Steve Kloehn is a partner in Peterson Rudgers Group. Over a three-decade career, Kloehn has been a leader and executive at two of the world’s top universities and a major national newspaper. Most recently at Carnegie Mellon University, he served as Vice President for Marketing & Communications, creating and leading a new division of 50 professionals who provide strategic communications planning, integrated marketing campaigns, media relations, social media, executive communications, web development, creative design, video, photo, visitor experience, and university events.
As one of Carnegie Mellon’s nine officers, Kloehn served as an advisor to two presidents, contributed to the university’s strategic plan, and helped set programmatic and budgetary priorities for the institution. He led the first university-wide plan to build global visibility, working with deans, officers, and more than 160 campus communicators to align unit needs with university goals and messaging. He developed and delivered critical communications for the university; initiated and led the in-house redesign of more than 300 websites; directed high-impact digital marketing campaigns and national media campaigns; spearheaded a university branding initiative; and helped drive a dramatic increase in the university’s social media following. That work contributed to a 19 percent increase in undergraduate applications in 2018.
Prior to Carnegie Mellon, Kloehn served for more than seven years as the University of Chicago’s associate vice president for news and public affairs. In that role, he was responsible for content creation and major announcements, issues management, media relations, and communications strategy for a wide variety of university leaders and programs. He led integrated communications in support of faculty Nobel prizes in 2008 and 2013, and helped orchestrate the opening of university centers in Beijing and New Delhi.
Kloehn was an award-winning newspaper reporter, columnist and editor for 21 years, rising from editor of a small-town weekly to deputy metropolitan editor for Sundays and Enterprise at the Chicago Tribune. At the Tribune, he chronicled popes and presidents, and created new teams that specialized in original, in-depth analysis of trends in education and urban affairs.
In 2018, Kloehn was elected to the Higher Education Roundtable and the Seminar, two of the nation’s most prestigious organizations for leaders in public relations. He graduated magna cum laude from Princeton University.