John Caldwell was an early pioneer of custom publishing who passed away in 2006. In honor and memory of John’s contributions to the evolution of custom content as a marketing channel, The Content Council created the John Caldwell Award.
The award is presented to an individual who has made significant contributions to the industry by virtue of his or her leadership and success at promoting the use of custom media as a marketing channel and a standard for work that demonstrates excellence in content marketing.
Congratulations to 2017 winner, Keith Sedlak, Executive Director, Business Development, MXM
Keith Sedlak is Executive Director, Business Development at MXM. He began his career working in the advertising industry for a brand that many would say is the epitome of true journalism: The Wall Street Journal. As sales manager, he learned the value of building brands in an environment of church and state. Keith still considers this role one of the most important in molding his career. During the late 90s, Keith left The Wall Street Journal to expand his horizons into the world of New Media. As Eastern Sales Manager for AltaVista, and later Director of Corporate Development for Terra Lycos, he built and led internet sales teams in NY and led the business development efforts for the travel, ecommerce and search categories.
In 2003, Keith joined Meredith Integrated Marketing (MIM) as Managing Director, trying his hand at something new. At MIM, he became intimately involved with the onboarding and integration of five agency acquisitions, uniting them to create North America’s largest content marketing agency. Keith then went on to land some of the most exciting content marketing programs in the business, for brands such as Lowe’s, State Farm, Chrysler and more. As CMO in 2011, Keith was responsible for business development and marketing, and led the effort to rebrand into Meredith Xcelerated Marketing (MXM), now a content-powered digital agency.
In 2012, Keith decided to join the management team at TMG, to create another industry-leading content agency. During his four-year tenure, he worked with the team to successfully merge TMG with McMurry into McMURRY/TMG, and became CMO in charge of revenue growth. Two years later, McMURRY/TMG acquired Manifest and Keith became EVP, GM at Manifest.
In 2016, he returned home to where his content marketing career began. As Executive Director, Keith brings more than 20 years of business development experience and a proven track record of growth and reinvention back to MXM.
The winner of the 2016 John Caldwell Award is Gary Johnson, President, MSP Communications
Gary Johnson joined MSP Communications in 1977 and has held positions as advertising director (1977-1985), Director of Marketing (1985-1991), Chief Operating Officer (1991-1999) and president since 2000. Johnson was an owner/partner from 1986-89 and from 1992-96. MSP publishes both a city magazine, Mpls.St.Paul and a regional business magazine, Twin Cities Business and was a pioneer in producing custom magazines, beginning in 1978.
39 years and 225 print and digital titles later, MSP Communications is a leading content marketing agency whose current portfolio includes two proprietary brands and digital/print content creation for some of America’s most recognized brands including: American Express, General Mills, United Healthcare, Delta Airlines, 3M, McKesson, IBM and NetApp as well as associations and single events.
In addition to running MSP Communications, Johnson is an adjunct professor at the University of Minnesota teaching a graduate course in content strategy and brand journalism. He has served on the board of The Content Council, the City & Regional Magazine Association and the University Children’s Foundation and was honored in 2016 with the Milton W. Jones Lifetime Achievement award from the City & Regional Magazine Association.
Johnson resides in Minnetrista, Minnesota with his wife Stephanie and enjoys his three children and five grandchildren.
The winner of the 2015 John Caldwell Lifetime Achievement Award is Meredith Kopit Levien, Executive Vice President Chief Revenue Officer, The New York Times
Watch the highlights of Meredith accepting her award here>>
Meredith Kopit Levien was named executive vice president and chief revenue officer of The New York Times Company in April 2015. Ms. Kopit Levien is responsible for the generation
of all advertising and subscription revenue from The Times’s multiplatform products and services and for leadership of the global advertising, marketing, and live event
Ms. Kopit Levien joined The Times Company in August 2013 as executive vice president of advertising.
She previously served as chief revenue officer at Forbes Media, where she led the North American and European revenue operations for Forbes.com, the Forbes Magazine Group and Forbes Conferences since 2011.
Ms. Kopit Levien began her professional career in 1993 at the Advisory Board Company in Washington, DC. From 1999 to 2001, she served as an account manager and director of new business for the digital advertising agency and web site development firm, I33 Communications. Before joining Forbes in 2010 as vice president and publisher of ForbesLife and ForbesWoman.com, she held various senior and strategic advertising sales positions at The Atlantic Media Company from 2001 to 2008.
Ms. Kopit Levien serves on the boards of The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) and the American Advertising Federation (AAF).
She received a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Virginia in 1993. She lives in New York City with her husband and son.
Learn more about the Caldwell Award.