Matthew Gonring

Adjunct Professor

Employer: Jackson National Life

Title: VP Corporate Communications

Social Media Handles: N/A

As a seasoned corporate executive, Matthew Gonring has a proven record of accomplishments derived from more than 35 years of experience building and leading marketing and corporate communications teams in manufacturing, consumer goods, professional/financial services, healthcare and airlines.

Matt is widely known for his strong leadership and innovation in developing and executing strategies that assist organizations build compelling messages that combine their vision, mission and values, and effectively communicate the messages to a broad range of corporate constituencies and stakeholders. His comprehensive experience spans branding and digital communications, public and community relations, crisis management, employee relations, labor issues, arbitration, bankruptcy, mergers and acquisitions, restructuring, litigation, and product recalls.

Matt most recently served as VP Corporate Communications with Jackson National Life, a $25 billion leader in financial services and the largest underwriter of variable annuities in the U.S. In this role, he was responsible for planning and implementing communications and marketing support including oversight of social and digital media, internal and external communications, thought leadership and community relations. Prior to that he served as Vice President and Chief Communications Officer for Pactiv Corporation, a $3.4 billion leader in the consumer and foodservice packaging markets. Late in 2010, the company was acquired by Reynolds Group Holdings Limited, and Matt joined Jackson.

Early in his career, Matt was responsible for media relations, special events, community relations and related duties as Director, Public Relations at Northwest Airlines, and later, as Manager, External Communications with United Airlines, Inc. and UAL Corporation. Matt was then recruited to USG Corporation, where as Vice President Corporate Communications, he became responsible for both internal and external communications, as well as for product promotions, marketing, special events, Board presentations, speech writing, publications production, and philanthropic involvement. 

In 1997, Matt joined the global professional services company, Arthur Andersen as Managing Partner, Worldwide Communications and Integrated Marketing. In this role, he provided leadership through a matrix alignment for a worldwide team of 500 professionals in 79 countries charged with developing and implementing global marketing and communications strategies and programs. Matt since has led global communications teams as Vice President Global Corporate Communications at Baxter International, a $7 billion healthcare industry leader, and as Vice President Global Marketing and Communications at the $6 billion factory automation systems and services manufacturer, Rockwell Automation. He also served as a consultant with Gagen MacDonald, a boutique management consultancy specializing in strategy execution, change leadership, and employee engagement. 

Matt holds a Masters degree in Public Relations from the School of Business, American University in Washington, DC, and Bachelor of Science degree in Communications and Political Science from the University of Wisconsin/Stevens Point. 

He is the recipient of a variety of communication awards, and is a frequent speaker on marketing and communications topics, and has been a member of the Graduate Faculty, Integrated Marketing Communications Program, at Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism and currently serves on the graduate faculty at George Washington University. He currently is on the Board of Directors of the Arthur W. Paige Society, and Chairman Emeritus of the Institute for Public Relations. 

Present and past affiliations include: International Association of Business Communications, National Investor Relations Institute, Business Marketing Association, Public Relations Society of America, Publicity Club of Chicago, and Conference Board Communications Council.

Matt and his wife, Maggie, have three adult children and reside in Libertyville, IL.


M.S., American University
B.S., University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point



Gonring, M. (2014) “When PR Leadership is Missing in Your Workplace” Culpwrit, August 25, 

Gonring, M. (2008). “Customer Loyalty and Employee Engagement – An Alignment for Value.” Journal of Business Strategy, Volume 29, Number 4, 29-40.

Gonring, M. (2004) “Making Public Relations Indispensible to the CEO.” Public Relations Strategist, PRSA publication, Summer 2004

Gonring, M. (2001). “Global Megatrends Push IMC Concepts to the Forefront of Strategic Business Thinking.” Journal of Integrated Communications, 15-18, 2001

Gonring, M. (2000). “Remaking the Arthur Andersen Brand.” Corporate Reputation Review vol. 3 

Gonring, M. (1997) “Where Do Employees Fit Into Integrated Marketing Communications?” Journal of Employee Communications Management 15-19 

Gonring, M. (1995). “Case Study-USG Corporation, Making Employee Communications Move with the Times.” Internal Communications Focus North America, issue 7, August 199, 9-12

Gonring, M. (1997). “Creating a Customer Focus Among Frontline Employees.” Internal Communications Focus, issue 22, February 1997, 7-9

Gonring, M. (1994). “Putting Integrated Marketing Communications to Work Today.” Public Relations Quarterly, Volume 39, Number 3, 45-48

Gonring, M. (1992). “The Communicators Role in Leading Corporate Culture Change.” Communications World, February 1992, 25-28

Gonring, M. (1991). Communication Makes Employee Involvement Work. Public Relations Journal, 

Gonring, M. (1990). “The Communications Professional as Change Master”. IABC Communication 



Gonring, M. (2012). Global and Local Media Relations, Chapter 17, 275-289. The Handbook of Strategic Public Relations and Integrated Marketing Communications.

Gonring, M. (1997). Global and Local Media Relations, Chapter 4, 63-76. The Handbook of Strategic Public Relations and Integrated Communications, Caywood, C. 

Gonring, M. (1997). Checklist for Integrated Marketing Communications, Chapter 20 “Marketing Management” Kotler, P. 9th Edition, Excerpted from Public Relations Quarterly 



Frank, J. (2000) “$100 million To Brand a New Arthur Andersen.” PR Week February 21, 2000, 22, 

PR News (1995), “Professional Development is an Individual Responsibility, October 9, 1995

The Ragan Report, (1997). “On Showing the Human Side of Your Top Executives.” October 20, 

Reputation Management, (1995) “Managing Bankruptcy with Integrity.” July/August 1995, 31-34

Ragan Report, (1994). “On Communicating with the Free Agent Employee.” January 10, 1994, vol. 

Gonring, M. & Tonkin, L. (1993) “Creating and Sustaining Supportive Employee Communications.” Target Innovation at Work (AME) Volume 9 Number 2, 11-15

The Chicago Tribune (1989) “Lending an Ear to Employee Relations.” June 25, 1989

Classes Taught

Ethical Standards in Public Relations and Public Affairs