Creative Director | Advertising Concepts, Inc., Midlothian, VA — 7-16 to Present
Originally hired as a Senior Designer to improve the design of the company's publications and strengthen the advertising design provided to clients; promoted to Creative Director in mid-February 2017 
• Manage the design and production of four magazines — West End's Best, River City, Chesterfield Living and Hanover Lifestyle — as the primary designer (the design department consists of the Creative Director and two part-time junior designers) 
Initiated and conducted a redesign of the company's four magazines from folios to body text specifications to page design structure to the redesign of logotypes 
• Responsible for the selection, digital processing and printing preparation of all photography 
• Responsible for all file preparation for printing output and digital usage; responsible for reviewing and approving all pre-press proofs 
• Provide supervision to junior designers and photographers 
• Manage and produce approximately 50% of all placed advertising, including client contact, concept, design, client proofs and approvals, and preparation for printing 
• Responsible for the design and production of four advertisement- and coupon-based shopper publications 
• Oversee spreadsheets tracking advertising sales, ad sizes, prices, placement and client instructions
Senior Designer / Writer | Oneboat Publishing, Manteo, NC — 2/12 to 2/16
• Expanded/diversified readership and increased ad sales for Magazine through creation of consistently appealing and eyecatching cover designs which generated extensive reader and advertiser interest in a highly competitive, tourism-driven market; crafted feature article/advertorial magazine layouts to best showcase each issue’s theme topic or clients’ products or services; concepted and created advertising in multiple formats; collaborated with writers and editor; conducted photo shoots in support of editorial content and advertising

• Created seasonal cover designs and worked as part of production team responsible for six destination guide tourism tabloids focusing on specific beach communities along the Outer Banks; created maps and other infographics; provided concept, design, production and photography for promotional brochures for local clients; responsible for generating clean, press-quality PDF output and transmitting to print vendor via email or FTP
• Enhanced ad sales of new EAT • SHOP • PLAY publication through concept and design of mock-up covers, including typography and overall exterior look and feel; defined interior typography specs from headlines to subheads and body copy; worked as part of design team to craft interior graphic design styles and standards; set ad sizes based on page/column measurements
• Oversaw design and production of In The Park, a seasonal visitor guide for the National Park Service; provided training and supervision to a design intern and final design review and approval; responsible for all client liaison
• Concepted and designed responsive websites from project initiation to delivery of final design files to coding subcontractors; designed website interfaces using Oneboat’s proprietary CMS; created online ads, banners, headers and graphics; designed Facebook business packages
• Concepted, designed and produced sales support materials for both print and digital platforms
• Authored feature articles and advertorials for Magazine and wrote copy for sales materials and multiple company websites, client advertising and client websites; produced descriptive writeups of local businesses for destination guide tabloids; provided editing back-up at editor’s request
• Responsible for selecting topics and writing popular weekly blog for Outer Banks This Week e-newsletter;
input, formatted and distributed blog content using Expression Engine CMS; researched, selected and incorporated photos, videos and links to to provide readers with additional information sources
• Produced scenic, event, product and food photography for clients and in-house use to produce magazine and destination guide covers, article/advertorial spreads, print and online advertising, websites, brochures and sales support materials; extensive use of Photoshop to retouch, color correct and optimize images
• Supervised and trained design interns

Owner, Art Director and Designer | Michael Lay Design Co. , Manteo, NC — 9/01 to present
• Design and produce publications (newsletters, brochures, rack cards, catalogs, etc.), logos/identity materials, posters, signage, t-shirts, websites and create associated materials such as illustrations, photography, maps and other graphic elements; prepare all projects for press and handle all print vendor liaison, including printing specifications, RFQs and proof approvals; writing and editing, including publication copy and press releases

Publications Manager/Art Director | American Social Health Association, Research Triangle Park, NC — 9/99 to 7/01
• Revitalized and dramatically improved the quality of the association’s stable of revenue-generating health education publications, as well as catalogs, conference graphics, presentation materials and peripherals, and marketing and corporate materials through establishment of a consistent branding system
• Created families of publications for distinct target markets in collaboration with an editor, marketing partners and executive management; Carried out updates of existing product lines on ongoing basis
• Managed the publication production process from concept to delivery, determining most cost-effective production/printing methods to decrease per unit costs while maintaining quality standards; Chief vendor liaison, negotiated quantities/prices/schedules; determined project specifications and prepared RFQs
• Supervised graphic design assistant and freelance designers and illustrators

Freelance designer/illustrator | Charlottesville, VA — 5/98 to 9/99
• Produced brochures, newsletters, ads, posters, illustrations, t-shirts and identity for diverse client list

Graphic Designer | Wake County Public School System, Raleigh, NC — 5/97 to 5/98
• Provided design solutions for system-wide client base (from superintendent’s office to individual school programs) within a large metropolitan school system through the creation of publications, posters, cards, brochures, letterheads, reports, support materials and other projects, including the system’s annual report

• Maintained the school system’s branding and graphic standards• Responsible for preparing digital output files, printer liaison, press checks, approval of proofs, film and bluelines

Creative Services Director | Insiders’ Guides Publishing, Manteo, NC — 11/93 to 5/97
• Provided design direction and production oversight for small travel book publisher that expanded from 8 to 52 titles over three years, all with an 18-month edition cycle; Supervised and trained junior designer staff

• Conceived, designed and produced four-color book covers, catalogs, newsletters, marketing & sales materials, and high-end real estate catalogs and brochures

• Initiated redesign of book series’ interior pages, enhancing readability, reducing page counts, production time and expenses, printing costs and shipping costs

• Maintained quality and continuity of branding over the complete nationally distributed product line, all sales and marketing materials and other in-house design projects

• Developed comprehensive specification sheets, publication templates and checklists to streamline and clarify project production and approval procedures; Approved all creative services projects

Managing editor/designer | RU News, Radford University, Radford, VA — 12/91 to 10/93
• Redesigned Campus Currents into RU News, an award-winning bi-weekly university newsletter, clarifying its mission and enhancing its appearance and readability; designed pages/spreads, created artwork and approved printing; produced black & white, four-color spot and full-page illustrations for award-winning university publications, including RU Magazine, Radford University's alumni magazine

• Designed and wrote brochures; identified photographic needs and art-directed photographers

• Wrote/edited articles for publications and news bureau; planned faculty/staff newspaper and other news bureau projects

• Extensive experience with the primary components of the Adobe Design software package (InDesign, Photoshop, Illustrator, Acrobat — currently using Adobe Cloud versions of each), CorelDRAW, FotoSketcher, Microsoft Word, Wordpad, Expression Engine and OneBoat proprietary content management systems, scanning softwares including optical character recognition packages, Avast and Trend Micro (antivirus/security softwares), Windows Live Mail, Gmail, Skype, major internet browsers (Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Windows Internet Explorer)

• B.A., Communications Studies, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA
• Editorial assistant (full time), Virginia Tech University News Bureau
• Editor, Campus Quarterly Magazine ; Member, Student Media Board

• Member, Gallery Committee, Dare County Arts Council, Manteo, NC (2013-present)
• Member, First Friday Committee (March 2005-2010)

• President, Roanoke Island Business Association (January 2006-09)
• National Health Information Awards — Health Promotion, Bronze; Patient Education, Merit (2000)
• National School Public Relations Association — Award of Excellence, Annual Report Category (1997)
• Vacation Rental Managers Association — Best Newsletter (1995)
• Apex ’92 Award for Publication Excellence — Most improved tabloid/newspaper, RU News (Radford University)

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