Sam Ford, M.S.
Director of Cultural Intelligence, Tiller Press, Simon and Schuster
Member Term: 2016-2019
- As an independent consultant, has conducted projects/consulting with a range of companies, including The Coca-Cola Company, Microsoft, MIT, Peppercomm, Univision, and 99 Antennas. More detailed information on this, and my work in general, can be found at my bio site: https://samford.wordpress.com/.
- In addition to his consulting, currently Lead Producer, Future of Work initiative in Kentucky, for the MIT Open Documentary Lab.
- In 2015-2016, served as VP at Univision's Fusion Media Group and launched the organization's Center for Innovation and Engagement.
- Part of a team that won a 2016 Shorty Social Good award and was a finalist for two additional Shorty Social Good awards for his work at Fustion Media Group.
- Member of the Inaugural MIT Graduate Advisory Council.
- Co-Author of Spreadable Media: Creating Value and Meaning in a Networked Culture (NYU Press, 2013)
- Co-Editor of The Survival of Soap Opera: Transformations for a New Media Era (University Press of Mississippi, 2011)
- Named 2014 Digital Communicator of the Year and a 2014 Social Media MVP by PR News and 2011 Social Media Innovator of the Year by Bulldog Reporter
- Named WKU Communication Department’s Alumnus of the Year in 2012
- Advisory board member for WKU’s Communication Department.
- Spoke at South by Southwest Interactive and Futures of Entertainment at MIT and at events for the Word of Mouth Marketing Association, PR News, CableFAX, the Society for Cinema and Media Studies, the Popular Culture Association, the Advertising Research Foundation, etc.
- Written for Harvard Business Review, Wall Street Journal, Christian Science Monitor, BusinessWeek, Fast Company, Inc., Advertising Age, Chief Marketer, PR News, Bulldog Reporter, and commPRO.biz.
- Served as Word of Mouth Marketing Association Board of Directors member and a board liaison to WOMMA’s Ethics Committee
- Won Kentucky Press Association award for writing for the Andy Anderson Corporation newspapers
- Teaches courses on popular culture at WKU and previously taught at MIT.
- Through Columbia University's Tow Center for Digital Journalism, Andrea Wenzel and I are working on an ongoing initiative focused on how regional/local journalism can intervene in a culture of polarization to create public spheres.
- Co-founder, as part of a cohort led by Grant McCracken, on The Artisanal Economies Project.
- Working on a set of Future of Work initiatives, focused here in Kentucky, with the MIT Open Documentary Lab, USC Annenberg's Civic Paths team, and various other partners in the state and beyond.
- Married to fellow WKU alum, Amanda Ford.
- Two daughters: Emma, 7, and Harper, 5
- Proud Bowling Green resident
Most Vivid Memory of WKU
With many memories on campus, it’s hard to pick out the most vivid. But I’ll perhaps opt for bringing pro wrestler Mick Foley to campus at the end of my final semester here for a lecture at the Downing University Center. It was almost time for him to come out to greet the crowd, and the crowd—realizing that—started cheering right before I went out to check the mic volume. After having performed at a few pro wrestling events myself, I was experienced at playing “the heel.” So, I came through the curtain at the exact moment their cheers rose and raised my hand as if I thought all the adulation had been for me. This drew an almost universal “boo” from the whole crowd. For someone who spent his undergraduate thesis years studying pro wrestling, having several hundred Hilltoppers and WKU guests boo me out of the room was a moment to be treasured.