Administrative Council

The Administrative Council (AC) includes STC Chicago’s elected officers and appointed committee managers. Officers are elected for the program year, from July through the following June.

To get in touch with any of the officers, email

AC meetings are open to all members of the STC Chicago community. You can review past AC meeting minutes here.

Meet the 2023-2024 STC Chicago Administrative Council

President: Ashley Gordon

Ashley Gordon is a professional technical communicator with experience in both the enterprise and startups. She specializes in customer-facing instructional and expository content and has also produced promotional and product marketing materials. Ashley has more than seven years of experience collaborating across teams to create content that answers users’ questions and drives them towards decisions. She also enjoys taking on internal initiatives that promote a company-wide culture of documentation. Ashley lives in Chicago with a rotating cast of foster dogs whom she hosts through the nonprofit One Tail at a Time.

Vice President: Travis Simpson

Travis Simpson has more than nine years of experience in industrial automation and controls engineering. As document specialist and technical writer at BNP Associates, he is responsible for developing specifications, technical manuals, training documents, and engineering reports for baggage and cargo handling systems.

Travis is also responsible for developing quality control standards, copyediting services for BNP’s submittals to clients, and producing marketing materials and proposals. He also has experience with field testing and commissioning services for domestic airport projects.

Travis enjoys all music and has a long-haired cat named Blue, named after the Kentucky Wildcats’ live mascot.

Secretary: Dan Dornbrook

Dan Dornbrook is a technical writer at the Deerfield office of JMA Wireless, a privately owned company based in Syracuse, NY, that makes software and equipment for telecommunications networks. He joined JMA in 2018 after more than 17 years (combined) as a technical writer at Motorola and one of its spinoff companies, Motorola Solutions. Before that he worked in technical writing for a series of companies with Chicago-area headquarters or branches, mostly in the telecommunications industry.

Dan joined STC Chicago in 1993 after moving to the northern suburbs from Milwaukee, where he joined STC as a student at Milwaukee School of Engineering (MSOE). (He also has a bachelor’s  degree in journalism from Indiana University-Bloomington.) Dan has served the chapter in a variety of roles, including editor of the former Byline newsletter (twice), treasurer, vice president, president, and Nominating Committee manager. He has been Program Committee manager since 2020 and chapter secretary since 2017.

Treasurer: Rita Hovorka

Rita Hovorka made a career transition to technical writing in 2001. She worked for Siemens Building Technologies for nearly 20 years. In 2021, she was recruited by a start-up company in Santa Barbara, CA, that is developing a software platform to automate operations in the cold storage industry.

Rita continues to live in the Chicago area with her cat while working remotely with her colleagues in California. Rita received a B.A. in Home Economics from Mundelein College, Chicago; an MBA from DePaul University; and a Professional Technical Communication Certificate from the College of Lake County in Grayslake, IL.

Rita has served on the Administrative Council for the past three years: immediate past president (IPP) for 2021-22, president for 2020-21, and vice president for 2019-20. She received the President’s Award in 2021. She looks forward to continuing to serve as treasurer of the Chicago Chapter and continuing to serve members of the STC community.

Immediate Past President (IPP): Phil Hayek

Phil is a full-time lecturer in the English Department at the University of Illinois – Chicago (UIC), specializing in technical and professional writing courses for the English major and minor concentrations in professional writing.

Phil came to UIC in 2017 after earning a doctorate in rhetoric and writing at Virginia Tech while teaching technical communication to undergraduate engineering students. Before that, he earned a bachelor’s degree in English and a master’s degree in writing, rhetoric and discourse at DePaul University and then taught first-year writing and communications courses at DePaul and at Harry S. Truman College.

Phil served as Chicago Chapter vice president in 2021-2022 and chapter president in 2022-2023.

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