Scott Copeland is the CEO and owner. In the spring of 2021, Scott and his wife, Jillian Copeland, acquired Bethesda Magazine and Bethesda Beat from co-founders Steve and Susan Hull.
Longtime residents, business owners and philanthropists in Montgomery County, the Copelands believe an informed community is an engaged community and understand that trustworthy journalism strengthens readers and empowers individuals to engage with the world around them. As stewards of the next generation of these publications, they are excited to bring together content that matters to readers on a new, reimagined website—from timely news to compelling features.
Scott Copeland is a principal of RST Development LLC, a mid-Atlantic developer of multifamily market-rate and affordable housing. Together with Jillian, they also co-founded Main Street, a unique model of inclusivity and affordability that provides housing and dynamic community engagements so people of all abilities can live their best lives; and The Diener School in North Bethesda, which supports academic and social needs for students with learning differences.
Copeland has served on several boards including Children’s National Medical Center, Green Acres School, Sunniva Super Coffee and Citizens United for Research in Epilepsy (CURE), a Chicago-based nonprofit.
The Copelands have four sons and reside in Rockville.
Sumindi Peiris joined as the president at the beginning of 2022. Peiris is a seasoned executive with a passion for purpose-driven brand building. She has spent the past 25 years helping build iconic brands at international companies spanning the media, hospitality and consumer goods sectors. Known as a master collaborator, Peiris excels in building community, engaging audiences and creating high-performing teams. Her work has been recognized across business publications, such as Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg, Brand Week and Ad Age.
Most recently, Peiris was the global chief marketing officer at Time Out Group, a global media organization that reinvented itself when the COVID-19 pandemic hit in 2020 and went on to win multiple international awards for its innovative response. Prior to Time Out, she was the vice president of global brand marketing for luxury and lifestyle hotels at Hilton Worldwide and held leadership roles at Diageo, LVMH, Bacardi and Unilever.
An avid learner, Peiris has completed executive programs in digital marketing and social media analytics from MIT Sloan School of Business and INSEAD in Fontainbleau, France. She earned her International MBA from Long Island University in Switzerland and her BA in International Business from Franklin University in Switzerland.
Born in Sri Lanka, Peiris grew up in Kensington, traveled the world and now lives in North Bethesda with her husband, Sam, their son, Daveeth, who also attends Walter Johnson High School, and their 4-year-old Bichon Frise, BooBoo.
VICE PRESIDENT OF BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT
Brendan Martin’s career spans 15 years in sales, marketing and business development. Prior to joining Bethesda Magazine and Bethesda Beat, Martin founded the Northwest Courier where he was the CEO & Publisher. Launched in 2018, it was the largest hyper-local newspaper in Northwest, Washington, D.C. Prior to the pandemic, it reached more than 48,000 homes in the D.C. area and an additional 2,000 in Bethesda neighborhoods. Before starting the Northwest Courier, he was the head of advertising operations at Current Newspapers.
Brendan earned an MBA from DePaul’s Kellstadt School of Business with a double concentration in management and marketing, and earned his BA in English from Southern Methodist University.
Anne Tallent is the executive editor of Bethesda Magazine and Bethesda Beat. She joined the publications in August 2021 after 16 years as an editor at The Baltimore Sun. There, she rose from copy editor to director of content/news, overseeing teams responsible for coverage related to breaking news, justice, features, magazines and sports, among other topics. Her leadership contributed to Sun coverage recognized by Maryland Delaware DC Press Association awards, the National Press Club, the National Headliner Awards and the Pulitzer Prize.
Previously, Tallent had been an editor at the Democrat & Chronicle in Rochester, N.Y., and the Daily Oklahoman in Oklahoma City. She attended the University of Maryland and graduated from Oklahoma State University. Tallent has been a resident of Silver Spring since 2015. She and her husband have a young son enrolled in Montgomery County Public Schools.
GROWTH AND JUSTICE REPORTER
Apoorvaa “Apps” Bichu, joined Bethesda Magazine and Bethesda Beat as a growth and justice reporter in October 2022. She recently graduated from Northwestern University with a Master of Science in Journalism, specializing in social justice reporting. She has previously written for organizations such as The Chicago Reporter, Education Week, Omaha Magazine and Illinois Latino News, among others. She completed her Bachelor of Arts in journalism with a double specialization in news and public relations at Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska. While at Creighton, she served as the opinion editor of her college newspaper: The Creightonian. As a person of Indian origin, born and raised in the United Arab Emirates and having travelled to 28 countries so far, Apps considers herself global at heart, and enjoys traveling, trying different cuisines and learning more about new cultures. She has a vested interest in reporting on underrepresented communities, and wants to use digital content creation, solutions journalism and multimedia reporting to amplify stories that aren’t always heard in mainstream media.
POLITICS AND ENTERPRISE REPORTER
Ginny Bixby joined Bethesda Beat in 2022 as a politics and enterprise reporter. She grew up in Manassas, Virginia, and graduated in 2020 from the University of Mary Washington, where she was an editor at the student paper. She previously interned for RVA Magazine and GayRVA in Richmond, Virginia, and the Student Press Law Center in Washington, D.C., and was a correspondent for The Free Lance-Star in Fredericksburg, Virginia. Most recently, she was the city reporter for The Daily Progress in Charlottesville, Virginia, covering city government and digging into the ways that local government decisions affect marginalized communities.
COUNTY GOVERNMENT REPORTER
Steve Bohnel joined Bethesda Beat in 2021. He is from Doylestown, Pennsylvania, a suburb about 30 miles north of Philadelphia. After graduating from Temple University in 2017, he moved to the Midwest to work for the Globe Gazette, a small newspaper in Mason City, Iowa. His most recent job prior to Bethesda Beat was at The Frederick News-Post in Frederick, where he predominantly covered county government.
Em Espey has joined Bethesda Beat as our education reporter. Originally from Baltimore, they recently graduated from American University with a master’s in journalism. Most recently, Em served as copywriter for FreeState Justice, Maryland’s leading LGBTQIA+ nonprofit. They previously spent seven years working as a digital court reporter covering Maryland and Virginia. In that role, Em had the opportunity to transcribe legal proceedings related to the death of Baltimore’s Freddie Gray as well as the Charlottesville Unite the Right rally. They also spent a year working as an investigator with the nonprofit G.R.A.C.E., where they assessed the response of religious organizations to cases of sexual abuse. When Em’s not writing, you can usually find them drinking hot tea, reading mystery novels and spending time with their partner and two Russian sphinxes.
MANAGING EDITOR, LONG-FORM
As the managing editor, long-form, Kelly Kendall helps come up with story ideas and then sees them through to completion, from assigning stories to freelance writers to working on edits along the way to coordinating the right photos with the art department to combing through final pages. She graduated from Indiana University with a degree in French in 2000 and Indiana University School of Law in 2004. Kendall spent years writing and editing for The Indianapolis Star and Indianapolis Monthly, her hometown newspaper and magazine. She arrived at Bethesda Magazine in 2022.
A native of Oxon Hill, Prince George’s County, Akira Kyles joined Bethesda Beat in 2022 as a lifestyles reporter focusing on dining, culture and things to do. She graduated in 2018 from Morgan State University, where she served as editor in chief of The MSU Spokesman, the school newspaper. She has previously written for the Afro-American Newspaper and Baltimore City Paper and attended the Politico Journalism Institute. She has been a community news reporter for the Carroll County Times and, most recently, an arts and culture reporter at the Fayetteville Observer in North Carolina.
Jeffrey K. Lyles has joined the team as the managing editor. He is passionate about journalism and has a strong background in covering and editing community news. The writing bug fully caught him at Howard University, where he switched majors from business to communication. He was a reporter for The Gazette Newspapers covering education, lifestyles, crime and municipal government and some of his stories were published in The Washington Post, which owned The Gazette Newspapers. From there, he served as an assistant editor and then managing editor until The Gazette’s closure in 2015. He continues to write online movie reviews and recently celebrated 10 years of his pop culture review website, in addition to launching a YouTube channel discussing his love of action figures.
Kelly Martin joined Bethesda Magazine/Bethesda Beat in early 2022. He has over 20 years of experience in visual storytelling and branding that span print and digital media. After more than a decade of working in print journalism, Martin opened his own studio in 2015, serving clients such as AARP, The Atlantic, The Investigative Reporting Workshop, Politico and Kx Advisors. A graduate of Ohio University, Martin is a native of Cincinnati and will gladly explain why Skyline Chili is far superior to Gold Star.
Ellen’s career roots began at a small, bustling newsroom in the Poconos as a copy editor and designer, following graduation from Temple University with a degree in journalism. From there, she’s been a designer and art director for a variety of newspapers and magazines in Pennsylvania, Tennessee, and Maryland. While she loves all aspects of graphic design, storytelling through publication design has a special place in her heart. She received a master’s degree in graphic design at the Maryland Institute College of Art in 2020, and she’s thrilled to be back in the newsroom.
SENIOR CONTENT EDITOR
Amy Orndorff joined MoCo360 in 2023 after nearly 20 years doing a little of everything at The Washington Post. Born and raised in Rockville, she graduated from the University of Maryland in 2007 and lived briefly in D.C. before returning to her beloved suburb. She proudly serves her community as a volunteer firefighter, EMT and ambulance driver.
DESIGNER OF PRINT AND DIGITAL PROJECTS
Olivia Sadka joined Bethesda Magazine in April 2021. She designs print and digital projects, working across the editorial, advertising and marketing departments. Sadka graduated from James Madison University in 2020 with a degree in media arts and design and a minor in art. She lives in Annapolis and loves spending time traveling with her friends and family.
Advertising & Sales
Arlis Dellapa has been working in the publishing business for almost 20 years, working for The Washington Times and Hanley-Wood Publishing before joining Bethesda Magazine. She has been with the company since 2014, helping businesses meet their marketing goals through evolving digital and print platforms. Originally from Huntsville, Alabama, Dellapa graduated from Auburn University with a degree in marketing and is often heard saying “War Eagle!” She has two daughters, Grace and Sarah, and lives in Rockville with her husband, Mike, and three “pandemic kittens” who are taking over the house.
BUSINESS SOLUTIONS & PARTNERSHIPS
A native Washingtonian, Jeni joins us with over 20 years of experience in managing public relations and community engagement campaigns. She leverages her network to develop successful business alliances and applies core strategies for business growth, impact and sustainability.
A graduate of Boston College, Jeni served on the Board of Directors for the BCAA. She also serves as the Chair of the Black Alumnae Association at the National Cathedral School and sits on the host committee for several organizations including the American Freedom Fund, the Go Bo Fund, The District Cup and Run Hope Work.
Jeni enjoys the art of the dinner party, rides Harleys with her beloved (adopted) Veterans Motorcycle Club and – against her better judgment – occasionally practices the game of golf. Her grandmother, the late famed milliner, Vanilla Beane, was known as “DC’s Hat Lady” and has an exhibit at the National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC).
AD SALES COORDINATOR
Mel Korobkin joined the Bethesda Magazine team in August 2021 and works with advertisers, the production team and the sales team. With a background in events, she has worked with local businesses to build their brands and bring the community together. Korobkin was raised in Howard County and moved back to the area after graduating from College of Charleston with a degree in sociology and communications. Korobkin lives in Bethesda with her husband, son and dog. She loves exploring new restaurants in the area, traveling and spending time with loved ones.
BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT LEAD
Amanda McCloskey comes to us from an extensive career in business marketing and consulting, and has worked with a wide array of companies and industries—here in Montgomery County and beyond. From big household names to Mom & Pop businesses, she utilizes her broad digital and conventional marketing experience to help her partners design creative strategies to ultimately achieve real-world results.
Originally from Pittsburgh, PA, Amanda earned her undergraduate degree in Journalism from University of Delaware, then moved to the DC area shortly thereafter. She now resides in Rockville with her husband Tommy, a Montgomery County native, her preschooler, Major, and her baby boy Flynn.
An avid beach-lover, she visits Rehoboth Beach, DE often, where her family lives year-round. Amanda is also a fitness enthusiast who loves to spend time outdoors, and a former certified barre and yoga instructor.
Penny Skarupa has over 30 years of advertising and marketing experience. She began her career on the agency side in Boston, but soon moved into advertising sales, which included large national and smaller local companies. Skarupa worked for Boston Magazine for five years until her family relocated to the D.C. area in the early 1990s. She has been with Bethesda Magazine for over 18 years, since the second issue. Originally from Connecticut, Skarupa is a Boston College graduate who splits her time between Boston, Rockville and Florida. She and her husband have two grown children, Dylan and Haley, and a daughter-in-law, Karen.
LuAnne Slagle Spurrell
LuAnne “Lu” Slagle Spurrell, has over 30 years of advertising and marketing experience with companies including Mead Data Central and Congressional Quarterly. She is passionate about her clients and loves to help them achieve their goals. Spurrell is an avid VOL fan who graduated from the University of Tennessee. She resides in Bethesda with her husband, and has two grown daughters, Evan, an architect in Colorado, and Megan, an emergency room doctor in Virginia Beach. Spurrell enjoys playing golf, hiking and traveling. She also loves to spend time at the family’s river cabin in Harpers Ferry, West Virginia.
DIRECTOR OF ADVERTISING OPERATIONS
Amélie Ward joined the Bethesda Magazine and Bethesda Beat staff in 2017 working in web production, marketing and events before assuming her current role in 2021. As the director of advertising operations, she is responsible for the management of all print and digital ads. After graduating from Denison University in Ohio in 2013, Ward moved to Washington, D.C., to work at Sibley Memorial Hospital in marketing and communications. Originally from Westport, Connecticut, Ward resides in Annapolis with her husband, Greg, and daughter, Madeline.
Audience Development & Marketing
DIRECTOR OF DATA ANALYSIS AND TECHNOLOGY OPERATIONS
Jack Copeland joined Bethesda Magazine in 2022 as the Director of Data Analysis and Technology Operations. Calling on his work experience from Anheuser-Busch and Haystacks.AI, Jack is striving to create a better digital experience for our readers as well as our advertisers. Jack graduated from The University of Virginia in 2019 with a computer science degree, and is excited about his role in progressing local, trustworthy journalism in his hometown of Montgomery County.
MARKETING AND EVENTS MANAGER
Ashley Fletcher joined the Bethesda Magazine and Bethesda Beat staff in December 2021. Born and raised in Springboro, Ohio, Fletcher graduated from the University of Mississippi in 2016. She is responsible for virtual and in-person marketing events as well as the marketing plans leading up to them. Fletcher loves trying new restaurants in the DMV area with friends and traveling to Florida to spend time with family.
Elizabeth Moseley manages social media, our membership program and other engagement initiatives. She helps our newsroom reach and serve readers. Moseley is a Tuscaloosa, Alabama, native who studied journalism and theater at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and The University of Alabama, where she was the chief copy editor of the campus newspaper. Elizabeth previously worked at NCTA – The Internet and Television Association and Meredith Corporation, producing and publishing videos for brands like Allrecipes, Southern Living, Food & Wine, Martha Stewart Living and Health Magazine. She loves plants, antique stores and taking long walks in nature.
ENGAGEMENT & PRODUCT SPECIALIST
As our engagement and product specialist, James Musial manages operations, curation and innovation for our digital products, as well as analytics reporting. Together with other audience staff, he uses analytics and best practices to guide content and product strategy. Musial studied English and journalism at Georgetown University, where he served as deputy editor of the school paper’s social media team. James grew up near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and previously worked at the Pittsburgh Jewish Chronicle as a digital and audience specialist. He now lives in D.C. and enjoys exploring the city as well as reading science fiction, cheering for the Steelers and spending time with his brothers.
CUSTOMER SERVICE MANAGER
Onecia Ribeiro has been with Bethesda Magazine since 2015 and manages customer service and print magazine subscriptions. Born and raised in India, Ribeiro graduated with a finance degree and spent several years in Dubai and London. She lives in Potomac with her husband and three sons, and enjoys traveling, exploring varied cuisines and spending time with family and friends.
DIRECTOR OF AUDIENCE ENGAGEMENT AND MARKETING
Karen Singer brings more than 20 years of experience in digital strategy and content marketing. Prior to joining MoCo360, Karen served as Content Director at Healthy Directions where she supported the sale of 100 products across eight doctor brands with a multi-channel content strategy, including articles, advertorials, E-Newsletters, video scripts and social media.
Karen is a graduate of the University of Delaware. She and her husband are longtime Montgomery County residents and enjoy visiting local restaurants and parks. In her free time, Karen enjoys playing tennis, watching Netflix and hanging out with their two adopted kitties, Muffy and Dana.
HUMAN RESOURCES CONSULTANT
Chessie Williams is the human resources consultant for Bethesda Magazine and Bethesda Beat. She has over 15 years of industry experience and holds a masters degree in human resources. Previously, Williams worked for Hercules Real Estate Services, Lowes and Hyatt Hotels & Resorts. She prides herself in impacting the lives of others and has a passion for people and helping small businesses.