Strategic Communications Leader

Innovative communications and public relations strategist with 30 years of success in corporate and non-profit communications, integrated marketing and communications, messaging, storytelling and reputation management. Leverages expertise in media relations and major event production to build relationships with key stakeholders and target audiences on a regional and national scale.

Notable Skills and Qualifications
  • Extensive and diverse marketing communications experience including developing strategic plans
  • More than 20 years of team leadership experience, managing and coaching high-functioning MarCom teams to create data-driven strategies that align with corporate branding, messaging, and transformational goals; includes gathering, analyzing, and synthesizing data to establish clear objectives
  • Balances and manages multiple high-visibility projects with competing priorities, aggressive timelines, and strict budgets
  • Plans, develops, and coaches organizational leadership in internal and external communication messaging, timing, and delivery as a seasoned crisis communicator for educational institutions and nonprofit organizations
  • Skillful public speaker and written communicator in both English and Spanish, with advanced written and verbal proficiency in Spanish-language

Areas of Expertise

Organizational Leadership • Crisis Communication • Crisis Coaching • Event Planning • Logistics & Scheduling • Web Design • Graphic Design • Internet Marketing • Marketing Collateral • Promotional Materials • Social Media Content • Corporate Branding • Messaging • Creative Direction • Video & Print Production • Broadcast Journalism • Project Management • Budget Management • Purchasing • Public Relations • Media Relations • Vendor Management • Team Leadership • Cross-Functional Collaboration

Professional Work History
American Heart Association – Portland, OR 2022 – Present
Marketing Communications Director
  • Oversee marketing and communications for Montana, Oregon and southwest Washington
  • Maintain the integrity of the brand and identity of the American Heart Association by developing and/or reviewing/editing communications and marketing materials.
  • Serve as marketing communications consultant to staff and volunteers, including conducting communications orientation and training, monitoring progress on key objectives and cause initiatives, and providing general counsel and guidance.
  • Coordinate, in conjunction with National Center and Western States communications and marketing staff, communications- and marketing-related promotions, mailings, distribution, and reporting.
  • Raise visibility of the Association via traditional and digital media outlets. Maintains and stewards existing media relationships. Explores and engages new outlets, especially media with reach to targeted audiences. Researches and monitors new/burgeoning media, especially those being developed in the market.
  • Seek new approaches to transforming sponsorship communications and marketing deliverables. Stewards current sponsorships and expands into new industries. Helps craft mission-focused proposals and weaves in media, marketing and messaging themes to fully complement our campaigns.

North Pacific Union Conference & Upper Columbia Conference (NPUC/UCC) – Ridgefield & Spokane, WA 2009 – 2022
Communication Director & Chief External Affairs Officer
  • Oversaw communications and public relations for the northwest headquarters of a non-profit organization representing five states.
  • Coordinated and managed all public affairs, public relations, media relations, marketing strategy, and event planning
  • Anticipated and prepared responses to general, sensitive, and major policy or decision inquiries as media spokesperson; included planning timely releases of church-relation information to the public and/or media
  • Proactively developed communications strategies to address public issues with key influencers and target audiences; included coaching and preparing senior leaders for media interviews
  • Counseled president and officers on all public affairs matters, messaging strategy and consistency, and communications
  • Directed and influenced social media communications; analyzes new and emerging online communication technologies to measure impact on followership and audience engagement

Northwest Headquarters (NPUC; 2019 – 2022):
  • Led a cross-functional staff of web developers, graphic designers, and video/print producers in executing marketing, advertising, internal, and event communications for 500+ churches and 100 schools in five states
  • Proactively spearheaded an employee communication strategy in response to poor communication practices; improved internal communications, collaboration, engagement, and support between 1,200 cross-functional team members
    • Coached administration on communicating with staff members to increase motivation and engagement, empower employees to take ownership of problem-solving, and achieve desired results
    • Ghostwrote and edited all communications from administration to staff
    • Introduced controls to ensure consistency in tone and messaging across all internal communications
  • Increased external email subscriber base by 98% within three months, nearly doubling goal of 50%; led to two additional regional offices adopting digital communication methods and implementing first-ever digital newsletters
  • Instituted first-ever digital media archive, enabling easier access to media assets across platforms and various devices
  • Recovered 100% of past due account payments within six months and maintained net 30 with all ad clients by transitioning ad billing for all publishing channels to a single centralized online billing and payment system
  • Coached a key stakeholder for an interview with a major Seattle news station during the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic; station highlighted main message point in both anchor’s article teaser and reporter’s comments within story

Inland Northwest (UCC; 2009 – 2019):
  • Directed a cross-functional team of web developers, graphic designers, and video/print producers to execute marketing, advertising, internal, and event communications for 130+ churches and 25 schools in three states
  • Created and implemented the organization’s first-ever crisis communication strategy, enabling 145 campuses to positively engage with the public and media during school shooting threats, employee sexual misconduct, and destructive fires
  • Spearheaded a digital employee communication plan to engage with all 1,200 staff members via email and text message
  • Orchestrated a four-day conference that garnered such positive feedback from constituents that it became an annual event; directed and coordinated complex event logistics for eight consecutive years, including:
    • Largest event tent venue between Portland, Oregon and Minneapolis, Minnesota
    • Day-of-event live-streaming, as well as recording of plenary meetings and seminars
  • Directed a city-wide marketing campaign that included billboards, transit bus advertising, and social media to build brand awareness, leading to significant improvements in positive community engagement and goodwill

Additional Professional Experience
Creative Director & Communications Consultant | Independent Contractor – Ridgefield, WA 1997 – Present Provides a full suite of graphic and web design services to a variety of individual and local small business clients. Services include handcrafted custom websites, focused content, user interfaces, branding photography, videography, and print design.
  • Designed website and developed web content for an aircraft customization company, enabling the business to effectively showcase patented after-market aviation products to their US customer base while driving international business
  • Produced four major trade shows for an international client based in Hong Kong, including booths and event collateral targeting North American customers; enabled company to surpass their email subscription goal by 150%+
  • Introduced drone videography and photography to a real estate client, leading to rapid sale of a $1.5 million property


Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communications, Emphasis in Broadcast Journalism | Walla Walla University, 1996

Technical Skills
  • Adobe Creative Suite 
  • Drupal 
  • Final Cut Pro 
  • Google Docs
  • iWork Suite 
  • Microsoft Office Suite
  • WordPress

  • National Association of Photoshop Professionals 
  • Public Relations Society of America 
  • Society of Adventist Communicators