Meet the Team

THE PEOPLE BEHIND THE SEATTLE TIMES MEDIA SOLUTIONS

With a breadth of marketing experience and an in-depth knowledge of the Northwest audience and market, we are a full-service agency that knows your customers and how to reach them.

GARY SMITH

Vice President of Advertising


I am focused on leading our team by providing the resources they require to successfully support our clients’ needs. I keep close watch on the evolving digital marketing landscape to ensure our clients have access to best-in-class products and services. I began my career at the Tacoma News Tribune as an IT professional back in 1989, when I saw this thing called the Internet emerge and change people’s lives.

I am passionate about our unique role as a government watchdog, and a platform to speak for those who have no voice. Our reputation for in-depth journalism has attracted a vast audience to The Seattle Times and seattletimes.com, a place where our advertising customers can promote their products and services to a quality audience.

Fun fact: I love to golf. I enjoy the challenge of competing with myself, and when the weather is nice, there is no place I’d rather be than on a golf course.

AMBER ALDRICH

Senior Director of Advertising


I oversee our sales and operations teams, both of which are dedicated to excellent client service and results that exceed expectations. Our sales team consults with clients on marketing needs and makes strategic recommendations to reach their goals, while operations works to execute these marketing plans on time and on budget.

I started my career as a writer, and still have a passion for journalism, but I’ve spent the last 15 years in advertising with a focus on digital marketing. Before joining The Seattle Times Media Solutions, I served as Advertising Director of the Bellingham Herald. I am a creative, strategic thinker who loves to help clients solve their pain points and grow their business.

Fun fact: My two kids consume my heart and my time! Our family loves exploring the Northwest, taking advantage of all the beauty and adventure our region has to offer.

KELLY HULIN

Regional Sales Director


Leveraging their deep knowledge of the Puget Sound market and competitive landscape, my team works with some of the area’s largest regional businesses. Whether they’re looking to build awareness or need help improving their conversion rate, we have the tools and expertise to help them create great campaigns.

Prior to joining The Seattle Times in 2013, I worked for The Everett Herald, overseeing strategic management of their digital operations, including supervision of product development, revenue, marketing and outreach efforts for five company websites. I love thinking creatively and helping our clients overcome challenges. There is nothing more rewarding than watching a business grow and succeed using the marketing guidance they provided.

Fun fact: I can’t create it, but I am passionate about art. I love viewing it, visiting it and buying it!

ALLYSON MCKINNEY

Agency Services Director


I oversee the Account Services and Campaign Management team, working with our clients to develop and execute digital strategies that align with their business objectives. I’ve worked in advertising for 17 years, and have eight years of digital marketing experience; most recently as the International Client Success Manager for Adtaxi.

I am passionate about understanding a client’s pain points and offering recommendations to address them. It’s satisfying to see the progression from problem to idea to real-life campaign.

Fun fact: As a Southern girl, born and raised in rural Virginia, I am always seeking a warm climate – especially on cruises to tropical locations.

HOUMAN ALIABADI

Local Sales Manager


As a collaborative team member, I act as a positive force in helping our local clients achieve their specific goals and metrics. I love forging new relationships, the challenge involved in solving problems and working with companies to identify new ideas to generate revenue.

A Seattle native and UW graduate, I bring over 27 years’ sales and leadership experience to The Seattle Times Media Solutions team. I’ve worked in companies specializing in digital, video, audio and broadcast (general and Hispanic market), serving national, regional and local clients in a range of verticals and industries. I’m passionate about working for such a unique company – a trusted news source and a one-stop marketing agency. The Seattle Times provides an unparalleled range of services that no other local media company can offer, and a vital platform for advertisers to connect with our local Puget Sound communities.

Fun fact: I love to spend my time with my family, preferably outdoors. We enjoy skiing in the winter and attending local events in summer, which include live performances by my four-piece alt-rock band.

MATTHEW GAINE

Digital Operations & Services Manager


I manage our Campaign Specialists Team, ensuring deadlines are met, targets are focused and all verticals are effectively approached. I started my career in 2001 in print publishing, selling advertising for weekly newspapers. In 2009, I made the switch to digital, which is now my primary focus.

When you get the right message in front of the right audience, it can be a powerful thing. I enjoy the process of making this happen, and putting all the pieces together. It’s a loud world out there, and I aim to separate the signal from the noise, helping our advertisers speak to consumers in a strong, clear voice.

Fun fact: My family, our dogs and my early morning cups of coffee prepare me to face the world each day, so I can serve my clients with passion, diligence and creativity.

CHANDLER DOWNS

Account Director, Strategic Partnerships


I initiate, maintain and grow strategic relationships with local and regional organizations to create value and advance our shared mission and goals. These creative collaborations strengthen The Seattle Times’ brand while helping our partners better connect and engage with our community. I joined the company in 2010 and have managed various territories and roles specializing in education and entertainment verticals.

It’s important for me to feel a sense of purpose in my work, and The Seattle Times provides me with that opportunity. My day-to-day efforts help the company succeed in ways big and small, and these successes positively affect the community in which I live. Our wins are celebrated by all, creating a great sense of pride.

Fun fact: As a new parent, I’m joyfully navigating a balance between work and home life, investing time in family, friends, cooking, running, design and photography.

DINA SKEELS

Art Director


I help our clients produce print and digital advertising and manage our award-winning advertising content team which creates campaigns of all kinds. My team is smart, versatile and extremely creative, and consistently turns out incredible work.

For over 20 years, I’ve worked in advertising, doing graphic design, copywriting, illustration and project management. I strongly support independent journalism and the advertisers who make it possible, and I feel a great sense of accomplishment in helping them meet their goals with creative work that gets results.

Fun fact: Influenced by my favorite artist, Pablo Picasso, I have a passion for abstract art. Whether I’m traveling, camping or spending time with friends and family, you’ll often find me with a sketchbook and Sharpie. But some say my real passion is making bad puns. So bad, they call it punishment.

STEVE FULLER

Research Analyst


Using both sourced information and customer-supplied data, I analyze locations, behaviorally segment end-user households and monitor category trends to ensure every dollar spent has an effective target and achieves an optimal ROI. I’ve worked for The Seattle Times since 2008, and also spent nine years as the Research Analyst for The Tacoma News Tribune. I’ve watched this market evolve for almost 20 years, and this gives me an invaluable perspective in helping guide your business.

I am passionate about everything I do, especially when it comes to our clients. We are helping them build a dream, and I don’t ever want it said that I failed to do everything I could to make that dream come true.

Fun fact: In my free time, I like to build everything from custom concrete coffee tables to custom motorcycles and hot rods. I also dream of riding my Harley across the country, taking in the beauty of the land and variety of people that make up America.

ROB SCHWERTLEY

Yield and Advertising Systems Manager


I make sure the technical systems and tools we use to run and measure our campaigns are working to maximize our clients’ success. This includes analysis to ensure our clients’ digital advertising is presented in the most effective way to our readers. I’ve been in media for over 15 years, working in Account Executive and Sales Manager roles, working with businesses large and small on campaigns that included digital, outdoor and print advertising. I have a degree in Marketing from Seattle University, and received my MBA from Washington State University in 2015.

I understand the important role local news organizations play in our communities, and I’m proud to work on behalf of a company with such deep roots in the Northwest.

Fun fact: I’ve been an Elvis fan since I was a teenager, and since 2013, I’ve been performing in the Seattle area as an Elvis Tribute Artist. Quite different than data analysis!

JOHN GREENLAND

Account Director, Business Development


I am a trusted digital media strategist and brand champion. Using data, I work with regional and national accounts to target, engage and track ROI from audiences across all stages of the consumer journey. I also really enjoy working with independent businesses and startups. They’re the lifeblood of America!

I’ve spent 22 years in digital media, starting my career on the web development and content side before moving to marketing strategy and sales in 2004. In addition to digital media, I also have extensive experience with broadcast and print advertising.

Fun fact: Born and raised in Seattle, I now live in Port Townsend on the weekends, where I enjoy exploring, surfing and boating. Before college, I attended aeronautical school in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

KIMBERLY PFAFF

Manager, Agency Sales and Services


I lead a team of account executives who help clients win. I am well-versed in the methodology of digital advertising – how data can help us track what happens after an ad is served, and offer insight into the customer and sales process.

I have 20 years of experience in print, direct mail, TV, video and digital marketing, and have held roles in service, sales, staff development and management. My breadth of experience allows me to understand how each advertising element works together to achieve results. I especially like the “triple win” – when a plan we put together helps a business attract customers who go on to find great products and services to buy. When I do my job well, I make both my clients and their customers happy. And that makes me happy.

Fun fact: Outside of work, I like getting outside. I enjoy spending time in the great outdoors, as well as enjoying movies, art and music.

LUCIA BLACKWELL

Branded Content Editor


I develop, edit, produce and present branded content to appear on seattletimes.com and beyond. We work to create content that resonates with readers, boosts brand awareness and positions our clients as subject matter experts and a resource for the community. I’m a digital editor with more than 15 years’ experience working in newsrooms, editing and producing stories and engaging readers on news sites and social media. Now I’m using those same skills to produce branded content of value to both readers and clients.

I love finding a way to tell interesting stories that offer readers valuable information, create a way for clients to directly engage with an audience – all while supporting the local journalism that keeps our community strong.

Fun fact: I’m an avid home cook and dining enthusiast. On most weekends, you can find me at the farmers market, and I'm always ready to try a new restaurant or local hangout.

SHAWN KINGMA

Sales Operations Manager


I manage the team that serves as a one-stop resource for scheduling, collecting creative assets and fulfilling all advertising campaigns in print and on seattletimes.com. We pride ourselves on our professionalism, exceptional service and knowledge in optimizing campaigns to exceed customer goals.

I’ve been with The Seattle Times over 31 years, working in nearly every department. My diverse range of experience enables me to think and act in the best interest of our advertisers.

I play a part in the daily miracle of producing The Seattle Times, keeping our readers informed and connected. I am constantly learning something new every day. My team consists of seasoned Seattle Times veterans to individuals right out of college, and each of them inspires me daily.

Fun fact: I grew up as a horse-crazy kid, and never grew out of it. I owned and showed many horses as an adult, and after a 10-year break, I recently purchased a yearling, with a goal of showing him at the American Paint Horse Association’s World Show in 2020.

SHELLY PHAM

Advertising Sales Manager


My team handles recruitment advertising, obituary notices, legal notices and all private party advertising for The Seattle Times newspaper and seattletimes.com. Our goal is to provide the vast reach these clients want and/or require. Though we work with individuals and primarily smaller organizations, no client is too small to receive top-notch customer service.

I started my career here in 1997, working as a Data Analyst. Three years later, I moved into advertising and marketing, and have never looked back. I am thrilled to be able to offer my clients a breadth of advertising options, helping them find the combination that will best serve their needs.

Fun fact: As a parent of very active kids, I spend most of my weekends traveling to surrounding cities attending softball and basketball tournaments or robotics competitions.

We are always looking for talented people.
Explore opportunities with The Seattle Times and Seattle Times Media Solutions.

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