who we are.

Vanessa Bortnick Communications is a Bay Area-based internal communications consultancy dedicated to setting the stage for vibrant, thriving workplace cultures in which employees are not only engaged, but performing at their highest levels.

VANESSA BORTNICK, FOUNDER AND PRINCIPAL

Vanessa Bortnick is founder and principal of Vanessa Bortnick Communications. Her nearly 20-year career spans both lifestyle and technical fields, and corporate and agency environments, where she came to embrace and understand first-hand the complexities, challenges and realities of growing companies. Her expertise and passion lie in helping activate great company cultures that shine from the inside out through thoughtful internal communications.

Prior to starting her consultancy, Vanessa worked for 13 years at Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants, most recently as the Vice President of Brand & Communications. In that position, she oversaw all internal and external communications, social media and brand strategy for 55 hotels, 56 restaurants and nearly 8,000 employees nationwide. While at Kimpton, Vanessa wrote hundreds of C-suite communications, ranging from speeches to employee letters to internal messaging. Vanessa was instrumental in placing the company on FORTUNE magazine’s Best Companies to Work For list for five years.

At the height of the dot-com boom, Vanessa was a Senior Account Executive at Blanc & Otus, a Hill & Knowlton public relations agency, working primarily with business-to-business technology clients. There, she became inspired by the idea of heightening the employee experience and breaking the traditional mold. She recognized the need for cultures to adapt to a shifting workforce and, ultimately, adjust to the dot-com bust.

In 2009, Vanessa was inducted into the California State University Chico’s Journalism Hall of Fame. In 2003, she was named a Rising Star in the San Francisco Business Times. Vanessa has been a repeat guest lecturer at the University of California, Berkeley Haas School of Business, as well as a featured speaker and panelist at numerous industry conferences, seminars and universities.

Collaborators.

For her consultancy, Vanessa collaborates with some of the nation’s top communications professionals in the fields of marketing, event planning, copywriting, public relations and graphic design to deliver the best results to her clients.

STEPHANIE MOUSTIRATS

Stephanie loves discovering the many stories that exist within an organization, utilizing a holistic communications approach to share and bridge the stories both internally and externally.

Stephanie has more than a decade of communications experience in the high-tech and hospitality fields, working both in-house and at agencies. Her experience runs the gamut, from helping to launch early-stage technology start-up companies through a blend of digital media and traditional media campaigns, to establishing new communications platforms for top global consumer brands. While at Voce Communications, Stephanie worked with top executives on positioning and corporate messaging on a broad range of topics for companies including Yahoo!, Playstation and Fijitsu, as well as innovative start-ups.

Most recently, Stephanie worked for Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants as Director of Hotel Public Relations, overseeing communications for the company’s 60+ hotels. While there, she helped launch or re-launch nearly a dozen hotels, and worked closely with the executive team on internal positioning and external messaging. She played a key role in growing Kimpton’s brand recognition and developing and rolling-out internal and external communications platforms.

KELLY AIGLON

Kelly is a freelance writer, editor and content strategist for editorial and corporate clients. On the brand side, she has worked with ULTA Beauty, Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants, Unison Home, IES Abroad and more. On the editorial side, she was part of the team at DailyCandy, where she worked on feature stories and promotional copy for brands like Starbucks and Cover Girl; and Red Tricycle, where she was Managing Editor of local and national products. Prior to that, she wrote stories and styled photo shoots for The Chicago Tribune, Modern Luxury Publications and numerous lifestyle and travel publications. She loves music, dance and anything that has to do with the ’80s (yes, even banana clips).

MINDY SMYTH

Mindy is an agile and accomplished communications specialist with a broad base of expertise spanning Silicon Valley technology start-ups to Fortune 50 companies. Her real passion is message development, corporate reputation building and internal communications. She’s worked with Procter & Gamble for the past ten years developing internal and external message strategies, executive speech writing, and guiding internal communications that support the adoption of new technologies and work processes. Her early career began in San Francisco, working at two of the largest global PR firms for companies including IBM, MCI, BMC Software, ichat and Dragon Systems.