Colleen Mastony, executive director of media relations and external affairs at the University of Chicago, will serve as assistant vice president for public affairs at the University of Michigan.
Her appointment begins Jan. 2, 2024.
“Colleen has an extraordinary mix of experience as a reporter, media strategist and university spokesperson leading a team of media pros,” said Richie Hunter, vice president for communications. “She brings a nuanced understanding of the media landscape and a deep appreciation for the important role that major research universities like Michigan play in society.”
Mastony will assume responsibility for the university’s Office of Public Affairs, The University Record and the Freedom of Information Act Office, and she will be U-M’s primary spokesperson. She will succeed Rick Fitzgerald, who will retire in January after leading Public Affairs for the past decade.
As assistant vice president of public affairs, Mastony will report to Hunter.
“The University of Michigan is a powerful engine of innovation and ideas, a proving ground for the next generation of leaders and thinkers, and an economic driver for the state and nation,” Mastony said. “I am honored to join this great institution and to play a part in advancing its mission.”
At the University of Chicago, Mastony leads a team of media relations staff and works across the university, medical center, two affiliated national labs and six international centers.
Before that she was vice president of media strategies at a Chicago-based public affairs firm and built a career as a magazine and newspaper journalist, including 13 years as a reporter for the Chicago Tribune, where she won the first Anne Keegan Award, a top annual prize for feature writing in Chicago.
Mastony is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania. She has earned three Pulitzer Prize nominations and has been a two-time finalist for Livingston Awards.