest to win Game Seven becomes a crisis that threatens the presidency. His follow-up novel Season of Lies covers a presidential election year with characters from the first book and was released by Headline Books early in 2017. His latest project, The Vanished, will be complete in 2019. (To learn more about Dennis' books, go to his author website, www.dennishetzel.com.)
Hetzel retired from the ONMA in March of 2019 and now heads Fresh Angle Communications, a consulting firm based in his new home of Holden Beach, North Carolina. His wife, Cheryl, is a retired educator, and they have three adult children. He's still hoping this "guitar thing" works out when he grows up.
You can find a detailed resume for Dennis at this link.
PAUL BOYLE, SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT, PUBLIC POLICY
NEWS MEDIA ALLIANCE, ARLINGTON VA
“I’ve walked the halls of the U.S. Congress with Dennis on many issues and seen first-hand what an effective advocate he is. He analyzes the issue thoroughly, develops compelling communications materials, and lays out a well-reasoned path for getting a policymaker to 'yes.' Above all, he is passionate – not only about journalism and the media – but about life, an asset in any endeavor.”
CLINT EDGINGTON, PRINCIPAL, BEACON HILL INVESTMENT ADVISORS, COLUMBUS, OHIO
""Dennis is not only a fantastic wordsmith, but he understands how to craft a technical piece to make it accessible to a target reader. He’s improved the quality of our content, and our efficiency has skyrocketed."
NICKOLAS MONICO, PRESIDENT, NEWS MEDIA CORP., ROCHELLE IL
"I've worked with Dennis for years on issues that matter to the media industry and the communities we serve. You'd be hard-pressed to find another professional who can bring the skills that Dennis has to solve problems."
TOM CALLINAN, RETIRED GANNETT EXECUTIVE, FORMER EDITOR OF THE CINCINNATI ENQUIRER & ARIZONA REPUBLIC
"I worked with Dennis at The Cincinnati Enquirer at a time we were trying to improve our reach and influence in Northern Kentucky. Dennis came on board to lead that effort and the circulation gains and digital growth were testimony to his strategic thinking and hands-on efforts as an experienced journalist."
KEN PAULSON, FORMER EDITOR OF USA TODAY, COLLEGE DEAN, HOST OF 'THE SONGWRITERS' on PBS
"Dennis is a prominent First Amendment advocate and a highly principled journalist whose work reflects his deep concern for the future of the news media and their critical role in our democracy."
ROB WALTERS, MANAGING EDITOR, BRISTOL (VA.) HERALD COURIER
"Dennis is a hard-charging newsman, a reporter's reporter, an editor's editor. He holds a passion for watchdog journalism. Dennis knows the secrets of effective leadership. He offers a clear vision, sets obtainable stretch goals and spells out viable steps for his direct reports so they can become successful."