Carnegie Mellon University


The University Communications & Marketing (UCM) Creative Team is the university’s central source for video, photo and print materials. The team delivers creative solutions to specific needs while meeting university objectives — from large-scale brand and visual efforts to one-time departmental projects as a cost-recovery unit. This group is responsible for defining and maintaining the university's Brand Blueprint and Guidelines including the university sign standards. The Creative team creates materials, from concept to execution, for UCM, executive communications and many of the university's academic and administrative units.

photo of Brian James

Brian James

Senior Director, Creative

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Brian leads the creative team within the Marketing & Communications department. He provides oversight and leadership which contributes to CMU's brand strategy development. Brian's career is rooted in North Carolina tobacco advertising, through which he learned consumer behavior and the power of brand loyalty. Since quitting tobacco marketing cold turkey, he has practiced and refined strategies to brand everything from startups to national household products over the past 25 years. He lives in the North Hills of Pittsburgh with his wife and two very competitive teenage boys.

Asset and Content Curation

The Content and Asset Curation team strategize, implement and manage processes and resources that are critical to the development of creative content for marketing and earned media efforts. This includes CMU’s digital asset management system, main YouTube channel and the online Brand Center.
photo of Carrie Chisholm

Carrie Chisholm

Director, Asset and Content Curation

Carrie has worked in Creative at CMU for more than 10 years. She serves as the first point of contact for all video and photo projects. Her primary role is to strategically plan and execute video and photo coverage for major university initiatives and events. Carrie has a bachelor’s degree in professional writing from Wheeling Jesuit University in her home state of West Virginia, and a master’s degree from the University of Exeter in South West England. When she is not running projects, Carrie makes good use of running gear stuffed in one of her filing drawers.

photo of Judith Pearson

Judith Pearson

Senior Project Manager

Judith manages creative services projects for clients university-wide. She is a certified Project Management Professional with experience in higher education, advertising agencies and design firms. Prior to CMU, she worked for more than 10 years in support of The Art Institutes. She is an expert in project management, production management, workflow development, quality assurance and problem-solving. Judith mastered the art of typesetting back in the day, and can still measure a pica and a point by eye. She also is a licensed Pilates instructor.

photo of Emily Salerno

Emily Salerno

Content Production Specialist

Emily has over 24 years of graphic design experience in manufacturing and retail, and most recently spent 14 years working at Giant Eagle directing photography and maintaining production of the weekly circular. As content production specialist, Emily is responsible for the curation and maintenance of UCM's Digital Asset Management System (DAM) for all marketing and communications departments at CMU, in addition to CMU's presence on YouTube. When Em isn't playing in her flower gardens or training her crazy puppy, she's likely curating her large extensive private crafting, beads and paint supply collection.


The Design Team is responsible for preserving and advancing CMU's visual identity. Whether creating visual presence for the university or marketing material for specific units, the team incorporates the overall strategy and standards of the Carnegie Mellon University brand. Project managers work closely with the academic and administrative units to assist in a wide range of initiatives while the design team executes to the most professional standards.

photo of Mark Werle

Mark Werle

Director, Design

Mark leads the Design team within the University Communications and Marketing department. He guides creative direction, building the reputation of CMU’s brand and school initiatives across print, social media and digital platforms. Mark’s career began by designing consumer packaging before pivoting from an in-house design team to a small agency owner. Through these experiences, he discovered the power of brand strategies, consumer behavior and consistent marketing and communication. Mark tends to tell a few too many dad-jokes and enjoys hiking with his family in the great outdoors.

photo of Deborah Allen

Deborah Allen

Production Artist

Deborah produces print-ready art and assists with preparing photos and digital graphics for university websites and emails. She has a bachelor’s degree in graphic design from LaRoche College and a diploma in web design from The Art institute of Pittsburgh. Her knowledge and appreciation for print production is equaled by her love of typography and branding. Prior to CMU, Deborah worked primarily with nonprofits in education and the arts. When she is not behind a computer, Deborah is a hands-on board member of Handmade Arcade, Pittsburgh’s largest independent craft fair. She enjoys weekends collaborating with her family on big renovations to their small, historic Victorian home.

photo of Rob Azarcon

Rob Azarcon

Senior Graphic Designer

Rob Azarcon creates visual solutions for the strategic needs of University Communications & Marketing with a focus on enhancing CMU’s reputation and brand. Prior to CMU, Rob did agency, non-profit and corporate work and has even worked for himself. Born in the Philippines, he immigrated to the U.S. when he was 13 years old. He earned his bachelor's degree in graphic design from Penn State University. His time outside of work is spent driving his children to various activities, listening to podcasts, reading non-fiction, playing soccer and evangelizing for the Oxford comma.

Alli Goimarac

Senior Graphic Designer

Alli joins the team as a senior graphic designer, creating design solutions for university initiatives and admissions. She comes with experience in both small marketing agencies and large retail corporations, and earned a B.F.A in graphic design from Bowling Green State University. Outside of work, Alli enjoys painting and illustrating and is often found redecorating her apartment, exploring local Pittsburgh breweries or searching for her next travel spot.

photo of Sue Layton

Sue Layton

Project Manager, University Brand

Sue works with CMU’s schools, colleges, departments and global locations to advance and protect the university’s identity. She often partners with the Office of General Counsel and the Trademark Licensing Office and serves as a consultant for proper usage of trademarked graphics, photographs and videos. Prior to CMU, Sue worked in advertising agencies in project management and graphic design for more than 25 years. She still has two grown sons at home, whom she loves to death, but she welcomes suggestions of how to get them out.

Kelsey Stark

Junior Graphic Designer

Kelsey joins University Communications and Marketing as a junior designer, working with the Design team on a variety of projects. Prior to working at CMU, she worked at two other Pittsburgh-based companies, UPMC and GNC. She has a bachelor’s degree in graphic design from Penn State. When not at her desk, you can find Kelsey perusing the aisles of her favorite thrift stores or dancing with the Pittsburgh Ceili Club.

Photography and Video

The Photography & Video team tells the unique story of the university by capturing and showcasing CMU’s groundbreaking research, world-changing students and faculty and beautiful campus with high quality photography and video compositions.

The team works with partners across the university on projects ranging from quick turnaround photos and videos for press releases and social media to highly produced pieces in support of major university initiatives, and provides artistic and technical consultation.

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Vincent Varsalona

Director, Visual Storytelling

Vinny joins the University Communications and Marketing team as director of visual storytelling, working with the video and photography teams to produce relevant and exciting stories about CMU. He comes to CMU with many years of experience as a video producer and earned a B.F.A in film and television from Savannah College of Art and Design. Outside of work, Vinny enjoys cooking, skiing and spending time with his fiancé, Vincent, and his 85lb dog, Jersey.

photo of Di-ay Battad

Di-ay Battad

Principal Video Producer

Di-ay (they/them) leads the creation of high-quality video content to showcase the university’s initiatives, people, programs and research. Previously, Di-ay ran video and photo operations for Student Affairs at the University of Pittsburgh. They have a BFA from CMU's School of Art with a concentration in Electronic and Time-Based Media, and have shown video, sound and two-dimensional work nationally and internationally. When not in the middle of a creative project, Di-ay is growing plants and eating them; exploring by bike or foot; learning or teaching; or looking at one of the several books they’re currently reading.

photo of Rebecca Devereaux

Rebecca Devereaux

Multimedia Specialist

As part of the photo & video team, Rebecca creates compelling photos, video and multimedia stories that contribute to the story of CMU. Rebecca approaches her craft with an artistic eye and a focus on visual storytelling. After earning her BFA in photography from Point Park University, she led video and multimedia production at Whitman College, produced video and photography for Oberlin College and spent over a decade freelancing for various clients. Outside of CMU, Rebecca teaches video editing online and enjoys puns, nature, music, trying new coffee shops, playing D&D with her friends, hanging out with her cat and spending time with her significant other in Chicago.

photo of Kevin Lorenzi

Kevin Lorenzi

Senior Photographer

Kevin manages incoming requests for photographic services and embraces collaboration in producing high-impact imagery that gives visual voice to the CMU story. Prior to joining CMU, he worked as photojournalist for over a decade in Western Pennsylvania. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Professional Photographic Illustration from Rochester Institute of Technology. When not holding a camera in his hands, he’s likely reaching for the next hold at a climbing gym or reaching for rusty gold and vintage treasures that speak to the Pittsburgh’s rich cultural and industrial history.

photo of Jordan Taylor

Jordan Taylor

Senior Video Producer

Jordan is a seasoned video producer with extensive experience in video editing and music production. With over two decades of multimedia expertise, he has tackled a wide range of projects, including television shows, commercials and audio-visual operations on cruise ships, as well as live game-day videos for the Pittsburgh Steelers. When he's not working, he enjoys producing music, watching movies and traveling the world with his significant other.