Southwest Strategies Announces Two New Hires in Central Valley

Nov 23, 2015

FRESNO (November 23, 2015) – Southwest Strategies recently hired two new employees – Senior Account Executive Cynthia Martinez and Account Executive Jim McHugh – to support the firm’s expansion into the Central Valley.

Cynthia Martinez

Cynthia Martinez

Cynthia Martinez is a Senior Account Executive specializing in communications for energy clients. Before joining Southwest Strategies, Martinez worked as the Sales & Marketing Coordinator for a technical publishing firm, Murach Books. During her time at the firm, she successfully expanded the company’s reach and brand recognition through her work in international sales and reprint rights; publicity; event coordination and management; and community engagement. She also acted as the firm’s technical lead for its highly successful eBook program.

Prior to her time at Murach Books, Martinez worked as an assistant to the Public Information Officer at Reedley College, where she helped develop district-wide publicity campaigns focused on expanding awareness of financial aid programs benefiting low-income students.

“Cynthia brings over 11 years of communications expertise to Southwest Strategies,” said Southwest Strategies’ President, Chris Wahl. “Her ability to effectively communicate complex concepts combined with her strong community engagement background makes her an invaluable addition to our team.”

Martinez studied mass communication and journalism at Fresno State University. While attending Fresno State, she was active in the university’s Hispanic Business Student Association and acted as the group’s Publicity Coordinator in 2006. She also volunteered for various nonprofit organizations, including Ronald McDonald House Charities of the Central Valley and the Fresno Area Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.

Jim McHugh

Jim McHugh

Jim McHugh, Southwest Strategies’ newest Account Executive, brings his experience in energy, land use and community outreach to the firm.

McHugh previously interned for a member of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, where he researched and analyzed public policy, as well as organizing the Supervisor’s community outreach efforts. Prior to holding this position, he interned at the California Energy Commission, where he engaged in media and public outreach for the Commission’s Research and Development, Fuels and Transportation and Efficiency divisions.

‘Jim’s public outreach experience in the land use and energy fields will be a tremendous asset to our team,” said Chris Wahl, President of Southwest Strategies. “His educational background and knowledge of the issues will serve our clients well as we continue to deliver successful community outreach and communications programs.”

McHugh holds a Bachelor of Arts in Geography and Planning from California State University, Chico and a Master of Public Affairs from the University of San Francisco. While in graduate school, he volunteered for a high-profile grassroots organizing campaign and authored a capstone piece that examined crisis communications strategy for pipeline spills.

About Southwest Strategies
Southwest Strategies is a full-service public affairs, public outreach and strategic communications firm with offices in San Diego, the Central Valley and Sacramento. At nearly 50 employees, Southwest Strategies is one of the top communications firms in the State of California. The firm provides comprehensive communications strategy and outreach support to the public sector and private companies across a broad range of industries, including energy, transportation, water, retail, housing, professional sports, maritime and real estate development. For more information, visit

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