Thomas Graham is the founder of Crosswind Media & Public Relations and for more than 20 years has helped business leaders energize their brands and achieve their business objectives through effective media and corporate communications strategies. He is an accomplished brand architect, crisis-tested media spokesperson and an expert in shaping public opinion and managing complex communications programs.
As the former head of U.S. communications for a top 10 global financial institution and practice leader in two global public relations firms, Thomas brings decades of experience helping business leaders engage effectively with their most important stakeholders. He founded Crosswind Media & Public Relations to provide clients with experienced senior counselors who are committed to helping navigate communications challenges to achieve business results. Thomas has been privileged to develop global brand strategies, direct communications of large-scale acquisitions and to prepare senior executives at Fortune 500 companies for media interviews, investor and analyst roundtable discussions and presentations before business conferences and to employees.
As the Executive Vice President of Communication & Image at BBVA USA, Thomas developed the brand strategy for BBVA Group’s U.S.-acquired financial institutions while protecting the overarching brand reputation from the issues associated with acquisition, integration and financial industry crises. While serving on the management committee, he held primary oversight of branding, investor relations, corporate communications, employee communications and executive programs. Prior to BBVA, Thomas served as a General Manager with Weber Shandwick, the world’s largest public relations agency, where he directed the firm’s Austin office.
During his 20 years of public relations, Thomas gained extensive experience in political and regulatory issues, corporate communications, brand strategy, investor relations, crisis and reputation management and media relations. His clients have included leaders in their fields and among the world’s most admired companies, including Fluor, Wal-Mart, the Project Management Institute, Atmos Energy, NRG Energy, the Texas House Republican Caucus, Vought Aircraft and The Methodist Hospital. He is a former business reporter covering local, regional and national trends in business, financial, agricultural, oil and gas and industrial sectors as well as a former communications director for a Texas State Senator. He is a member of the National Investor Relations Institute, the Public Relations Society of America, active in communications organizations, and a frequent lecturer on communications issues before students, non-profit, governmental and business associations. He is married to Tanya Fielder and they have three children.
JT Graham coordinates design, programming, enhancement and content of client websites and web-based services for Crosswind.
JT works directly with state and global clients to assess social media needs and then identifies and delivers appropriate internet technologies to best meet client objectives and to best support implementation and on-line maintenance. He is also an accomplished producer of audio and video services created and directed to support client special events.
JT Graham has always had a love for Texas music, rhythm, and entertainment technologies. After attending Dub Academy in East Austin during high school, he has been DJing professionally at events since early 2012. In fall 2012, he attended Harding University for communications and media, where he was a live radio host for Harding Radio, and in fall 2013, he attended Dark Horse Institute for Audio Engineering in Nashville.
In addition to managing the marketing and social media for his own music career, JT has worked at Vector Marketing and interned at Crosswind Media & Public Relations. He rejoined the Crosswind team full time in August 2014, and now handles the firm’s IT and AV services division, manages the agency’s own websites and supports the agency’s social media presence across the web.
Adrian Patenaude is an accomplished editor, writer and director of marketing media and collateral, specializing in social media and online communications.
Adrian joined the Crosswind team in 2014 after moving to Austin to pursue a career in public relations and film. She grew up in Thailand where her family worked in community development and partnered with local churches in the rural north. Due to this overseas upbringing, she has a global perspective beneficial to our clients working in an increasingly international and multicultural world.
As a creative writer, published poet and photographer, she has a love for effective language and powerful visuals that expresses itself in the press releases, videos and reports she produces for clients.
Adrian is a key team member at Crosswind, serving as the agency’s principal social media supervisor, corporate scriptwriter, photographer and critical workflow chief on Crosswind’s health, higher education and international technology accounts. She is also involved in the creative community in Austin, including serving as a marketing volunteer for the Austin Asian American Film Festival. Adrian studied advertising and public relations at Abilene Christian University (ACU).
Aurora Silva is an assistant account executive at Crosswind Media & Public Relations. She is a born and raised Houstonian, currently living in the Cypress area, who enjoys anything involving Mediterranean food and Texas sunshine. Her mom makes the best ribs, and she is always excited to see what new creation she will be cooking up in the kitchen.
She attended Texas A&M in College Station where she received her Bachelor’s in English and fell in love with fantasy novels after attending a Fiction Fantasy literature course. Princess Bride is still the wittiest novel she’s ever read, she recommends that novel to everyone looking for a good laugh.
Aurora is a co-founder of a non-profit organization named Positioning Excellence Around Kids (P.E.A.K.). The goal of P.E.A.K. is to ensure that students in the K-12 environment have equal access and opportunities to build a bright future. P.E.A.K. works with low-income families in Texas to offer programs that introduce participants to the skills and interests they have not yet acknowledged.
During her time at A&M she was also a member of Her Campus, an online global community for college women. Her Campus is now the #1 media site for college women, written entirely by the world’s top college journalists. In this organization, founded by three smart, empowered, and fearless college women, Aurora wrote blog postings and contributed to the social media of her chapter in College State – all dedicated to and empowering college women.
Aurora was an member of Texas A&M’s chapter of American Association of University Women (AAUW), a non-profit organization founded in 1881 that advances equity for women and girls through advocacy, education, and research to end discrimination. Advocacy efforts by AAUW have propelled countless new laws, including the Equal Pay Act, first proposed in 1945 and finally passed in 1963; the Title IX amendment in 1972; the Family and Medical Leave Act in 1993; and the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act in 2009.
After graduating, Aurora returned to the Houston area where she enjoys watching scary movies like A Quiet Place with her Mini Schnauzer named Fifer, always followed by something funny like Bob’s Burgers. She also loves trying new foods and would love to try Japanese food in Tokyo one day. Aurora stays active by going on long walks, doing yoga, and lifting weights at the gym. Her favorite international trip was visiting Greece during New Year’s Eve where she ate one too many gyros and traveled to Delphi. Her dream vacation is going to the Florida Keys where she’d spend her time out in the sunshine and by the beach.