1:00 – 1:50 Room 1L: Panel Discussion

Recruiting Challenges/Needs for Digital Media

Do Kansas City area firms have difficulty recruiting employees for their digital media job openings?  What types of skills and education do their candidates need?  Are they able to find the talent they need locally?  What messages would they like to share with educators about preparing their students for jobs in the digital media industry?  Recruiters and Human Resource leaders from Kansas City area firms share their thoughts about the digital media talent requirements for their firms.

Lee Ann Garrison – Moderator

Director of School of Visual Studies, School of Visual Studies, University of Missouri – Columbia

Lee Ann Garrison is the director of the School of Visual Studies at the University of Missouri since fall 2019. Previously, she was the director of the School of Arts and Communication at Oregon State University and chair of the Department of Art and Design at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee where she taught for many years. Garrison is a painter and art and design professor with degrees in painting from the Southern Illinois University, California State University-Long Beach, and the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. She is probably the only painter you know who spent a year as the Interim Associate Dean in a School of Business. She has exhibited her oil paintings in galleries nationally, and her paintings are in over 80 private and public collections across the US.


Natalie Nowak

Recruiting Director, Barkley

Natalie brings over 10 years of experience in the advertising industry, within both independent and holding company agency structures.

She began her career in client service, supporting international CPG and ecommerce brands, before transitioning to recruiting. Natalie is fiercely passionate about elevating the candidate journey and resetting expectations within hiring for both talent and hiring teams.

She now leads the recruiting team at Barkley, focusing on fostering the conditions for hiring the best talent for the agency as well as finding opportunities to allow new and diverse thinkers access to the industry. She lives in Kansas City with her husband, toddler and boxer. The toddler makes all executive decisions about life outside of the office. 


Kimberly Spencer

Talent Acquisition Group Director, North America, VMLY&R


Megan Walker

Director, DEI&B, Talent & Culture, Andrews McMeel Universal

Megan is the Director of DEI&B, Talent, and Culture at Andrews McMeel Universal. Her time spent in the entertainment and media industry has been centered in talent attraction and retention. Megan has had recruitment experience in a variety of industries and believes the key to success in any organization is finding creative ways to maximize and invest in the talent within an organization. With a bachelor’s degree in Education and a Masters in Strategic HR Management her goal and purpose in her career is to be a continued resource for the many talented people she has the privilege to get to know and work with.