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With 20+ years experience as a photojournalist, I have honed my skills to become a strong visual storyteller and an award winning photographer.  Love, joy, humor, tenderness and compassion are trademarks in my work and are what sets me apart from other photographers in the field.

It is my life's passion and purpose to make a difference in this world for human and animal kind, using the power of photography paired with an empathetic heart.  

No matter what job I am tasked with, I always give 110%.

My newspaper work history includes visually documenting all aspects of life in short and long-term feature stories, professional and prep sports, breaking news, businesses, restaurants and just about everything in-between --- including writing stories and doing videography.

My portraiture work includes newborns, children, special needs individuals, families and pets. 

I also do commercial, corporate, headshot, nature and travel photography.

Work experience



Laura Stoecker Photography LTD

Children, family, children/adults with special needs and pet photojournalistic photography. Photojournalism, corporate, commercial, headshots, & nature photography work as well. Studio located in St. Charles, IL. 

1998May 2016

Senior Staff Photographer

Daily Herald

Photojournalist covering news, spot news, prep sports, pro sports, feature stories, business, food and just about everything else in Kane and McHenry counties in Illinois. Additional daily duties include producing short stories to accompany photos, video and social media. 


Staff photographer

Amdur Productions

Staff photographer 2003 to present: Photographer of all fine art festivals produced by Amdur Productions (Gold Coast Art Fair and Port Clinton among them) for promotional and content material for web, print, and social media use.


BFA Fine Art

Columbia College of Chicago

Photography degree with a concentration in photojournalism.


Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Lightroom, Final Cut Pro, Photo Mechanic, Adobe Bridge,  videography, studio lighting, news and feature writing, social media.


Clients range from small businesses to large corporations. Below is a sampling from my client list.

The Nature Conservancy of Illinois                              Adler University                                        Amdur Productions           

Women Investment Professionals                               1st Advantage Mortgage                       Plan Sponsor Advisors

95% Group                                                                            Port Clinton Square                                Lafeber Company

Orchard Road Canning                                                    Shamrock Landscaping                        Segal Rogerscasey

PK Tax Services                                                                   Too Chic & Little Shab                           Homework Construction

Alpine Landscape                                                               Novak and Macey LLP                           Beyond Blinds

Pioneer Press                                                                       Wednesday Journal, Inc.                      Village Counseling Center

Kathy Schaeffer & Associates


Peter Lisagor Award for Exemplary Journalism 2014: Best Feature Photo; "Football Fireworks"

Peter Lisagor Award for Exemplary Journalism 2005: Best Feature Photo Story,  "Branson Boys: Living with Cerebral Palsy/Dreams Not Despair"

Several awards with Illinois Press Photographers Association and National Press Photographers Association:                  List available upon request; also listed on LinkedIn.

Photography Exhibitions

-Downtown St. Charles Partnership/Art Around the Corner;  Exhibiting artist  2013, 2104 & 2015:                                            Fine art travel photography from the Southwest;  family and pet photojournalistic portraiture.

-Art Around the Corner for Aurora Downtown; Exhibiting Artist, 2015: One Person Show at Chef Amaury's Epicurean Affair: Eastern European travel photography images on display throughout fine dining restaurant in downtown Aurora. 

-Creator Gallery, North Aurora, 2013 : Inaugural show exhibiting artist. Fine art and nature photography.

-neXt Gallery, St. Charles, 2012 & 2013: Fine art and nature photography. 

-Vis-à-Vis ART Gallery, Flat Iron Arts Building, Chicago, 2011 & 2012: Fine art and nature photography. 

-ARZ+5 Gallery, St. Charles, 2012: 1 of 6 resident artists in a limited run gallery. Eastern European travel photography. 

-Water Street Studios, Batavia, 2010. Fall art show. Fine art and nature photography. Resident artist for one year.

Community Service

Field of Dreams Horse Rescue and Adoption: 2007 to present: Horse rescue care  volunteer and volunteer photographer.

Autism Society of Illinois: 2006-2009: Volunteer photographer covering rally day at the state capitol in Springfield and other events.

Max McGraw Wildlife Foundation; 2006-2008: Volunteer Photography Instructor for Beyond BOW (Becoming an Outdoors Woman) special event.

Social Media

Instagram: stoecker_photography

Facebook: Laura Stoecker Photography LTD

Twitter: laurastoecker

Professional Affliations

Illinois Press Photographers Association (IPPA)

National Press Photographers Association (NPPA)

St. Charles Chamber of Commerce

-Co-Founder and lead organizer of 'DreamCapture Visual Arts Collective': Womens group comprised of professional visual artists where members inspire, collaborate and support each other in their creative endeavors.


Contributing photographer with images published in Storybuilders Books children's book titled "bark. run. nap. repeat."
-Four photographs of dogs published in a children's interactive story book about dogs.