Approach

C. Blohm & Associates uses a three-step process to achieve successful visibility results. We use both established and emerging media channels. Using discovery, engagement and evaluation, we create conversations that make an impact with influencers and thought leaders in the education industry and special needs markets.

3-steps_CB+A

Values

We’re passionate about what we do. Our number one goal is to expand the reach of our clients’ public relations initiatives.  We use our time-tested knowledge of communications in the education industry to help them deliver their message and surpass their goals. Our guiding values are the roadmap by which we meet these opportunities.

CB&A Beliefs and Guiding Principles:
• Education is valuable. All kids deserve a chance.
• Every individual has unique strengths to offer, and deserves the appropriate tools to harness these gifts.
• The power of storytelling and carefully chosen words to convey vivid ideas and meaning.
• Sharing, collaborating and communicating to address challenges and opportunities together.
• Responsibility and accountability to the taxpayers who support our education system.
• Respect for all and doing right by others.

Why Us

Thanks to our focused expertise, we know how to tailor your communications with depth and genuine resonance. With a guiding principle of “Visibility Matters,” we work tirelessly to get you noticed, build brand loyalty and create staying power among educators, therapists, parents and students.

Whether you’re an international market leader or an emerging enterprise, we’ll work with you to define your goals and help you achieve them. Our deeply rooted industry relationships, dedication to the community and results-driven ethos create successful solutions.

Impactful Relationships

We’ve established relationships with the media. Our knowledge of social channels is unmatched. Members of the CB&A client family average millions of impressions per month in target publications including online venues. We help them develop long-standing relationships with media venues that matter most.

A Dedication to Making a Difference

We’re passionate about giving back to the community, whether it’s reading to kids at the local elementary school, providing supplies to teachers or ringing bells on behalf of the Salvation Army. We measure success in the lives touched and generations enriched.

Results

We help our clients build and execute strategic communications plans that significantly boost their visibility, which in turn has a substantial impact on their bottom line. Each client’s plan is customized to focus on their business objectives and key audiences.

Expertise

Members of the CB&A team are frequently asked to contribute articles and lead presentations at industry events. Additionally, Charlene is active in leadership roles with a number of industry associations.

Presentations

• Presenter, Securing National Visibility for Autism Research Results, ATIA, Feb 2016 (Charlene Blohm, Pamela Rollins)
• Contributor, What You Need to Know about Building, Marketing and Selling Products for Special Needs Students, SIIA’s Education Business Forum Roundtable , Dec 2015 (Charlene Blohm)
• Moderator, Selling Success with Focused Sales & Marketing Boot Camp, SIIA’s Education Industry Summit, May 2015 (Charlene Blohm)
• Panelist, How Social Media Can Help You Win Educator Friends and Influence School Leaders, SIIA’s Education Industry Summit, May 2015 (Charlene Blohm)
• Co-presenter, CoSN’s CETL Summit (Certified Education Technology Leaders), March 2015 (Charlene Blohm)
• Interviewer, EdNET Insider, Selling to Schools Radio, October 2014 (Saul Hafenbredl)
• Presenter, Game-Changing Market Opportunities: Leveraging Social Media to Stay Competitive, SIIA’s Education Business Forum, December 2014 (Saul Hafenbredl)
• Co-presenter for roundtable discussion at EdNET 2014: Taking the Pulse. Uncovering Trends. A Year Four Perspective. September 2014 (Charlene Blohm with Linda Winter)
• Reviewer/Judge for Pitchfests: Reviews of Company Marketing Plans, SIIA Education Industry Summit, May 2014 (Emily Embury)
• Interviewee, How to Use Social Media to Engage School Administrators, Selling to Schools on BlogTalkRadio, July 2013 (Charlene Blohm)
• Panelist, Shifts that are Changing How Products are Being Marketed, SIIA’s Ed Tech Business Forum, November 27, 2012 (Charlene Blohm)
• Contributors, Educators Speak Out About Traditional and Social Media – Together We’ll Explore the Implications for Education Marketers, EdNET 2012 Roundtable, October, 2012 (Charlene Blohm & Linda Winter)
• Contributors, What Educators Say, Think, and Do With Your Marketing Communications, EdNET Roundtable, September, 2011 (Charlene Blohm & Linda Winter)

Articles

Do’s and Dont’s of CTO Communications with Local Media, CoSN CETL blog, May 2015 (Charlene Blohm)
• How CTOs Can Share Success with a Wider Audience, CoSN CETL blog, May 2015 (Charlene Blohm)
• How CTOs Can Communicate with Internal Stakeholders More Effectively, CoSN CETL blog, April 2015 (Charlene Blohm)
• What Are CTOs’ Biggest Communications Challenges? CoSN CETL blog, April 2015 (Charlene Blohm)
How to Drive K-12 Sales in a WebCentric World, Selling To Schools, Dec 2012 (Charlene Blohm)
• Integrating Social Media and Traditional PR for Better Brand-Building, Chapter 4, “Marketing”, in SIIA’s The Experts’ Guide to the Postsecondary Education Market, June 2011 (Charlene Blohm)
Desktop and Web Widgets, Education Channel Partner, January 2009 (Charlene Blohm)

  • Charlene Blohm


    Charlene earned a Master of Business Administration degree from the University of the Incarnate Word and a Bachelor of Arts degree in journalism from the University of Wisconsin–Madison. She has more than 20 years experience in the communications and marketing fields. Since founding CB&A in 1991, Charlene has worked with publishers and manufacturers whose products span the educational landscape, from traditionally printed books to broadband-delivered online curriculum. Her expertise in developing and implementing strategic marketing plans has been fine-tuned over the years, and she’s now one of the “go-to” people in the educational publishing industry. Charlene began her career as a reporter, columnist and managing editor for newspapers in Montana and Texas.


    Q & A

    • What was the first meal you learned to cook? I know I burned it. I made beef hash with potatoes and gravy. It was a mess and I had no idea what temperature to cook it at. You should’ve seen my dad’s face when he ate it.
    • Favorite movie? Bagdad Café and Once the Musical. In both cases the music teleports you to a different time and place and you become one with the movie.
    • Best PR advice you can fit inside a Tweet? Customer stories are key. Your prospects want to hear and learn in an authentic way from your customer base.
    • If you could have one super power, what would it be? Read people’s minds. Wouldn’t it be fabulous to create key message text that answered the unstated needs of educators and therapists?
    • Best vacation you ever took? Fishing and canoeing at a cottage in northern Wisconsin. We canoed four lakes in three days and had to use the second stringer in the boat.

    a CHARLENE BLOHM, Founder & President

    Emily Embury


    A graduate of the University of Wisconsin–Madison, Emily earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in journalism and women’s studies. Devoted to working with organizations whose overall mission benefits the community, she completed internships with two nonprofit organizations while in college. Emily joined CB&A in 2004, and previously held titles of Account Executive and Account Supervisor. She works in partnership with clients to develop and execute strategic public relations and social media plans to achieve their visibility goals. In her expanded leadership role, Emily also oversees campaigns, manages team members and supports the overall growth of the agency. She is an active member of PRSA and regularly attends Social Media Breakfast events. A certified master gardener, Emily enjoys digging in the dirt and spoiling her dog Barley.


    Q & A

    • Dogs or cats? Woof. My dog Barley, a soft coated wheaten terrier, is a big brother to my son Arlo.
    • Morning or night person? Morning but only if a good cup of coffee is available. A coconut latte would be even better!
    • Favorite sport and team? Football. I grew up in Green Bay and used to work for the Packers.
    • If you weren't in PR, what would you be doing? Running an organic farm with goats. I’m a master gardener and love goat cheese.
    • Best PR advice you can fit inside of a tweet? Act like a duck...stay calm, cool and collected on the surface even if you're paddling like crazy under water.

    a EMILY EMBURY, Account Director

    Saul Hafenbredl


    Saul attended the University of Wisconsin–Madison where he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in journalism with an emphasis in strategic communication. While in school, he held positions with several Madison-based organizations such as the Associated Students of Madison, StudyBlue, Inc. and the Greater Madison Chamber of Commerce. Saul joined CB&A as a PR & social media account coordinator in 2011, was promoted to Account Executive in 2012, and Account Manager in 2014. In his expanded role, Saul completes more strategic client work while playing a larger part in leading account services. He prides himself on adding innovative nuances to traditional methods and helping clients surpass their goals. A Wisconsin native, Saul has adapted to the state’s decidedly temperamental climate. He enjoys outdoor activities and breathing as much fresh air as possible.


    Q & A

    • Dogs or cats? I love animals in general, but dogs win this match-up. I'm the proud dad of a wonderfully affectionate and needy Yellow Lab named Garrett.
    • If you could have dinner with your favorite literary character or author, who would you choose? Hemingway. Although he probably drank more dinners than he ate.
    • What's your favorite sport and team? I back all of the Wisconsin sports teams, but my favorite team is whoever happens to be playing against the Cubs and Bears.
    • If you weren't in PR, what would you be doing? I've wanted to work in PR for a long time, so I haven't really thought about it much. But I would probably be working on the other side of the desk, so to speak, as a journalist.
    • Favorite condiment? Exotic, spicy mustards. Ranch dressing is also good on most things.

    a SAUL HAFENBREDL, Public Relations Manager

    Donna Kraenzle


    Donna is a graduate of Avila University, earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in Special Education (ED/LD/MR). After teaching for several years, she completed graduate course work at Kansas University and Lindenwood University before moving to management positions with commercial real estate and investment banking companies in Kansas City, Mo. In 1995, Donna began a 10-year stint as Business Manager with HealthTech Solutions in St. Louis, Mo., followed by a move to CPI Corp. as Director of the Business & Institutional Services Division. Under her leadership, the division grew to a multi-million dollar business focused on providing professional business portraits. Donna recently moved to Madison to be closer to family, especially three “totally adorable” grandchildren. She is a certified Zumba instructor and hospice volunteer.


    Q & A

    • Favorite movie? The Color Purple
    • If you could have one super power, what would it be? Power to heal, definitely!
    • Best vacation you ever took? Spent a couple of months touring Europe.
    • If you weren’t in PR, what would you be doing? Leading a non-profit organization or creating pocket neighborhoods in communities.
    • If you could have dinner with your favorite literary author or character, who would you choose? I would have loved to sit down with the incredible author and humorist Terry Pratchett and talk a little Discworld and life in general.

    a DONNA KRAENZLE, Office Manager

    Dusten Carlson


    Dusten earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in English with a minor in Creative Writing from Anderson University in Anderson, Ind., as well as a Masters in Education from Rockford University in Rockford, Ill. After graduation, he started a career in new media and has worked as a blogger, journalist, editor and editorial contributor for many online and print publications and magazines. Dusten also co-owned an online publication focused on social media enterprise and culture for two years, which he and his partners sold in 2013. He joined CB&A as an Account Executive with a simple impetus; to create compelling content that reflects his dedication and passion for the education and special needs industries. Dusten also enjoys reading, spending time outdoors, volunteering, and music (so if you’re looking to start a band, you might want to shoot him an email).


    Q & A

    • Early riser or night owl? A little of both, depends on the day. Workdays, early riser for sure. Weekends, well…
    • What would be your last meal on Earth? If I knew I was going to die, I wouldn’t be able to keep anything down.
    • What is the first meal you learned to cook? Either Pizza Rolls or Ramen (I learned in college, obviously).
    • If you could have one super power, what would it be? Shape shifting for sure. Imagine what an employment advantage it would be if you could be your boss in that meeting she can’t make it to!
    • If you could have dinner with your favorite literary author or character, who would you choose? Ernest Hemingway. Another no-brainer.

    a DUSTEN CARLSON, Account Executive

  • Chloe Scheller


    Chloe comes to CB&A with a background in managing media relations for nonprofits, startups and established businesses. She earned her stripes at a public relations agency in Austin, Texas, where she worked on campaigns for a luxury hotel and its restaurant, a local architect, an estate jeweler, a navigation app, and staple Austin events such as Lemonade Day Austin. More than 6,000 K-8 students participate in this annual, citywide event, which teaches fundamental lessons of business entrepreneurship by showing youngsters how to start, own and operate a lemonade stand. Chloe earned her Bachelors of Arts in communication with an emphasis in public relations at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay. As an account executive, she helps clients reach their business goals through earning media coverage, forming strategic partnerships, increasing social media engagement, crafting effective messaging and positioning clients as thought leaders in the education and special needs industries. Outside of work, Chloe enjoys traveling the world, outdoor adventures and eating out at the latest hotspots in town.


    Q & A

    • Dog or cat person? Dog wins this battle hands down. I am a mother to an Australian Cattle Dog mix, Chief, and a mystery mutt, Bandit. They are the funniest duo and forever keep me entertained.
    • Best PR advice you can fit inside a Tweet? Want a loyal following? People don’t buy products or services. They buy stories.
    • What would be your last meal on Earth? This is a tough question for a self-proclaimed foodie so I’d have to go with a buffet where I can eat sushi, pho, jambalaya, barbecue and breakfast tacos in one sitting.
    • If you could have dinner with your favorite literary author or character, who would you choose? Jay Gatsby. I’d love to go to one of his extravagant 1920s parties at his grand mansion in West Egg.
    • If you could have one super power, what would it be? To be in two places at once. Imagine all the things you could accomplish and experience if you had twice the amount of time in the day.

    a CHLOE SCHELLER, Account Executive

    Lauren West


    Lauren earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in psychology and sociology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She developed a love for PR and social media while completing several internships, including stints with a UW student food publication The Dish, and a Chicago-based dating service. While in the Windy City, Lauren enjoyed expanding her PR knowledge in the Publicity Club of Chicago, and as an CB&A Account Executive, she puts her affinity for writing and meaningful communication to good use. Decidedly Midwestern, she’s lived in Minnesota, Illinois and Wisconsin. When not working, Lauren is probably at a Badger game, dining at the newest restaurant with friends or catching up on favorite TV shows.


    Q & A

    • Dog or cat person? Dog. My childhood cat used to scratch me so I’m literally and figuratively scarred.
    • What would be your last meal on Earth? Noodles & Co. Spicy Chicken Caesar Sandwich and cookies and cream ice cream as dessert.
    • If you weren’t in PR, what would you be doing? Going to grad school to be a school psychologist.
    • Best vacation you ever took? I went to the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, CA and then stayed in Vegas a couple times.
    • Favorite movie? Sixteen Candles.

    a LAUREN WEST, Account Executive

    Aaron Krish


    Aaron attended the University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point, earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in communication with a public relations emphasis. During that time, he served on student government, held a committee chair position for Stevens Point’s PRSSA chapter and wrote for the campus newspaper – The Pointer. Prior to joining CB&A, Aaron completed an internship with an entertainment and arts agency in London, England, and worked within the consumer-marketing practice at Edelman PR in Chicago. Outside the office, Aaron can be found at the nearest coffee shop, reading, or catching up with the latest TV shows on Netflix.


    Q & A

    • If you weren’t in PR, what would you be doing? The answer to this changes daily. I’d love to own a coffee shop/brewery/publishing house.
    • If you could have one super power, what would it be? I’d chose invisibility or the ability to fly, but I’m not sure I’d be able to pick one or the other.
    • Best vacation you ever took? Spending New Year’s in Sydney, Australia and spending a summer in London are at the top of my list.
    • If you could have dinner with your favorite literary author or character, who would you choose? Authors: Douglas Adams, Agatha Christie, Sherman Alexie or J.K. Rowling.
    • What was your favorite part of going to school at your alma mater? I always felt that where you go to school needs to feel like home, and Stevens Point is where I’m my most authentic self.

    a AARON KRISH, Account Coordinator

    Kelsea Kierstead


    Kelsea earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in psychology and journalism, with an emphasis in strategic communication. While at UW-Madison, she honed content marketing and social media skills during internships with Pop-Dot Marketing and Legato Healthcare Marketing. Kelsea discovered her passion for education, especially regarding students with special needs, through work as a fitness instructor at UW Rec Sports, and as a direct service provider for children with autism at Integrated Development Services. At CB&A, she applies her love for storytelling and education to help her clients reach their visibility goals. A true Wisconsinite, Kelsea enjoys racing sailboats on Midwest waters, water-skiing, running and spending time with family and friends.


    Q & A

    • Early riser or night owl? Earlier riser, but I always take coffee.
    • Best PR advice you can fit inside a Tweet? Never forget that a pitch is someone’s story you're telling.
    • If you weren't in PR, what would you be doing? Directing or scripting the Animal Planet show, Too Cute.
    • Favorite movie? Finding Nemo. (With fronds like these, who needs anemones?)
    • If you could have dinner with your favorite literary author or character, who would you choose? Susannah Cahalan, journalist and author of Brain on Fire.

    a KELSEA KIERSTEAD, Account Coordinator

    Aleesha Halbach


    A graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Aleesha earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in journalism with an emphasis in strategic communication. Passionate about social justice and diversity issues, she worked at the Division of Diversity at UW-Madison to help increase access for underrepresented students in STEM through outreach, mentorship and programming. Aleesha joined CB&A in 2014 as a PR & Social Media Intern. When not at work, you can usually find her jet-setting to a new city, or Instagramming the latest and greatest brunch spot.


    Q & A

    • Number one song played on your iPod? Make Me Proud by Drake
    • What would be your last meal on Earth? A traditional prosciutto Neapolitan pizza, maybe with an egg on top. Mmmm.
    • If you weren’t in PR, what would you be doing? Working in higher ed diversity programs.
    • Favorite candy? This is a no brainer, Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups.
    • Best vacation you ever took? It’s tied between last year’s trips to New Orleans and San Diego.

    a ALEESHA HALBACH, Account Coordinator

  • Quinn Buchanan


    Quinn is a UW-Madison alumna with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and Communication Arts. She followed her passion for writing and communication by interning at both the University of Wisconsin Press and the Credit Union National Association. Her position as an undergraduate Writing Fellow also refined her editing and leadership skills. As a CB&A Account Coordinator, Quinn continues to utilize her effective communication skills and tell the stories of CB&A clients. In her free time, Quinn enjoys playing board games with friends, spending time with her dogs and deciding which TV show to binge watch next.


    Q & A

    • Dog or cat person? I’m one of the biggest dog lovers you’ll ever meet. My family has an Australian shepherd named Dudley and a mini dachshund named Coco.
    • Best PR advice you can fit inside a Tweet? Know your client’s story well enough to be able to tell it in diverse ways.
    • What’s the first meal you learned to cook? Grilled cheese and tomato soup
    • Favorite movie? Titanic has it all: romance, action, Leonardo DiCaprio…
    • If you could have dinner with your favorite literary author or character, who would you choose? Winnie the Pooh would be a delight to have at the dinner table.

    a QUINN BUCHANAN, Account Coordinator

    Lydia Jerabek


    Lydia earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in communication with a public relations emphasis from the University of Wisconsin - Stevens Point. She found her passion for PR and social media after joining Stevens Point’s PRSSA chapter where she held a leadership position. Lydia expanded her knowledge of the PR field by interning at non-profits and a five star hotel in London, England. Before joining the CB&A team, Lydia cultivated her digital experience as an intern for Golin in Dallas, Texas. When not in the office, Lydia is probably creating content for her blog, reading, or exploring the Madison area.


    Q & A

    • What would be your last meal on Earth? Tortellini, breadsticks, green beans, and peach cobbler.
    • If you weren’t in PR, what would you be doing? I’m not sure. I love PR.
    • Best vacation you ever took? Europe 2015
    • Favorite Candy? Cookie Dough
    • What was your favorite part of going to school at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point? PRSSA (Public Relations Student Society of America)

    a LYDIA JERABEK, Account Coordinator

    Danny Paulmeyer


    Danny is a Marquette University alum with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Public Relations. During his time at Marquette, Danny refined his writing and communication skills by interning at the Milwaukee Common Council and Laughlin-Constable. He also was the president of Marquette’s PRSSA chapter. Before joining C. Blohm & Associates, he spent time at GE Healthcare and the Journal Media Group. In his current role as an Account Coordinator, Danny works with his clients to find new and interesting ways to tell their stories. New to Madison, Danny spends his free time learning his new city while trying to not get lost, but that’s only if he’s not drinking coffee or binging a show on Netflix.


    Q & A

    • Early riser or night owl? Early riser thanks to coffee
    • Number one song played on your iPod? Probably Taylor Swift. Haters gonna hate, hate, hate&ellip;
    • What is the first meal you learned to cook? Pasta, just boil it and ready to go!
    • If you could have dinner with your favorite literary author or character, who would you choose? I am the proud owner of all 8 Harry Potter movies.
    • What was your favorite part of going to school at Marquette University? Being in a city where there was always so much to do and a new place to go to.

    a DANNY PAULMEYER, Account Coordinator

    Paul Mamelka


    Paul administers our Macintosh network, scripts the servers, and helps the team keep the CB&A website up-to-date. He’s also the author of our in-house database system and copy editor of last resort. Although loathe to admit it, he’s spent some 40 years working with computers as a systems analyst, programmer and web designer, including stints with Control Data Corp., State of Wisconsin, University of Wisconsin–Madison, and Texas Biomedical Research Institute in San Antonio. He completed a math and computer science degree (before it was fashionable) at University of Waterloo in Ontario, Canada.


    Q & A

    • Dog or cat person? Cat: Enigmatic critters, they might be indifferent, or merely diffident; who can tell?
    • Best PR Advice you can fit inside a Tweet? Eschew obfuscation.
    • Number one song played on your iPod? Female: “Island of Wonder”, Nelly Furtado. Male: "Mystery Train", Elvis Presley
    • If you could have dinner with your favorite literary author or character, who would you choose? Author(s): Margaret Atwood or ee cummings; character: Don Quixote.
    • What would be your last meal on Earth? The meal I ate before being kidnapped by aliens from Ursa Minor; a heaping bowl of borsch, hopefully.
    • a PAUL MAMELKA, IT Administrator

To monitor trends within the industry, advance our clients’ interests and support client communications planning, CB&A is an active member of the following associations and organizations.