When Dawn Kamerling was a kid, her mother asked her what she wanted to do when she grew up. Her answer? “I want to work in music.”
Over 20 years ago, she started on the path to making that dream a reality.
After honing her chops and building connections by working at an acclaimed PR firm, she decided to set out on her own. Dawn founded The Press House on the idea of providing personal service and attention to each individual client – something that’s hard to come by in the fast-paced and often impersonal world of PR.
Using nothing more than her charisma, drive, business savvy, and her vision for the company, Dawn built The Press House into a successful PR powerhouse that employs a staff of passionate and talented people located throughout the country.
In addition to her work with Press House clients, Dawn has taken part in music industry panels, penned articles on the art of publicity and self-promotion, as well as consulted for various record labels and start-up PR firms. In addition to this, she's led self-promotion workshops for CD Baby and The Kaui Music Festival.
In recent years, The Press House has expanded from its music roots into the world of film and restaurant publicity, as well as event planning. Post-expansion, Dawn’s client-centric philosophy still hasn’t changed.
"No matter what industry you're working in, marketing comes down to having a vision for the endgame and figuring out the strategy to get there,” she says. “That’s my favorite part of the job.”
Ever since she was a teenager, Kiva has felt a connection to the music world. When she was younger, she found a welcoming community as she made connections with, supported, and promoted the bands and music she was passionate about.
"When I was a kid, every Wednesday I would go to the local club and sneak into shows. I felt like an outcast at school, and the bands were nonjudgmental. They became some of my closest friends,” Kiva says. "That connection made it personal, and it drove me to spread the word about these bands. And that connection stays with me today, whether I'm working for bands, charities, comedians, or photographers."
Today, as PR director and publicist for The Press House, she uses her knack for developing deep interpersonal connections to create hugely successful campaigns. Her confidence and open-minded approach to PR are valuable assets when working with the firm’s diverse client base.
"I'm always learning," she says. "But with any new client, you just jump right in and pitch with the same passion and aggressiveness you do all of your other clients. That entails thinking about what they need and making sure they're portrayed in the proper light."
When not busy with work for The Press House, Kiva is an accomplished photographer. Her works has appeared everywhere from major music magazines to album covers. Her favorite photography subject, however, is nature, and her love of animals shines through in her stunning shots of howling wolves, grazing deer, and preening birds.
Her first love, however, will always be music. “Never in a million years did my 15-year-old self think that I would be doing what I am today,” Kiva says. “That excitement hasn't gone away."
Maria Ivey joined The Press House in 2010 as an intern in New York City. In the 8 years that have followed, she opened the firm’s Nashville office and played a key role in launching The Press House’s festival and lifestyle division-- conducting wildly successful campaigns for some of Nashville’s hottest restaurants and music’s biggest festivals.
Maria is a big-picture planner, a fan of triple checked to-do lists, and an excellent communicator. She is a guest lecturer at her alma mater, Belmont University; has twice-sat on the PR panel at Folk Alliance International; and is currently co-authoring a textbook, titled “Music Publicity: A Practical Approach” to be published by Kendall Hunt in 2018. She lives in East Nashville with her husband, a Labrador Retriever named Willie, and a handful of chickens.
An obsession with music started early for Sarah Frost, when she received her first George Strait cassette at just six years old.
Sarah, a native Texan, developed a deep connection to the music world and set off to work in marketing, event production, and social media. After moving to Nashville in 2014 and immersing herself in the entertainment industry, it was only natural that she would find The Press House and become part of the team a year later. After beginning with The Press House’s Nashville office, she relocated to New York in 2016.
Sarah shares The Press House’s passion for music and personal attention to each of its clients. Her expert writing skills and meticulous attention to grammar make her a skilled craftswoman for every pitch and press release. From lifestyle brands to musicians, Sarah believes that every client has a story to tell, and she loves being the one to help bring these stories to the the rest of the world.
Her Instagram feed is filled with photos of her dog, Dolly Parton-Madison, in addition to screenshots of whichever of the various Bruce Springsteen/Ryan Adams/James Taylor/Joni Mitchell playlists she’s currently blasting throughout her home.
Austin native Ellee Fletcher grew up listening to the canon of great songwriters. Her passion for music was built on a childhood spent immersed in the musical storytelling of Bob Dylan and Townes Van Zandt.
Ellee launched her PR career by working in the entertainment, lifestyle, and hospitality fields before joining the Press House team. Storytelling is still a central theme for Ellee as she works to craft campaigns that bring each of her clients’ distinctive stories to life. Whether she’s working with a talented chef, a first-time author, a seasoned music festival producer, or an emerging musician, Ellee highlights the creative thread that connects all of The Press House’s clientele.
As the co-founder of the Luck Reunion music festival, Ellee works to celebrate the diversity and evolution of American roots music. She spends her free time nurturing her unhealthy obsession with “Yatzy,” the Norwegian version of Yahtzee.
Born at the foothills of the Appalachian Trail, Sarah Bennett is a Georgia peach that was raised on mountain music and a lot of Crosby, Stills, Nash, and sometimes Young.
After moving to Athens, Georgia, to pursue a degree in journalism at the University of Georgia and immerse herself in indie rock, she ultimately fell in love with media and the music industry. During her time in Athens, she gained invaluable experience in artist promotion and writing. She has been published in multiple outlets, including print (Ampersand Magazine) and online venues (Vinyl Mag, Paste Magazine).
She is happy to now call Nashville home and loves the personality that lives within the city. She believes that the heart of media lies in making meaningful relationships and telling the best stories, which makes working at The Press House her dream job. "Being able to go to work and come home always feeling inspired to do more, push harder, and expand your knowledge is something that most people never get to experience. I feel so lucky that I get that every single day."
On the side, Sarah still freelances regularly and spends most of her free time in nature, bars, and at concerts. She supports the Oxford comma and holds the title of Shania Twain's #1 Fan.