ProfNet Experts Available on Rail Industry, Cybersecurity Insurance, Mobile Payments, More

Also in This Edition: Jobs for Writers, Media Industry Blog Posts

May 18, 2015, 14:40 ET from ProfNet

NEW YORK, May 18, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Below are experts from the ProfNet network that are available to discuss timely issues in your coverage area.

You can also submit a query to the hundreds of thousands of experts in our network – it's easy and free! Just fill out the query form to get started:


  • Amtrak Tragedy Highlights Lack of Federal Oversight
  • Speed Control Remains Amtrak Engineer's Responsibility
  • Tips for Buying Insurance Against Data Breach
  • Feds Crack Down on Unsafe Trucking Operation
  • 'Transformers' Sheds Light on Business Leadership
  • The Biggest Challenges in the Digital Publishing, Media Industries
  • Hybrid Solutions in the Mobile Payments Market
  • Best Practice for the Nervous Investor: Dollar-Cost Averaging
  • The Growing Contract Workforce Trend
  • Behavioral Health M&A Volume Likely to Increase


  • Multimedia Reporter – New Haven Register (CT)
  • Assistant Managing Editor – American Bar Association (IL)
  • Editor-in-Chief – (NY)


  • Using Social Media to Land Writing Gigs and Make Money
  • A Day in the Life of a Freelance Writer
  • ProfNet Success Story: Robyn A. Friedman, Freelance Writer



Amtrak Tragedy Highlights Lack of Federal Oversight
Brent Walker
Aldous\Walker in Dallas
The Amtrak train derailment in Philadelphia ultimately may prove to be the latest example of an industry that lacks effective governmental oversight in maintenance, operator training and passenger safety. Says Walker: "While railroads are making massive profits, they aren't investing a sufficient amount of money in those areas because there's not enough pressure compelling them to do so. Rather than just looking for a scapegoat and blaming this on one individual or factor, we need to look at this as a widespread public safety crisis. Frankly, determining what really happened and who should be accountable is going to have to happen in a court at law because of the process failures and limitations of the Federal Railroad Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board."
Walker, who has prosecuted railroad-related accidents, adds regulators frequently rely too much on self-reporting by the railroads, including the factual reports resulting from this type of accident.
Contact: Barry Pound,

Speed Control Remains Amtrak Engineer's Responsibility
Ron McCallum
Catastrophic Injury Lawyer
Simon Greenstone Panatier Bartlett, PC in Dallas
As the investigation proceeds into the Amtrak train derailment in Philadelphia, the question of whether the disaster was caused by human error, an equipment malfunction or other unknown factors remains. Federal investigators say the train was travelling more than 100 mph in a 50 mph zone. Says McCallum: "If the automated speed governor was intentionally disabled, then Amtrak faces some serious exposure. And if, through a series of catastrophic malfunctions, the safety system simply failed to work, then it was incumbent on the engineer to manually reduce the speed to the safe zone. Disasters like this prove that, while rail travel remains largely safe, when it goes wrong, hundreds of lives may be in danger."
Contact: Amy Hunt,

Tips for Buying Insurance Against Data Breach
Amy Elizabeth Stewart
Insurance Coverage Lawyer
Amy Stewart Law in Dallas
Increasingly, business owners are looking for insurance to cover losses from data breaches and other cybersecurity incidents. Because the insurance market for these losses is relatively new, coverage can vary widely depending on the policy. Says Stewart: "Most standard business insurance policies issued in 2015 will not cover cybersecurity losses, so a separate policy is a must these days. Because cybersecurity insurance is a growing market, evolving in response to changing risks, the policies are not standardized. That means there can be room for negotiation with prospective insurers. As an example, if the business has a vendor they know they want to work with in the event of a breach – such as a breach coach or a PR agency – they should ask the insurance company up-front for specific approval to use them. Otherwise, they might only be able to use vendors pre-selected by their insurer."
Contact: Amy Hunt,

Feds Crack Down on Unsafe Trucking Operation
H. Peyton Inge IV
Trucking Defense Attorney
Chamblee, Ryan, Kershaw & Anderson, P.C. in Dallas
The recent federal shutdown of a Darlington, S.C.-based trucking operation is a reminder to all carriers of the importance of complying with hours-of-service and equipment safety regulations. Says Inge: "The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration closed a single-truck operator, though no collision occurred and no traffic citations were ever issued. Instead, the FMCSA looked at the carrier's record and concluded that cumulative maintenance issues and hours-of-service violations were so serious as to merit a revocation of operating authority. Hours-of-service violations and vehicle maintenance issues can be avoided by monitoring a driver's logs against miles driven and proactive maintenance."
Contact: Mark Annick,

'Transformers' Sheds Light on Business Leadership
Seth Spain
Assistant Professor, School of Management & Fellow, Center for Leadership Studies
Binghamton University
There is more than meets the eye when it comes to the impact of Saturday morning cartoons. According to Seth Spain, assistant professor of organizational behavior at Binghamton University, fantasy-based stories, in particular the popular 1980s cartoon series "The Transformers," can shape children's perceptions of what behaviors are associated with effective leadership. Says Spain: "We believe 'Transformers' presents three key lessons about leadership: 1) flatter groups are more successful -- sharing power is more valuable than trying to use power for the selfish benefit of oneself; 2) in general, leaders tend to be exceptional people; and finally, 3) intelligence (cognitive ability and skill) is a particularly important attribute for a leader to have. These messages align well with the current academic literature about what kinds of individuals emerge as leaders and what it takes to be effective as a leader."
Spain, along with University of Nebraska-Lincoln's Peter Harms, rated the leadership skills of more than 120 characters featured in the first two years of "The Transformers" cartoon (1984-1985) and the 1986 film "The Transformers: The Movie." The individual leadership ratings were developed using "Bio and Tech Specs" profiles printed on the back of "Transformers" toy packages. For more information on this research, watch a YouTube video featuring Spain:
ProfNet Profile:
Contact: Ryan Yarosh,

The Biggest Challenges in the Digital Publishing, Media Industries
Field Garthwaite
Co-Founder & CEO
"Some of the biggest challenges in the marketing tech space (around video) are the growth of owned and operated sites and managing how to spend effectively to ensure you build long-term relationships with your audience and effectively manage your CPA costs."
Field has extensive knowledge about the digital publishing and media industries. He has previously worked in digital distribution, data architecture, and video for nine years at companies including HBO, Rubicon Project and Jukebox TV. He is based in Los Angeles.
Contact: Jennifer Cruz,

Hybrid Solutions in the Mobile Payments Market
Ozgur Gungor
General Manager
Cardtek Mobile & EMV Solutions
"Giants [like Samsung and Apple] may find paths to follow and make significant changes in the mobile payments market. It seems that hybrid solutions, using secure elements of host card emulation and tokenization, will come to light."
Gungor received his BSc from Bogazici University on management information systems. Following on this line of studies, he received his MBA and doctorate degrees in business administration from Yeditepe University Social Sciences Institute in 2008. In the meantime, he was working in ICT for more than 22 years, where he started as a software developer and climbed up to leading Cardtek Mobile & EMV Solutions as general manager. He also lectured e-commerce and MIS courses in various universities, published numerous articles and papers about innovation and technology, and contributed to books about management. He is an expert on management science, research and development, NFC mobile payment solutions, mobile wallet, business analysis, e-marketing, business support systems, NGOSS and convergence. He is available to discuss mobile payment solutions (Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, Facebook Pay), data security, payment solution industry outlook, NFC.
Contact: Michelle Lim,

Best Practice for the Nervous Investor: Dollar-Cost Averaging
Bijan Golkar, CFP®
CEO/Senior Advisor
FPC Investment Advisory, Inc.
Dollar-cost averaging – the practice of purchasing securities at fixed intervals and in equal amounts over time rather than  in one lump sum – has long been used as a way to avoid jumping into the market at the wrong time. Says Golkar: "Returns and principal invested in stocks are not guaranteed. Investing does not ensure a profitable outcome and always involves risk of loss. Dollar-cost averaging does not ensure a profit or protect against a loss in declining markets. Dollar-cost averaging involves continuous investment regardless of fluctuating prices."
Based in the San Francisco Bay Area, Golkar has been quoted in The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, U.S. News & World Report, Yahoo Finance, The Fiscal Times, Bankrate,,,, Physician's Money Digest, and
ProfNet Profile:  
Contact: Steve Garmhausen,

The Growing Contract Workforce Trend
Gene Zaino
President and CEO
MBO Partners
Zaino can provide data and insights about the growing contract workforce trend. He can address the growth, and challenges that must be addressed to make it easier and safer for employers and independent workers to engage in this work arrangement: "In 2024, the number of independents will be at least half the workforce and it will be a standard expectation that most people will need to be more self-reliant with their lives and careers."
Zaino graduated cum laude from the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School of Business, receiving a bachelor of science in economics. He has served on the expert advisory board for the Human Capital Institute and collaborated with other industry leaders to create and develop the Contract Talent Research Practice Area at HCI, furthering education, ethics, and industry best practices. He has led executive seminars at the Project Management Institute, Staffing Industry Analysts, and the Military Officers Association of America. He is a frequent speaker and has appeared in publications, radio and television, including the CNN, CNBC, Forbes and The Wall Street Journal. He is based in Herndon, Va.
ProfNet Profile:
Contact: Karen Swim,

Behavioral Health M&A Volume Likely to Increase
Steven Shill
Healthcare Practice National Leader
Behavioral health M& A deal volume is highly likely to increase. The market is small and fragmented, and new government initiatives are incentivizing such care and creating profitable opportunities in new markets, such as lower-income patients. But traditional, retrospective financial due diligence processes don't accurately reflect the dramatic changes happening with insurance and Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement and health care business models. And they don't always look at the clinical outcomes. Even as deals surge, deal value and risk could be dramatically overestimated -- or underestimated. Says Shill: "Insurers and government payers are no longer going to pay for treatment that doesn't provide outcomes. But investors aren't necessarily looking at outcomes when they review deals. On the flip side, providers that appear to be bleeding cash could actually provide great ROI for investors who know what to look for."
Contact: Danielle Elliott,



Following are links to job listings for staff and freelance writers, editors and producers. You can view these and more job listings on our Job Board:

  • Multimedia Reporter – New Haven Register (CT)
  • Assistant Managing Editor – American Bar Association (IL)
  • Editor-in-Chief – (NY)



Following are links to other news and resources we think you might find useful. If you have an item you think other reporters would be interested in and would like us to include in a future alert, please drop us a line.

  • USING SOCIAL MEDIA TO LAND WRITING GIGS AND MAKE MONEY. As writers become more familiar with multimedia storytelling, social media has developed into a powerful tool to gather an audience and promote content -- that is, if you know how to use it. At the recent ASJA Writers Conference, five experts shared their experiences with social media and how they use it to their advantage:
  • A DAY IN THE LIFE OF A FREELANCE WRITER. Ever wonder what it's like to be a freelance writer? We asked Dawn Papandrea, a full-time freelancer specializing in personal finance, higher education and family topics, to give us an insider's view of her day. She talked to us about how she finds sources, what her workday is like, the importance of not being distracted, how to schedule time off, mistakes to avoid and much more. It's great insight for anyone who works with freelancers:
  • PROFNET SUCCESS STORY: ROBYN A. FRIEDMAN, FREELANCE WRITER. Check out this month's ProfNet Success Story, featuring Robyn A. Friedman, a freelance writer for numerous outlets, including the Wall Street Journal, HotelNewsNow, City & Shore and more. Robyn tells us she has found most of her sources by using ProfNet, so we asked her for her insight on best practices:


PROFNET is an exclusive service of PR Newswire.

To contact ProfNet: or 800-776-3638, ext. 1

Logo -