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Freelance Marketplace Forum 17 topics
TIP ON PHOTO WEBSITE & COMPANY BEING RUN BY TEENS (1) 6/30/2014
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Returning to work as freelance proofreader (1) 5/1/2014
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  Brooke Edwards Staggs
 
Professional/Personal Overview
  A knack for finding interesting stories, thorough reporting and artful writing—always delivered on deadline—have helped me win multiple awards, land steady gigs and make a career as a journalist for the past eight years. I’ve covered everything from women’s rights in Ghana to the pot penny stock market, doing multimedia work for local and national publications. I'm passionate about sharing compelling human interest stories, quirky trends and profiles, innovations in business and science, travel stories and whatever new subject I’ll discover tomorrow. I’m a lifelong learner, earning my first graduate degree while I taught high school and teaching undergraduate courses while I worked as a newspaper reporter. I see journalism as another form of teaching, helping readers understand the world around them, curbing prejudice by exposing them to different views and assisting them in making informed decisions.
Work Info
 
Expertise
Editor 2 Years
Reporter 8 Years
Writer 8 Years
Specialty
Business (general) 8 Years
Education 8 Years
Travel 8 Years
Total Media Industry Experience
8 Years
Media Client List (# assignments last 2 yrs)
Daily Press (11+), Orange County Register (11+), Vegas Seven Magazine (3-5)
Other Work History
1. Freelance Journalist (Oct. 2006 – Present): Work published in Vegas Seven Magazine, Scholastic Classroom Magazines, The Atlanta Voice, Chelsea Now, The Villager, Downtown Express, The New York Resident, Big Bear Grizzly, NYCreports.com, MensRacing.com, Fast-Women.com and RunningTimes.com
2. Reporter, Orange County Register (Jan. 2013 – June 2014): Covered South County communities plus tracked area water and development
3. City Editor and Senior Reporter, Victorville Daily Press (Jan. 2008 – Dec. 2012): Managed five reporters plus freelancers while still writing up to six stories a week covering Victorville. That coverage sparked local, state and federal investigations.
4. Adjunct Faculty, Victor Valley College (Sept. 2008 – May 2012): Taught reading and writing courses
5. Teacher, Rubidoux High School (Sept. 2004 – June 2006): Led students in newspaper production plus taught English and AVID
Computer Skills
I'm adept at using both a Mac and PC. I can do in-depth online research, use social media such as Twitter and Facebook, use platforms to build my own websites and blogs, use multiple news editing programs and use Office, including Word and Excel.
Technical Skills
I can shoot and edit my own basic videos, audio, slideshows and photos using programs such as Avid, Final Cut, Adobe and GarageBand. I can also do basic layout using programs such as InDesign.
Equipment
I have a MacBook and MacBook Pro, an iPhone, a basic digital camera and an audio recorder with USB output.
Work Permits & Visas
Have passport, will travel!
References
Available on request
Awards
-First place for breaking news during the 2013 California Newspaper Publisher Association's Better Newspapers contest
-Blue ribbon for environmental coverage in the 2012 CNPA contest
-Second place in the feature category and general excellence in 2011 CNPA contest
-The 2010 Daily Press Publisher’s Award
Other
-MA in Journalism from New York University, emphasis on magazine writing
-MS in education from California Baptist University, emphasis on teaching
-BA in English from CBU
-Travel to five continents for business, pleasure and service work
-Public record reporting experience including the Freedom of Information Act, Brown Act, California Public Records Act, court documents, city and police records, property tax records, Securities and Exchange Commission filings
Freelancer Availability
I freelance full-time. I live near Los Angeles, CA. I am willing to travel anywhere. I have a driver's license. I have access to a car.
Work Samples
 
Travel, Arts and Recreation  
(Vegas Seven Magazine, 8/19/2014)
The sun is setting on your California getaway, and you're ready to trek home to Las Vegas. You leave behind the hell that is Los Angeles traffic and make it to Interstate 15. There's just one major hurdle left between you and the open road: the Devore interchange.
(Orange County Register, 3/25/2014)
He can't resist for long. Mid-conversation, amid halting talk of swim lessons and math class, Brandon Xia reaches for the white and black pieces arranged on the table in front of him.
(Orange County Register, 11/29/2013)
"Have you ever been mistreated? You know just what I'm talking about." A Gibson Les Paul guitar wailed in the hands of singer Christopher "Bubba" Clerc. "I worked five long years for one woman, she had the nerve to put me out." A Hammond B-3 wooden organ hummed.
(Orange County Register, 10/28/2013)
It's a clear October night, just days from a full moon. My heart speeding up a bit, I follow a black SUV into the Santa Ana Mountains with photographer Isaac Arjonilla in my passenger seat. Lights from Lake Forest fade away as we wind our way along Santiago Canyon Road.
(Daily Press, 5/7/2012)
Confused children, dusty and tired from a Saturday morning of Little League, drifted away from the ball fields at Eva Dell Park. They were drawn by flashes of sunlight bouncing off suits of armor and the clash of swords cutting through the spring air.
(Daily Press, 2/18/2012)
This isn't the first time Stevie Ryan's hazel eyes and puckered pout have graced the front page of the Daily Press. When she was in second or third grade at Liberty Elementary School, Ryan's photo was snapped with a group of kids running across Amethyst Road.
(Daily Press, 10/23/2011)
To my aunt and many other Americans, going to Vietnam still can't mean visiting a nation of idyllic beauty frozen in time because it still means draft cards, fighting the impossible fight and saying goodbye and meaning it.
(Vegas Seven Magazine, 7/1/2010)
With three names over 50 years, this water park in the middle of nowhere has been plagued by bankruptcies, embezzlement and a tragedy that left an employee paralyzed. But Lake Dolores also holds fond memories for people now meeting up on Facebook to reminisce about America's first water park.
Science, Nature and Technology  
(Orange County Register, 6/24/2014)
Researchers really have no idea how many crows there are Orange County. Without that information, it's difficult to track the origin and spread of any diseases they might be carrying. That's where Mark Gonzales, his team of fellow students plus a pair of professors from Saddleback College come in.
(Los Angeles Register, 5/10/2014)
A few months ago, a plant pathologist at UC Riverside and his research team sampled coast live oaks he believed had been hit by the ambrosia beetle. When lab tests were complete, Akif Eskalen discovered he'd stumbled on a new threat from a familiar pest.
(Orange County Register, 11/26/2013)
Orange County residents spend an average of 53 minutes driving to and from work each day, according to census data. A startup tech company aims to ease the financial and emotional burden of commuting a bit with a free smartphone app that offers perks for road warriors.
(Daily Press, 3/11/2012)
When one of the 70-plus exotic animals at Forever Wild Animal Sanctuary needs some tender loving care, owner Joel Almquist takes them to one place: the Family Pet Clinic in Phelan.
(Vegas Seven Magazine, 9/5/2011)
After a long day of flying, who wants to be bothered with parking the plane, traversing the tarmac and slipping into another driver's seat to get home? The solution for the busy pilot on the go: the BiPod, a twin-fuselage vehicle that can be flown from one cockpit and then driven from the other.
(Daily Press, 4/16/2011)
While quick to emphasize there's no substitute for slipping into the pew, more local believers are logging onto church blogs, downloading sermons and using smartphone applications to support their faith.
(Daily Press, 8/19/2010)
When Grant Lamson was born, his dad's wedding band could slide over his hand and rest loosely around his delicate wrist. And for Cole Kelso, dad's ring slipped with ease to the top of his translucent-skinned thigh, grazing a diaper that was no bigger than a cell phone.
Health and Fitness  
(Orange County Register, 5/8/2014)
Dave Roberts met Quinton "Rampage" Jackson in a wrestling ring when he was 16. Roberts was a standout athlete at his high school in Memphis. Jackson attended an inner-city school on the other side of town, with a rough family life and a physical strength that defied logic.
(Orange County Register, 4/23/2014)
Alicia Serratos knows chickens like to eat Swiss chard. She knows milkweed attracts butterflies, and that you can swap the bread in eggs Benedict for a slice of eggplant. When she's not running 5Ks or creating art, Alicia, 7, loves spending time in the garden and helping her mom cook healthy meals.
(Orange County Register, 6/12/2013)
Myung Sook Lee didn't like cooking when she boiled her first noodles at home in Seoul, Korea. As the oldest of five siblings, her busy mother taught her to cook traditional dishes for the family starting at age 9. While she didn't yet enjoy the process, she knew from that early age she loved the res
(Orange County Register, 5/9/2013)
Sara Aguilera was running late. On April 29, 2012, she jumped into the shower typically used by her sons. As she rushed to lather up, Aguilera felt something that froze her hand and changed her life: a lump in her right breast.
Business and Development  
(Orange County Register, 7/13/2014)
Seasoned after years of battle as stables across the county have been impacted by development, the county's equestrian community is looking south at Coto Valley Equestrian Center. Oak Grove LLC, a Newport Beach developer, wants to level 14 percent of the equestrian center so it can build 18 homes.
(Orange County Register, 4/14/2014)
A penny stock company announced it was leaving the world of nutritional supplements to enter the growing marijuana industry. The wild ride of CannaBusiness provides a window into the "green rush" of investment dollars targeting anything associated with the newly legalized business of marijuana.
(Orange County Register, 2/21/2014)
Architects from around the world can submit their best designs, competing for cash plus recognition with Arcbazar.The startup company has stirred some controversy. It's gaining traction with clients, though, making design services accessible for home and small business owners.
(Orange County Register, 1/30/2014)
Founding settlers of the canyon communities were beekeepers, with remnants of that history visible from Trabuco Canyon to Black Star Canyon. It's not an easy way to make a living. Droughts, urbanization, Africanized honeybees and mysterious colony collapses have made the occupation more challenging.
(Orange County Register, 1/30/2014)
Someone mentioned a sign staking a gold mining claim in the Cleveland National Forest. I hiked a trail, chatted with locals, climbed into an abandoned mine shaft and scoured records to learn about modern-day prospectors. The result? A front-page story and an adventure I'll never forget.
(Orange County Register, 8/20/2013)
Want to see an independent, eclectic, organic cafe open in Ladera Ranch? If so, Matt and Ava Surrena are asking you to put your money where your mouth hopes to be. The couple is using the crowdfunding website Indiegogo to fuel their dream of opening Lola's Cafe.
(Orange County Register, 5/10/2013)
Amid bankruptcies, liens and foreclosures, roughly every other aspiring entrepreneur in Front Street Business District has learned the hard way just how difficult it is to keep a business open. But from daycares to music schools to bridal magazines, they've made peace with working where they live.
(Orange County Register, 4/18/2013)
Each weekend, revelers turn out of the traffic speeding along Santiago Canyon Road in Orange County. They pass through dark wooden gates and under a white adobe archway, entering a land where the air is perfumed with rose and orange blossom, peacocks roam and tigers lounge in dappled sunlight.
(Orange County Register, 2/16/2013)
The first phase of the largest housing development ever planned for South Orange County is on track for a grand opening this summer. It's an opening 22 years in the making, as developers waded through a complex approval process and waited out the worst recession since the Great Depression.
(Orange County Register, 2/15/2013)
Most people who stop by Silverado General Store can greet each other by name. As the only store in the canyon, residents rely on the community grocery when they run out of sugar, need firewood or want to sip some wine on their back porches without driving 20 minutes into Orange.
Government and Politics  
(Orange County Register, 7/18/2013)
The Bustos family was knee-deep in a remodel to their 12-year-old Ladera Ranch home when their daughter noticed something odd: bubbling white paint on new base molding. "My husband said, 'That's water,' " Pam Bustos said, recalling that mid-October night.
(Daily Press, 11/17/2012)
It's been two years since the Securities and Exchange Commission first subpoenaed Victorville, requesting documentation on how the city has spent $480 million in bond funds. Victorville has turned over more than 740,000 pages of records and spent more than $1 million responding to the probe.
(Daily Press, 6/2/2012)
One city of Victorville employee has accumulated 1,529 hours - more than six months - in sick pay. Another worker has more than three months in vacation leave on the city's books.
(Daily Press, 1/8/2012)
If you haven't taken a turn on Phantom West in a while, you may be pleasantly surprised at the bustling business at Southern California Logistics Airport. But look beyond day-to-day business, and you'll find the airport is bonded to the hilt, defaulting on debt payments and facing investigations.
(Daily Press, 5/18/2008)
The city of Victorville's venture into the electric power business cost $95 million and the Foxborough cogen power plant never produced a single kilowatt of electricity.
(Downtown Express, 1/12/2007)
Xu Zi has taught at the New York Chinese International School, produced award-winning videos on Chinese culture and created multilingual calligraphy for countless tourists out of Battery Park for over seven years. But on Dec. 14, Xu Zi was kicked out of the park, and she hasn't been back since.
Breaking News  
(Orange County Register, 3/27/2014)
Bob Haig and his wife came home from dinner Wednesday night to find five police cars and an animal control vehicle surrounding their Mission Viejo home. A neighbor in their Palmia retirement community, tucked up near the 241 toll road at the north end of the city, quickly filled the couple in.
(Orange County Register, 3/5/2014)
The Arthurs were planning a natural birth for their baby girl, Colette. They just didn't expect it to be quite this natural.
(Orange County Register, 2/20/2013)
"Action cures fear." "The pursuit of excellence is its own reward." Melvin Edwards carried these quotes with him on flashcards, reading them after he arrived to his Santa Ana business each morning. For the first time any of his employees at Rubicon Gear can remember, Edwards didn't show Tuesday.
(Orange County Register, 2/13/2013)
The search for Christopher Dorner, a fugitive former police officer suspected of carrying out a murderous vendetta against law enforcement, ended with a volley of gunfire, a fusillade of hot tear-gas canisters and a fire that burned his final hideout to the ground.
(Daily Press, 10/13/2012)
Multiple shots were fired into Gator's Sports Bar and Grill 2 early Saturday morning, narrowly missing customers and shattering windows at the Hesperia Road bar.
(Daily Press, 12/12/2011)
Artist Michael Craig Carrier and his wife, Lisa, had just settled into their Ford Flex around noon Saturday, destined for Colorado to deliver the largest commission of his career, when a man came barreling down their dirt road, honking his horn and signaling for help.
Sports  
(Orange County Register, 5/1/2014)
Josh Wege enlisted in the Marines straight out of high school, leaving behind his Wisconsin home and shipping out to Afghanistan. Six months into his tour, Wege, 19, was in a light armored vehicle taking supplies to the Afghan National Police when a back tire detonated a 200-pound bomb.
(Orange County Register, 5/13/2013)
Cole Custer is a bit of a backseat driver. With 7 months before he can get his driver's license, Cole's older sister, Kate Custer, drives the two of them to Tesoro High School each morning, taking her time to conserve costly gas. As drivers impatiently whiz around them, something stirs inside Cole.
Family, Lifestyle and Home  
(Orange County Register, 9/27/2013)
At 4 years old, Brooke Schlutter can count to 10 in Spanish. The dimpled blonde can say "I love you" and recite many colors in Spanish. When her 7-year-old brother, Austin, gets a scrape, she can sing a traditional Mexican song to comfort him. Brooke picked up the language from her au pair.
(Orange County Register, 9/23/2013)
An attorney from Irvine and a kindergartner known as "Lollipop" have little in common. At his birthday party Saturday, John Eggers was the consummate host while Anna Steen hid behind her mom's dress. But the attorney and the kindergartener are bonded by one thing: their fight against brain tumors.
(Orange County Register, 9/3/2013)
Charlene Keene was pulled from rounds she's made in the neonatal intensive care unit at Children's Hospital of Orange County since 1979. The nurse was ushered into a small waiting room, where she was greeted by a semicircle of eager, mostly unfamiliar faces.
(Orange County Register, 8/21/2013)
Julie Sarkissian was potty trained in an outhouse and fed on produce from her parents property. Though her "town" friends loved to leave their tract homes in Orange and come hike or play in the creek by her Modjeska Canyon home, Sarkissian dreamed of being a "more typical Orange County girl."
(Orange County Register, 8/6/2013)
Pages are starting to tug from the binding of the little red book. Zaleeya Pratima Dhalla turns them slowly, narrating photos that document her life at Calcutta Children's Home. "That's me," the 5-year-old says, pointing at a smiling infant dressed in pink and nestled in blankets.
(Orange County Register, 6/21/2013)
Disney. John Wayne. Six Flags. Each has played a role in the tale of Coto de Caza, the exclusive South County enclave that's marking its 50th anniversary. Coto has become famous as the land of the "Real Housewives," though there's still a hint of mystery in the history behind those gates.
(Orange County Register, 6/14/2013)
Since the Internet became the Internet, Alan has spent part of his father's birthday, on Jan. 12, searching Google for "Sam Boinus" in hopes of discovering anything about his father's time working on film sets, his military record or any newspaper clipping. On Jan. 12, 2012, he found something.
(Orange County Register, 3/14/2013)
They've withstood floods and fires, whipping winds and trespassing teens. They've played host to Easter sunrise services and given parts of themselves to help guide national leaders in prayer.
(Daily Press, 2/27/2012)
At 16, Cher Castanon fell in love with the man she'd date for the next 10 years. "We were young and we were in love," said Castanon, now 26 and living in Hesperia. At 19, the high school sweethearts had their first child, a son named Ray Ray. Two years later, their daughter Heather was born.
Philanthropy and Nonprofits  
(Orange County Register, 11/10/2013)
The Shura Council has been advocating for Muslim prisoners for years. That includes fighting to get halal meals for jail inmates, the way kosher meals are available for Jewish inmates. It was just a year ago, though, that the Shura Council created a formal program to serve incarcerated Muslims.
(Orange County Register, 8/12/2013)
Two flat tires. Steam pouring from the hood. Trunk crunched into the backseat. Still the women kept going, taking aim and smashing into each other until one car was left standing.
(Orange County Register, 3/12/2013)
"Which do you like better, cows or chickens?" Bill Null said, his expression earnest beneath his safari-style hat. With cows as the clear choice, Null reached into the reusable grocery bag at his side. Out came a piece of wood he'd carved into the shape of a pie and painted white with black spots.
(Daily Press, 5/16/2012)
Villagers in Laos imprisoned because of their faith. Three men murdered in Turkey for publishing Christian texts. An attorney jailed in Iran for defending a pastor. Tales of Christians being persecuted around the world were the inspiration behind a concert Friday at Victor Valley Church.
Education  
(Orange County Register, 12/31/2013)
It's a moment that would drive some third-grade girls to tears. For months, Maggie Jennison had practiced a song-and-dance routine. Her mom had taken her to Old Navy to get the purple-striped dress all the girls were instructed to wear for the program, and Maggie excitedly donned hers.
(Orange County Register, 12/6/2013)
Dressed in his best suit, Ethan Malamatenios took a pair of white gloves from his young companion and set them aside. The 8-year-old offered the girl his arm, escorting her to a table where punch and cookies were waiting amid twinkling white lights.
(Orange County Register, 11/15/2013)
he music program for kindergarten through third-grade students at Ladera Ranch Elementary School is in danger of being canceled if donations don't start flowing in soon. "We are in desperate need of help," Principal Amy Bryant said.
(Orange County Register, 9/13/2013)
For the last eight years, Earthroots Field School has been traipsing toddlers and seniors, teens and families across Orange County in search of one thing: a connection with nature. Now Earthroots is setting down some roots of its own, having recently closed escrow on Big Oak Canyon.
(Orange County Register, 6/7/2013)
When boys become men and graduate from St. Michael's Abbey Preparatory School - a boarding academy run by Norbertine fathers - some are anxious to branch out. Then there are those afraid to face the "real world," accustomed to a monastic life. Then there is Adam Aeschliman.
(Daily Press, 12/17/2012)
A group of counselors stood in a circle, arms linked and tears flowing, as they begged Victor Valley Union High School District's board to let them keep their jobs.
Contact Info
  Brooke Edwards Staggs
Ontario, CA 
USA

E-Mail: journobrooke@gmail.com
Website: http://www.journobrooke.com/