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Chaptman named news and media relations director at UW-Madison

June 30, 2009

Dennis Chaptman has been appointed director of news and media relations for University Communications, the central news and information unit for the University of Wisconsin–Madison, Amy Toburen, the unit’s director, announced today (June 30). His appointment is effective July 1.

Chaptman, who has served as senior university relations specialist in University Communications since 2003, will oversee the office’s news management operation, working with media professionals as they cover the university, generating story ideas for both internal and external audiences, and assisting with communication of critical university issues.

While on staff at University Communications, Chaptman has held communication responsibility for university administration, budget issues and capital building projects, and has covered areas including business, education, law and political science. He also has administered two programs that bring nationally known writers to campus each semester to meet with students, faculty and staff.

“Dennis brings an invaluable set of skills to this position, given his long and respected career in journalism and his knowledge of UW–Madison,” says Toburen. “He recognizes both the rewards and the challenges of communicating about a large public research university, while also understanding the needs of working journalists. He does an extraordinary job of balancing these aspects every day — and often under tight deadlines.”

Prior to joining UW–Madison, Chaptman held positions at several Wisconsin newspapers, including city government reporter at the La Crosse Tribune and the Green Bay Press Gazette; city editor for The Capital Times from 1986-89, a position in which he supervised a staff of 13 reporters; sportswriter for the Milwaukee Journal and Milwaukee Journal Sentinel from 1989-99; and state capitol reporter for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel from 1999-2003.

Chaptman is the author of two books, “The Badger Handbook: Stories, Stats and Stuff About Wisconsin Football” and “On Wisconsin: The Road to the Roses.”

As news and media relations director, he succeeds Brian Mattmiller, who is now assistant dean of external relations at UW–Madison’s College of Engineering.

Chaptman earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from UW–Madison in 1980.

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