Hammerhead Communications tightly coordinates PR/crisis efforts with other functions such as lobbying and advocacy. Hammerhead puts clients first, and presents modern alternatives to legacy firms who are doing the “same old, same old.”
Hammerhead Communications is spearheaded by Skip Foster, a pillar of Florida’s journalism scene and the former president and publisher of the capital city’s newspaper of record, the Tallahassee Democrat.
Foster’s 30-year journalism career reflects the arc of the classic American success story; one that starts with humble beginnings and continues to rise through hard work and insight. His 30 years in the business started as an entry-level sports reporter in Hickory, N.C. He moved quickly into a management position becoming an editor and eventually a publisher, first in Shelby, N.C. He moved to Ft. Walton Beach where he was named publisher of the Northwest Florida Daily News as well as four weeklies. From there, he was promoted to become the tenth publisher in the history of the Tallahassee Democrat in 2015; a position in which he served for five years.
During his tenure at the Democrat he became immersed in not only local news, but statewide and even national issues that originated in the state’s capital. Under Foster’s direction the Democrat broke and covered some of the most important political news in Florida, including corruption scandals that reshaped the political landscape of North Florida.
Foster succeeded on the business side as well, driving revenue and EBITDA growth and leading his staff to top performance within Gannett. In 2017 Foster was named Leader of the Year for the entire Gannett company.
This three-decade arc of experience has given Foster unparalleled insight into how news is gathered and presented in Florida. His connections to media outlets throughout the state give his clients an advantage not experienced with other communications firms. This critical difference allows Skip to shape messages in a way that uniquely benefits his clients, and plays an important role in achieving the clients’ ultimate goals. And Foster’s management experience as the CEO of a 100-plus employee operation means he can speak fluently with CEOs, marketing leaders and others who need counsel and advice.
Handley Mikec joined Hammerhead Communications as Vice President in April, 2022.
A savvy and resulted-oriented marketer, Handley comes to Hammerhead with 10 years of experience both on the agency and client side. She began her career in Atlanta, Georgia at BBDO, a global, full-service ad agency, helping to deliver disruptive marketing strategies to clients like The Georgia Lottery and Zoo Atlanta. From there, she moved on to pursue her MBA at Emory’s Goizueta Business School, concentrating on marketing strategy and brand management. While at Emory, she had the opportunity to consult for one of her most admired brands, Coca-Cola, which ultimately led to her to land a gig in brand management at the Coca-Cola Company. At Coca-Cola, Handley quickly climbed through the ranks and shaped beverage brands of various sizes from iconic Coca-Cola to smaller, acquired brands like Peace Tea. In her last role at Coca-Cola, she led the turn-around of vitaminwater, helping the brand to reach its highest market share in nearly 3 years.
As a native of Tallahassee, Handley jumped at the opportunity to join Hammerhead. With her experience on both the agency and client side as well as expertise across multiple marketing disciples, Handley aims to provide a 360 perspective to her clients. Handley brings the right balance of strategic thinking and creative capabilities to any challenge, and most importantly, can’t wait to partner to grow your business.