Communications to Advance Great Ideas

“Pete Mackey’s exceptional gifts of an unusually high intellect, remarkable communication capabilities, sound judgment, keen insight, and wonderful sense of humor are overshadowed only by his reliability, leadership abilities, solid moral compass, and high character. I can’t begin to count the number of times I’ve thought of how he would approach a matter.”

Lyles Glenn
Principal, Keenan Development Associates, LLC, and former Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, University of South Carolina

“Pete Mackey is simply the best. Having seen his body of work over many years, I am convinced that no one is better in higher education communications than he. Creative and highly professional, Pete also has a unique ability to make work downright fun. From marketing and branding, video, print to social media channels and so much more, Pete is a complete expert in many categories. What I admire most is his ability to translate strategic institutional priorities into every word and action. Few people have the capacity to think very strategically while creating and implementing critical tactical plans. Having worked with many higher education consultants, I believe Pete is in a category by himself.”

Scott G. Nichols
Senior Vice President, Development & Alumni Relations, Boston University

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“Pete Mackey’s talents are obvious in the field of communications and marketing. He has advised us as well as many clients on all of their external messaging. But what we realized, and what is not obvious, is that Pete is an excellent strategist on so many issues, someone who can help transform your organization.”

Shelly Weiss Storbeck
Managing Partner, Storbeck Pimentel & Associates

“Dr. Mackey is simply outstanding. He is a gifted writer and a person who understands strategy and performance. I believe he is one of the most capable people I have ever had the opportunity to work with during my career. He is a person of both great vision and integrity.”

William Harris
Founding Director General of Science Foundation Ireland; Former Assistant Director of the Mathematical and Physical Sciences at the National Science Foundation

“Pete Mackey is a rare bird. He understands higher education like an academic, but solves its challenges like a marketer. As an advertising professional, I loved working with Pete on communications for my alma mater, Bucknell. He always uses research to point the way to a sharply focused strategy. For Bucknell, his approach led to success on everything from a total rebranding to the launch of a half-billion-dollar capital campaign.

There are five other qualities I admire about Pete.

1.    He listens.
2.    He works fast.
3.    He never settles for “one size fits all” solutions.
4.    He digs for insights that set you apart from your competition.
5.    He’s FUN.

Talk to him and see.”

Jane Maas
Jane Maas is best known for her “I Love New York” campaign.
 Advertising Age magazine named her one of the most influential women in American advertising.

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“Pete Mackey guided Aurora University through a critical chapter in our institutional story. After a period of intensive enrollment growth, he collaborated with trustees, faculty, administrators and staff to fashion the communication and marketing strategies that will carry the university through the next five years. The outcomes of the process were impressive. So too was the widespread ownership of Mackey’s recommendations that emerged as a result of his ability to listen closely and then to weave a vibrant tapestry of ideas.”

Rebecca L. Sherrick
President, Aurora University

“Pete Mackey is one of the finest and most discerning writers I know, and a great listener. He takes even fragmentary ideas, quickly helps you clarify your own thinking, and efficiently produces compelling texts to fit any need. But besides that, he is gifted at developing strategies and communications that fit together beautifully.”

John C. Bravman
President, Bucknell University

“Pete’s breadth of professional experience allows him to apply his strategic know-how to whatever the issue at hand may be. He is an innovative thinker with the ability to anticipate and respond to crises that campuses may face, to develop meaningful relationships with media, and to initiate relevant research and develop coordinated institutional priorities and corresponding messages built around it. Here at Amherst, Pete was an invaluable resource for Admission and Financial Aid as we developed a new family of publications and a revitalized presence on the college website, and as we commenced development of a multi-year strategic communication plan.”

Katharine Fretwell
Dean of Admission and Financial Aid, Amherst College

“In the early days after the creation of the Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) it was extremely important that the global scientific and industrial communities were made aware of the enormous new investment the Irish government had made in research and innovation. Pete Mackey joined SFI as the Director of Communications and was responsible for developing the communications strategy and all communications on the opportunities and the progress being made in establishing a world class research activity in Ireland.

By any measure Pete’s activities were hugely successful. The success of SFI was recognized around the world and has been cited extensively. At the time I was the Director of the new Information and Communications Division of SFI and was most impressed by Pete’s energy and initiative in seeking out the best places to broadcast the accomplishments of SFI and of the researchers—not just in Ireland but in the international press. It is generally difficult to find people with strong communications skills in the scientific and technical fields, and Pete is exceptional in this respect.

I left Ireland in 2006 to go to Ontario, Canada as Deputy Minister of Research and Innovation because the Canadians were so impressed with the progress in Ireland—which they were aware of in large because of the outstanding communications by Pete Mackey.”

Alastair Glass, Ph.D.
Former first Deputy Minister of Research and Innovation for the Province of Ontario, Former Director of Information and Communication Technologies for Science Foundation Ireland, and Former Vice President of Bell Labs Photonics

“Pete Mackey is one of the most brilliant and versatile authors and communication experts I have encountered in more than 30 years in higher education. Not only can he find an effective mode of communicating, he has the talent, originality, and insight to express powerful ideas in a way the audience can appreciate. He is a leader.

I have worked with Dr. Mackey for more than 20 years, including my last 14 as President of Macon State College. He knows how to position an enterprise in the marketplace, develop public relations documents, and express—with great care—strategic ideas that work. He is an analyst, theoretician, and a gifted writer as well. He uses what I would call a Socratic Method, which allows him to engage others in a dialog so he best understands their thoughts and feelings as he accomplishes his work.

He has proven to be excellent at developing public relations opportunities and positioning an educational institution’s foundation in the marketplace. He has the ability to recognize big ideas and run with them. I think you’ll find if you work with Pete, the same continuity of excellence that I have.”

David Bell, Ph.D.
President Emeritus, Middle Georgia State College (formerly Macon State)