Blast PR Celebrates
20 Years!

Experienced | Dedicated | Passionate

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Clients That Matter

Results That Matter

Our Capabilities

The Team

Our team is quite simply the best in the business

Founding Principal

Kat Formidoni

Kathleen ‘Kat’ Formidoni founded Blast in 2000, and has been providing solid strategic counsel and creative direction across the client base ever since.

Kathleen ‘Kat’ Formidoni founded Blast in 2000, and has been providing solid strategic counsel and creative direction across the client base ever since.

Previous to founding Blast, she was an early entrant to the internet and is considered an internet oldtimer. She was with Engage when they went public in the late 90’s and used it as a jumping point to found the agency in Raleigh NC.

Kat graduated from Eastern Illinois University with a BA in Zoology. She makes her home in the mountains of Santa Ynez CA. She owns and operates an animal rescue ranch and has saved countless horses, chickens, and dogs.

Managing Partner

Don Knox

As Managing Partner, Don oversees Blast’s operations, financial and technology initiatives. Don also leads the agency's growth and expansion strategy.

As Managing Partner, Don oversees Blast’s operations, financial and technology initiatives. Don also leads the agency's growth and expansion strategy.

Don is a 30+ year veteran of media and advertising strategy, marketing and business development. He was also an event organizer for several advertising and technology conferences around the globe. Within this period, Don led an 18M digital marketing conference franchise, while also launching several new business units.

Don holds a B.S. in Marketing from Georgia State University. Don’s passions include tinkering with and collecting vintage audio gear, wristwatches and anything on 2 wheels. Don currently operates the Blast San Francisco office, where he lives with his wife and 2 boys.

Executive Vice President

Matt Caldecutt

Matt is all things media here at Blast -- strategy, outreach, staffing meetings (especially in New York City) and training -- from one on one meetings to group sessions.

Matt is all things media here at Blast -- strategy, outreach, staffing meetings (especially in New York City) and training -- from one on one meetings to group sessions. He is directly involved in multiple accounts and makes himself available to others, as needed. Matt is also instrumental in new business development.

Prior to joining Blast, he was recruited to oversee Yahoo! B2B PR at DKC Public Relations, where, as vice president, he helped create the LinkedIn Marketing Solutions PR operation and worked with companies large and small -- Criteo, Conduit, SapientNitro, Time Warner Cable Media, Viggle, and YANGAROO -- while being the agency’s go-to for all things advertising-related.

Matt holds a Bachelor’s and Master’s Degree in History from Binghamton University (SUNY). Since the late aughts, he has made regular appearances in the media -- TV, print, and online -- as a “person on the street” or as an expert “early adopter.” Matt, his wife, and daughter are foodies who have great tips on where to dine in New York City and he photographs almost everything he eats on Instagram. He is also the President of the Board of The Belvedere, a co-op located in the Historic District of Jackson Heights, Queens.

VP Brand Strategy

Warren Pickett

Warren is VP Brand Strategy at Blast, working to define the agency’s identity and supporting branding and content initiatives for clients, as well as sharing industry insight and research.

Warren is VP Brand Strategy at Blast, working to define the agency’s identity and supporting branding and content initiatives for clients, as well as sharing industry insight and research.

Prior to Blast, Warren spent 25+ years in print and digital marketing and media. He was most recently content director for digital marketing and performance marketing events, and editorial lead for an ecommerce direct-to-customer sales online publication and in-person event.

Warren holds a bachelor’s degree in Technical Journalism from Colorado State University. As a native to Colorado, he enjoys spending time in the mountains, nature and wildlife photography, and fostering rescue kittens from the Navajo Nation. He lives with his veterinarian partner and two kids in northern Colorado.

VP People & Culture

Lorene Bagley-Kane

Lorene Bagley-Kane is the VP of People and Culture, responsible for overseeing the human aspect of the human relations department.

Lorene Bagley-Kane is the VP of People and Culture, responsible for overseeing the human aspect of the human relations department.

After more than 20 years in tourism PR, Lorene joined the team of Blast in the fall of 2012. She quickly grew within the company, and was instrumental in starting the content creation department.

Lorene graduated from Eastern Illinois University with a B.A. in Communications. A Midwest native, she has made her home in the Teton Mountains for over 20 years. She alternates her passion for running and hiking in the summer with her love of downhill and nordic skiing in the long Rocky Mountain winters. She shares her passion for skiing and the outdoors with her husband, daughter, and their Idaho shaggy dog, Corbet.

Executive Director of Content

Katie Sanders

Katie Sanders is Executive Director of Content at Blast PR. She is the queen of all things content-related, including contributed content/byline programs, blog creation, social media strategy and management of the events/awards team.

Katie Sanders is Executive Director of Content at Blast PR. She is the queen of all things content-related, including contributed content/byline programs, blog creation, social media strategy and management of the events/awards team. With her eagle eye, Katie is the go-to resource for copyediting within the agency. In addition, Katie oversees the internship program and works with new hires to onboard successfully, implementing best practices for new employees.

Prior to her work at Blast, Katie found joy as a teacher. Leaning on her exceptional communication skills, she was eager to find her next challenge and PR was the calling she answered with a cross-country move to help establish Blast’s west coast operations in 2010.

Katie has since relocated back to the east coast to Raleigh where, outside of work, she can be found tending to her garden, exploring the local food scene or at home making cocktails and salsa dancing with her husband Fernando and their dog, Soup. Katie graduated from East Carolina University with a BA in Theatre Arts and a minor in Sociology.

Executive PR Consultant

Michael Shmarak

Having developed deep expertise in corporate communications, marketing strategy and executive positioning, Michael Shmarak spearheads corporate communications and media outreach efforts for clients across the country.

Having developed deep expertise in corporate communications, marketing strategy and executive positioning, Michael Shmarak spearheads corporate communications and media outreach efforts for clients across the country.

Michael advises clients on how to use different forms of communication to their fullest advantage to generate measurable organizational performance. His work in preparing clients for proper communications execution ensures they are properly equipped to have long-term media relationships—even during times of crisis and adversity. He brings meaningful and influential relationships with the nation’s top business, financial and features media outlets.

Michael also serves as Adjunct Lecturer within Northwestern University's School of Professional Studies.

Senior PR Specialist

Kristen Frizzelle

As Senior PR Specialist, Kristen crafts strategic communication plans and performs a variety of PR initiatives to move the needle for her clients. She has a hand in all facets of her accounts to ensure clients needs are met.

As Senior PR Specialist, Kristen crafts strategic communication plans and performs a variety of PR initiatives to move the needle for her clients. She has a hand in all facets of her accounts to ensure clients needs are met. Kristen spearheads media relations, leads speaking and award programs, supports the creation and placement of earned content pieces, stays up to date on industry happenings and conducts research to ultimately drive awareness of her clients in the marketplace.

Prior to Blast, Kristen served as an executive assistant at Vista Equity Partners, a market-leading investment firm focused on enterprise software, data and technology-enabled businesses, where she worked closely with multiple senior-level executives to ensure all administrative needs were met.

To carry on her family's legacy that spans across three generations, Kristen graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a B.S. in Public Relations and a Business Foundations Certificate. Outside of the office, you can find Kristen catching up on the latest episodes of her favorite reality TV shows, exploring Austin's newest cuisine with her husband and friends and maintaining an active lifestyle by attending various dance and fitness classes.

PR Director

Caty Posey

As PR Director at Blast, Caty Posey works directly with clients across the agency to oversee events and awards initiatives by developing content for speaking engagements and award nominations, supporting event sponsorships and advising on client hosted events.

As PR Director at Blast, Caty Posey works directly with clients across the agency to oversee events and awards initiatives by developing content for speaking engagements and award nominations, supporting event sponsorships and advising on client hosted events.

Prior to joining Blast in 2012, Caty worked and interned at several nonprofits as well as large corporations in NY and VA. She was also a graduate teaching fellow while completing her master’s degree.

Caty holds a B.A in Communication with a minor in Business from Lynchburg College and a M.S in Corporate and Professional Communication from Radford University. Caty is a New York native, but now calls Virginia home. In her free time, Caty enjoys traveling, cooking, spending time with her husband, daughter and stepson, and of course her two dogs, Neville and Leia.

Senior PR Specialist

Kaitlyn DeSimone

As a Senior PR Specialist, Kaitlyn DeSimone supports strategic plan execution for clients across the U.S. Kaitlyn’s core responsibilities include press list development and management, media pitching and relations, client timeline tracking, account team management and various research and reporting initiatives, as well as supporting event and award nominations across multiple accounts.

As a Senior PR Specialist, Kaitlyn DeSimone supports strategic plan execution for clients across the U.S. Kaitlyn’s core responsibilities include press list development and management, media pitching and relations, client timeline tracking, account team management and various research and reporting initiatives, as well as supporting event and award nominations across multiple accounts.

Prior to joining the team full-time, Kaitlyn was an intern at the Blast PR Raleigh office in the fall of 2018. Through Blast PR’s internship program, Kaitlyn found a passion for public relations.

Kaitlyn graduated with a BA in Fashion Merchandising as well as an MBA with a Certificate in Marketing. She is zealous for health and fitness and traveling to new locations. Outside of the office, Kaitlyn can be found exploring Raleigh, taking care of her garden or enjoying coffee on the front porch of her home with her husband Mike and their Pomeranians Hollie & Winston!

PR Director

Jessica Petrullo

Jessica Petrullo has over 8 years of experiential marketing, communications and event experience working for agencies, cultural institutions and incubators in New York City.

Jessica Petrullo has over 8 years of experiential marketing, communications and event experience working for agencies, cultural institutions and incubators in New York City. While working for Huge and MINI, she spearheaded special brand projects and social impact initiatives that garnered press in design and tech publications including: Fast Company, Adweek and Surface Magazine, and were recognized at SXSW and Cannes. Jessica directly supported in-house and external PR teams with local and global announcements. She has a strong background in content creation and project management, and launched prominent social media channels and email newsletters.

Jessica earned her B.A. in Communications Arts with a minor in Sociology and Photography from Marymount Manhattan College, attended ITP Camp at NYU and is a certified yoga teacher. She recently moved back home to Los Angeles after 12 years in NYC with her husband, australian shepherd and sphynx cat. She’s based in Venice, where she spends her free time by the beach, playing tennis, hiking the canyons and cooking with her friends and family.

Senior PR Consultant

Robin Carol

Robin Carol has spent more than a decade working in public relations, marketing and advancement for businesses, museums, libraries, and causes. Her expertise in media placement, publicity and messaging has garnered national and international attention.

Robin Carol has spent more than a decade working in public relations, marketing and advancement for businesses, museums, libraries, and causes. Her expertise in media placement, publicity and messaging has garnered national and international attention. From launching LinkedIn's Influencer program to announcing the installation of wind turbines on the Eiffel Tower to creating the global hashtag #MuseumMomentofZen, Robin brings passion, creativity and deep insight to tell stories that move, engage and catalyze audiences.

Prior to launching her communications consulting practice, Robin held leadership roles at organizations including the Rubin Museum of Art, DKC Public Relations, and UGE International. She is a graduate of Tufts University and lives in Brooklyn, NY, where she spends weekends visiting museums, cooking, practicing yoga, and dancing.

PR Specialist

Stacee Collins

As a PR Specialist, Stacee Collins supports strategic plan execution for clients across the U.S. Stacee’s core responsibilities include press list development and management, media relations, byline pitching, client timeline tracking, and various research and reporting initiatives across multiple accounts.

As a PR Specialist, Stacee Collins supports strategic plan execution for clients across the U.S. Stacee’s core responsibilities include press list development and management, media relations, byline pitching, client timeline tracking, and various research and reporting initiatives across multiple accounts.

Following her success as an intern and part-time employee at Blast, Stacee was awarded a full-time role on the team in May 2019. She also interned at a variety of PR firms in Austin, including Mercom Communications and Paula Biehler PR.

She graduated with high honors from the University of Texas at Austin and holds a B.S. in Public Relations. In her free time, Stacee enjoys discovering new music, playing the Super Nintendo and exploring Austin with her dog Odie.

Accounting & Office Manager

Nancy Hirsch

As Accounting & Office Manager at Blast, Nancy keeps accounts, payroll and employee benefits in tip top shape.

As accounting and office manager at Blast, Nancy keeps accounts, payroll, and employee benefits in tip top shape. Leveraging her vast experience in personnel management, she keeps the internal machine running smoothly.

Earning her degree from UCLA, Nancy excelled in office management, with a number of New York companies. She later established her own business services firm.

Her love of travel takes her all over the world, but Oaxaca, Mexico holds a special place in her heart. She is a lover of the arts, and an avid reader in her spare time.

PR Coordinator

Anne Bowers

As a PR Coordinator, Anne Bowers supports strategic plan execution for clients across the U.S. Anne’s core responsibilities involve media relations and pitching, client timeline tracking, press list development and management along with various research and reporting initiatives across multiple accounts.

As a PR Coordinator, Anne Bowers supports strategic plan execution for clients across the U.S. Anne’s core responsibilities involve media relations and pitching, client timeline tracking, press list development and management along with various research and reporting initiatives across multiple accounts.

Prior to becoming a PR Coordinator, Anne interned at Blast PR’s Raleigh office. She was previously a PR intern and Social Media Intern at a variety of companies in Raleigh. Through these experiences, Anne discovered her love and enthusiasm for PR.

Anne continued her family’s generational legacy by graduating from Virginia Tech in 2021 with a BA in Communications and a minor in Consumer Studies. She enjoys all things beauty or make-up related, is an expert on the TV show “Friends,” and loves anything involving cats. In her free time, you can find Anne watching her favorite reality TV shows and maintaining an active lifestyle by running with her family or attending fitness classes.

Case Studies

Let's Connect

Inquiries:
information@blastpr.com  |  877.544.6676

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Santa Barbara, CA

Mountain
Denver, CO

Central
Austin, TX

Eastern
Raleigh, NC