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Thursday, November 14, 2019
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Meet Your LA Alumni Chapter Co-Chairs

She’s an executive producer. He’s a brand manager. She grew up in Venezuela and England. He grew up in Vermont. She graduated from Emerson College in 1998. He graduated in 2004. Together, Gia Galligani and Scott Shipley are excited about taking the reins of the Emerson College’s Los Angeles Alumni Chapter.

“I’m looking forward to helping Emersonians across all generations connect to get jobs and advice,” said Galligani. “I want alumni to get the same opportunities I got, to help and be helped.”

Galligani credits Emerson alumni, including Vin Di Bona ’66, with helping her build connections and find job opportunities when she first moved to LA in 2002. Now, she has more than 13 years of experience specializing in the development and production of nonfiction programming for networks throughout the United States and world. With more than 4,000 alumni in the LA region, the largest concentration of Emerson graduates outside of Boston, Galligani hopes that a reenergized Los Angeles Alumni Chapter can help build synergy.

“I’m very passionate about helping people because people have helped me,” said Galligani. “We have the talent and resources and now the vehicle.”

With a robust alumni population in the city and the presence of the Emerson Los Angeles Center, Galligani and Shipley say they are excited to connect with more alumni.

“Having a big center calls for having a unified chapter,” said Galligani. “The LA Alumni Chapter will be equal parts entertainment, jobs and education, and networking.”

Gia Galligani graduated in 1998.

Shipley, who began his post-graduate years in LA in the entertainment, hospitality, and tourism sectors, now works as a brand manager for Mash Studios, a multifaceted design firm specializing in high-end, modern furniture sought by top tech companies in Silicon Valley and Silicon Beach. He said that alumni—even those who have become disconnected from the College—should consider attending future events because there will be more opportunities to engage and an array of programming.

“I totally get that people go into the working world and forget about their college days,” said Shipley, who is married to alumna Billie Shipley ’07. “Having a chapter is a wonderful way to get people reconnected to their alma mater and especially their values, helping them rekindle the tenaciousness they had as an undergrad.”

Galligani and Shipley said they are planning events and programs for the Los Angeles Alumni Chapter that will be more inclusive. In addition to panels and networking opportunities for both recent alumni and those who are more established in their careers, Galligani and Shipley said there will be events for alums in fields beyond entertainment and time to build connections on a more personal level. 

“Gia and Scott are passionate, dynamic leaders within the LA alumni community whose enthusiasm for bringing together Emersonians is palpable,” said Laura Daroca, assistant director of alumni engagement at Emerson College Los Angeles (ELA). “Together, we will develop meaningful programming to support and engage alumni.”

For Shipley, being co-chair of the LA Alumni Chapter is a natural extension of his desire to get involved. During his time at Emerson, Shipley was captain of the lacrosse team, a brother in the professional communicative arts fraternity Phi Alpha Tau, and a member of the student filmmaking organization Frames Per Second. He also helped to build the Emerson Los Angeles Graduates of the Last Decade (GOLD) Council.

“The most fulfilling part of being an Emerson alum has been being able to give back,” said Shipley, who credits alumni with helping him find career opportunities in LA. “There’s no greater satisfaction than linking people up to help one another professionally, creatively, or just to offer advice.”


Meet Gia and Scott and other alumni at ELA on Saturday, August 13, at 6:00 pm during Sippin’ on Sunset, a celebration for Emerson College alumni in the LA area. RSVP at: https://t.co/YLQMAL4438