How I define Public Relations:
I define public relations as the art and science of giving individuals, groups and entities a voice – and then guiding them to use their voices in meaningful ways not only for them, but their target audiences and the greater community-at-large.
Hat you most identify with:
The answer to which hat I most identify with? Why, it’s elementary, my dear readers!
My hat is none other than that of Sherlock Holmes himself, which is actually called a deerstalker hat (creepy!).
Why, you ask?
I love nothing more than putting on my detective hat (usually metaphorically, mind you) and seeking out the best stories for my clients and the media. Everyone has a story to tell – I just need to help them find it.
It was 110 degrees on the Arizona State University campus – in September.
I had just come out of another dull Accounting 240 class, wishing that earning a marketing degree didn’t require me to learn words like “balance sheet” or “accrual.” After all, I just wanted to write!
As I often do in times of crisis, I turned to food. The only cure for my post-accounting meltdown? Chocolate – a volcano brownie from the Coffee Plantation to be more specific.
But, alas, the only Coffee Plantation was on the other side of campus – nearly a mile away.
After making the long journey across campus, where I convinced myself I was preemptively burning any calories I was about to consume, I stood in the line at the Coffee Plantation as afternoon classes were letting out.
Having never been to this side of campus, I couldn’t help but to put on my detective hat (see above) and investigate a bit.
Turns out, the Coffee Plantation stood directly outside the Journalism, Broadcast Journalism and Mass Communications buildings on campus. Eager to enjoy my little brownie in the air conditioning, I ducked into the Journalism building.
And I never left.
That day, as I enjoyed my brownie and walked the halls of the Walter Cronkite School for Journalism and Mass Communications, I not only learned about the stellar reputation of the school, but its Public Relations course options. After filling out some requisite forms and completing a few essays (my favorite – again, love to write), I officially changed majors – and dropped that blasted Accounting 240 class to boot!
Diploma in hand and internships with a few movie studios under my belt, I accepted a job as an account coordinator with HMA Public Relations in 2004.
Today, well over a decade later and as a senior account executive, I focus on providing client management, digital communications, business development, online content management, strategic media relations, client relations, promotional marketing, creative writing, crisis communications, event planning and issues management – and then I get my morning coffee.
An active member of the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) locally, regionally and nationally, I have served and continue to serve in volunteer leadership positions and committees each year. In addition, I currently volunteer on the board of directors for the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Rocky Mountain Southwest Chapter, where I also help plan the organization’s annual Rocky Mountain Emmy Awards Gala.
I also serve as a founding member of Suns Charities 88 and as a board member for Subway Kids & Sports of Arizona, where we focus on providing local children with access to sports and wellness. Prior, I was an active volunteer and event coordinator with the Arizona Institute for Breast Health. In my spare time, I am a passionate freelancer writer on all things travel, food, wine and business for So Scottsdale Magazine, Uptown Magazine, Scottsdale Health Magazine, AZ Business Magazine, North Valley Magazine, Arizona Health & Living Magazine and about a dozen others.
While at HMA, our team has been recognized for its work by PRSA Phoenix, IABC Phoenix, Bulldog Reporter, the Public Relations Global Network, the Arizona Festivals and Events Association, the American Marketing Association and many more. In recent years, I have been honored as one of the “Women to Watch” in Arizona communications as well as one of the “Five Most Influential Women in Arizona Business under 35” by AZ Business Magazine.
I am happily married to a fellow lover of writing, though – in an odd twist – he works in public accounting. We live in Northeast Phoenix with our cat, Lucky, and NFL Sunday Ticket Package. Go Cards!
So, now that I’ve told you my story – what’s yours? Not sure? Let me help you seek it out!