Communications Strategist with 9+ years experience in WordPress, Social Media Marketing, Radio Production and Reporting/Editing.
Initiated, Created, and Trained students with using a CMS website utilized in Basic Reporting and JMC Seminar. Developed the News & Information Director position at WOCR FM. Publisher of justice and community oriented online news & information publications, including GreenActionNews.com covering environmental activism around the world.
Bachelor of Arts in Journalism/Mass Communication at Olivet College Class of 2011
GPA: 3.4791 Dean’s List Spring 2009, Fall 2010, Spring 2010
My First Media Project
When I was a kid, I collected books about typography and I was drawn to publication design. I designed a concept for a neigborhood news magazine called, “Zaaap!” I was 8 and I thought it sounded cool, but it was terrible branding. It sounded too much like I was going to be Harriet the Spy.
My First Job
Newspaper delivery person for The Grand Rapids Press.
My First Website
In 1993, I launched a chat site called WTSS. It was a community building chat site attempting to foster progressive Christianity. I learned HTML from scratch to build it and with the help of a CGI programmer it had 5 chat rooms. This was in pre-Google days and the site had top ranking on Yahoo! with the key search phrase Christian Teen Chat. I also learned a great deal about UX in the process. In 2011, I sold WTSS for a good chunk of change to a lawn mowing service and I used the money for college.
First Local Online-Only News Site
In 2004, I got involved in public affairs when I ran for Kent County Commissioner and volunteered as the Meetup organizer for DFA. I have also worked as Communications Director/Advisor for two Congressional campaigns. My experience in politics opened my eyes to the bias of the media and inspired me to create the first online-only local news source for the Grand Rapids area called KentCountyStar. It was the first of its kind in the Grand Rapids, MI area. The software was clunky, so I scrapped it for awhile, got a journalism degree, and revived it on WordPress with a new name, metroGRnews.
First CMS Learning Tool at Olivet College
While I was a student at Olivet College, I created ConvergentMediaCenter.org to give my fellow JMC students and future JMC students the opportunity to learn and practice publishing news in an Content Management System environment. I provided training and ongoing support to students. It was used by students in Basic Reporting class and JMC Seminar.
Maybe the First Morning Show at WOCR (at least in recent history at the time)
I suggested to the WOCR Faculty Advisor, Gary Smith, that there might be some people in the area who might enjoy listening to WOCR during the morning drive. He asked me to produce the morning show which consisted mostly of album rock, 80’s rock and grunge – stuff I like. I convinced the campus cafeteria staff to play WOCR in the mornings to expose WOCR to our student body. The deal was, as long as I played country music every hour, they would play it.
Strengths & Characteristics
I am inquisitive. I delve, study, analyze. I excel at going beyond the surface toward uncovering information and discoveries. I am methodical, precise, and detail-oriented. I am creative yet organized, and I have a myriad of strengths. I have systems of keeping things that are important to keeping me organized, while my creative mind utilizes an ‘out of the box’ approach to work and life. I excel when I am ‘lost’ in my work, completely engrossed in a project. Though I might come across as quiet, I am observant, enthusastic, deeply passionate about the project. I am a visionary. I see the big picture, all the parts, and how it all fits together. I love to work on a team toward a common goal. I also have a capacity for mentoring, with great communication skills, patience, and compassion in working with others to help them to learn and grow. I am attached to the natural world. I am energized by nature. I enjoy thunderstorms and enjoy having natural elements in my surroundings. I enjoy spending time with other people, especially at creative or social justice events. I take inititiative. I am comfortable working under pressure in a deadline driven goal-oriented environment and getting the job done. I am especially motivated when I have the opportunity to advocate for others.