As head of the Ohio News Media Association, Fresh Angle’s principal, Dennis Hetzel, was one of the most respected government relations professionals in the Ohio Statehouse, leading efforts that improved access to information for all citizens while also representing the business interests of Ohio’s local media organizations in challenging times. He also worked with related state associations and lobbied in Washington on media industry and freedom of information issues and became a “go-to” source for local, regional and national stories about the media industry and freedom of information.
We can help with everything from strategy development to issue analysis, testimony preparation, coalition building and overall messaging. On many issues, particularly those involving freedom of information and media business issues, we can provide direct expert testimony.
A sampling of some of the government relations accomplishments in Ohio in recent years includes the following:
Preservation and improvement of statutory requirements on public (legal) notices.
Stopping efforts to vastly expand sales taxation in Ohio that would have been devastating to any industry dependent to both advertisers and media outlets.
Working with state and national groups on multiple fronts to create viable business models for local media outlets into the future.
Email us if you’d like to see specific examples of work product and results.
'Hillbilly Elegy' author J.D. Vance, left, with Dennis Hetzel at a fund-raiser for the Ohio Coalition for Open Government in Columbus.
Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine, far left, presents Dennis Hetzel with a proclamation and a hat from the DeWine family minor-league baseball team. Former Gov. John Kasich, center top, was joined by Hetzel and Keith Faber, then president of the Ohio Senate, to sign a law creating an innovative, low-cost process to seek public records.
WHAT WE DO: 5 CORE COMPETENCIES
Government relations consulting
Short-term executive roles
Writing, editing and related communications
Help for authors and other writers
Support for local journalism initiatives
Short-term Executive Roles
If your media organization or trade association needs an exec to fill short-term leadership requirements or an operational evaluation, let us know. Our principal, Dennis Hetzel, has led nationally recognized media organizations to great success whether your measure is journalistic excellence, audience growth, community partnerships or careful expense management. He won the Pennsylvania Newsmedia Association’s Benjamin Franklin award as executive of the year in 2003 and the national winner of Columbia University’s Paul Tobenkin Memorial Award for media leadership on diversity issues. At Enquirer Media in Cincinnati, he led a successful effort to dramatically grow audience and improve news coverage in the rapidly growing Northern Kentucky portion of the metro area.
In the trade association world, Dennis knows the requirements and challenges of 501(c)6 organizations, for-profit affiliates and 501(c)3 non-profit status.
During a varied career, Dennis has been a reporter, editor, general manager, publisher and trade association director while serving on numerous boards in his communities and in the media industry. He also taught collegiate journalism at Temple University and Penn State.
Dennis has frequently given this 20-minute talk to help the general public understand the "real" causes behind the challenges to the business models of all local media. He also talks about solutions, and why it's so important to our country to find profitable models for local journalism.
Writing, Editing, Communications
We welcome free-lance writing and editing assignments, from upbeat features to breaking news and in-depth news coverage. Whether it’s a news/feature article or an op-ed column that you need, you can be assured we’ll accomplish it with precision, speed, accuracy and strong writing quality. We also can provide back-end editing and other internal support for other writers either on staff or free-lance.
We’re also well equipped to assist organizations in that need support for media relations and crisis communications — from the basics of a workshop on “what makes something newsworthy in today’s environment” to a complete media strategy. We also can go into your communities or help you prepare presentations on numerous topics.
Current satisfied clients range from investment advisers to emerging authors. Here are a few examples of Dennis’ recent published writing and presentations:
Dennis Hetzel wrote this 2018 article on the importance of media literacy for "Pathways" magazine.
Helping Authors, Other Writers
Dennis is the author of two award-winning novels, “Season of Lies” and “Killing the Curse,” with more projects upcoming. He’s also done detailed manuscript editing for both fiction and non-fiction authors, leveraging years of experience as a professional writer and editor. He’s a regular reviewer for “Windy City Reviews” in Chicago and BookTrib.com. We welcome the chance to do critiques, draft reading and mentoring to other authors.
If you need related services such as audiobook production, video services, marketing and publicist work, we can refer you to some awesome partners.
NBC News' Jeff Rossen, right, and Dennis Hetzel were among authors at Books by the Banks in Cincinnati.
Supporting Local Journalism
Working with young journalists and being directly involved in ongoing efforts to ensure communities have strong local journalism is one of our major organizational goals. We welcome the opportunity to collaborate and support efforts around the country to support and improve local journalism.
Throughout his career, Dennis Hetzel has been active in groups such as the American Society of News Editors, News Media Alliance and state media associations. He also taught journalism to graduate students at Temple University and was editor-in-residence for a semester at Penn State.
If you have an idea that involves working with aspiring journalists and future leaders or opportunities to work on projects that involve media credibility, we’d be excited to help.