ENVIRONMENTAL LAW & POLICY CENTER (ELPC) — Chicago, IL
Digital Advocacy Specialist, July 2014 – present
COMMUNICATIONS ASSOCIATE, JUNE 2011 – June 2014
1. Strategic Communications Planning — Shape comprehensive roadmaps to achieve project goals through:
- Collaborating with ELPC staff, coalition partners, clients, donors, and other stakeholders;
- Establishing project goals, ascertaining targeted decision-makers, and identifying best messages, messengers, and channels through which to reach them; and
- Executing many parts of the plan, including writing, designing, and “teching” needs such as those outlined below.
2. Content & Brand Management — Oversee strategy, writing, design, production, distribution, and metrics for ELPC-branded content across multiple media, including:
- More than a dozen websites, including ELPC.org and PlugInChicago.org;
- Social media channels, including Facebook (170% growth), Twitter (115% growth), and YouTube;
- Advocacy system facilitating 25,000+ public comments on legislative and regulatory processes;
- Marketing system distributing news, action alerts, and invitations to our base of 18,000+ supporters; and
- Organizational and programmatic literature, including our year-end report, fact sheets, advertisements, videos (see examples of a story, event save-the-date and programmatic victory), invitations, logos, infographics, large-format signage, digital signage, and memes.
3. Data Analytics & Strategy — Review and analyze data insights for all digital marketing channels and adjust communications strategy accordingly. Metrics include: email open rates by subject, audience and opportunity type; action alert participation by subject, audience and geography; social media engagement; website visitor behavior (26% growth in sessions); and online donor performance.
4. Operations Oversight — Direct various vendors and consultants responsible for hosting websites, managing domains, processing online donations, presenting webinars, and distributing advocacy and marketing content.
5. Industry Knowledge — Understand policy, legal, economic, and scientific perspectives on environmental issues to aid in effective communications. Areas of knowledge include: renewable energy, energy efficiency, energy transmission, coal mining/burning, diesel pollution, point/non-point water pollution, electric vehicles, passenger rail, and urban planning.
ASSOCIATE DIRECTOR OF COMMUNICATIONS & DEVELOPMENT
AUGUST 2010 – JUNE 2011
- Developed, wrote and produced articles, newsletters, case studies, web content, white papers and other informational products
- Helped expand, update and maintain Delta’s website
- Developed press materials and coordinated media and partner outreach
- Conducted research, compiled data and provided analysis of marketing and fundraising results
ENVIRONMENTAL LAW & POLICY CENTER
JULY 2007 – AUGUST 2010
- Composed persuasive grant proposals and reports by working with program staff to translate legal, policy and economic work into language accessible to both the casual philanthropist and the sophisticated program officer
- Helped secure organization’s budget ($4.5 million in FY2008; $6 million in FY2009; and $6.6 million in FY2010)
- Designed, wrote, and produced organization literature, eblasts, web content, and event materials
- Coordinated special projects between development and communications teams
- Managed Access-based databases with creativity and good humor
MICHIGAN ENVIRONMENTAL COUNCIL
JANUARY – JUNE 2007
- Assisted with writing and editing all organization content, including press releases, editorial board memos, annual report, quarterly newsletters, and web content
- Revamped all online content to streamline navigation, include new content on program-specific accomplishments and goals, and launch an online press room
MICHIGAN DEPT. OF ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY
JANUARY – MAY 2006
- Assisted the press secretary in developing a communications initiative about the department’s “good news” in preparation for the upcoming gubernatorial election
KNIGHT CENTER FOR ENVIRONMENTAL JOURNALISM
EDITOR, EJ MAGAZINE
AUGUST 2005 – MAY 2007
Served as editor-in-chief of EJ, a biannual publication about environmental issues and the reporters who cover them, when the magazine won more than a dozen reporting and design awards. Editorial duties included:
- Content – Exercised complete editorial discretion and mentored diverse writing staff
- Design – Created the “dummy” for 40+ page magazine and managed artistic staff
- Production – Obtained printer bids, chose paper specifications, and coordinated bulk-mailing
- Marketing – Wrote, designed, and implemented
EJ’s first website and media kit
VANCE PUBLISHING CORP.
ASSOCIATE EDITOR & ONLINE EDITOR
AUGUST 2004 – 2005 (FULL-TIME)
AUGUST 2005 – FEBRUARY 2007 (FREELANCE)
- Wrote and edited features and news for three monthly trade publications about the woodworking industry
- Managed web content for three magazines and two industry groups
COUNTRY INSURANCE & FINANCIAL SERVICES
WEB PUBLISHING ANALYST
JANUARY – MAY 2004
- Developed, posted and maintained internal website content about technical and legal insurance guidelines and employee benefits
- Provided support and served as editor for authors throughout the company
COUNTRY INSURANCE & FINANCIAL SERVICES
MEDIA RELATIONS INTERN
MAY – DECEMBER 2003
- Created awareness of the value of insurance, farm safety, and other issues via nationwide print, radio and television media
- Wrote news releases, piloted an all-electronic distribution system for releases and photos, and created articles for internal and external publications
IWU CAREER CENTER
COMMUNICATIONS PEER & SEARCH ASSISTANT
AUGUST 2001 – MAY 2004
- Coordinated a 17-member student and professional staff in developing creative student programming, including campus-wide open houses and several panels of field-specific alums and local professionals
- Composed, designed and edited Career Connections and Volunteerism, two monthly newsletters distributed to the campus and local community
THE ARGUS, IWU STUDENT NEWSPAPER
AUGUST 2002 – FEBRUARY 2003
- Weekly duties included editing all copy, leading the editorial board, aiding section editors with layout and AP Style, interfacing with business personnel, managing a diverse 30-member student staff, and interacting with campus leaders, university officials and the community at large
MICHIGAN STATE UNIVERSITY
M.A., ENVIRONMENTAL JOURNALISM, MAY 2007
MSU’s Knight Center for Environmental Journalism teaches journalists how to better report on the world’s most important beat. At the Knight Center, I learned from environmental experts, reported alongside seasoned environmental journalists, and served as editor of the award-winning EJ Magazine. The core value I learned there: It is both possible and necessary to the progress of society to explain complex environmental issues while maintaining traditional journalistic values of fairness and accuracy.
ILLINOIS WESLEYAN UNIVERSITY
B.A., ENGLISH WRITING, MAY 2004, CUM LAUDE
IWU is a traditional “liberal arts school” — a phrase I’m afraid most people never explain or understand properly. Here’s my take: I got a high-quality, well-rounded education that taught me how to learn and how to connect theory with reality. I was a writing major, but I also double-minored in Hispanic studies (don’t ask me to translate these days, though) and political science. And, here’s the kicker: I really should have majored or minored in environmental studies, a passion I discovered late in my undergraduate career. In the end, though, my multi-disciplinary studies have served me well in my environment-focused, public interest communications career.
FELLOWSHIP RECIPIENT, JUNE 2004
Shortly after receiving my bachelor’s degree, I was lucky to study environmental conditions and challenges in the Chinese countryside (and to visit many parts of rural China that tourists are not likely to venture). As part of a team of 6 — myself, another student, our two translators, and two professors — we interviewed subsistence farmers from a cross-section of villages north and south, coastal and inland, mountainous and flat, near and far from cities. You can read more about my experiences in my Fall 2005 article in EJ Magazine.
I am a trained journalist, so I know how to talk to people. But this list highlights some of my technical skills, which are quite extensive. I can’t code fancy web things (though I enjoy working with people who can), but I can do just about everything else and am highly adaptive. Many examples of my work are available on the homepage.
MAC + PC
WEB DESIGN & MAINTENANCE:
ONLINE MARKETING & ADVOCACY:
Convio Constant Contact (now part of Blackbaud)