Matthew Steen, MTC
A full-time resident of Arkville, NY with his wife Stephanie and son Ryan, Matthew Steen is the Marketing Manager for Margaretville Telephone Company (MTC) and a Managing Partner at CatskillsAir. Matt transitioned to telecommunications after a 12-year tenure in the hospitality industry as both a Hotel Manager and Marketing Manager. With a commitment to community, he is involved in various boards and committees including the Margaretville Central School Board of Education, the Central Catskills Chamber of Commerce, past seat on the Ulster County Tourism Advisory Board, and in 2019, the I Love NY Tourism Advisory Council.
Leigh Melander, Spillian Owner
Leigh Melander, Ph.D. has a doctorate in cultural mythology & psychology, with a background in the arts, marketing & strategic planning, and strengthening communities nationally and internationally. She and her husband founded Spillian: A Place to Revel, a regenerative center for imagination and creativity on the historic Fleischmanns Yeast family estate in Fleischmanns, NY. Leigh has served on a range of local to international organizations on a board level, including The California Invasive Species Advisory Committee, the Joseph Campbell Foundation, and the Academic Advisory Board of Spring Journal and Books. Locally, she has served as president of the board of Rosemary Farm Sanctuary, and the MARK Project. In 2018, Leigh spearheaded a regional tourism development campaign funded by Market NY: Catskills Trout Tales, that attracted over 3000 visitors to 50+ events in the Catskills in the spring. Leigh has been featured on the on the History Channel as an expert on myth and story, and hosts the Myth America podcast. She was the founding editor of the MythBlast essay series for the Joseph Campbell Foundation, and has been published in a range of academic publications, including Spring Journal and the the award-winning Routledge International Handbook of Jungian Film Studies. She is the author of Psyche’s Choice: The Frivolous Revolution.
Chris brings over 40 years of experience in Entertainment Marketing and Project Development for EMI, Elektra and RCA Records As General Manager for N2K Encoded Music, he oversaw start-up for the first internet positioned recording label and was part of the management team the led N2K, Inc. to a successful IPO less than 12 months after inception.
For 13 years, Chris was President of MusicDisc-covery – an internet marketing and research company that helped expose, familiarize and grow hundreds of music artists and projects for major recording labels and managers. He was a founding partner for Mediagraphics, International, a company that developed and marketed high concept advertising and imaging vehicles for US and International clients including Coca-Cola, the United Nations, Ogilvy-Mather, the Columbus Pavilion in Genoa Italy and Atlanta’s Hartsfield Airport.
After retiring to the Catskills in 2014, Chris spent 3 years developing an underwriting foundation for WIOX Community Radio, produced Spillianfest I, II and III, 9 Emerson Supergroup Jams, the Gibson Brothers, the Catskill Food Truck Festival and the Hudson Food Festival for Columbia Green Media. As an avid fly-fisherman, Chris is also proud of his role as a Board member for the Ashokan-Pepacton Trout Unlimited Chapter.
Kevin Mattice, Founding Program Director
In his current position as the Program Director, Kevin brings over 30 years of experience creating compelling videos for various sports networks and organizations. Kevin has been a video editor for such companies as NFL Films, NBC Sports, ESPN and the WWE. In his many years of being in the television industry, he has seen how the industry has changed and he has continued to adapt to these changes and continues to learn more about the technical advances in delivering video content to viewers. Whether it be watching a commercial television or a video delivered through social media, Kevin prides himself on being able to tell an emotional story through his editing and has won awards for his work, Nationally and Internationally.
Julia Marks, News Director
A native of Virginia Beach, Va., Julia Marks is a journalist, communications director, and sometime soccer coach. Her news reporting, for which she has received three New York Press Association awards, has appeared in the Catskill Mountain News and the Catskills Chronicle. In addition to her news work, she is also the communications director for the Margaretville Central School District and the president of the Fairview Public Library Board of Trustees. Julia holds a degree in communications and journalism from Virginia Wesleyan University.
Matthew Avitabile is the publisher of the Mountain Eagle newspaper, covering Delaware, Schoharie, and Greene Counties. He is a history professor at SUNY Oneonta and was Mayor of Middleburgh between 2012 and 2020. He contributes to the Citizen News Bureau’s Delaware County News Update each week.
Sonny Rock is a touring/session drummer who has played behind well-known musicians including Bryan Adams, Kiss, Peter Frampton, Heart, and members of The Who. In addition to his work on the drums, Sonny is an author, record producer, drum teacher, and kickboxing instructor, and was a concert promoter for “Concert for the Catskills,” a 35-band, two-day benefit for victims of Hurricane Irene. He can regularly be seen on CatskillsAir interviewing area musicians and artists for the Citizen News Bureau.
is a Magical Realism artist and fantasy writer, living in the Catskill mountains of New York. A lifelong animal rescue person, working with local animal groups and the ASPCA. She is a lifelong hospice and healthcare worker, community and climate advocate. Gaia First Art and Graphics (formerly Art By Beth), is her business of more than 30 years, creating signage, murals and fine art portraits. Elizabeth is an author of four books and creator of the graphic art and literary magazine, “The Legions of Light.” As a cultural journalist for the Citizen News Bureau, Beth provides information about community cultural events, openings and exhibits in Delaware County and surrounding areas.