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Mar. 2 - Nexstar media group names Marc Hefner Vice President and General Manager of Savannah, Georgia television and digital operations

Savannah Business Journal Staff Report

March 2, 2017 - Nexstar Media Group, Inc. recently announced that Marc Hefner has been named Vice President and General Manager of WSAV-TV, CW / MyNetwork digital subchannels and associated digital services, including WSAV.com, serving Savannah, GA. Since 2007, Mr. Hefner has served as Vice President and General Manager of Nexstar’s WCWJ-TV and YourJax.com in Jacksonville, FL. Mr. Hefner will immediately assume his new responsibilities and report to Bill Sally, Senior Vice President and Regional Manager of Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc.

An accomplished local media sales and management executive, Mr. Hefner is a highly-regarded leader within the Nexstar organization.

He brings to his new role over two decades of broadcasting experience with success in station and digital revenue growth, local programming and digital content development, and strategic planning across multiple media platforms.

In his most recent position at WCWJ-TV in Jacksonville, he developed highly effective sales teams that executed successful multiplatform marketing campaigns on behalf of clients, while also increasing revenue, market share and profitability.

In addition, he launched innovative sports and local entertainment programming, as well as unique digital content strategies that expanded audience reach and engagement and produced incremental revenue for the station.

His efforts and initiatives resulted in ongoing strong station performance that was consistently acknowledged by industry peers.

Most notably, WCWJ-TV was a recipient of a CW #1 affiliate performance award along with consistent recognition as an elite and a Model CW affiliate.

Mr. Hefner’s launch of Bounce Jacksonville achieved equal success and has been recognized as one of the top Bounce TV affiliates in the country.

Before joining Nexstar, Mr. Hefner held other sales management positions in Jacksonville at WTLV-TV, WJXX-TV, WAWS-TV and WTEV-TV where he consistently delivered excellence in client service and sales performance.

Prior to his work in Jacksonville, he held sales management and Account Executive positions at KCTV-TV in Kansas City, MO, WZTV-TV and WXMT-TV in Nashville, TN.

Bill Sally commented on the appointment, “Marc is a dedicated and a highly accomplished General Manager within the Nexstar organization.

He has an intimate understanding of how the Company’s organization-wide commitment to delivering exceptional service to our communities and outstanding results for our clients serves as a cornerstone of our long-term success.

Marc brings to his new role a proven record of growing revenue and market share by leveraging Nexstar’s unique local programming and digital content to deliver diversified marketing solutions that yield distinct competitive advantages for our local and national advertising partners.

Throughout his television career, he has built high-achieving, deeply engaged teams that have established enduring partnerships with local advertisers, businesses and community organizations, while elevating the level of service provided to the local viewers and clients.

With his entrepreneurial spirit and deep dedication to the local communities he serves, we are confident in Marc’s ability to provide effective leadership and look forward to his contributions as we continue to enhance the effectiveness and value of our Savannah operations.”

Commenting on his promotion, Marc Hefner stated, “I am excited about continuing my career with Nexstar Media Group in my new leadership role in Savannah.

Many business and cultural traditions in Savannah are very similar to those in Jacksonville and other Southern markets I have proudly served throughout my career. As such, I have a deep appreciation for the city’s rich history and a solid understanding of a local economy that is influenced by a strong military presence and a thriving seaport.

Nexstar’s unwavering commitment to superior local content production and service combined with its scalable diversified marketing solutions drives positive results on behalf of our local clients and customers.

I look forward to immediately immersing myself into the Savannah community and working together with the exceptional team at WSAV-TV as we continue to build upon the foundation of client service excellence across our broadcast, digital and mobile platforms.”

Mr. Hefner earned his B.A. in Political Science from the University of Missouri and attended the Antoneli School of Media, in New York City.

He has also served the Jacksonville community through board membership of Goodwill Industries of North Florida and has been a Trustee Member of the Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce. He has also coached youth baseball and soccer for non-profit organizations in Jacksonville.

Mr. Hefner, his wife and children will be relocating to Savannah, GA.

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Mar. 2 - A-Town Get Down Art & Music Festival Announces 2017 Lineup

Savannah Business Journal Staff Report

March 2, 2017 - Savannah’s 7th Annual A-Town Get Down Art & Music Festival heads to its new location on Indian Street on Saturday, March 25, bringing 12 hours of inspiration to attendees of all ages. The festival’s new location on Indian Street under the bridge allows for larger stages, more bands, more live art installations, and more food trucks than ever before.

This year’s lineup of musical acts includes Cracker, Bobby Rush, Colonel Bruce Hampton, AJ Ghent Band, Low Country Voices, Snarky Puppy Horns, Old Salt Union, Savannah Children’s Choir, Walter Parks and Swamp Cabbage, Waits & Co, Missionary Blues, The Billy Jonas Band, Complicated Animals, Marques and the Marvelous Miracles, Kim Michael Polote, Annalise Curtin, Lil’ J, and more. 

Visual artists include R. Land, Betsy Cain, Shea Slemmer, Jor Smith Michel, Katherine Sandoz, Will Penny, Matt Toole, Jose Ray, Jason Armstrong Beck, Emergent Savannah, Lara Wolf, Stephen Green, and Elmer Ramos, among others. 

Festival-goers will also have the opportunity to immerse themselves in interactive art experiences, including a digital art and design studio by the Adobe Arts Lab, an open “Drawing Jam” at the Collabostation, face painting by Scribble Art Studio, screenprinting with SCAD Print, live mural painting, a dance party with Emergent Savannah, photo opps on a custom storybook backdrop, illustrations by SCAD Fashion, custom portrait painting, an interactive sculpture, large-scale projection installations by Will Penny and Jason Armstrong Beck, and so much more. During the festival, a selection of artists will be live painting large-scale panels that guests can bid on in a silent auction.

The A-Town Get Down festival is free from 12pm-5pm and ticketed from 5pm-Midnight for the headliner performers and art events. Tickets are $25 for military/students with valid ID, $35 for general admission, and $95 for VIP. VIP tickets include access to a complimentary VIP tent at the festival, VIP seating, and a swag bag, plus exclusive access to a pre-festival event on Friday, March 24 with special appearances and meet and greets with select A-Town Get Down performers. 

Savannah’s A-Town Get Down Art & Music Festival was created in honor of art student and musician, Alex “A-Town” Townsend, who passed away in 2010. The festival’s mission is to increase access to music and art to citizens of the region.

To view the full lineup of artists, artist bios, and the festival schedule, or to purchase tickets online, visit www.A-TownGetDown.com

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Jan. 26 - Atty. Bowen, founder of Savannah Film Alliance, launches Southern Gateway Production Services for film industry in Georgia

Savannah Business Journal  Staff Report

January 26, 2017 – Savannah business and entertainment attorney Charles Bowen has announced the formation of Southern Gateway Production Services with the mission to ensure a seamless experience for out-of-town producers coming to Savannah.

Bowen’s overall goal is to continue to build upon Savannah’s stature as one of the country’s most desirable and user-friendly filming locations, he states,  in ways that will both greatly benefit production companies while also strengthening the relationship between visiting productions and local crew, vendors and service providers.

“The idea came from weeks of strategy sessions with the City of Savannah, the Savannah Area Film Office, local service providers, and the unions and guilds,” said Bowen. “Because of Georgia’s industry-leading tax credit program and Savannah’s additional generous rebate incentive offered by the Savannah Economic Development Authority, inquiries and interest in filming in the Savannah area are at an all-time high. Total local spending on motion pictures and television in Savannah in 2014 was slightly over $18 million. In 2015, that number jumped to nearly $60 million, and 2016 is expected to significantly surpass that figure."

After going through a significant vetting process, Southern Gateway Production Services became signatory to all IATSE National Term Agreements. IATSE is the union that represents the vast majority of film and television crew. This allows Southern Gateway clients to gain access to the most favorable terms and conditions offered in the industry.

Rather than charging a set fee for access to the National Term Agreements, Southern Gateway will instead allow its clients to simply pay a percentage of their actual savings in an effort to make certain the service is accessible and affordable to film and television productions of all sizes.

Bowen is recognized within the Savannah film community for his formation of the Savannah Film Alliance in 2015, an organization that promotes the film community within Savannah and the greater Coastal Empire through advocacy and action via education, outreach and collaboration. As the founder of The Bowen Law Group, he has also developed a reputation as one of Savannah’s most experienced attorneys in entertainment law.

He plans to put that expertise to use at the helm of Southern Gateway Production Services by offering motion picture and television productions access to an array of exclusive services. This not only includes access to the National Term Agreements, but the company will also facilitate production loans, broker the sale of Georgia tax credits, and provide extensive legal services including handling the application process for both the Georgia tax credits and the local incentive. Southern Gateway also serves as a one-stop shop for production companies coming to Savannah by vetting and providing connections and referrals to the full spectrum of local services required by productions at a discounted price.

“My overall objective is to ensure the continued growth and success of the Savannah entertainment industry,” Bowen said. “The film and business community are working hard to make Savannah the premier film destination in the country. I am confident that these new exclusive services provided by Southern Gateway will significantly contribute to the accomplishment of that goal.”

Southern Gateway Production Services is located at 7 East Congress St, Suite 1001.

More information is available by contacting him at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 912-544-2050.

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Feb. 13 - Want to sell services to the TV and Film industry in Savannah? Become a 'Camera Ready' vendor

Savannah Business Journal Staff Report

February 13 2017 – The Film Savannah office, Savannah Technical College and Georgia Small Business Assistance, are jointly offered training for businesses and individuals to learn how to become a ‘camera ready’ vendor.  The session will inform attendees on selling their services and products to the film and TV productions in the Savannah area.

The program will be held March 3, 2017, from 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM, at the Savannah Technical College, 5717 White Bluff Rd, Room 7126. Tickets are $69.  Registration is available at www.georgiasbdc.org/southern.

The course will include:

• An overview of the production ecosystem

• The types of services and products purchased

• How to adapt your product/service offering to meet the unique needs of this industry

• How to engage with the entertainment Communities of Practice

•How to market your business to the appropriate connectors, influencers & decision-makers

• The impact of east coast/west coast competition

• How to handle purchase orders, invoices, and payments

• Assigning dedicated personnel to serve entertainment accounts

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Jan. 21 – Become a ‘Camera Ready’ vendor for the film industry; Program offered by Savannah Tech

Savannah Business Journal Staff Report

January 21, 2017 – The Film Savannah office, Savannah Technical College and Georgia Small Business Assistance, are jointly offered training for businesses and individuals to learn how to become a ‘camera ready’ vendor.  The session will inform attendees on selling their services and products to the film and TV productions in the Savannah area.

It will be held March 3, 2017, from 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM, at the Savannah Technical College, 5717 White Bluff Rd, Room 7126. Tickets are $69.  Registration is available at www.georgiasbdc.org/southern.

The course will include:

• An overview of the production ecosystem

• The types of services and products purchased

• How to adapt your product/service offering to meet the unique needs of this industry

• How to engage with the entertainment Communities of Practice

•How to market your business to the appropriate connectors, influencers & decision-makers

• The impact of east coast/west coast competition

• How to handle purchase orders, invoices, and payments

• Assigning dedicated personnel to serve entertainment accounts

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