Carnegie Mellon University

Strategy & Operations

Strategy & Operations staff coordinate efforts across the division, from leading CMU’s long-term marketing and communications planning to executing daily functions such as executive communications, analytics and metrics, special projects, budgeting, human relations and administrative work. The team supports leadership communications by ensuring the accuracy and timely flow of information to and from the President’s and Provost’s offices, and aligning communications with other institutional priorities and communications efforts.

Sophie Elias

Sophie Elias

Associate Vice President, Strategy & Operations 

Sophie is the associate vice president for strategy & operations. As a senior leader and chief of staff to the vice president, she helps translate the division’s mission into action, developing strategic plans and organizing operations and resources. She leads the executive communications team in close collaboration with the offices of the president and provost and also manages high-impact projects for increased global visibility. Prior to CMU, Sophie worked for two international public relations firms, Fleishman Hillard and Ketchum Communications, serving clients across a number of channels and industries. Outside work, she stays active by keeping up with her two children and mountain biking with her husband.

photo of Noele Creamer

Noele Creamer

Executive Communications Manager

Noele manages the communications process for the Office of the President. Prior to CMU, she worked in executive communications at Westinghouse Electric Company and public relations at Seton Hill University. She has a bachelor’s degree in English from California University of Pennsylvania and master’s degrees in writing from Seton Hill University and Chatham University. Noele loves all things outdoors and homesteads on a small farm, raising fruit and veggie gardens, chickens, four children and various look-what-followed-me-home pets.

Kara Kessler

Kara Kessler

Strategic Communications Manager

Kara helps coordinate and manage major projects, such as the university’s Tony Awards partnership and participation in the World Economic Forum. She earned her undergraduate degree in communications from Clarion University of Pennsylvania and her master’s degree in journalism and mass communications from Point Park University. Prior to CMU, she worked for UPMC and Allegheny Health Network, United Way of Allegheny County and H.J. Heinz Company. While at Heinz, she was a part of the corporate team who created the company’s float for the 2000 Rose Bowl Parade.

photo of Beth Wiser

Beth Wiser

Director, Visitor Experience

Beth works collaboratively across campus to create and maintain an exceptional visitor experience. Prior to CMU, she welcomed visitors to large and small universities for more than three decades in undergraduate admissions, working closely with marketing and communications staff on messaging and strategy. Most recently, Beth was the executive director of Admissions at The University of Vermont. Beth received her bachelor’s degree from Emory University and her master’s degree and Ph.D. from The Ohio State University. She has visited hundreds of college campuses, including some with her two children during their college searches. Beth lives near Highland Park with her wife, who also works at CMU, and their black Labrador, Teegan.