(Work listed in chronological order beginning with the present; projects often overlapped and/or were returned to, hence the year listing only for past projects; references are available.)
Promotional Writer and Publicist, SugaFUNK the Band
Responsible for all promotional material, band bios, web site copy-(site construction in progress)-Facebook and Twitter accounts, and press releases for up and coming Louisiana Funk band consisting of ten outstanding musicians. Their first major engagement was a 2011 Missouri Mardi Gras celebration; Responsible for all of the publicity and achieved significant print and television coverage of the event. Developing theme and marketing slogans that will center around the phrase “SugaFUNK, Y’all!” to connote regional origin and to create an action phrase that creates a strong association with the band; We are currently slated to create promotional packages for band’s first professional demo recording to be produced in New Orleans this summer. A primary marketing task is to interpret and tell the story of the band and arouse popular interest. (See writing sample: Lazarro Nettles).
RFP Proposal Writer, Oil and Gas Support Services Company
Complex proposal to support government contractor in providing catering services to two sites in Afghanistan. Approached this project with the goal of determining what areas the current food service provider was deficient in and providing a clearly superior choice. After research, we determined that a mandated government food safety procedure was not being followed by the current provider; we proceeded to study the policies carefully, tactfully inserting important policy points throughout our proposal and pointing out how we could improve them.
Publicity and Communications Chair, Acadiana Republican Women
Provided communications, publicity, and media relations assistance to newly elected Executive Board. Responsible for all written communications and outreach initiatives in cooperation with membership and the public. Managed web site content and handled photography for all major events. Wrote, directed and served as on-air announcer for national publicity campaign entitled “Find Your Voice and Change the World”-later adopted by the National Federation of Republican Women, played at the national convention, and released for general state club use. Original copy was read by 7 adult women and one child. Wrote and recorded an additional piece for local Constitution event entitled “Our Values, Our History”- which was also recognized on a local, state and national level. From 2009 to 2010, the number of paid members increased from 56 to 205. ARW became the first club in the state to have regularly updated Facebook and Twitter announcements and a modern, interactive web presence. In 2010, ARW swept the awards at the state conference for the most dynamic and innovative club in the Southern region.
RFP Proposal Specialist/Technical Writer/Project Manager, Texas Correctional Management Company
Interpreted and formulated bid proposal to the exact specification of the agency to which it was submitted. Handled every aspect of Response from data collection and research to document creation and production. Required to become familiar with intricacies of particular government agency, the specific industry, and all required procedures. Organized and managed information-gathering from wide variety of sources in and outside of company. Bid was submitted on time with very short turn-around.
Independent Paralegal, Lafayette Law Firms & Attorneys
Research and draft court motions and pleadings that reverse improperly-ordered court directives. Break new ground in identifying and highlighting Louisiana statutes that contradict and undermine constitutional rights. Skilled in legal research and the identification of important case law; often called on to review contracts on a free-lance basis, identify discrepancies or issues, and refer them to an attorney if necessary. Can draw up pleadings on short notice and relieve work load of attorneys; familiar with all aspects of a law practice and the need to keep arguments current with new statutory and case law. Extremely skilled in interpreting Louisiana Revised Statutes and Louisiana higher court decisions.
RFP Proposal Specialist/Technical Writer/Project Manager, Louisiana-based Correctional Management Company
Responsible for year-long project that included preparing lengthy RFP responses to in-state and out-of-state entities. 150 page Proposal Response with over 100 exhibits made short list for major Arizona contract (RFP later re-issued.) Responsible for data collection and organization; document analysis and interpretation; creation of original written narrative; and construction of technical responses to meet precise RFP specifications. Relationship-building in proposed facility locations required. Technical information collected from numerous sources distilled and consolidated into organized, persuasive, understandable document. Experienced in Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Federal Bureau of Prisons, and Civil Detention standards. One particular Louisiana RFP response was determined by receiving agency to be "most technically precise." Met all deadlines, even with extremely short turn-around.
Web Site Copywriter, Private Lafayette Home Builder
Created all website copy and worked closely with web designer to create outstanding site for this small business.
Writer and Communications Consultant, Louisiana State Senate Race
Advised campaign on all aspects of communication strategy including position statements, press releases, media relations and publicity. Wrote all web site content and advised candidate on public speaking events, topics and themes. Made the candidate’s life and history come alive; he is now the primary contender in the race and is still gaining momentum.
RFP Proposal Specialist & Technical Writer/Project Manager, Lafayette Trucking Company
Responsible for the monitoring and compliance of special projects in accordance with federal and state guidelines and particularly DOT mandates. Charged with producing verifiable and measurable proof of compliance; reading and responding to all intra/inter-office communications and maintaining ongoing record related to project status, results, and assessment. Was successful in saving client a significant amount of money by identifying errors in contracts.
Publicity and Communications Consultant, Citizens for a Fair Count
Hired to organize, publicize and host forum & dinner at City Club of River Ranch ballroom in which the counting of non-citizens for purposes of Congressional reapportionment was discussed. Featured were two nationally known authorities on this subject, Louisiana demographer Elliott Stonecipher and LSU Professor of Constitutional Law Dr. John Baker (featured in a Wall Street Journal editorial). Played central role in kick-starting public awareness of this issue; wrote press releases, OP/EDS, and policy statements. Personally secured financial backing for this event and handled all follow-up details. Appeared on two local radio programs promoting the event and achieved significant newspaper coverage.
Writer & Legislative Advocate, Teche Federal Bank
Hired to work against passage of HR 3126, the Consumer Financial Protection Agency Act, that would have taken over America's community banks. Intense lobbying on the state and national level to educate consumers about this proposal and influence lawmakers’ vote. Managed to slow down process and stall legislation; final legislation was considerably better than original proposal, so we considered our effort a success.
Freelance Reporter and Feature Writer, Acadiana Gazette
Reported on various topics of local interest, particularly longer feature stories highlighting a unique local individual or organization. Particularly skilled in finding and researching stories of a rare or unusual nature and reporting on them in an appealing, engaging manner; was highly recommended by the current editor, Judy Johnson.
Communications Consultant & Analyst, Louisiana United States Senate Race
Assisted the campaign in organizing statewide volunteers, particularly in the area of LTEs (Letters to the Editor) in support of candidate. Wrote extensively in support of the candidate in Op/Eds, blogs and on social networking sites; helped craft campaign messages, particularly on short notice and in reaction to statements by opponent.
Communications Consultant & Analyst, Louisiana Attorney General’s Race
Played a primary role in communicating the message of the campaign though press releases and announcements; the crafting of statements and short speeches; and the writing of statewide OP/ED columns. Participated in fundraising efforts that ultimately totaled almost $750,000. Although the race resulted in a loss, we were able to garner nearly 40% of the vote for a previously unknown candidate.
9th grade; 7th grade
Staffing Specialist, WillStaff Worldwide
Recruited and screened candidates for local job openings. Based on comprehensive initial screening, matched candidates with potential employers. Developed a keen sense of candidate skills and attributes, and an ability to quickly determine their ideal work environment. Gained a deep understanding and empathy for those seeking employment and the appropriate way to help guide them personally and professionally. Enjoyed this work very much; began teaching as the summer schedule would be more conducive to the single parenting of a young child.
Lobbyist/Media Advocate, Washington, DC
Hired as legislative advocate and lobbyist on major initiative in the state of Iowa; traveled throughout the state garnering support for position among legislators, community groups, college campuses, media outlets, and the electorate at large. Effort was successful as proposed anti-family legislation was resoundingly defeated.
Successfully organized students on college campuses throughout the country to engage in activism.
Served as regular media liaison for large, national family advocacy organization.
Hired to write position pieces and issue analyses for various Washington, D.C. Think Tanks.
Appeared on CNN, the Lifetime Network and national radio programs.
Volunteer debate lecturer for the Close-Up Foundation, a nationally respected government education program for youth.
Correspondence Analyst, Executive Office of the President of the United States
July 1990-November 1992
Read and analyzed Executive Correspondence
Maintained Correspondence database
Determined correct response based on issue topic
Referral to government agency if required
Maintained public opinion log on various issues
Collaborated closely with the Office of Special Letters Response (SLR)
Recommended mail for personal review by the President
Assisted in manning the White House Hotline during Los Angeles riots of 1992
Louisiana: In Words
Pelican Publishing 2007
A collection of short essays from a diverse selection of Louisiana writers; the short essays depict a true moment in time that characterizes and reflects our unique Louisiana culture and lifestyle. I was honored to be selected as a part of this project.
University of Louisiana at Lafayette
Teaching Certificate, English/Language Arts (Alternative Certification)
Northern Virginia Community College
Associate Degree, Paralegal Studies, with a concentration in Legal Research and Writing (An American Bar Association-approved program)
University of Louisiana at Lafayette
BA, English grammar and composition