A new adventure!

IMG_0548Far from a legend, but thanks, Chris aka “Pants,” it was great for a photo opp!

Wow… I’m embarrassed at how long it’s been since I have posted! But, I’m hoping that today’s post will make up for it…at least a little!

The last few weeks been had their ups and downs which is the explanation for my absence. Two big things happened that are life-changing. One is the loss of a friend who impacted my little corner of the world so so much. She’ll be missed so much by so many and I know her grace, kindness and compassion is something that will continue to be in my thoughts every day. So many times during the five years I’ve known her have I referenced how she’d handle a situation in my own life and I know that’s not changing anytime soon. Since we received the news of her passing, I have lacked a lot of inspiration until, really, the last couple of days. It’s just been hard to process and know that she’s no longer a phone call away, but that doesn’t mean she and her family who mean so much to me aren’t in my thoughts every day.

The other life-changing news … I’m starting a new job….TODAY!  (I told you … ups and downs!)

I am now the campaign manager in the sports and entertainment division for the American Diabetes Association. (!!!)

As I sit on a plane en route to D.C. for my first day, it’s hard to articulate how special the last eight-plus years have been with the Pelicans/Hornets and Saints.

IMG_0556Jimbote & Lindseybote

Working in PR for an NBA team was my dream job in college. After working in sports information for a couple years and landing an summer internship with the Charlotte Bobcats (now Hornets), I knew the NBA was where I wanted to be. The game of basketball has been so influential on my life for about a million reasons – and it’s also been IN my life since I was born.

FullSizeRender (1)The best around – Kory & Big Shot, Pelicans equipment

Here’s a short history: I moved to New Orleans in August of 2007 and took the role of basketball communications coordinator. It was SO. COOL. Being at practice today and working every home game and facilitating interviews with players – I mean, I was loving my job. The following year – being able to travel with the team and take in games around the country – I thought it couldn’t get better. In the spring of 2011, the team’s corporate communications manager left and my boss asked if it was something I would be interested in. I was, but, I mean, how am I going to leave this super fun job that I’m in love with?! When I was told it was the best way to continue to grow and move up within the organization, it was a decision I knew I needed to make, but I was really terrified to do it. At that point, the team was owned by the league and, sometime in the near future, someone new would buy the team, and change was imminent. I took the leap and it ended up being the perspective, growth, opportunity for creativity and chance to take ownership of a role that I really need to grow personally and professionally. When the team was bought by the Benson family, I had the chance to do the job for both teams, work with ownership, including its philanthropic efforts, and my job was literally one of a kind in the world. So darn lucky.

Around the time that the team was bought, I was reading an article (and wish like crazy I had the link) that included the quote:

“…Take a deep breath. Be confident in your abilities. Be open to new ideas. Find comfort in knowing that it’s okay for dreams to change.”

I LOVED it and it’s been taped to my monitor ever since – and made an appearance in my ‘See you later’ email to my co-workers.

untitled.pngPR + CR + Digital = Work Fam

That’s where my luck gets even better (if I could ever imagine). After a few years working for both teams and learning SO much, I wondered what was next. I loved my job (despite the stressors and minutia that sometimes drags you down that EVERYONE deals with) and so many of the people I worked with, but it was hard being a one-person show and, not to mention, having my husband in the building. We loved seeing each other, but the pace and hours we were both putting in were starting to be tough and we spent a lot of time at home talking about work, which is fine, but also can get old. I hadn’t applied for any other jobs, but family comes first and I wanted to be a better wife, daughter, cousin, niece and friend, too, so I wasn’t ruling out a change.

After volunteering with the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network and seeing the organization’s culture, I really loved the non-profit sector. In the last few years, there have been so many negative events and happenings, and also some negative cultural patterns that really have pushed me to want to do something to make the world a little better and help people when I go to the office every day.

On Monday, Feb. 10 (I remember because the Pels played that day, of course! Ha!), a former co-worker and friend of mine called to tell me about a few opportunities across a couple of non-profits, including one with the American Diabetes Association in its sports and entertainment division (where she had recently taken a job).

Talking to Morgan made me so excited about having the chance to unite two of my passions at the same time. How was that a thing?! I couldn’t believe it and immediately wanted to know more. After talking with her and the department head, Suzanne (who I knew through her husband and through a committee for a charity gala), I was in.

So, here I am, flying to D.C. to start another dream job – feeling incredibly lucky and, despite literally finishing my last day of work with the Saints and Pelicans earlier in the day, energized and excited for a new chapter. The department is relatively new at ADA and the organization has gone through a lot of changes and has a ton of new faces. The opportunity to be a part of building something special is really exciting.

For all of my Pelicans/Saints co-workers, colleagues and anyone who’s path intersected mine during my time in New Orleans and along the way that are reading this: THANK YOU!  Each of you has had a profound impact on molding me into the person and professional I am today. I’ve learned so much from so many and that makes me feel pretty darn lucky – and so many friendships have come from work and those relationships mean so much to me. It made it a lot easier to walk out of the building and not be a mess knowing that those friendships aren’t going anywhere.

It’s a new chapter. The chance to have more balance in life and take better care of my loved ones and myself and also, hopefully, make a difference in people’s lives every day at work.

Can’t wait to see how it all works out…but, forever, GO PELICANS & SAINTS!

Thanks for reading and have a great day!

-Lindsey

Sharpheels.com: A True Team Player

Happy Tuesday!

My third article posted on SharpHeels.com so I’ll be sending you over there today. This post is about being a team player and what that REALLY means in an office setting.

Throughout high school and college, it’s ingrained in us that saying, “I’m a team player” in an interview is a must. Sadly, when you begin your career and years in, you realize that not everyone understands the true meaning of what it is to be a part of a team.

Thankfully, our Pelicans PR #squad is pretty darn awesome. We even take super fun selfies with old school sunglasses on 80s night!

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Below is the beginning of the article and you can click on the link to see the rest on Sharpheels.com. Happy reading!

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5 Insights on What it Really Means to be a Good Colleague and Co-Worker  

Team player. Every interviewee has used it to describe the kind of employee they are, but once in the position, what does the phrase truly mean?  Here are five characteristics of people who pull their weight, lift others up (psychologically speaking), and understand that their professional goals should enhance the larger ones of the organization.  That’s a team player. Continue reading…

Have a great day!

-Lindsey

SharpHeels.com: Finding a Mentor

Happy Tuesday!

I’m sending you over to SharpHeels.com for today’s post. I chose to writer about mentors today. I’m really lucky to have worked for some great people. It’s not easy to find a professional who is willing to take the time out of his or her already-busy schedule to help someone else become better.

Someone to whom I will always be grateful is Tom McGuire, the Director of Sports Information/Athletic Marketing and Promotions at Bloomsburg University. Had I not worked for Tom for three years in the sports communications department, there is no way I would be living my dream of working in the NBA. Tom always made time to give feedback on my work and would ALWAYS be there when I had questions and needed guidance as I began my career. I will forever be grateful to him.

resizeIn 2014, Tom was honored by the ECAC-SIDA (Eastern College Athletic Conference-Sports Information Directors Association) with its Marsh Award. (Photo from here)

Below is the first tip for establishing a relationship with a mentor. Hope you enjoy the article!

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5 Tips for Mentor-Seeking, Cold-Contacting Professionals and Job-Hunting in your Industry

Find the Right Time
This is of the utmost importance. Depending on the industry in which you aspire to work, look to make contact during a part of the year when the workload is lightest. For example, if you want to work in sports, the weeks leading up to the season, or early on in the schedule, are the worst for sports professionals. So target the off-season – perhaps a few weeks after the season ends. Continue reading…

Have a great day!

-Lindsey

SharpHeels.com: First article!

Well, I hope everyone had a great weekend. It was a bit of a bummer around here – Saints lost…Pels lost…LSU lost…and the weather was crummy all weekend.

On a positive note, the third annual PurpleStride New Orleans raised over $80,000 at its event despite some nasty weather yesterday morning. I was very lucky to volunteer at the event and the core team did an amazing job planning, as always! Congrats, guys!

I’m sending you over to SharpHeels.com for today’s post. I’m really excited to be a contributing writer for the site and my first article posted today.

Since I was in college, volunteering has been important to me. Our tennis coach at Bloomsburg, Marty Coyne, encouraged us to particpate in volunteer projects when we had the opportunity and also hosted Special Olympics clinics at our facility. When I moved to New Orleans, I wanted to be involved and have been very fortunate to spend time volunteering at Animal Rescue New Orleans, the local affiliate of the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network and Miracle League.

IMG_2723 Jeanne (a co-worker of mine), her buddy, Cody, myself and my buddy, Brandon a couple years ago at the Miracle League awards ceremony. Jeanne and another co-worker, Jenna, introduced me to Miracle League — such a great organization!

IMG_5846PurpleStride New Orleans 2014 with emcee Natalie Shepherd and four local survivors: Joe, Benjy, Bertha and Liz.

The Perks of Volunteering

“Find a need. Fill a need.” – How Donating Time Can Enhance your Life and Career!  

In 2013, volunteering hit its lowest rate since 2002, given that only 25.4 percent of Americans 16 and older had spent time working for an organization at least once in the prior year. In the two years after that, little changed; according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2013, the rates were 25.4 percent, and in 2014, slightly lower at 25.3 percent.

But in addition to the benefits an organization receives from a person’s time, skillset and effort, there are countless pluses for someone who spends a little time giving back – including having a positive impact on their career….Click here to continue reading

Hope you enjoy the article and thanks for reading!

Have a great day!

-Lindsey

Five Things for Friday

Happy Friday!

It’s been a busy week and we have a busy weekend ahead, but I’m hoping it will be a 3-win-in-1 weekend as the Pelicans play tonight and tomorrow and the Saints play at home on Sunday.

IMG_2196Class photo with mass comm students at Loyola University after a panel discussion about the importance of relationships between media/PR.

IMG_2007Happy [belated] Halloween! A picture of some work pals celebrating the holiday a day early and Ashley’s birthday a few days late.

IMG_2080LOVED walking into Gretna No. 2 Academy for Advanced Studies and seeing these colorful, decorated tiles. A bright way to start the day for students and staff for sure!

IMG_2137The sweet Jersey girl made her own pillow one morning this week.

IMG_2543Special shoutout to my JoJo Bear! This week was his 4th (!!!) adoptiversary. I can’t believe he’s been a Mitchell for four years. Time. Flies.

Have a great weekend!

-Lindsey