I moved to Northern Nevada in 1989 after being born and raised in Los Angeles. I left a great job at Rockwell International (Space Shuttle Program) with anticipations of belonging to a community that was smaller, safer and one where I could make a difference.
Upon arriving, I landed a job as an FM radio broadcaster. Doors quickly opened as I successfully pursued careers in journalism and small business. In 1991, I was touched by the local story of an 11 year old girl who was kidnapped while walking to the school bus stop. It inspired me to write the song “Jaycee Lee”. I used my position in the media to bring more attention to this story. In 2009, the world rejoiced as “Jaycee Lee Dugard” was safely rescued in what has become the most popular abduction/recovery in American history.
My newly formed entertainment company was quickly setting a standard within the area as well. I frequently was the emcee at many private and public functions. I eventually gained the attention of entertainment legend Dick Clark and became his personal DJ and Master of Ceremonies for private family functions.
My position in radio and in business gave me many opportunities to interact with people in the community. My passion for journalism found me embarking on a whole new journey twenty years after first becoming a Nevada resident. In 2011, I released the book “Customer Service A to Z”. Endorsed by Nevada Governor Jim Gibbons – this book has gained local and national interest as one of the finest books of its kind. As a member of the National Speakers Association, I now tour the country and spread my message of customer service. Yes, the same customer service I have experienced here in the Biggest Little City.
Recently an out-of-state friend of mine was diagnosed with Pancreatic Cancer. His dying wish was to give his beloved custom-made guitar to country superstar Brad Paisley. He reached out to me and I reached out to a local radio DJ friend by the name of JJ Christy from KBUL Radio. This kind man, JJ Christy, managed to arrange for him to meet Brad Paisley and give him his guitar. Paisley honored his memory by using this guitar on the song “Officially Alive” which is featured on his new album “Wheelhouse”.
Where else in America is this possible? My story of Reno is an amazing testament of how people come together to make a difference. Where your contribution is recognized and actually means something. Where your efforts don’t get lost in the chaos of the big city. Where you can call the Governor (or other political or business figure) and actually get something done. In Reno, you are only limited by your imagination and motivation. There are amazing stories throughout this community where everyday people roll up their shirtsleeves and make a difference. Helping others is what it’s all about. The next great success story may very well be YOU!!!