Okay, I’m “it.” I’ve been tagged by Susan Anthony who was tagged by Tracey Halvorsen who was tagged by countless others in the “7 Things…” meme making its way through the blogosphere. Not that you ever asked or wanted to know or even care, but here are seven things you probably didn’t know about me.
1.) I credit my ability to remain calm under pressure to my journalism foundation – especially my days as a newspaper reporter dealing with multiple stress factors, including daily story deadlines and demanding editors. I still wouldn’t trade the low-paying but exciting early days of my career. I got to cover Ronald Reagan and Jesse Jackson as they campaigned through South Jersey in the 80’s. I interviewed Tip O’Neill in Atlantic City. In Ohio, many Fall weekends were spent as a photographer for home Ohio State football games. The foundation of that foundation? The outstanding journalism education at Ohio Wesleyan University under professor Verne Edwards.
2.) I played center for the undefeated (10-0) Radnor High School football team that finished the season ranked #2 in football-intense Pennsylvania. Many lessons that lasted a lifetime were taught by Coach George Corner and his staff.
3.)I spent one Thanksgiving inside the Delaware County Jail in Ohio. No, I wasn’t arrested. I couldn’t get home to Villanova, Pa. that year, so decided to stick around for dinner with the inmates and a feature story for the Delaware Gazette where I was a reporter.
4.) Last year around this time I was a finalist in a national Phil Mickelson look-alike contest for a hotel commercial (that’s Lefty, right).
4a.) A dachshund – yeah, one of those weenie dogs that stand a few inches off the ground – once bit me on the mouth, requiring me to get emergency plastic surgery. Don’t ask.
5.) My PR career has exposed me to some interesting assignments, including PR for the family of Chandra Levy, Pope John Paul II’s visit to Baltimore (where I got to board Shepherd I at BWI Airport to check out his private quarters after he headed to downtown Baltimore), the 64th All-Star Game, ABC’s Extreme Makeover: Home Edition in Port Deposit, Md., the landmark Intelligent Design case, PR during the 2002 Salt Lake Olympics, and a lacrosse PR assignment during the Duke scandal.
6.) Years ago I escorted Roots author Alex Haley up Main Street in Annapolis to meet the media for interviews following a press conference I helped arrange for what is now the Kunta Kinte-Alex Haley Foundation. Today there is a bronze statue of Alex Haley at the City Dock, the starting point for a chilling and controversial event I helped organize (and participate in) many years later – the “slavery reconciliation walk” through the streets of Annapolis where along the way protestors held racist signs and shouted names at us.
7.) Responding to a last-minute invitation, I flew to London on Virgin Atlantic Airways (their awesome Upper Class Suite), stayed at the 5-star hotel Claridge’s and attended the Led Zeppelin Reunion Concert at the O2 Arena, all courtesy of a lifelong friend and major Led Zep fan. An incredible time.
There you have it. Now it’s my turn to ask seven others to expose their innermost secrets. How about it? Annie Heckenberger, Jason Mays, Mutha Mae, Tim Windsor, Daniel Victor, Julekha Dash, Steve Sullivan.