Executive Team

Strategists & Analysts

The Team

Jason Hyde

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SVP Research

With over twenty years of client-side experience in the market research field, Jason has a proven track record of creating and socializing actionable research about traditional and digital media consumers, directly affecting key business metrics, ratings, and revenue.


Jason has extensive experience testing nonfiction and lifestyle TV series, promotions and ad campaigns, website content and usability, brand health, and new product features and pricing at several top media companies.


In his most recent position as VP at Discovery Communications, he led the research team for their flagship brand.  In this role, he tested and influenced the development, production, and marketing of some of Cable’s highest-rated series, including Gold Rush,  Bering Sea Gold, Moonshiners, Frozen Planet, Amish Mafia, Fast ‘N’ Loud, Deadliest Catch, Shark Week, and Naked and Afraid. 


Prior to Discovery, Jason was responsible for the research functions for Scripps Networks’ home category media brands, HGTV and DIY Network, where he helped develop and market several hit series, including Design Star, House Hunters, Holmes on Homes, and Property Brothers.


During his tenure at The Weather Channel and, Jason played a key role in introducing program pilot testing to the network, leading to the launch of TWC’s successful long-form series Storm Stories and It Could Happen Tomorrow.  He also integrated market research into all of TWC’s interactive ventures, including and the fledging TWC Mobile businesses.


Jason has also held research positions at Turner Broadcasting and Atlanta’s Fox affiliate, WAGA-TV.  He holds a bachelor’s degree from Florida State University in Media Communications.

With over twenty years of client-side experience in the market research field, Jason has a proven track record of creating and socializing actionable research about traditional and digital media consumers, directly affecting key business metrics, ratings, and revenue.


Jason has extensive experience testing nonfiction and lifestyle TV series, promotions and ad campaigns, website content and usability, brand health, and new product features and pricing at several top media companies.


In his most recent position as VP at Discovery Communications, he led the research team for their flagship brand.  In this role, he tested and influenced the development, production, and marketing of some of Cable’s highest-rated series, including Gold Rush,  Bering Sea Gold, Moonshiners, Frozen Planet, Amish Mafia, Fast ‘N’ Loud, Deadliest Catch, Shark Week, and Naked and Afraid. 


Robert Wendt

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Senior Research Analyst

With over 15 years of broadcast experience and a proven track record of delivering results, Robert provides an in-depth understanding of the ongoing evolution of local news and advertising. He has wide-ranging experience in researching local news content and talent. Throughout his career he has been dedicated to understanding audiences and consumer behavior.

Robert has a deep passion for helping companies grow through research and strategic action planning. He has consulted several top companies in a variety of categories including media, automotive, home services, real estate, healthcare and financial services.

Prior to joining SmithGeiger he served as Research Director for Cox Media Group in Charlotte, North Carolina at WSOC-TV (ABC), WAXN-TV (IND) and Telemundo. During his time at Cox Media Group he was an innovator in data visualization identifying opportunities to grow market share and revenue for the company and its clients. He also served as chairman of the ABC Television Research Advisory Board.

Robert began his career in media at KCNC-TV (CBS O&O) in Denver, CO where he served as account executive, market executive and eventually research director.

Outside of work Robert enjoys spending time with his son and being active in the outdoors.

Michelle Toy

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Content Strategist

Michelle Toy plays a critical role at SmithGeiger in shaping and growing client initiatives around content creation and distribution, helping brands leverage their traditional strengths to bolster next-gen platform performance, and molding new workflows and organizational structures.

She is an Emmy Award-winning producer who has played key roles in transforming newsrooms over the past 20 years. 

Michelle served as Director of Digital and Content at KTVU Channel 2 News, in the San Francisco Bay Area, where she led the complete re-design of the station’s website and mobile apps. She crafted the social media strategy for KTVU’s main brand and talent, while also leading the all-platform initiatives for the FOX Television Stations.  

Michelle has produced live broadcast events, held Executive Producer and Managing Editor posts, and produced a series of stories that changed law in California. 

She helped create a newsroom modernization and workflow re-design at KNTV, when the NBC-owned station moved into a state-of-the-art, all-digital facility in Silicon Valley in 2004.  

Michelle graduated from the University of Southern California with a degree in Broadcast Journalism.  A fourth-generation San Franciscan, she enjoys yoga, cooking, and traveling the world. 

Dave Smith

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CEO and Founder

David Smith directs the development of strategic consulting partnerships, oversees all consulting relationships, and is responsible for marketing and cultivating client relationships. During his 20-year consulting career, he has consulted with ABC, NBC, CBS, FOX, UPN, WB, Lifetime, USA Networks, A&E, Disney, Warner Bros., Sony, 20th Century Fox, Paramount, Universal, Microsoft, MSNBC, CNBC, Hearst, COX, AOL and many other clients.   

Prior to forming SmithGeiger, Mr. Smith opened the Entertainment Practice in Los Angeles and New York for Frank N. Magid Associates. As President of Entertainment, Mr. Smith presided over the largest growth in the firm’s long history and served as a senior consultant to virtually all of the major studios and production companies in the industry. He consulted on all facets of his clients' business, including: brand identity, format development, talent evaluation and performance, distribution, marketing, and promotion. Before creating the Entertainment Division, Mr. Smith held key management positions in Magid's television station practice, consulting with prominent broadcasters around the world.

Mr. Smith began his career in media as a journalist, reporting and anchoring in television stations across the country. Later he served as an Associate Professor of Journalism at the University of Missouri School of Journalism, where he received undergraduate and graduate degrees.

Seth Geiger

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President | Co-Founder

Dr. Seth Geiger directs the development of strategic research partnerships and oversees research innovation and product engineering. He has consulted with clients across the broadcast, cable, satellite, digital platforms, syndicated television, telecom and web industries, including: ABC, AT&T Broadband, CNN, DIRECTV, Discovery Networks, Google, IBM, Intel, Microsoft, NBC, Raycom, Scripps Networks, Sinclair, TiVo, Visa, Warner Bros., among others. 

Prior to forming SmithGeiger, Dr. Geiger served as Vice President of Professional and E-Commerce Services for, the leading supplier of e-commerce research and intelligence, and the largest B2C shopping marketplace on the web. Dr. Geiger set strategy, built research partnerships and oversaw the development of real-time, integrated web-based research reporting tools.

Before joining, Dr. Geiger worked for Frank N. Magid Associates, where he established the company’s strategic research direction and designed research initiatives in new media and television convergence.  Dr. Geiger joined Magid from the University of California, Santa Barbara, where he was an assistant professor in the Department of Communication. His academic research is recognized internationally in the fields of media processing, research design and mass media effects.

Dr. Geiger holds a Ph.D. and Master's degree in Communication Research from Stanford University and a Bachelor's degree in Anthropology from Cornell University.

Chris Lang

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Partner| EVP Research

Chris has worked with SmithGeiger for over a decade and specializes in a host of strategic areas, including marketing, pricing, promotions, distribution, and development. He serves a range of media and entertainment clients across the broadcast, cable, satellite, technology, and digital arenas, including ABC, NBC, Warner Bros., Disney, Sony, Universal Studios, T-Mobile, CTAM, NFL Network, TV Land, DTS, and many local TV stations.

Prior to joining SmithGeiger, Mr. Lang served as Director of Consulting for (working closely with clients such as Nokia and and before that as Senior Research Consultant for Frank N. Magid Associates in Los Angeles.

Chris began his career in media as a writer for KFOR-TV, the NBC affiliate in Oklahoma City, OK. He holds an MBA from The Anderson School at UCLA where graduated as a member of the Anderson Business Honor Society. He graduated with honors from Northwestern University, majoring in Communication Studies and Economics.

Andrew Finlayson

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EVP Digital Media Strategies

Andrew Finlayson serves as the senior consultant regarding leading digital media issues spanning social media, news apps, streaming video and mobile news consumption.

He joined SmithGeiger after completing the John S. Knight Fellowship at Stanford University where he studied emerging media technologies and concepts with a special emphasis on mobile, social, and location based news concepts.

Andrew has served as Director of Online Content and Business Development for the Fox Television Stations and has been a news director in Nashville for Meredith’s WSMV, where he led the newsroom to number one ratings in four out of five newscasts.

As the news director at Cox’s San Francisco/Oakland KTVU, he led the station to the market leader in all dayparts and was honored by the Project for Excellence in Journalism for the highest quality local newscast in the country.

Barbara Breest

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Barbara oversees all financial, accounting and HR functions and has been an integral part of the SmithGeiger team since 2001.
Prior to SmithGeiger, she was Vice President of Finance for Creative Domain, a firm focused on marketing for the movie industry. Creative Domain specialized in the production of trailers and TV commercials and served all major studios including Sony, Walt Disney, DreamWorks, Paramount, 20th Century Fox and Universal.

Barbara is a Certified Public Accountant in the State of California, a member of the AICPA and the California Society of CPA’s. She has a business degree from the University of Michigan.

Dan Reines

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SVP Research

Dan Reines provides research analysis and strategic consulting to a broad range of SmithGeiger clients, from entertainment and media organizations to nonprofit and public organizations and trade groups. Recent project have included exensive work with CNBC, NBC, THe People's Choice Awards, Fox Sports, Google, Participant Media, AT&T U-verse and the Center For Disease Control (CDC).

Dan has an extensive background in print journalism, having written and edited for national and local newspapers, magazines, and web publications for nearly two decades, and his writing on investing and PR has appeared in two textbooks.

He has an MBA with a marketing emphasis from Pepperdine’s Graziadio School of Business and Management, and a BA in Mass Communications from the University of California at Berkeley.

Bill Seitzler

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VP Media Strategies

Providing clients with an expertise in station management, promotion, production, new media, marketing and news strategies, Bill joined SmithGeiger in 2006 after working 20 years at local television stations across the country.

Before serving as News Director for television stations KXAN – NBC Austin, KJRH – NBC Tulsa, WHEC – NBC Rochester, KAMC – ABC Lubbock, Bill was a television and radio sportscaster for 10 years. As News Director, Bill led newsrooms that won multiple Emmy, Regional Murrow and Associated Press Awards for various newscast excellences.

Bill used his passion for weather to develop innovative “Weather Lab” sets and presentations now used in many local television newsrooms. With a background in Storm Chasing and Marathon Severe Weather Coverage, Bill continues to channel his passion to develop innovative weather coverage ideas for SmithGeiger clients.

Bill lives in Austin, Texas and serves on Texas Tech University’s School of Mass Communication’s Advisory Committee.

Emily Conklin

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Director Research Production and Design

Emily has worked at SmithGeiger since 2011 and is currently the company’s Director of Research Production and Design. In this role, Emily utilizes her experience in statistical data analysis, artistic expertise, and her creativity to design and convert complex findings into powerful visualizations that are engaging and comprehensible. Previously, Emily worked as a Media Research Associate, where she refined her skills as a media and market researcher.


Prior to joining SmithGeiger, Emily worked as a Research Assistant in the Kinesiology and Public Health Department at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, where she received her Bachelor's degree in Statistics.

Gilbert Quinonez

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Director Analytics

For over a decade, Gilbert has managed the quality control process at SmithGeiger and oversees data analytics projects. Gilbert is responsible for SmithGeiger’s rigorous quality control process, which includes data integrity and quality, survey methodology and logic, and ensuring deliverables are held to a high standard for data accuracy, visualization and clarity.


Gilbert specializes in big data projects, including modeling media consumption, mobile usage, ratings data , analyzing viewer responses to videos and testing study findings for statistical significance.


Prior to SmithGeiger, Gilbert was an online editor for the Ventura County Star, where he helped create the newspaper’s first online high school football database. Gilbert has a B.S. in Statistics from the University of California, Los Angeles.

John Culliton

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SVP Media Strategies

John Culliton, through his 20 years of experience as a major market TV general manager, news director, and a new media entrepreneur, brings a multi-dimensional expertise to SmithGeiger clients.

He served as VP and GM of KCBS in Los Angeles, the ABC affiliate in Phoenix, and one of the nation’s most noted TV stations, WCCO in Minneapolis. He received national attention for being bold, colorful, and successful—balancing the entertainment qualities of television with relevant, award-winning content.

In addition, he led broadcasters into new media at the turn of the century—co-founding the nation’s largest Internet Company for broadcasters, Internet Broadcasting (IB) based in Minneapolis and New York. IB co-owns, manages, and operates websites for the NBC owned stations, Hearst-Argyle Television, Post-Newsweek stations, McGraw-Hill, Cox Broadcasting, Lin Broadcasting.

Simultaneously, John co-founded Digital Cyclone—an online and mobile weather company which developed a weather forecasting and radar which pinpoints exact latitude/longitude locations. The company sold in 2007 to GPS navigation company, Garmin.

In his current role with SmithGeiger, Culliton consults across many platforms-working closely with major media executives to enhance audience growth. Culliton has been with SmithGeiger since May of 2005.

Chris Archer

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Partner| EVP Media Strategies

Chris Archer joined SmithGeiger in 2010 after serving key newsroom roles for almost 20 years.

As News Director, Chris led the unprecedented combination of the CBS, NBC, and Independent television stations as part of the Hawaii Shared Services Agreement in late 2009 – a model that would then be used in various other markets around the country.  In just 60 days, he redeployed the news staff and all-platform workflow to seamlessly produce more than 40 hours of content per week from one newsroom.

Before his success in Hawaii, Chris spent nearly a decade at KRON-TV in San Francisco, starting during its NBC era. With the internet in its infancy, he helped the station transition away from its long-time NBC affiliation by creating, producing, and then managing San Francisco’s first 9 p.m. newscast, and pioneering several early digital initiatives. Chris then led his team through one of the industry’s first video journalist deployments, training his large staff to work in what has become a model for other newsrooms across the country.

When not traveling for work, Chris loves spending time with his two daughters in his native San Francisco Bay Area.  Chris graduated from the University of California at Berkeley.

Mark Briggs

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VP Digital Media Strategies and Innovation

Mark Briggs has spent his career focused on digital strategy, business development, workplace transformation, audience and revenue building, teaching and collaboration. He has started two companies, worked in senior management for three others and written three books. 


Most recently Briggs has served as the director of digital media and innovation for KING 5 in Seattle from 2010-2017 and served as a Ford Fellow in Entrepreneurial Journalism at The Poynter Institute from 2010-2012. Previously, he co-founded Serra Media, a Seattle-based technology company, and spent nine years running newspaper websites in Everett and Tacoma, Wash.


Briggs is the author of Entrepreneurial Journalism, a book about the rise of journalism startups and how to start your own journalism business. It was published by CQPress and released in October 2011.Briggs is also the author of Journalism 2.0: How to survive and thrive in the digital age which was published by J-Lab and the Knight Citizen News Network in 2007 and downloaded as a PDF more than 200,000 times in English, Spanish and Portuguese.


That book lead to Journalism Next, which was published by CQPress in December 2009. A second edition was published in Nov. 2012 and a third edition hit the shelves (and Kindles) in 2015 and is available at (A French translation was also released in late 2013.)


As part of his mission to help journalists transform in the digital age and leverage the power of digital/social/mobile media, Mark has served as a speaker, trainer and consultant for various projects around the U.S., Europe, and the Middle East. He spoke at SXSW Interactive in Austin in 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013. In May 2010 he was named one of 20 Journalists to Follow by Quill, the magazine of the Society of Professional Journalists.

Mishell Hyun Behrman

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Director of Online Programming


Mishell Behrman joined SmithGeiger in 2010. She is responsible for programing online surveys, managing sample vendors and conducting the fielding for all SmithGeiger's quantitative studies. 


She began her career at  at SmithGeiger as project manager for operations and logistics for qualitative studies before transitioning to the quantitative research department.


Prior to SmithGeiger, Mishell spent 5 years working for GlobalNet Data Services, a market research data processing company. Mishell graduated from UCLA with a double major in Psychology and Sociology. 


Peter Lazaro

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Manager Data Analytics

Peter manages SmithGeiger’s data analytics team which conducts the day-to-day data operations including checking, validating and overseeing the processes of all survey data. He ensures data integrity for reporting and analysis and oversees the on-time delivery of proprietary client reports – an Excel-based dynamic reporting tool that employs SPSS tables as foundation. Peter also designs innovative optimizations and enhancements or our processes which translates to more efficient workflow and rapd report turnaround times.


Prior to his 7 years at SmithGeiger, Peter was a research assistant at the Department of Statistics, Western Michigan University (WMU) – Kalamazoo, MI, where he also served 2 years as a teaching assistant. Preceding his tenure at WMU, he worked as a software engineer at Accenture, Inc in the Philippines.


Peter has a Masters in Applied Statistics from WMU and a BS in Statistics from the University of the Philippines, Manila.

Sam Walton

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Manager Strategic Research

As Manager of Strategic Research, Sam Walton is involved in all stages of research projects, including survey design, data analysis and insights, report building, and interfacing with clients.  Since 2010, Sam has been an integral part of designing and implementing strategic research programs for our clients.  He conveys complex concepts to business leaders and provides on-going counsel and insight allowing them to meet their business objectives.


Prior to joining SmithGeiger, Sam worked as an Adjunct Professor of Physics at California Lutheran University teaching physics concepts in a lab-based environment to future educators. He has a love of research and turning findings into actionable outcomes.


Sam and his wife live outside of Denver and have one child with plans for more. He holds a B.S. in Physics with an emphasis on Fluid Dynamics and an MBA with an emphasis on Small Business Consulting, both from California Lutheran University.


Tim Talley

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VP Operations and Data Analytics

Tim is responsible for research methodologies, data hygiene, reporting deliverables and the custom data analytic functions at SmithGeiger. Tim leads a team of data analysts who build cutting-edge, powerful reporting tools allowing SmithGeiger clients to visualize their survey results in a streamlined and intuitive format.

Having served as SmithGeiger’s primary statistician for over 10 years, Tim is also responsible for conducting multivariate data analysis focusing on customer segmentations, key drivers, Principal Components Analysis among other analytical techniques to uncover deeper-level storylines within the data structures.

Prior to joining SmithGeiger, Tim was a research manager at where he was involved in analyzing the trends and key satisfaction metrics for more than 2,000 online retailers and providing client management to several key accounts. He also mined relational databases for use in consumer segmentation modeling and actively supported’s sales team by helping to provide research solutions to specific marketing-related problems.

Before working at, Tim was a project director at Maritz Marketing Research, a large custom marketing research firm based in St. Louis. Tim directed all aspects of project management from sampling, fielding, tabulation and data analysis for projects in a variety of industries including hi-tech firms, financial institutions, public utilities, gasoline companies, and newspaper syndicates.

Mike Bosland

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Director of Media and IT Platforms