Work History

Work History
Apr 2014 - Present

Director of Customer Assistance & Agency Liaison Office

U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services

Leads three senior teams of immigration professionals with a focus on helping secure America's promise as a NATION OF IMMIGRANTS while maintaining the INTEGRITY of our nation's immigration system.

- Oversees operations of senior analysts and adjudicators, dedicated to resolving customer issues and maintaining strategic alliances with our most critical stakeholders.

- Manages enduring relationships between agency and strategic partners to include the Department of Homeland Security Ombudsman, Office of Civil Rights and Civil Liberties, and other federal agencies. Facilitates and coordinates a unified agency response to complex and controversial issues, requests for information, and formal recommendations on all immigration issues as well as allegations of civil rights violations.

- Oversees resolution of cases involving individuals who have encountered problems applying for immigration services and benefits, as well as those with unusual or sensitive situations.

- Manages dialogue with customers and stakeholders on behalf of senior leaders throughout our government's executive branch.

Feb 2012 - Mar 2014

Director, External Communication

U.S. Marine Corps

Results focused communication executive and innovative/inspirational leader with proven success at generating positive national and international publicity that directly supports achievement of institutional goals for an organization of 250k+ with facilities and operations across the globe.

  • Led innovative, award-winning team of 20+ PR professionals in managing enterprise-wide national mass communication campaigns, which garnered significant positive coverage in major markets and showcased mission to global audience.
  • Senior spokesperson for U.S. Marine Corps. Conducted nationally covered news conferences, interviews and satellite media tours. Fostered enduring relationships with senior news executives; securing unprecedented coverage for strategic issues and mitigating impact of negative coverage.
  • Trusted counsel to chief executive and senior staff on brand management and communication strategies. Prepared executives for national & international media engagements; ghost wrote OP/EDs. 
  • Developed executive-level talking points playbook; unifying communication across the enterprise.
  • Directed/managed creative design and development of print, broadcast, and multimedia products for engagements with key stakeholders. Leveraged technology to secure favorable coverage.
  • Managed national digital media campaigns; leveraging social media, search engine optimization and web-based channels to promote institutional themes and messages. Official Facebook site netted 5.5M fans with comparable audience share on Twitter, YouTube, and Flicker. 
  • Led crisis communication for numerous high visibility incidents and issues threatening the organization’s brand and strategic goals. Leveraged digital channels and professional relationships to mitigate damage to organizational reputation; transforming crises to engagement opportunities for publicizing mission and policies.
Jan 2011 - Jan 2012

Director, Communication Strategy and Plans

U.S. Marine Corps

Strategically oriented communication planner with extensive expertise in applying research toward solving institutional problems and achieving organizational goals. 

  • Led 8-person, multi-disciplinary team in development of holistic communication strategies in support of organizational policies, programs, regulations and operations. 
  • Directed formal communication research in support of internal and external communication campaigns. Created executive communication dashboard to demonstrate campaign effectiveness.
  • Authored 300-page reference publication for PR research, planning, implementation and evaluation
  • Active participant in organizational policy and doctrine development. Led change management of institution's communication function. 
  • Designed and led professional development symposiums for 500+ communication professionals.
  • Orchestrated media training and communication strategy seminars for newly promoted executives.
Jan 2010 - Dec 2011

Director, Community Outreach

U.S. Marine Corps

Expert at establishing strategic partnerships to further organizational objectives. Keen ability to bridge between strategic communication plans and grassroots engagements with tangible results.

  • Led fast-paced, 7-person team in managing national community outreach program; leading highly effective grassroots engagements with large and small communities throughout the United States.
  • Oversaw academic outreach projects at select universities to support recruiting efforts and increase awareness of organization’s focus on diversity and professional development. 
  • Managed relationships with national service organizations, advocacy groups, industry associations, and business leaders to establish and maintain strategic alliances of mutual benefit.
  • Oversaw and managed organization’s participation in international, national and regional conferences, festivals and trade shows; promoting positive impressions and perceptions of institute.
Feb 2009 - Jan 2010

Commanding Officer

Defense Information School

Highly effective chief executive of a unit responsible for training 700+ PR professionals annually. 

  • Redefined organization's mission and vision to align with emerging strategic communication requirements; then initiated operational and organizational changes to realign limited resources toward priorities.
  • Oversaw 40+ functions in daily operations of unit; including logistics, administration and budget. 
  • Directed exhaustive staff professional development program; raising level of organization’s proficiency.
  • Supervised $13M facilities and equipment upgrade project; elevating quality of training.
Jun 2006 - Jan 2009

Academic Director for Public Affairs Leadership

Defense Information School

Recognized academic leader with demonstrated success in revolutionizing public affairs training and education for the Department of Defense, U.S. government agencies, and partner-nation militaries.

  • Led diverse team of 40+ graduate-level instructors in extensive overhaul of the Defense Department’s entry-level public affairs course; elevating instruction in communication best practices.
  • Initiated development of training and education continuum for Defense Department public affairs professionals; establishing a progression of communication courses for mid- to senior-level leaders.
  • Oversaw professional development and certification for senior instructors and adjunct faculty.
Jun 2004 - May 2006

Public Affairs Director

Third Marine Air Wing

Directed all aspects of public relations and served as senior communication counsel to chief executive for large operational aviation unit; managing 20+ PR professionals in four separate functional areas.

  • Orchestrated successful communication campaign to counter attempts by special interest groups to close facilities and degrade operations; increasing public support for unit’s mission and presence. 
  • Led event planning and media coverage of second largest military air show in the United States; resulting in 1.5M+ attendees and major positive coverage in regional and national markets.
  • Served as managing editor of weekly internal newspaper with circulation of 30K+; coordinated a public/private venture to produce newspaper at no cost to organization.
  • Stood up inaugural organizational web presence and directed optimization of all creative content.
  • Led crisis communication following several high-visibility aircraft crashes in southern California.
Aug 2001 - May 2004

Media Relations Director

Marine Corps Forces Japan

Led media relations program for all U.S. Marine forces assigned to Japan; increased publicity and raised awareness of U.S. security mission and policies among key audiences in Pacific region. 

  • Planned and conducted media roundtables and editorial boards with Japanese media outlets; coordinating international press conferences, media visits, and satellite media tours
  • Served as executive producer for radio/television programs that enhanced perceptions of U.S. forces.
  • Initiated Japanese-language website and magazine focused on outreach to host nation publics. 
  • Selected to lead historic media embed program for U.S. Marine forces in Iraq during two separate deployments. Leveraged unique cultural and language skills to garner coverage in Arab media.

Education

Education

Senior Public Affairs Leadership Series

Department of Defense Information School

Bachelor's of Science

State University of New York

Masters of Science

University of Maryland

Certifications

Certifications

Certified Master Instructor in Public Relations

Department of Defense

Accredited Public Relations practitioner

Public Relations Society of America

Skills

Skills

Professional Development

Media Training

Leadership Development

Training Management

Digital Media Production Management

Social Media

Community Outreach

Media Relations

Executive Consulting

Strategic Planning

Crisis Communication

Brand Management

Campaign Management

Strategic Communication

Public Relations

Top Secret/SCI

Department of Defense