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A Communicator's Story...

Mark Kotzin started his journey as a professional communicator while still in high school, managing publicity for the school musical. He caught the eye of an editor at Metroland Magazine in Albany, New York, who offered him a summer internship where he gained experience with proofreading, editing and layout/design, and tabulated the magazine’s first annual readers’ survey.

While completing his BA degree in Rhetoric and Communication at the University at Albany in 1989, Mark took on another internship, this time with the Communications Department of the Civil Service Employees Association (CSEA), a statewide union of primarily public sector workers. Working on CSEA’s bi-weekly newspaper “The Public Sector,” Mark became skilled as an interviewer, news and feature writer, photojournalist and editorial assistant. He regularly contributed articles and photos, as well as working in all facets of production.

In 1989 CSEA hired Mark as their full-time Communications Specialist for the association’s Central Region (encompassing 20 counties in Central New York).

Since 1989 Mark has been the public face of CSEA in Central New York. He is the chief spokesperson, and manages all facets of the region’s internal and external communications. He is responsible for communicating with the union’s 50,000 members throughout Central New York, as well as handling the union’s public relations in CNY, including four larger media markets (Syracuse, Watertown, Utica, Binghamton). His primary duties have included:

Mark has received awards from several industry trade groups for his photos and articles. His photos and articles have also appeared in numerous other newspapers and magazines throughout New York and nationally.

Among his many accomplishments to date, Mark has:

Mark has been a member and/or officer of several trade groups for communications professionals, including the Syracuse Press Club, the Public Relations Society of America (including serving as one term as chapter treasurer and two terms as Northeast District Secretary), the International Labor Communications Association, and the National Association of Photoshop Professionals.

A proud 2012 graduate of Leadership Greater Syracuse, Mark is also an active community volunteer, regularly volunteering his time and talents for fund-raisers and community events.

Mark and his family live in Syracuse, New York.

Mark's Top Personal Qualities

Settling for the status quo just isn't in Mark's DNA. He's always striving to find better ways to get the job done and integrating new technology into his tactics as a professional communicator.

Whatever the communications need, Mark uses his creativity to craft a unique message that will resonate with the stakeholders he's communicating with.

Detail Oriented:
Mark is a stickler for getting things right the first time, and won't let the 'little things' slide. How your communications look is just as important as what they say, so details count.

If juggling multiple priorities is called for, Mark's got it covered. He regularly works multiple campaigns at the same time and serves multiple clients with overlapping priorities.

Good listener:
One of the most important skills to learn as a communicator is how to listen. If you can't hear what your audience is saying, you can't accurately gauge the success of your efforts. Mark practices the art of active listening to ensure his messages are effective.

Straight Shooter:
Mark won't tell you what you want to hear... he tells it like he sees it. He's great to bounce ideas off, because he'll give you his honest opinion without sugarcoating his answers.

Mark has spent more than 25 years with the same non-profit membership association, crafting messages, and offering strategic advisement.

As a former District Board member of the Public Relations Society of America, Mark maintains the highest ethical approach to dealing with stakeholders. He realizes that communicating with integrity is vital to credibility and reputation management.