About


We feel we have just the right blend of top-tier journalism knowledge, public relations expertise and social media savviness to help you craft and deliver relevant messages. Our quiver of award-winning services is built upon our trusted relationships. 


Gary Bird
President
Gary has over 15 years of public relations and top-tier journalism experience. Some of his campaigns include Cisco Systems, Slacker, Griffin Technology, and Smith Micro, among others. Before starting FortyThree in 2005, he held the vice president position at one of the largest technology public relations firms in Silicon Valley. As a journalist, Gary was a bureau chief for Knight-Ridder responsible for timely tech news to global markets. Before joining Knight-Ridder, he was a correspondent for The Economist covering tech and business. His articles have appeared in London Times, San Jose Mercury and USA Today. Gary earned a bachelor's degree from University of California, Santa Barbara. 

Erika Seligsohn
General Manager
Erika is responsible for managing operations at FortyThree and supporting nationwide promotional and online marketing campaigns. Prior to FortyThree, Erika co-founded Noah’s Garage, a snowboarding site showcasing talented boarders and selling snowboards and other gear. She managed operations and marketing initiatives. Noah’s Garage was successfully acquired by action sports retailer HardCloud complementing its skate, snow, bike and surf offering. Erika was previously advertising director at Thrasher Magazine, the most popular skateboard magazine spanning over 20 years. Erika has a bachelor's degree from University of California, Santa Barbara.


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Nikki Dance
Account Manager
Nikki delivers a unique approach to PR, bringing together a background in marketing, social media and graphic design. Her development of PR strategies is both creative and analytical as she identifies opportunities and measures results. She graduated with degree in Media Studies from University of California, Berkeley. She also loves drawing, sewing, traveling and taking her dogs on nature walks.

Michael Stevens
Account & Media Manager 
Michael is responsible for overseeing all client-related multimedia content, developing PR strategies and helping his clients secure meaningful coverage. With a degree in Cinema Studies from the University of Oregon's School of Journalism, he helps bring client messages to life through video and media. Michael's passions include film, rock climbing and Hot Cheetos (Limón).

 


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Alexandra Baker
Account Associate
Alexandra is passionate about connecting people to organizations that make a positive impact. She focuses on media relations, content creation, and overall PR tactical planning. Before returning to her PR roots, Alexandra was in the nonprofit development sector. Alexandra graduated from Gonzaga University (Go Zags!) with a bachelor’s degree in Public Relations with minors in Writing and General Business. A Santa Cruz native, Alexandra cannot go a day without cruising by the beach, grabbing a coffee from SC Coffee Roasting, or spending time with her family. 

Casie Fox Account Associate                                                Casie is passionate about connecting organizations to their audiences through engaging storytelling and creative outreach. With a degree in Journalism, her approach to PR has developed through a diverse background in media relations for film festivals, health and wellness events, environmental non profits and more. In her free time Casie is a traveler, yogi, and lover of any experience that takes her into the ocean or the mountains.


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Michelle Hua                                                   Account Associate                                            Michelle is responsible for monitoring client coverage, industry and competitor reports, market research, as well as assisting account managers with their tasks. She has a degree in Film and Digital Media with a concentration in Production from UC Santa Cruz. As a Los Angeles Native, she knows what good soul food can do for you. Growing up besides Hollywood, film has been integral to her life since she was born. Aside from work, you can find her at an aerial acrobatic dance studio or chilling on her yoga mat!

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Takara Hepburn
Account Associate
Takara creates captivating content for clients by utilizing social media marketing strategies. Prior to FortyThree, Takara held a PR position at a nationwide collegiate magazine. Takara has a degree in Communication from the University of California Santa Barbara, and is eager to take on new challenges. When she’s not sitting behind her computer, you’ll find her trying her hand at a tasty new Pinterest recipe, buried in a good book or soaking up the sunshine.


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Tia Mayer                                                    Multimedia Producer                                               Tia is responsible for handling photography and graphic design projects at FortyThree.  She uses her background in filmmaking, photography and animation to create media content for our clients. Previously, she was a video editor for a real estate and lifestyle company based in San Diego. Tia studies film and digital media at UC Santa Cruz, loves watching TV and her favorite food is sushi.

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Veronica Luke                                                  Multimedia Producer                                               Veronica Luke is responsible for creating visual media content at FortyThree. She is currently studying at UC Santa Cruz, working towards a degree in Film and Digital Media as well as a minor in Legal Studies. In her free time, Veronica enjoys reading, lying to herself that she is a vegetarian and watching movies.  


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Shelby Noland                                                    Account Assistant                                                 Shelby is responsible for assisting account managers with client coverage, market research, and influencer tracking. As an undergraduate at the University of Colorado Boulder, she is on the road to pursuing a bachelor's degree in Strategic Communications with an emphasis in Media Design. In her free time, Shelby loves to spend time at the lake, go to yoga and travel.

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Eli Crespin                                                        Multimedia Producer                                                   Eli Crespin is responsible for assisting account managers and researching clients. He also produces digital media for various clients. He is currently pursuing a Double major in Film & Digital Media and History of Art & Visual Culture at the University of California, Santa Cruz. In his free time he enjoys spending way too much time in the kitchen, getting too excited when a dog appears and riding his bike downhill.


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Sharon Wong                                                      Account Assistant                                                   Sharon helps track influencer coverage, press coverage, and research market trends and statistics. Currently an undergraduate at University of California, Santa Cruz majoring in Computer Science. She loves to spend her free time blogging, working on new programming projects, and drinking boba.

Otis Bird                                                   Team Mascot   
Otis is responsible for maintaining office morale.