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*2020 NYSPRA Communicator of the Year*
Jean oversees a school communications staff of nine and a printing staff of five, leading both departments with her signature kindness, compassion and integrity. She began working for OHM BOCES in 2002 as a public relations assistant and later became the senior public relations specialist in 2009, after leaving for a short time to write for SUNY Cortland. She added supervision of the OHM BOCES Print Shop to her duties in the spring of 2019.
Jean has been a part of a large number of successful initiatives at the BOCES during her tenure, including a capital project, development of a new mission statement in 2012, the 65th-anniversary celebration, rebranding and new website launches.
She also served as a volunteer for the International Boxing Hall of Fame for 16 years, including 10 years as the Information Booth/Induction Seating Chairperson. Jean is a graduate of Horseheads High School and earned her bachelor’s degree in public relations/journalism from Utica College.
In her free time, Jean can be found reading or watching Law & Order: SVU at her new home in Oneida; spending time with her husband, puppy, family and friends; or going to concerts.
“Daring greatly means the courage to be vulnerable. It means to show up and be seen. To ask for what you need. To talk about how you’re feeling. To have the hard conversations.” -- Brené Brown
Supervisor of Communications and Printing Services
Andrea brings a wealth of knowledge and more than 14 years of experience in graphic design and photography to her role as Graphic Services Supervisor at OHM BOCES. In addition to her job experience working at BOCES since 2006, she earned her associate degrees in graphic design and graphic arts technology from Mohawk Valley Community College and is a graduate of the Graphic Design certificate program at the Madison-Oneida BOCES.
As Graphic Services Supervisor, Andrea makes sure that all graphics projects are on schedule and meet the high quality our office is known for. Her dedication and pride in her work have earned her numerous photography and design awards at both the state and national levels. In addition to her duties in School Communications, Andrea also assists with pre-press in the Print Shop and is a certified Blackboard/Schoolwires trainer. Above all, Andrea encourages creativity, innovation and fun in the office.
When she’s not at work, Andrea loves spending time with her husband, their three daughters, and their mischievous monster puppies.
"When one of us shines, all of us shine." -- Moira Rose
Graphic Services Supervisor
As our Public Relations Specialist, Rebecca maintains the OHM BOCES social media channels and website, coordinates media relations and collaborates on a variety of other PR projects throughout the organization. Rebecca works closely with BOCES staff and administrators to share the stories and achievements of BOCES programs and students. She’s always on the lookout for the next new and exciting thing happening at BOCES.
Rebecca earned her Associate of Arts degree in Humanities from Herkimer County Community College and her Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications with a Public Relations concentration from SUNY Plattsburgh. Prior to joining OHM BOCES in 2016, Rebecca honed her customer service and PR skills while working in higher education public relations, healthcare industry marketing and human resources. During her time at BOCES, she has served as a judge for the SCNSPRA Rewards for Excellence and INSPRA Communications Contest.
Outside of work, Rebecca enjoys listening to podcasts, growing her own vegetables, cooking and baking, watching hockey and lacrosse, and spending time with her two beagles.
"Make it work." -- Tim Gunn
Public Relations Specialist
Cheri’s strength in multitasking and innate ability to predict what clients are looking for makes her the go-to designer for a variety of projects from fillable forms to newsletter layouts.
Cheri earned her associate degree in graphic design from Mohawk Valley Community College and a bachelor’s degree in communication and information design from SUNY Polytechnic Institute. She is also a graduate of the Visual Communications Media Arts program at the Herkimer BOCES.
Prior to coming to OHM BOCES in 2015, Cheri worked in the broadcasting field for radio stations in Binghamton and Albany doing promotional/marketing work. Cheri has earned several state public relations awards for her work on the OHM BOCES Career and Technical Education Program Guide as well as her photography and writing.
Outside of the office, Cheri enjoys mountain biking, hiking, cross country skiing, rock climbing, traveling and playing with her dog.
“You miss 100% of the shots you don't take." -- Wayne Gretzky -- Michael Scott -- Cheri Derdzinski
Senior Graphic Artist
Specializing in branding, typography, advertising and motion graphics, Manny brings his much-needed passion for design and ability to work under pressure to the School Communications team.
After earning his bachelor’s degree in Graphic Design from SUNY Brockport, where he also served as a junior graphic designer, Manny worked as a designer and digital marketer for several businesses in the Rochester area. Shortly before the COVID-19 pandemic, he relocated to the greater Utica area from ROC City, freelancing for clients from New York, Philadelphia and Texas before joining the OHM BOCES in May 2021.
When he’s not designing for our BOCES programs and component districts, Manny enjoys doing impressions, airbrushing, putting together model kits and dioramas, reading Tom Clancy novels and eating spaghetti and meatballs -- but ONLY with his mom’s sauce!
“How many breads have you eaten in your life?”
Adam is our resident video guru and photography expert. Since stepping into this position in 2020, Adam has quickly expanded the department’s ability to produce professional-quality visual marketing content for OHM BOCES programs, services and component school districts. He looks forward to helping provide resources to the staff members, teachers and students of local school districts through the School Communications service.
Adam is a graduate of the New Hartford Central School District and earned his Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree from the Alfred University School of Art and Design. He joins our team with more than 10 years of experience as a creative professional creating content including design, videography, photography and live streaming. Previously, Adam worked as a content producer, creative director and carpenter, and continues to run his own freelance photography and videography business in his free time.
When he’s not capturing education in action for OHM BOCES, Adam enjoys learning about music, reading fiction, picking up new photography skills and eating pizza.
“The question is not whether you will love, hurt, dream, and die. It is what you will love, why you will hurt, when you will dream, and how you will die. This is your choice. You cannot pick the destination, only the path.” -- Brandon Sanderson, Oathbringer
Kerry’s easy-going personality and excellent sense of humor have made it feel like she joined the School Communications office long before 2020! Kerry specializes in full-color design for digital and print, including brand identity and logo design. Her diverse design portfolio makes her the perfect person to work on new and unique projects for the OHM BOCES and our component school districts.
Kerry is a graduate of the Whitesboro Central School District and earned her associate degree in graphic communications/graphic design from Mohawk Valley Community College. Before joining our team, Kerry worked as a graphic designer in the casino industry for more than 17 years and has also served as the Head of Festival Merchandise for the Great American Irish Festival since 2016.
When she’s not beautifying our school districts’ websites and publications, Kerry can be found playing in volleyball leagues, going to concerts with friends, enjoying family get-togethers, working on custom crafts or just hanging out with her husband.
As the newest OHM BOCES Public Relations Assistant, Jerry creates clear and effective messages that convey the stories of our local schools and communities. He thrives on the teamwork aspects of working, building relationships with those around him and making sure he represents our organization well.
Jerry works with the New Hartford and Waterville Central School Districts, creating strategic public relations plans and showcasing District events. His outgoing, focused and detail-oriented personality has fit in quickly with the rest of the School Communications team.
Jerry earned his associate degree in public policy from Mohawk Valley Community College, and his bachelor’s degree in public relations from SUNY Oswego where he was also a member of the Communications Studies Honor Society and a nominee for the Dean’s Writing Award.
Prior to coming to the OHM BOCES in 2021, Jerry worked in marketing and communications in a variety of industries ranging from higher education to sports and economic development.
Outside of the office, Jerry enjoys spending time with friends and family, playing and watching sports, playing video games and golf, reading and catching up on Netflix shows.
“Don't count the days, make the days count.” - Muhammed Ali
Public Relations Assistant
Maria has worked with the Oriskany, Remsen and Frankfort-Schuyler Central School Districts since joining OHM BOCES in 2019. Maria’s professionalism and positivity have made her a tremendous asset to the School Communications department and all three districts that she works with. As a PR Assistant, Maria helps to bring her districts’ identities to life across web, social media and print platforms.
Maria graduated from Ilion Jr./Sr. High School and went on to receive her Bachelor of Science degree in Public Relations from Utica College. In her free time, Maria enjoys home décor, good food and spending quality time with her husband, friends, family and two dogs.
“You must be the change you wish to see in the world.” -- Ghandi
Public Relations Assistant
Since joining our team in 2020, Alyssa has brought with her a ton of experience and passion! Alyssa works with the Holland Patent and Clinton Central School Districts, generating dynamic digital, print and social media content that engages members of each school district and their surrounding communities. Her thoughtful and detail-oriented approach to her work have made her a welcome addition to the School PR Service.
Alyssa is a graduate of the New Hartford Central School District and earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Public Relations from Utica College, where she also served as Social Media Editor and Columnist for the College’s student-run newspaper The Tangerine. Prior to joining OHM BOCES, Alyssa cultivated her PR talents as a wedding coordinator, event specialist and partner engagement manager.
In her free time, Alyssa enjoys home decorating, working out with her boyfriend, spending family time with her parents and cousins, or cuddling up and binge-watching a Netflix series with her two puppies!
“Protect your peace, get rid of toxicity, cultivate love.”
Public Relations Assistant