Public relations is all about relationships—the people behind the stories. That’s why we’re offering this blog series all about our team members. This isn’t about our professional accomplishments but who we are as people. We hope you have as much fun reading along as we do interviewing each other.
1. What got you interested in public relations?
My love of public relations spun off from a combination of my early journalism career, a deep love for American history, and my love of good storytelling. After a short but intense stint covering politics on Capitol Hill at CNN and working local news in a few regional Virginia markets and my hometown in Western Canada, I realized I wanted to do communications differently than I had previously. I learned that I was really excited by taking on the challenges of shaping messaging, crafting narratives, and helping organizations navigate the media world, crisis communications, and engaging the public in mission-focused communications. Working in the non-profit world was an easy jump after graduate school. And that road ultimately led me to here – a new and exciting way to keep telling great stories and engaging clients in new and innovative ways.
2. Tell us about your favorite movie and what appeals most to you about it?
Anyone that knows me knows that this is a multi-hour discussion. However, because I’ve got a word limit, I’ll grudgingly choose one; and that is The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of The Ring. This movie never fails to give me chills to this day – and as a young kid, this movie blew my mind. The movie score, the cinematography, the acting, the scale and scope of what was built and created gave life to Tolkien’s masterpiece. I truly believe there’s never been a movie like it… and short of the new Dune movies, there may never be again.
3. What was the last, best book you read and what about it spoke to you?
The last book I read was a guilty pleasure: World War Z by Max Brooks. Totally just an entertaining and thrilling book, written in the form of a pseudo-documentary about a global war against zombies. The movie wasn’t great, but the book is fantastic. The last book that I read that inspired me and spoke to me was probably Washington: A Life by Ron Chernow. The life of George Washington is truly something that people need to read to believe. There’s something very inspiring about a person whose singular commitment to honor and duty shaped the way that we view civic virtue and our system of government to this day. Not without his flaws, the book also does a wonderful job exploring how deeply complicated and conflicted Washington was with his own family, his career, and his view of the revolution he helped fight. How that book and the story of George Washington hasn’t been given a proper treatment or at least translated into an HBO mini-series a-la John Adams or Chernobyl, is beyond me.
4. Tell us about a meaningful hobby or outside of work commitment that is important to you.
I am really into winter sports, which makes living in Florida an interesting place for someone who grew up playing ice hockey and snowboarding. But any time I can manage to get to the mountains I feel completely refreshed. There’s nothing quite like the total peace and quiet at the top of a mountain. It is a great place to clear your head and decompress.
5. Share a fun fact about you.
I am an avid cook and am constantly trying out new recipes for my wife and me. Not all of them are winners, but we’ve stumbled across some absolutely great ones that have become staples in our house. To quote the great classic, Ratatouille: “You must try things that may not work. Anyone can cook; but only the fearless can be great.”