Building on a successful career in public policy and executive management, I now enjoy a more personal approach to writing—helping clients transform their careers, businesses, and lives. Although River City Writing (RCW) is primarily a one-person shop, on occasion seasoned professionals are asked to assist.
What motivated me to create a new firm? After retiring from my leadership role at the Center for Health Improvement and consulting with two autism-focused collaborations, several colleagues, friends, former staff, and others asked me to help them with issues related to working smart and working well—all with a strong interest in living well. As a result, I chose to move from volunteer adviser to business person and focus services on career planning and organizational development.
Throughout my executive career in healthcare and management, I have compiled an extensive profile as a creative thinker with a reputation for collaboration and relationship building. Over time, my writing has changed from a focus on public health policy issues (see list of policy briefs and publications) to other types of documents, resumes and cover letters, educational publications, websites, and video scripts (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cjc6wDLxOgQ). Two of the websites that stand out include one that was created to disseminate effective policy strategies to policy-makers seeking improvements in health and healthcare (www.healthpolicycoach.com); the other was created to improve the healthcare of persons with developmental disabilities (DDHealthInfo.org).
Similarly, I was asked to author a publication on collaboration (www.dds.ca.gov/Autism/docs/ASD_BestPractices2008.pdf). The document was based on the input of sixty individuals who participated as focus group members, reviewers, and consultants. As a result of this input, “Ten Best Practices” are presented as a resource for professionals as they prepare to “practice” collaborative actions. These practices are in use today by professionals who are providing services to persons with developmental disabilities and their families.
Building on this work, government agencies and foundations in California and Missouri asked for my help in facilitating collaborations designed to improve services for individuals with autism and their families. For several years I worked closely with healthcare professionals, educators, and other community-based service providers to develop written tools to assist families and service providers in making informed treatment decisions. Several publications were created in which I had a central role in writing, editing, and project management: Autism Spectrum Disorders: Missouri Best Practice Guidelines for Screening, Diagnosis, and Assessment (www.autismguidelines.dmh.mo.gov); Autism Spectrum Disorders: Guide to Evidence-based Interventions( www.autismguidelines.dmh.mo.gov); Autism Spectrum Disorders: CA Best Practice Guidelines for Screening, Diagnosis, and Assessment.
My writing has also been influenced by my experiences in leadership roles in healthcare and public health (lobbyist/vice-president public policy for Capitol Associates, Washington, DC; President and CEO of Partnership for Prevention; President and CEO of Center for Health Improvement. I have served on over twenty different health policy advisory committees—to include the Institute of Medicine; UCLA School of Public Health; and, University of North Carolina, School of Public Health. As a result, I have been exposed to a range of writing styles, each targeted at a specific audience.
Today I am using these skills and experiences to help clients plan, manage, and grow their careers. For clients seeking new jobs, we write resumes, cover letters, statements of qualifications, and job applications. For clients interested in business growth, we write business plans, marketing plans, and other related documents. And, along the way, we coach, encourage, and inspire. Interestingly, many clients are leading start-up companies. As a result, we specialize in working with self-starters.