EPN: Where Entrepreneurs Network

Companies have their different ways of communicating with their workers. They blast emails or post notices on colorful bulletin boards. Some still drop lengthy memos into their staff members’ overflowing inboxes, hoping they don’t get lost among the clutter. (Hello? Welcome to the 21st Century!) But, how many companies stream their announcements and recognition live via the Internet to thousands of people at once?

I’m guessing there aren’t too many that do. But Primerica does. Through our own television studio, EPN-TV, Primerica produces more than 100 hours of original programming each year. It is a huge part of how we spread news to our sales force of more than 100,000 representatives.

The History
EPN-TV started broadcasting in April 1986 as ALW-TV. The station was founded as a way for company founder, Art Williams, to quickly get his message to the sales force. ALW-TV was a pioneer in the corporate satellite industry. After the merger with Primerica, ALW-TV became PFS-TV and was soon renamed EPN-TV (Entrepreneurial Network Television).

In addition to recorded daily programming, the station broadcasts live each Monday from the studios at the Primerica Home Office in Duluth, Georgia. The live studio audience can number up to 200 people. In April 2007, EPN-TV took a huge technological leap and began streaming its broadcasts live over the Internet. Record numbers of people have logged on to watch remotely. Executive Vice President Norma Richardson says, “Certainly things in the technical and production world have changed over the past 20 years, but what has not changed is the pride this team takes in its work and the willingness to go the extra mile.”


The Crew
The EPN-TV full-time staff includes producers, editors, videographers, floor directors, an audio engineer and an administrative staff. Since Atlanta is a major TV market, the department has been able to recruit professionals from networks such as CNN, TBS and ABC. They also have a producer on staff who worked at the USA Network in New York. Here’s a snapshot of some of their staff’s qualifications:

Tim Foster is EPN-TV’s in-house animation guru who uses MAYA and 3D animation software program to create amazing effects for Primerica videos. Tim’s creative skills and talents can be seen on various animation projects. His credits include a feature film produced by Orion Pictures, Disney and Lucas films. While working for United Artists, Tim produced the first-ever 3D animated film policy trailer which was viewed by millions across North America. Tim’s work crosses over from the big screen to the small screen for corporations like Delta, Dun & Bradstreet and Norfolk Southern Railroad. Tim has worked with major advertising agencies worldwide. He’s a master at capturing the image and recreating it using amazing three-dimensional effects.

David Cregan, one of our executive producers at EPN-TV, works closely with our Field Instruction department producing Primerica’s training videos. Prior to joining the EPN team David worked in New York and was involved in political advertising on campaigns for gubernatorial races, congressional and senatorial candidates as well as a winning presidential race.

Mike Solomon is EPN-TV’s senior editor, and he works on an editing workstation running Premier Pro. He pushes the creative envelope by designing incredible motion graphics using a program called After Effects.


James Gavin is senior video editor/technical director at EPN-TV. Using Adobe CS4 on a non-linear workstation as well as an analog editing suite, James edits and voices many of the training programs and promos that air on EPN-TV. In his former occupation, James was video editor at a local mega-church. James also worked at CNN Headline News in numerous capacities including technical director and audio engineer. In fact, he was technical directing when the space shuttle Atlantis launch failed on live TV.

Jacques Adams is one of the busiest guys at EPN as our chief videographer working both in the studio and on location shoots. Jacques came to EPN after having worked at all major network affiliates in Augusta, Georgia, with the last one being WAGT. Jacques’ background as news videographer has helped him develop a keen eye for shot composition. At EPN-TV, he uses Final Cut Pro software for video editing.

Megan Schwindler, an executive producer at EPN-TV, has as a degree in broadcasting with emphasis on corporate video. Megan worked at the Shop at Home Network prior to coming to Primerica’s in-house business television network.

Pam Tokarz, a senior vice president, is in charge of the daily operations at EPN. A 24-year veteran of Primerica she helped launch EPN in 1986. Pam, originally from Arkansas, graduated from Arkansas State University with a major in communications. She worked at local TV  and radio stations during college and then moved to Atlanta. She even produced a PBS show. Pam has witnessed many changes at EPN from the early days of VHS videos to broadcasting via satellite to streaming video on the Internet.

The Accolades
EPN-TV has received awards from Media Communicators Association International (MCA-I) for various projects, and several staff members have won awards in their respective fields: Mike Solomon received a bronze award for editing and Norma Richardson was awarded one for producing. Richardson said, “Since 1986, EPN has been connecting the Home Office and the field force, and I’m proud to say that I’ve been here since the beginning. From a personal perspective, working with such creative and talented professionals here at EPN is perhaps the most rewarding of all my professional experiences.”

SVP Pam Tokarz is also proud of the work her department produces. She said, “TV is all about teamwork, and we have an incredible team of talented professionals at EPN. They have a true passion for their work and always strive for excellence. It’s very rewarding to see their creative talents and hard work come together on videos for meetings, broadcasts and sales tools for the representatives. Our staff ranks right up there with the big networks.”

There’s a stellar bunch of folks over at the TV studio, and their work helps keep their reps in touch with the spirit of Primerica: helping families become properly protected, debt free and financially independent … one kitchen table meeting at a time.