• Summary

    I am a skilled communicator, editor and social media manager/coach with experience serving a range of industries, including: health care and behavioral sciences; higher education; aviation (drone safety); travel; and nonprofits, as well as working with individual authors.

  • Experience

    I have special interests and experience in the following areas: technical writing and editing, science/educational outreach, proposal management, social media, website content management, and marketing publication development and management.

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    AlaskaWriter, LLC

    Manager / Independent Creative Consultant May 2000 - present

    I offer special projects consulting for individuals and organizations. Services include assessing needs, team-building, and providing leadership and management for, creative projects, large or small--as well as writing, editing and multimedia/social media management.


    AlaskaWriter, LLC, began in 2000 as a service offering websites, one-on-one web coaching and marketing consulting to authors, scientists, writing/science organizations and others. During my times of other employment, the company continued as a membership-based web hosting and consulting company. I pioneered self-published websites before they became widely available. AlaskaWriter, LLC is now a provider of a range of communications, writing and editing consulting services.

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    The Salvation Army

    Alaska Division

    Senior Communications Manager Aug 2014-Aug 2015

    Over one year, overhauled content and structure of a statewide website encompassing 18 locations of Salvation Army community programs (not stores). Re-established and optimized existing social media channels for use by an extended internal team. Grew social media presence and more than tripled media coverage to enhance/improve recruitment of employees and volunteers, and to support fall bell-ringing and community service campaigns. Created and maintained printed materials as needed. Oversaw and implemented communications plan for state, including media relations, during The Salvation Army's very busy Christmas season. (Left for personal reasons after a long-distance family health crisis.)

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    Bristol Alliance of Companies

    I worked for 8+ years serving this group of five construction, engineering and environmental services firms, subsidiaries of Bristol Bay Native Corporation. Over frequent reorganizations, my role changed, as follows:

    • Independent Web & Publications Consultant, Bristol Environmental & Engineering Services Corp. (BEESC) & Bristol Industries, LLC May 2006 - May 2008
      Initially tasked with leading a major website redesign, I was retained to help the company build a library of marketing "one sheets" and other materials. I also subcontracted on other projects, when outreach or communications were needed.

    • Creative Services Manager, Creative Services Department, Bristol Industries, LLC May 2008-April 2013
      Hired in 2008 to build and manage an in-house creative and communications services department. Responsible for envisioning, creating, developing and managing an effective and motivated team of six creative professionals offering web, print and multimedia communications and marketing solutions.

      Additionally provided direct consulting to BBNC on communications, policy and creative program development. Program development and management included the PebbleWatch.com program and Day in Our Bay contest/video and resulting social media campaign and outreach.

    • Senior Creative Consultant, Corporate Communications Dept., Bristol Bay Resource Solutions, LLC April 2013-June 2014
      In this re-boot, our department was reorganized and moved under a new BBNC subsidiary company). Assigned to work on special projects alongside BBNC executive leadership. I left shortly before my department was to be eliminated.
    American Institute of Biological Sciences (2-color logo)

    American Institute of Biological Sciences

    BioScience freelance writer 2000 - 2009
    Freelance science features writer responsible for writing about a range of topics across the scientific disciplines to an audience of scientists and graduate science students.
    Anchorage Daily News  and adn.com logo/masthead

    Anchorage Daily News

    Features Writer 1996 - 2002
    Wrote regular feature articles for 70,000-circulation daily newspaper.
    The Washington Times logo (in red)

    Washington Times

    Intern 1994 - 1995
    My responsibilities included covering the "night cops" beat during a time when Washington, D.C. was the nation's "murder capital." I was fortunate to learn/hone basic journalism skills from some excellent editors and fellow reporters.
    The Philadelphia Inquirer (b&w logo)

    Philadelphia Inquirer

    Correspondent 1992 - 1994

    As a two-year contract correspondent working from a suburban news bureau, I covered a geographic beat including more than a half dozen communities in southern New Jersey. In addition to regular coverage, I also produced multiple front-page stories on topics ranging from Superfunds to a trends story on Philly "blunts."

    The Academy of Natural Sciences logo www.ansp.org (green and black)

    Academy of Natural Sciences

    Publications/PR Writer 1988 - 1990

    My first internship experience involved learning about public relations and publications -- among the dinosaurs and dioramas -- at this well-known Philadelphia  natural history museum and research institution. It grew into a full-time job the following summer when an interim PR person was needed. I researched, wrote and helped develop the publication's first museum guidebook and was responsible for writing press releases about special exhibits and events.

  • When I worked with Sonya, she was a solid reporter and a vigorous go-getter of information. She's organized, a planner, goal-oriented, efficient. Any organization would benefit from work done by Sonya!
    Kathleen McCoy


    "After several years of having in-house staff provide graphics and marketing support, Sonya took over as a consultant to our firm. She was able to produce twice as much in half the time that our previous employees expended doing the same work."

    -Manager, Bristol Alliance of Companies

  • Skills


    A former newspaper writer/editor with a Master's in journalism


    Real-life experience spans traditional engineering firms and innovative start-ups.

    Internal Communications

    Newsletters and special communications customized to your team.


    Fast, accurate editing to the style guide of your choice.


    Experience includes work on and for development teams.

  • Education

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    University of Maryland College Park

    Journalism, MA 1994 - 1996
    •University (full) fellowship, Graduate School of Journalism
    •Capital News Service, D.C. semester
    •Editorial Assistant, American Journalism Review
    •Intern, Washington Times
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    La Salle University

    English Literature and Communications, Bachelor's degree 1986 - 1990
    La Salle University, dedicated in the traditions of the Christian Brothers to excellence in teaching and to concern for both ultimate values and for the individual values of its students, is a private Roman Catholic University committed to providing a liberal education of both general and specialized studies.

    Activities: Collegian (newspaper), Masque (drama club)
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    Spencer-VanEtten High School

    1981 - 1986
    Activities: Honor Society, Science Club, French Club, Art Club
  • Let's Chat!

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    Eagle River, Alaska
  • Contact me!