Bio

 
 

Photo: John Stebbins

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Growing up in Venezuela, I remember periodic excursions to the city to pick up the mail and—most exotic to me—the latest issue of Time magazine. I caught the journalism bug early. I went on to get a master's in journalism at Columbia University, then spent the next 15 years working for wire services and newspapers. Beginning in 1997, I refocused my sights on Latin American issues at the Organization of American States (OAS) in Washington.

In 2007, I struck out on my own and returned to New Mexico, where I now work primarily in three areas:

  • Writing—Feature writing is my first love, and as a freelancer I write about whatever interests me—art, archaeology, gender issues, Latin American politics, the occasional travel destination. I also produce brochures, reports, and other types of publications for clients.
  • Media Relations—In my years in corporate communications and public affairs, I acquired experience in developing communications strategies, shaping messages for targeted audiences, cultivating media sources, and generating and pitching story ideas. Now I'm able to put such skills to use as a consultant for international organizations.
  • Translating & Interpreting—Having grown up speaking both English and Spanish, I work regularly as a translator, most frequently for the OAS and its Inter-American Commission on Human Rights. In New Mexico, I'm a certified court interpreter and do both consecutive and simultaneous interpreting in diverse settings.

 

EDUCATION

Master of Science in Journalism, Columbia University, New York, 1980
Bachelor of Arts, summa cum laude, Wheaton College, Wheaton, Illinois, 1979

 

PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE

WRITING, EDITING, INTERPRETING, MEDIA RELATIONS (July 2007-Present). Drawing on more than 25 years of professional experience, offer wide range of services to clients. Among recent publication projects: "Social Protection in the Americas," a glossy, eight-page report on the Inter-American Social Protection Network; "Dialogue in Action: Cooperation for Development in the Americas," a brochure with ten separate inserts on specialized topics; and "Forging Women's Rights," an in-depth article on a USAID-funded program in Guatemala. Other projects have included providing media relations support over a period of several months for the Fifth Summit of the Americas, held in April 2009 in Trinidad and Tobago; writing, translating, or editing OAS documents on democracy, human rights, and other topics; and contributing freelance stories to publications, most recently Américas and Archaeology magazines. Work on a regular basis as a court-certified interpreter in New Mexico.

ORGANIZATION OF AMERICAN STATES (1997-2007), senior public information specialist, Department of Press and Communications. Managing a six-person team, coordinated daily coverage of OAS events, edited press releases, and implemented strategies for media relations. Activities included pitching story ideas, briefing journalists, identifying opportunities for interviews, developing printed materials, and drafting op-ed pieces. Worked with technical areas of the OAS to convey key messages and generate press coverage of effective programs. Provided media support for numerous events around the Americas, including presidential summits, ministerial meetings, conferences, and electoral observation missions.

SUN HEALTHCARE GROUP, INC. (1995-97), director of editorial services. Wrote, edited, and managed creative production of award-winning annual report, marketing brochures, and employee newsletters for publicly traded company in New Mexico. Supported vice president of corporate communications in handling press queries, particularly during period of sensitive labor relations.

ALBUQUERQUE JOURNAL (1987-95), reporter. On feature desk of New Mexico's largest newspaper, covered social trends and wrote profiles, travel pieces, and other stories. Won New Mexico Associated Press Managing Editors Award, Features, Best in Show, 1991. Earlier, worked for the paper's business section, covering such beats as the oil and gas industry and the maquiladora business across the border.

BUSINESS LATIN AMERICA (1985-86), assistant editor, Mexico City. Wrote about the national economy, business, and politics for New York-based analytical newsletter.

THE ASSOCIATED PRESS (1984-85), reporter, Mexico City. Covered daily news and wrote features for leading international wire service. Also translated and edited copy from Central America.

THE NEW YORK TIMES (1982-84), stringer, Boston bureau. Wrote regularly for the national section and contributed stories on travel, education, and business. Assisted correspondents in reporting on Boston news.

THE ASSOCIATED PRESS (1980-82), correspondent, Caracas. Covered daily stories, including breaking news about the oil industry, and wrote features on Venezuela for U.S. and worldwide audiences.