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avatar for Marcia Stepanek

Marcia Stepanek

Columbia University and BrandStories, Inc.
Lecturer; Chief Executive
NYC and Chicago
Marcia (JSK 1996) is an award-winning journalist, a nonprofit media/management professor at Columbia University and  Chief Executive of BrandStories, a digital media collaborative in New York and Chicago she founded in 2011 that offers strategic and tactical guidance to many dozens of nonprofit news and social purpose organizations seeking to achieve deeper levels of awareness and citizen engagement to help solve some of society’s most challenging problems. A national leader in nonprofit innovation, transformative change and community/leadership engagement, Marcia directs BrandStories’ editorial strategy engagements and its story studio, and its creation and production of short-form documentaries, limited series podcasts, service journalism workshops and nonfiction video shorts. A former national news executive, technology strategies editor, Tokyo bureau chief and Stanford journalism fellow, Marcia is recognized thought leader in the nonprofit and for-profit sectors on the power of digital culture, narrative change and cross-cultural engagement. At both New York University and Columbia, she pioneered the nation’s first graduate classes in digital media strategy for nonprofit leaders—and for more than a decade, has been introducing to sector leaders new ways of thinking and operating in a connected world. Her journalism honors include a George Polk Award , an Obama Internet Fellowship and a National Press Club Award for Washington correspondence; earlier in her career, she was a finalist for a Pulitzer Prize. She is the author of a forthcoming book on knowledge services (deGruyter) and co-author of another, Charity: re-wired, on GenZ and the evolution of digital culture, citizen activism and the future of work.