Max Winter has joined our team this summer as intern with the Cincinnati Strategic Communications Leadership Program, which is a partnership between Vehr and the E.W. Scripps Company. The program is intended to promote diversity and inclusion in the field of strategic communications, and offers prospective young professionals an opportunity to get real-world experience in communications best practices, tactics and strategies leveraged in everyday agency and corporate environments at two leading communications organizations in Cincinnati.

Get to know Max in his own words:

I’m Max, a recent graduate of Xavier University, and an intern with Vehr Communications and E.W. Scripps. I was born and raised just outside of Washington, D.C., and have spent the last four years acclimating to life in the Midwest (I’m still trying to figure out what Skyline chili is made of).

I am an avid sports fan and religious supporter of the Philadelphia Eagles and Washington Capitals (2018 was a good year for me).  I have played baseball, football, rugby, lacrosse, and even wrestled over the years, all with relatively little success. These days I enjoy most of my sports from the couch, where I belong.

In my time at Xavier University I had a handful of internships in the MLB, ECHL, and at a Sports PR firm. I also served as a Communications Officer for Xavier Lacrosse, managing fundraising, social media and league communications. I love connecting brands in and outside the sports industry with their audiences through new and emerging platforms.

What do you like to do outside of work?
I try to get out as much as possible, either by hiking, exploring the city with friends, or playing lacrosse with old teammates. I also watch my fair share of HBO, which might change now that Game of Thrones is over (I could deliver a whole TED talk on where that show went wrong).

What is your favorite part of Cincinnati?
Mt. Adam’s was the first neighborhood that made me fall in love with Cincinnati. The narrow streets and countless coffee shops create a cozy environment juxtaposed against breathtaking views of the skyline and Ohio river.

What’s the most recent book you’ve read, or film you’ve seen?
I recently started reading Black Klansmen (which I understand has recently been turned into a movie), a true story about a Black police officer who goes undercover to infiltrate and take down a local chapter of the KKK. So far, the story has struck a semblance to one of my favorite books, Underground Airlines.

Where did you go to college? What was your major?
I recently graduated from Xavier University, where I studied Public Relations and Sport Management.

What is your favorite social media channel?
My favorite social media channel would have to be Instagram, because it confines your storytelling to creative visual mediums.

What media outlets do you follow? Why those ones?
When it comes to news, I enjoy NPR, Newsy, Vice News, and Now This. I can typically rely on NPR and Newsy to give me fair and balanced political coverage. Meanwhile, Vice News and Now This take a more unconventional approach to storytelling and package their messaging through the lens of a millennial audience.  

Have any crisis management campaigns caught your eye lately?
When I think about crisis management, I look to the work done with KFC during the chicken shortage crisis of 2018. In early 2018. KFC’s UK franchises found themselves in deep trouble, having run out of chicken due to a supply chain issue. Rather than try to downplay the problem, KFC and its agency took ownership immediately, and put a humorous spin on the brands visual identity to recognize their errors. By acting swiftly, KFC was able to control the conversation, and maintain the relationship with their supporters.

What’s one app you can’t live without?
After getting misled by Google Maps for the fifteenth time, I decided to download Waze. Along with traffic reports and voice navigation, Waze updates you on the location of potholes, road obstructions, speed traps, and other hazards. In all my trips between Washington, D.C. and Cincinnati, Waze has never let me down.

I would also be remiss if I didn’t give Venmo a shout-out. That app saved my life throughout college and made living with seven housemates somewhat manageable. 

Any hidden talents we should know about?
I have been skiing since I was nine years old, a talent rendered somewhat useless by the terrain of the Midwest. I also learned to play the drums at a young age, but given that my drum set is back at home, my desk at work will have to make do (apologies to my desk mates Haley, Karen and Lewis).