Freelance Writer & Photographer; Owner, VegaWire Media, NY 2011-Present
Built and maintained several community building Web sites that provide news and entertainment products serving niche and emerging markets. Established social media platforms for the company’s digital publications. Blogged and otherwise engaged community members and monitored traffic and responses through social media platforms, including Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Tumbler, and Reddit. Edited book manuscripts and magazine articles submitted for eBook publication under several trade imprints. Designed and created book covers, Web site banners, and other documents using industry standard tools. Edited digital images, created vector graphics, and laid out communications documents with exceptional typography and visual appeal. Managed marketing and promotions, new and social media analysis, media relations, and web content. Created, developed, and executed coherent social media marketing programs that included development, execution and evaluation of web– and tablet-based new media platforms. Advised clients on journalistic ethics and best practices in public information strategies.
Editorial Coördinator, NYC Independent Budget Office, NY, 2008–2011
Economic editor, writer, blogger, and communications coördinator for non-partisan municipal budget agency. Worked on tight deadlines, mandated by state and city statutes. Worked with various staff members to determine current editorial procedures and practices and created comprehensive agency style manual that set forth existing editorial procedures and practices. Optimized the agency’s existing document designs. Drafted and otherwise edited, reformatted, and rewrote contents of agency reports, blogs, testimony, and Op-Eds, while applying agency-wide editorial standards to all documents. Responsible for reviewing and revising analytical reports to ensure consistency with the agency’s style sheet and other authoritative style sheets and eliminating errors in spelling, grammar, and usage. Evaluated materials for accurate use of references, content, charts and statistics, textboxes, and footnotes. Provided detailed instructions on factors to be incorporated in subsequent drafts. Reviewed communications products, including brochures, budget guides, PowerPoint presentations, and Web pages for design and clarity. Conducted comparative bibliographic analysis of the agency’s library of publications to ensure inclusivity in transfer to website. Periodically tested the website’s hyperlinks to ensure proper linkage to documents and other targets. Participated in editorial meetings with analysts and division heads to discuss potential topics of future reports, ongoing projects, and to conduct post-publication reviews. Monitored and analyzed developments and trends at the local, state, and national levels that related to monetary and fiscal policy. Designed the agency’s Twitter page and advised senior staff on using social media to advance its public information goals.
Staff Reporter, American Lawyer Media, NY, 2007–2008
Deadline reporter for weekly and monthly legal publications covering civil court verdicts, judgments and settlements in New York, New Jersey and California state and federal courts. Produced 40 to 50 reports per month in a fast-paced deadline driven environment. Edited, reformatted, and rewrote articles submitted by attorneys to ensure clarity, accuracy, and consistency with editorial guidelines. The articles ranged from simple dog bite and rear-end auto collision cases to complex suits arising sounding in securities law. Based on court documents and live interviews, the reports circulated in both print and online formats and republished on Westlaw. Some also ran in the New York Law Journal. The readership was composed mostly of trial attorneys, perhaps the most exacting and contentious audience anywhere, requiring the highest standards of accuracy and balance. Duties included headline writing and fact-checking Top 100 Verdicts, which comes out in book form and as a summary list published in the National Law Journal.
Hohenberg Scholar, Columbia Graduate School of Journalism, NY, 2006–2007
Coursework: Reporting and Writing, Business and Financial Reporting, Photojournalism, Columbia News Service, Ethics and Law. Masters Project on the teaching of ethics at the US Naval Academy. While pursuing a graduate degree in journalism served in the following capacities: Writer and Photographer, Columbia News Service: generated story ideas and reported on national trends in entertainment, employment, culture, and education. Every story was picked up by a print or online publication, including the Washington Post, The Austin-American Statesman, and T.V. Guide. Staff Photographer, Bronx Beat: general assignment photographer for biweekly print newspaper. Shot free-standing photos and photos to accompany stories. Events Photographer, Society of Professional Journalists, Columbia chapter: photographed events organized by student journalist group, including the Pulitzer Traveling Fellows program and various social events.
Assoc. Prof. of English (Tenured), Palm Beach State College, FL, 1997–2006
Taught core and elective composition, creative writing, and literature courses, including American Literature (before and after 1865), World Literature after the Renaissance, and the Bible as Literature; Created and reviewed curriculum in both the English and English-for-Speakers-of-Other-Languages programs; read, evaluated and graded student essays; advised the Beachcomber (student newspaper); organized and led community-based writing workshop for poets and fiction writers; as chair of English Department, scheduled classes, and hired, supervised and wrote evaluations of adjunct faculty. Initiated and coördinated efforts by the college and the American Legion to endow scholarships for U.S. military veterans. Created self-study manual to guide the college through the reaccreditation review by the Southern Association of Colleges (SACS). Authored mission statement for English department and English cluster. Authored academic freedom statement adopted by Board of Trustees as college policy and incorporated into faculty bargaining agreement. Authored and edited English course descriptions for college catalogue. Organized on campus literary readings and programs for local and visiting writers. Moderated and participated in panel discussions covering Latinos in film, community responses to 9/11, and the impact of the Patriot Act on academic freedom. Advised the Beachcomber (student newspaper), Contessa (student literary journal), and the Dominican Club. Served as liaison to various civic organizations, including the American Legion, the Armory Art Center, ASPIRA and the Hispanic Jewish Committee of Palm Beach County to promote the college and raise scholarship funds (over $40,000). Served on key district committees: Academic Curriculum, Diversity, English as Second Language (ESOL), Tenure & Promotion, Program Coördinating Committee for Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Award and Strategic Planning (district level).
Freelance Writer & Editor, NY, 1994-Present
Writing and editing, the results of which were published in several soft and hardcover anthologies and classroom textbooks. Departmental Research Assistant, Columbia University, New York, 1992–1994 Coördinated numerous literary, social, and academic programs on and off campus. Created and distributed promotional materials, mailing lists, and invitations.
Associate Poetry Editor, Columbia Magazine, NY, 1992–1993
Solicited submissions of original poetry, translations, criticism, and book reviews for the literary journal of Columbia University. Read and discussed submissions with editorial board. Line edited works accepted for publication.
News writing: New York Law Journal, The Washington Post, Backstage, Reuters (Canada, India, Singapore), Columbia Journalist, Yahoo News (US, India, Singapore), MSNBC.com, ABC News, T.V. Guide, BCN (Broadband Comedy Network), The Star Online, Tampa Tribune, New York Resident Magazine, Hamptons Resident Magazine, Contracosta Times, Boulder Daily Camera, Lexington Herald-Leader (Kentucky.com), Mobile Register (Alabama), GreatReporter.com, Austin Statesman-American, VerdictSearch (New York Reporter, New Jersey Reporter, and California Reporter), and ComedyBeat.com.
News photos: 116th & Broadway, Columbia Journalist (web), Bronx Beat (print & web), Tampa Tribune, New York Resident Magazine (print & web), 801 Magazine, Gothamist, the Brooklyn Daily Eagle (print & web), DNAinfo.com, and ComedyBeat.com.
Fiction and poetry: Literature for Life and Work, Little Havana Blues, Parnassus: Poetry in Review, The Brooklyn Review, River Styx, Cool Salsa, Americas Review, Lookout, Encuentros, among many others.
Adobe Creative Suite (InDesign, Illustrator, Photoshop, Acrobat, Bridge); WordPress Content Management System (CMS); Microsoft Office; Excel; PowerPoint; Adobe Dreamweaver CS4; Photo Mechanic; Bloomberg Machine; Factiva and other electronic research tools; digital and film camera, photo-lighting; PDF scanner; type 50 wpm. Working knowledge of HTML, XHTML, and CSS.
United States Marine Corps (Reserves), 1983–1989
Communications specialist. NCO Leadership training. Honorable Discharge.
MS in Journalism, Columbia University, NY, May 2007
Coursework: Reporting and Writing, Business and Financial Reporting, Photojournalism, Bronx Beat, Columbia News Service, Ethics, and Law. Masters Project on the teaching of ethics at the U.S. Naval Academy.
MFA in Writing, Columbia University, NY, May 1994.
Coursework: writing and literature with concentration in poetry.
BA in English, with Honors, Brooklyn College, NY, May 1991.
Coursework: English major with minors in education and religious studies.
Regents Diploma, Cathedral Preparatory Seminary (Brooklyn), NY, June 1983. Coursework: college preparatory with religious curriculum.
National Arts Club, NY, 2010-Present. Active member of the Literary Committee, which organizes literary programs, provides scholarships to aspiring writers, and awards the club’s prestigious Medal of Honor for Literature.
Online News Association, New York Chapter, NY, 2010-present
Serve on central planning committee that organizes panel discussions and networking events for online news professionals. Programs have been held at Columbia University, New York University, Cooper Union, The New York Times, and the Associated Press.
W.B. Yeats Society of New York, NY, 1990-present
Active member of executive committee which planned literary, academic and social programs at the National Arts Club, the Liederkranz Club, Harvard Club, Columbia University, New York University, and other venues. Coördinated the Yeats Poetry Prize from its initiation until 1999. Served as treasurer from 1995 to 1997.
National Association of Hispanic Journalists, Region 2, NY, 2007–2010
Regional Conference Committee. Helped organize Region 2 conference at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism. Created 20-page new media information packet that was provided to conference participants. Secured permissions and copyrights.
American Legion Post 47, Palm Beach County, FL, 2003–2006
Chair of Boys State Committee that sends high school students to the state capital for week-long education program in government. College liaison officer in successful effort to endow scholarships for military veterans studying at Palm Beach Community College. Raised over $44,000.
Etta Ress Institute for Senior Citizens, Palm Beach, FL. 1997–2006
Instructor of poetry and memoir writing classes to senior citizens. Served as liaison with Palm Beach State College to provide the Institute with lecturers from college faculty.
Hohenberg Scholarship for Business and Economic Reporting, 2006; Certificate of Service, Strategic Planning, Palm Beach State College, 2005; Certificate of Appreciation, Palm Beach State College Library, 2005; Certificate of Teaching Excellence, Palm Beach State College, 2001; Certificate of Appreciation, Etta Ress Institute for Life Long Learning, 2000; Faculty Recognition Award, Palm Beach State College Athletics Dept., 1997; Departmental Fellowship, Columbia University, 1992; Writing Fellowship, Columbia University, 1991; National Hispanic Scholarship, National Hispanic Scholarship Fund, 1991; Bernard Grebanier Sonnet Prize, Brooklyn, College, 1991; Irwin Shaw Fiction Prize, Brooklyn College, 1990.
Spanish (Fluent: Written and Spoken)
Professional and Fraternal Associations
National Arts Club, W.B. Yeats Society of New York, Online News Association, Society of Professional Journalists, National Association of Hispanic Journalists, American Legion, Marine Corps League, Alumni Association of the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism, South Asian Journalists Association, MediaBistro.
Available upon request