Resume

STEVE SEWALL, PH.D.

Chicago, IL  ⋅  847-736-1914  ⋅  sewall2020@comcast.net  ⋅  LinkedIn 

 

CIVIC MEDIA DEVELOPER

 

  • 30 years designing and implementing dialogic civic media formats capable of improving political communication and government functionality at local, state and national levels.

  • 15 major civic media projects undertaken in Chicago with students, media professionals, businessmen, neighborhood groups and senior officials including a publisher of the Chicago Sun-Times, a Illinois Director of Public Health and the superintendents of Chicago's public and Archdiocese school systems. Two major successes.

  • Published freelance writer with credits in the Chicago Tribune, Chicago Sun-Times and Chicago Reader

  • Four years studying and working in India, Europe, South America and Africa

 

EDUCATION

 

Ph.D., University of California at Berkeley, 1991. Concentration: 18th Century English Fiction. Dissertation subject: Henry Fielding 

 

M.A.T., Yale University, New Haven, CT. 1966. Concentration: English

 

A.B. Cum Laude, Harvard College, Cambridge, MA. 1964. Major: English. Minor: Sociology

 

CURRENT EMPLOYMENT 

 

CHICAGO CIVIC MEDIA (CCM) 1990-PRESENT

Founding Director 

  • In 2022 CCM presents its transformative Two Chairs project to Chicago’s TV stations, beginning with Chicago Public Television.

  • 15 Chicago projects have given hundreds of thousands of Chicagoans of all ages and backgrounds an informed voice in the educational and political decisions affecting their lives. 

  • Dialogic CCM media formats are scalable at local, state and national levels and adaptable to print and electronic formats, including social media.

 

CHI NETWORKS, CHICAGO 2015-PRESENT

Marketing Content Writer

  • Trebled site visitor count by managing, designing, writing copy and doing SMO for the website of this Chicago-based managed services cloud provider serving a global client base. 

  • Active participant in marketing meetings and decisions.

 

THE VOICE NEWSPAPERS, CHICAGO 1997-PRESENT

Advertising Sales and Consultant 

  • Assist in the design and marketing of advertising campaigns for Chicago’s largest black-owned community newspaper, serving residents of the city’s Austin, Garfield and Lawndale neighborhoods since 1988.

  • Consultant and partner with the paper in the design of community outreach programs such as the Parent’s Political Party 

 

 

EMPLOYMENT IN EDUCATION

 

OAKTON COMMUNITY COLLEGE, DES PLAINES AND SKOKIE 2009-2013

Instructor of English

  • Taught courses in expository writing, poetry and journalism.

  • Courses challenged students to use the tools of writing and research to think for themselves.

  • Courses earned 4.2 in student evaluations at Rate My Professors online teacher evaluation site.

 

THOMAS JEFFERSON ACADEMY, CHICAGO 1980-1986

Founding Headmaster

  • Founded and directed this independent K-8 elementary school - "The Little School on the Prairie" - for 80 Chicago boys and girls. Location: 1126 W. Grace Street, Chicago.

  • School won Recognition status from Illinois State Board of Education. Won Provisional Accreditation status from the Independent Schools Association of the Central States (ISACS).

  • Devised Life Purpose education philosophy.

  • Led Board of Directors and fundraising efforts. Served as Director of Faculty, Director of Development and Chief Financial Officer (1985-86 school budget $400,000).

 

NORTHWESTERN UNIVERSITY 1970-1973

Instructor of English

  • Hired expressly to design and teach innovative freshman writing courses.

  • Taught innovative courses to 450 students in classes of 25 that consistently received high marks in student course evaluations conducted by the English Department.

 

CIVIC MEDIA ACTIVITIES 

 

Following are one current project and two past major successes of the 15 civic media projects undertaken by Chicago Civic Media since 1990. All CCM projects are described here. [Add link]

 

  • 2022 CCM’s Two Chairs proposal to Chicago’s TV stations enables them to supplement their current and largely negative coverage of Chicago’s violence with something decidedly positive. CCM’s edgy Two Chairs news feature shows pairs of usually feuding Chicago leaders working constructively to make Chicago safe. 

  • 1997-2000 Partnered with THE AUSTIN VOICE newspaper in creating the West Side Drug Area Shutdown Project whose success in enabling police and residents of Austin’s 15th police district to cooperate in permanently shutting down public drug deal areas caused the program to be partially replicated in neighboring 11th and 25th police districts.

  • 1988  Creator, “Get Out the Vote for LSC Elections”, a 20-page special supplement 400,000 copies of which appeared in the Chicago Sun-Times as an insert several weeks before the 1989 Local School Council elections. Supplement was widely credited with generating 17,000 candidates and 300,000 votes.

 

References and Letters of Support