The B/HI Team

Dean Bender
Dean Bender //
President & Founding Partner

As founding partner and President of B/HI, Dean Bender has counseled a wide range of entertainment, consumer technology and corporate brand clients over the years. Responsible for the company’s day-to-day operations, he works in conjunction with Managing Partners Jerry Griffin and Shawna Lynch to exercise his vast knowledge of the issues, trends and policies that impact the agency’s key practice areas. Bender provides corporate, branding and product consultation to the entire firm’s roster of clients including Warner Bros. Consumer Products, RCA, Rovio Entertainment, Facebook Games, Amazon Prime Video, IMAX VR and DC Entertainment, among many others.

Bender is also responsible for the agency’s strategic partnerships with companies that specialize in social media, influencer relations and content creation, as well as aligning B/HI with several agencies abroad as part of the company’s international network, OneVoice.

Prior to the establishment of B/HI, Bender held executive positions at entertainment-based public relations agencies Rogers & Cowan and ICPR Public Relations. From comprehensive and strategic campaigns to damage and crisis control situations, he has worked closely with such recognizable industry leaders as Rupert Murdoch, Reed Hastings and Al Gore on behalf of 20th Century Fox, Netflix and Current Media, respectively.

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Shawna Lynch
Shawna Lynch //
Managing Partner, LA

As a Managing Partner at B/HI, Shawna Lynch plays a key role in the client servicing operations of the agency and oversees the Entertainment Content and Consumer Products practices. With more than 25 years of experience in public relations, she brings a vast amount of leadership, knowledge and skill to every campaign she oversees. Lynch has represented some of the largest entertainment brands in the world including DC Entertainment, Warner Bros., Universal, Disney, Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment, Fandango, Hulu and Amazon Prime Video, among many others.

Lynch has developed groundbreaking communications strategies for a wide variety of companies, intellectual properties, and products in the areas of entertainment content, digital delivery, licensed merchandise and television. Among her strengths are strategic planning, creative events/concepts, media relations and corporate positioning.

She is known for getting in the trenches with her account teams and is personally involved in the implementation of every project, contributing on a daily basis to orchestration and execution.

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Jerry Griffin
Jerry Griffin //
Managing Partner, NYC

Jerry Griffin is the General Manager of B/HI’s New York office and Managing Partner for the agency, bringing over 20 years of journalism and public relations experience to the agency. Griffin’s communications and subject matter expertise runs the gamut of corporate communications, technology, consumer electronics, digital media and entertainment.

In his time at B/HI, he has helped craft many of the agency’s client service and business development methodologies and served as a corporate and issues management advisor to some of its largest clients. He also plays a key role in managing B/HI’s operations while overseeing the New York client base.

Prior to joining B/HI, Griffin spent six years at Edelman, where he built and oversaw a Digital Media & Entertainment practice within Edelman’s Technology group. As part of his duties, Griffin, who was the Deputy Global Client Relationship Manager for the Samsung Electronics corporate communications program, oversaw programs spanning corporate communications, product launches, CSR, global coordination and crisis communications, including serving as the crisis manager for Samsung on the 2008 Beijing International Olympic Torch Relay.

Prior to joining Edelman, Griffin was with Text 100 after beginning his PR career at PAN Communications, a Massachusetts-based boutique firm. Before that, Griffin was a reporter for seven years in Connecticut, including two years as a political writer covering the Connecticut Statehouse. An avid supporter of the arts, Griffin produced a critically acclaimed off-Broadway play in 2006.

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Jonah Keel
Jonah Keel //
Senior Director of Business Development

Jonah Keel brings more than 20 years of experience to B/HI in his role as Director of Business Development. For B/HI, Keel focuses on building awareness about the company’s full suite of capabilities with prospective clients. Additionally, he’s a key figure in agency client relations for B/HI’s current roster.

Keel oversees the growth of B/HI’s four primary practice areas – Entertainment Content, Interactive Entertainment and Gaming, Consumer Products, and Consumer Technology & Platforms – as well as the ongoing integration of B/HI’s rapidly expanding list of strategic partnerships. Keel’s strengths lie in strategic planning, creative events/concepts, forging collaborative connections, influencer management, and big picture ideation.

Before joining B/HI Keel worked in campaign strategy, social media management, as a promotions coordinator, a freelance journalist, and in business development for a variety of companies including Fox TV, Universal Studios, Regal Cinemas, Disney, Miller, THA/Allied, and Click Communications. On the agency side, he’s worked with marquee global brands including Disney, Marvel, Sony, DreamWorks, Lionsgate, TWC, Starz and Cartoon Network, among others.

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Nicole Yavasile
Nicole Yavasile //
Senior Account Director of Entertainment Content & Consumer Products

With over 10 years of public relations experience, Nicole Yavasile develops and executes creative communication strategies, implements media outreach and oversees high-profile media campaigns. Using tactics that marry both traditional and innovative public relations methods, Yavasile has carried out campaigns for clients such as DC Entertainment, Saban Brands, Fandango, Fathom Events, CBS Home Entertainment, Warner Bros. Consumer Products, Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment, Magnolia Pictures, Vivendi Entertainment and more.

With experience representing both top studios and independent distributors, she has launched and executed high-profile campaigns for a myriad of film, television, consumer product, publishing and digital releases. Before her tenure at B/HI, Yavasile also represented various start-ups for personal care, fitness and healthcare products.

Yavasile graduated from the University of California, Berkeley with a bachelor’s degree in English before earning a master’s degree in Mass Communications and Journalism from California State University, Fresno.

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Nathalie Nourian
Nathalie Nourian //
Account Director of Interactive Entertainment & Consumer Technology

Nathalie Nourian, director of interactive gaming and consumer technology, is a seasoned public relations professional with more than a decade of experience providing strategic counsel and generating awareness for clients across a number of verticals, including interactive gaming, tech and consumer products.

Prior to re-joining B/HI, Nourian worked both in-house at online gaming developer and publisher, Nexon, and at agencies specializing in gaming, consumer electronics and technology. She has been instrumental in launching and sustaining campaigns for numerous clients, including: Paramount Digital Entertainment, Sony Online Entertainment, Konami Digital Entertainment and Sanrio Digital Entertainment.

Nourian received her bachelor’s degree from California State University – Los Angeles in communications with an emphasis in public relations.

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Nick Valente
Nick Valente //
Account Director of Entertainment Content & Consumer Products

Nick Valente has more than a decade of experience across a wide range of entertainment, technology, consumer products and hospitality brands. As Account Director, he oversees the execution of client campaigns, strategic partnerships and events on behalf of DC, Warner Bros. Consumer Products, Kanopy, Magnolia Home Entertainment, RCA and more.

Prior to joining B/HI, he was at BLAZE PR where he led media relations for the nationwide retailer Performance Bicycle, The Daily Grill and The Claremont Hotel Club & Spa. Before BLAZE, he was with Middleton & Gendron (now Eric Mower & Associates), where he launched two major international luxury hotel brands.

Valente received his Bachelor’s Degree in Mass Communications with a Public Relations Certificate from Towson University in Baltimore.

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