Lauren Rinker Professional Writing Portfolio<br />Includes writing samples from Sports Backers Quarterly and The Greater R...
List of Published Works<br />“Shockoe Bottom Green”, The Greater Richmond Grid, Issue 1, Summer 2009, Pages 8-9, Writer an...
Shockoe Bottom Green<br />Richmond’s Shockoe Bottom has just become a little greener. The 17th Street Farmers’ Market<br /...
Living Easy with a Touch of Panache<br />Homeowners Colleen Hall and Carol Damon’s fabulous condominium with a stunning ri...
Fernando Luna Vera<br />Fernando Luna Vera, a native of Columbia and a Chemistry graduate<br />student at Virginia Commonw...
The Beauty of Pandora<br />“For us they’ve become this really invaluable way to just talk directly with Pandora<br />liste...
The Beauty of Pandora (continued)<br />Westergren believes that the beauty of Pandora and the reason that it’s successful ...
The Beautiful People<br />Richmond-area models, photographers, makeup artists, and hairstylists have the opportunity<br />...
MOSAIC<br />Known primarily as a hot lunch spot for Richmonders since 1999, MOSAIC<br />Cafe & Catering (6229A River Road ...
Cubicle Swansong<br />An evolving workforce necessitates change in workplace design<br />Richmond architectural and interi...
Cubicle Swansong (continued)<br />In addition to multiple generations in the workforce, other demographics<br />including ...
Cubicle Swansong (continued)<br />It is imperative that when designing workspaces for their clients, designers consider<br...
Making It Happen: The Metropolitan Sports Backers Earn National Acclaim from Peer Organizations<br />Sports Backers Quarte...
The Half Marathon Picks Up Steam<br />Ro Gammon takes on the half marathon.<br />While many Richmond area runners have alr...
The Half Marathon Picks Up Steam (Continued)<br />In Gammon’s past experience as a marathon coach, she saw how training gr...
TRIgirls Band Together to Power Spring<br />
TRIgirls Band Together to Power Spring (Continued)<br />Sports Backers Quarterly, Volume 2, Issue 8, May/June 2009<br />ww...
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Lauren Rinker Professional Writing Portfolio

  1. 1. Lauren Rinker Professional Writing Portfolio<br />Includes writing samples from Sports Backers Quarterly and The Greater Richmond Grid magazines<br />
  2. 2.
  3. 3. List of Published Works<br />“Shockoe Bottom Green”, The Greater Richmond Grid, Issue 1, Summer 2009, Pages 8-9, Writer and Photographer<br />“Living Easy with a Touch of Panache”, The Greater Richmond Grid, Issue 1, Summer 2009, Pages 12-13, Writer<br />“Fernando Vera Luna”, The Greater Richmond Grid, Issue 1, Summer 2009, Page 17, Photographer: Fernando Luna Vera<br />“The Beauty of Pandora”, The Greater Richmond Grid, Issue 1, Summer 2009, Pages 30-31, Writer and Photographer<br />“The Beautiful People”, The Greater Richmond Grid, Issue 1, Summer 2009, Page 40, Writer and Photographer<br />“MOSAIC”, The Greater Richmond Grid, Issue 1, Summer 2009, Page 43, Writer and Photographer<br />“Cubicle Sawnsong”, The Greater Richmond Grid, Online Article (reference in print version on Page 20), Writer and Photographer<br />“Making It Happen: Metropolitan Sports Backers Earn National Acclaim from Peer Associations”, Sports Backers Quarterly, Volume 2, Issue 5, July/August 2009, Page 7, Writer<br />“The Half Marathon Picks Up Steam”, Sports Backers Quarterly, Volume 2, Issue 5, July/August 2009, Page 28, Writer and Photographer<br />“TRIgirls Band Together to Power Spring”, Sports Backers Quarterly, Volume 2, Issue 4, May/June 2009, Pages 12-13, Writer<br />
  4. 4. Shockoe Bottom Green<br />Richmond’s Shockoe Bottom has just become a little greener. The 17th Street Farmers’ Market<br />partnered with Venture Richmond in May 2009 to create the Shockoe Community Garden.<br />The garden, adjacent to the market’s main office (100 N 17th Street), consists of over 18 beds of raised<br />garden containers that will grow vegetables and herbs as a way of giving back to the community.17th<br />Street Farmers’ Market Manager George Bolos describes how the garden came to fruition.<br />“[The] 17th Street Farmers’ Market approached Venture Richmond with several proposals, one of<br />which was the idea of a neighborhood garden, which they immediately loved,” he explains. “They felt<br />as we did that this was an affordable project that would enhance the surrounding neighborhood.”<br />The garden project is for neighboring restaurants as well as part of the “Little Sprouts” program for 50<br />children from faith based organizations who came out and planted the vegetables. Since this project is<br />primarily a children&apos;s project, the property was offered to the 17th Street Farmers’ Market at no cost. <br />Yogi Singh, a volunteer with Venture Richmond, helped recruit construction companies to build the<br />garden plots.<br />“Having a hand in building the garden, with friends and skilled craftsmen from Capstone Contracting<br />and Kjellstrom and Lee, Inc., was an experience I will remember for a long time,” describes Singh. “I<br />hope this garden will serve as an amenity for the community for years to come.”<br />While a few businesses in the area asked for and were granted plots in the Community Garden, not<br />just anybody can have a plot in the garden.<br />“This year it is for our Little Sprouts program,” says Bolos [photo: left]. “Next year we may expand the<br />plots to include others who are interested. We have to take baby steps before we walk.”<br />In addition to children benefiting from volunteer work, Bolos also wants the garden to benefit<br />Richmond by helping to make the area “green.”<br />“We are working in partnership with Tricycle Gardens and representatives from Lewis Ginter as a way<br />of introducing Urban Gardening methods to the City of Richmond,” Bolos says. “Specifically, we would<br />like to assist some of the other programs that are happening within the Richmond Redevelopment and<br />Housing Authority and promote self-sustaining gardens.”<br />Restaurants in the area were granted plots in the Community Garden. They are tending to their<br />gardens, harvesting their crops and using the produce and herbs for special features. The other week<br />folks from LuLu’s came down and harvested a big batch of mint. Guess what their special was that<br />night? Shockoe Community Garden Mojiotos!<br />The Greater Richmond Grid, Volume 1, Issue 1, Summer 2009<br />http://www.richmondgrid.com/index.asp?section=Live&id=10<br />
  5. 5. Living Easy with a Touch of Panache<br />Homeowners Colleen Hall and Carol Damon’s fabulous condominium with a stunning river view proves that<br />simplifying your life doesn’t mean you have to forgo comfort or style.<br />Built in 2007, Vistas on the James has sold out all of its 160 units—starting below $300,000 to just over $1<br />million. Owing much to its success are the facility’s luxurious amenities combined with a premium location.<br />In the heart of the River District, the complex is situated on the banks of the James River and along the<br />historic Canal Walk in Downtown Richmond.<br />Hall, a site acquisition and leasing specialist for wireless telecommunications, and Damon, a retired UPS<br />executive, have both been residents of Richmond for 12 years. After living in the Fan District and looking for<br />something new, they were immediately attracted to the Vistas for a variety of reasons, both practical and<br />aesthetic. <br />“We had talked about downsizing and when we saw the Vistas we loved it,” says Hall. “[We] decided it <br />would be perfect for us.” <br />What really drew Hall and Damon to the Vistas were the quality of the building and the layout of the units,<br />which include open-design floor plans, floor to ceiling windows, granite countertops, and a large private <br />balcony, creating a contemporary ambiance that differed greatly from their previous residence. “We moved<br />to the Vistas from a Victorian 2,600 square foot house in the Fan,” says Hall. “Our Fan house was very<br />traditional with many antiques. At the Vistas our space is a 1,400 square foot contemporary condo and our<br />furnishings follow contemporary lines.”<br />In addition to the updated look and feel of their condo, the newly constructed building has 24-hour security,<br />covered parking, a fitness center, and downtown convenience. <br />While the Vistas’ modern design and convenient amenities are enough to attract almost anyone, it was the<br />idea of having Richmond’s greatest natural resource right outside their window that made Hall and Damon fall in love with their complex. <br />“We love the views!” says Hall. “We are also within walking distance to great restaurants, Brown’s Island, the<br />Canal Walk, and much more.” <br />Vistas on the James offers a fresh design, amazing views, and easy access to all things Richmond, right in the<br />pulsating heart of Downtown. What more could anyone want in a home?<br />The Greater Richmond Grid, Volume 1, Issue 1, Summer 2009<br />http://www.richmondgrid.com/index.asp?section=Live&id=15<br />Homeowners Colleen Hall and Carol Damon display their view from the top.<br />Inside Hall and Damon’s luxurious loft.<br />
  6. 6. Fernando Luna Vera<br />Fernando Luna Vera, a native of Columbia and a Chemistry graduate<br />student at Virginia Commonwealth University, first discovered his<br />love of the Canal Walk at a festive time. <br />“Last Halloween night during my typical walk through the streets of<br />Downtown Richmond, I found a very curious congregation of<br />demons and nurses at 14th and Canal Street,” says Vera. “These<br />costumed people were there because a haunted cruise through the<br />canal was about to start. I was not surprised; after all, what better<br />place to have fun on Halloween than the Canal Walk?”<br />After that night, Vera continued to visit the Canal Walk as often as<br />his school schedule allowed, as he discovered that there was more to<br />the Canal Walk than just a haunted cruise.<br />“There is not a better place to find that characteristic blend of past<br />and modernity of Richmond than the Canal Walk, where luxury<br />apartment buildings, restaurants, and bars live together with the<br />memories of merchants trading goods and confederation partisans<br />trying to escape from the city,” Vera says. “I really enjoy walking that<br />mile and watching people run, taking their pets for a little trip, [and]<br />couples that find the place romantic, and I especially like to stop for<br />a while and read a book, because even though the place is transited<br />[it] is never noisy.”<br />“The Canal Walk is a fun way to access several of the places along its<br />line,” Vera says. “At night [it] is even better. You can see buildings<br />illuminated with green and red lights and go nuts taking pictures in<br />the short tunnels that resemble some sort of medieval castle.The Greater Richmond Grid, Volume 1, Issue 1, Summer 2009http://www.richmondgrid.com/index.asp?section=Live&id=18<br />Fernando Luna Vera: “There is not a better place to find that characteristic blend of past and<br /> modernity of Richmond than the Canal Walk, where luxury apartment buildings, restaurants, <br />and bars live together with the memories of merchants trading goods and confederation<br /> partisans trying to escape from the city.”<br />
  7. 7. The Beauty of Pandora<br />“For us they’ve become this really invaluable way to just talk directly with Pandora<br />listeners,” says Westergren. “I am really interested in hearing your [the listeners’]<br />thoughts, questions you have, criticisms you have, Pandora ideas you have for us.”<br />Pandora was originally launched in January 2000 as a music genome project, the<br />most comprehensive analysis of music ever attempted. <br />“What we do is understand songs musicologically, and then by marrying that with<br />some mathematics, kind of build this tool that connects songs based on their<br />musical content,” explains Westergren of the project. <br />Pandora’s team of 50 musician-analysts have been listening to music one song at a<br />time, dissecting and analyzing every single detail of each song. “We have this<br />musical taxonomy. It’s a list of about 400 musical attributes that sort of collectively<br />describe the songs,” says Westergren. “[What we do is] essentially dissect melody<br />and harmony and rhythm and vocal performance down to the basic building<br />blocks.”<br />Westergren’s original music genome idea failed initially, but that didn’t stop him<br />from using his project with a different purpose. “When I got out of school I knew I<br />wanted to be involved with music,” reflects Westergren, a Political Science graduate<br />from Stanford. After working as a “manny”—a male nanny—for five years after<br />graduating, Westergren became a working musician, writing music and traveling<br />across the country to perform. <br />“I became pretty intimately acquainted with the challenges of being a working<br />musician,” he says. “There’s one really hard problem for musicians, which is, how do<br />you get exposure? Only a small number of artists get on broadcast radio. And radio<br />really is a key to professional longevity. So we took this huge database we had built,<br />[the] music genome project, and decided to turn it into a radio.” Thus the birth of<br />Pandora Internet Radio in November of 2005. <br />Pandora’s team of musician-analysts still dissects songs based on 400 musical<br />attributes as they had when the company was first launched. The goal behind this<br />extensive analysis now, however, is to create playlists based on musical proximity<br />for its 30 million registered listeners, and its constantly growing number of<br />unregistered listeners. <br />On June 29, Pandora Internet Radio founder Tim Westergren treated Richmonders<br />to a meeting at Virginia Commonwealth University’s Grace Street Theater to discuss<br />the radio’s future.<br />The meeting allowed attendees to ask Westergren questions about anything<br />Pandora, from the company’s humble beginnings to suggestions on how to improve<br />ease of use on the radio website. These “town hall” meetings started in Austin,<br />Texas with only six people; now over 200 meetings later from Biloxi, Mississippi to<br />Boston, Pandora’s town halls have become so popular that entire rooms and<br />theaters fill up with listeners eager to hear what’s in store for Pandora.<br />
  8. 8. The Beauty of Pandora (continued)<br />Westergren believes that the beauty of Pandora and the reason that it’s successful lies in the method of catering to its listeners based on musicological proximity<br />and not on popularity. “It’s not a popularity contest,” he says. “It’s one of the only systems that, in terms of how it picks songs, is blind to popularity. So when you<br />type in an artist or song, Pandora doesn’t know if that artist [or song] is famous or not, so it really is a truly level playing field.”<br />Listeners at the Richmond meeting all expressed the desire for more granular feedback when rating songs picked for them by Pandora. Instead of just giving a<br />song or artist a simple “thumbs up” or “thumbs down,” which is what they can do now, listeners would like to say why they gave a certain rating, saying things like<br />“I like the vocal harmony on this song, I don’t like this singer, I like the melody,” and so on.<br />This idea of providing granular feedback is something that Pandora plans to do in the future for its listeners. There are also new technological applications for<br />Pandora in the works, such as car accessories in conjunction with the iPhone, as well as incorporating Pandora into DVD and Blue Ray players with Bose. <br />“I realized, wow this is what the world is going to be like,” says Westergren about these advancements. But changes for listeners aren’t the only goals of Pandora.<br />“We’ve gotten pretty ambitious with what we think Pandora can do,” Westergren says. “We’re intent not just on redefining radio from top to bottom for listeners,<br />but also to really make an impact for musicians.”<br />Westergren has received a lot of feedback from artists who have debuted on Pandora and have become successful from this platform. “Artists will say things like<br />‘My iTunes sales have spiked,’ and it corresponds exactly to when they were added to Pandora,” he says. “Or they’re at shows and people are saying they heard<br />about them on Pandora—that’s happening a lot. So I think we’re beginning to see the ripple effect of it. I can’t say that this musician attributes his or her success<br />to Pandora, but I think we’re kind of creating a bit of rising tide.”<br />Because of this feedback that he has already received, Westergren only sees continued success for musicians in Pandora’s future. “Our goal is to create a musician’s<br />middle class. I will be happy if someday Pandora will have reached the point where you graduate from college and you say to your mom, ‘Mom, I want to be in a<br />rock band.’ And she says ‘That’s a great career.’ We’ll have laid the foundation for a viable profession, which I believe is there. The audience is there for it, and<br />certainly the talent is there for it.” <br />The Greater Richmond Grid, Volume 1, Issue 1, Summer 2009<br />http://www.richmondgrid.com/index.asp?ID=50<br />
  9. 9. The Beautiful People<br />Richmond-area models, photographers, makeup artists, and hairstylists have the opportunity<br />to showcase their talent and network with professionals at Model Mondays.<br />The event is held every Monday night this summer through August 17, 7:30pm to 12:00am at<br />Xscape nightclub at 814 West Grace Street. Originally started by Richmond photographer<br />Randall Holmes at Rendezvous Café and Lounge and currently organized and hosted by<br />Carlos Funn of FunnFotos, the event allows anyone with an interest in modeling and<br />photography to actually participate in real photo shoots with the goal of making connections<br />with others in their field.<br />At the event, models bring several outfits to the event where hair stylists and make- up artists<br />prepare them for photo shoots. After speaking with photographers, models participate in a<br />one-on-one photo shoot to build their portfolios, as well as those of the photographer. <br />“It is a way for people to break the ice and do test shots to see about working with each other<br />on future dates or events,” explains Funn. “We do let people know that the models are here to<br />work on their portfolios, yet is an open artistic night for creating cool shoots and art.” <br />Model Mondays is the first event of its kind to occur in Richmond. Never before has a<br />networking event been so cool as to make connections and beautiful art in the same setting.<br />The event has drawn interested professionals from Virginia; Washington, D.C.; Maryland; and<br />North Carolina. <br />Mosheh Israel, President and CEO of Black Nobility Magazine [shown on photo right with<br />photographer Carlton Brightly] a lifestyle and culture magazine based in Raleigh, North<br />Carolina, recently attended Model Mondays to recruit new models for the model section for<br />future issues. And Founder and CEO of Catwalk Productions Angela Moore, also from<br />Raleigh, scouted the event to recruit models to her agency. Their presence at this event shows<br />how popular Model Mondays has become and how successful it has been in attracting<br />professionals interested in building their networks.<br />“Many have had a chance to pick up clients [and] set up gigs,” says Funn. “For me, it has<br />helped with branding FunnFoto and getting connected with others in the community to let<br />them know what kind of work I do and to let them know that we are here to not only help<br />with pictures [but] with artistic development.”<br />Funn plans to continue Model Mondays as a regular event all over Richmond throughout the<br />year.<br />“We are looking to make a moving venue,” he says. “We have some things planned, maybe a<br />‘hit the runway’ type of thing. We are searching for sponsors and vendors to help put on the<br />night, and if they do have an interest they can contact me at funnfoto@gmail.com.”<br />The Greater Richmond Grid, Volume 1, Issue 1, Summer 2009http://www.richmondgrid.com/index.asp?section=Play&id=57<br />Above: Makeup artists prep models for their close-ups.<br />Left: Funn with FunnFoto model Leanne Nicole.<br />
  10. 10. MOSAIC<br />Known primarily as a hot lunch spot for Richmonders since 1999, MOSAIC<br />Cafe & Catering (6229A River Road ) has revamped its look and services to<br />create more buzz and attract more clientele. In early June 2009 MOSAIC<br />reopened its doors—after closing for redecoration around Memorial Day<br />with a fresh look and an entirely new addition: the MOSAIC Bar and Lounge.<br />The bar and lounge areas were created partly in response to customer<br />demand, but it was also something that Jeffrey Weaver had wanted to do ever<br />since he was appointed General Manager three months ago.<br />“We really wanted to create an atmosphere where a guest could come in and<br />have a cocktail while waiting for their table,” explains Weaver. “We have<br />always been know as a lunch place; we won best chain for lunch in the Best<br />of/Worst of Richmond. We wanted to start focusing on dinner as well, so we<br />remodeled. We built a whole bar in four days and had to hire a whole staff.” <br />Weaver (right): “We really wanted to create an atmosphere where a guest could come in and have a cocktail while waiting for their table.“<br />Left: MOSAIC’s new design creates an ambiance that is exciting yet soothing, with light green as the restaurant’s primary color.<br />MOSAIC’s new design creates an ambiance that is exciting yet soothing, with<br />light green as the restaurant’s primary color, accented by earthy tones in the<br />granite countertops of the bar, the wood of the chairs and barstools, and the<br />multi-colored starburst light fixtures constructed with 60 to 70 twisted glass<br />tubes and the greatest of care. <br />“It’s very hip. I would say chic, modern, and artsy, not eclectic,” comments<br />Weaver. “The look and feel of our restaurant really match the look and feel of<br />our menu: very light, healthy, and fresh. [It’s] a fresh look. When you see it<br />now compared to what it was, it is literally night and day. Now it has a cool<br />atmosphere.” <br />The Greater Richmond Grid, Volume 1, Issue 1, Summer 2009http://www.richmondgrid.com/index.asp?section=Play&id=63<br />
  11. 11. Cubicle Swansong<br />An evolving workforce necessitates change in workplace design<br />Richmond architectural and interior design specialists had the opportunity to<br />learn about the constant changes of work environments at the Virginia<br />Interior Design Association (IIDA), Virginia/West Virginia Chapter’s Spring<br />Continuing Education and Social Event at the Children’s Museum of<br />Richmond on June 22. Erin Boden, LEED, AP, Architectural and Design<br />Specialist for Allsteel, Atlanta, discussed several topics of which design<br />specialists should be aware, including the drivers of workforce change and<br />how they ultimately cause changes in workspace design. <br />“Competition has become more fierce, especially in economic downturn,” says<br />Boden. “[With] increased margin and pricing pressures, 24/7 operation [and]<br />access to information is critical.”<br />This increased competition has caused the rules of work to change drastically. Instead of<br />working the once typical 9 to 5, Monday through Friday job, workers now have<br />nontraditional work hours at both their office and home. There is no “clock out” time for<br />workers anymore, and that’s due in large part to modern technology. Mobile devices<br />capable of internet access make it easier for workers to do their jobs at the “ding” of an<br />incoming email from their boss on their Blackberries. <br />Because technological advancements have made access to information much more feasible,<br />technology has itself become a main driver of workforce change. It has become a status<br />symbol, especially for younger workers, giving them an edge over seasoned workers who<br />may not be as tech savvy.<br />Changes in generational demographics have also influenced today’s workforce. With a<br />changing mix of workers, diversity in attitudes and beliefs about motivation, technology,<br />career development, and work-life balance can pose challenges between workers. <br />“People communicate based on their generational background,” says Boden. “Young<br />workers are willing to take risks and try new ideas and concepts. Seasoned workers are all<br />about entitlement and want privacy.”<br />Marais: &quot;Vendors are coming up with very creative ways to accessorize those<br /> smaller work stations by consolidating storage needs—personal storage versus<br /> task-oriented, immediately-accessed work areas. They’ve really refined the personal <br />work zone.&quot;<br />
  12. 12. Cubicle Swansong (continued)<br />In addition to multiple generations in the workforce, other demographics<br />including gender and race will create differences among workers. The number of<br />women and minorities are expected to rise and create a very different workforce<br />within the next five to ten years.<br />“People are complicated,” she continues. “[This leads to a] more diverse workplace<br />and a more complex workforce.”<br />But these differences have added value to the collaborative method of work, as<br />having different perspectives can create positive outcomes in group projects.<br />Environmental Issues<br />And as a result of generations both past and present, environmental issues have<br />affected how workspaces are designed. Rising costs of commuting to work,<br />polluting the environment, and ineffective building design are all problems that<br />have resulted out of current building designs. These issues are leading designers to<br />create workspaces that are energy efficient and environmentally friendly.<br />How can architectural and design specialists adjust to these changes? And how can<br />they effectively design workspaces that will attract and retain employees?<br />Designers must first acknowledge that effective work design calls for two necessary<br />elements: space for individual work and space for collaboration.<br />Patricia Taylor Marais, Director of Interior Design for Commonwealth Architects in<br />Richmond, discusses how this need for both individual and collaborative spaces has<br />changed workspace design.<br />“Personal work stations have a smaller footprint,” she says. “Vendors are coming up<br />with very creative ways to accessorize those smaller work stations by consolidating<br />storage needs—personal storage versus task-oriented, immediately-accessed work<br />areas. They’ve really refined the personal work zone. In terms of overall office plan,<br />there are more communal plans designed.” <br />Designers must also contemplate the impact of strategic organization in the<br />workspaces they design. Workspaces must support the diverse workforce of today <br />by allowing easy access to modern technology to increase productivity.<br />“We collaborate with specialty consultants more than we ever have before primarily<br />because of technological advances,” explains Marais. “Telecommunication,<br />teleconferencing—those are space requirements.”<br />Talk to Me<br />Randy Alberson, co-owner of Smarter Interiors in Richmond, notes how these<br />modes of communication, and the effect of generational differences on them, have<br />impacted how designers create suitable workspaces for is clients.<br />“The way people communicate is different from many, many years ago,” he explains.<br />“Employees of today are going to face situations that our grandparents couldn’t<br />imagine. But in the end it is going to come back to the same thing: it’s about people<br />sitting down face to face and talking. You want to feel like you’re in your living<br />room and be comfortable.”<br />But most important, designers must design workspaces to attract, educate, and<br />retain clients’ employees. They must implement drivers of worker satisfaction and<br />prepare for the future needs of organization by means of the education and<br />development of the workforce.<br />Marais has witnessed how an attractive workspace affects the futures of her clients’<br />employees.<br />“The younger workforce has greater expectations of their work environments,” she<br />says. “So what we found is that companies are having to modify their interior<br />environment to recruit more talented younger professionals. “In terms of the<br />environment, the spaces are more exciting, more invigorating, to generate more<br />creative collaborative communication.<br />
  13. 13. Cubicle Swansong (continued)<br />It is imperative that when designing workspaces for their clients, designers consider<br />the drivers of workforce change as well as their clients’ needs, which are constantly<br />evolving, and must predict the future through efficient workspace design.<br /> “It is our job to anticipate the needs of the customer, even when they don’t realize<br />it,” says Alberson. “We have to be able to set them up for the future. We’re the<br />experts; we come in and we tell them this is where you need be.”<br />The Greater Richmond Grid, Volume 1, Issue 1, Summer 2009 (Online article)<br />http://www.richmondgrid.com/index.asp?ID=73<br />Alberson (above): “Employees of today are going to face situations that our grandparents couldn’t<br /> imagine. But in the end it is going to come back to the same thing: it’s about people sitting down <br />face to face and talking. You want to feel like you’re in your living room and be comfortable.”<br />
  14. 14. Making It Happen: The Metropolitan Sports Backers Earn National Acclaim from Peer Organizations<br />Sports Backers Quarterly, Volume 2, Issue 9, July/August 2009<br />www.sbqnow.com<br />
  15. 15. The Half Marathon Picks Up Steam<br />Ro Gammon takes on the half marathon.<br />While many Richmond area runners have already begun training for the SunTrust Richmond<br />Marathon on November 14, this year offers a new challenge: the McDonald’s Half Marathon,<br />which will take place the same day. Ro Gammon--a history teacher at Powhatan High School,<br />personal trainer at the Midlothian YMCA, and veteran marathon coach and runner—has<br />accepted the challenge of coordinating the training group for this event. <br />“I love coaching marathon training groups, but when they approached me it was like, this is a<br />new opportunity, and you had not heard of half marathon training teams,” says Gammon.<br />“Sports Backers does a great job with all the other programs…it was like, okay, I will give it a <br />try.” <br />The SunTrust Marathon added the half marathon to its schedule because of the rising<br />popularity and increasing demand for the 12.1 mile race. “[In the past] you had the 5K, 8K, and<br />the marathon, and those were your only options,” says Gammon. “Now more and more races<br />have added the half marathon because it’s doable for people. They are really drawing a lot of<br />people.” <br />Not only that, but they are attracting people of all fitness levels. Half marathons appeal to new<br />racers because while it’s more challenging than a 5K or 10K, it is not as intimidating as a full<br />marathon. Runners who have not competed in a marathon before also use half marathons as a<br />stepping stone for participation in future marathons. Regular marathoners are drawn to half<br />marathons because the recovery process has a lot less time involved than a full marathon,<br />allowing them to begin training for their next marathon sooner. <br />But just because a half marathon is half the distance of a full marathon doesn’t make the race<br />any less challenging. “It’s always a big deal,” says Gammon. “You get the same satisfaction when<br />you cross the finish line, whether you do a half or a whole.” <br />The half marathon training group will meet every Saturday for long group runs as part of a<br />prepared training schedule given to group members. Members will follow the schedule day by<br />day, beginning with three miles on select days during the first week and increasing the distance<br />the following week, working up to the 12.1 mile race. <br />
  16. 16. The Half Marathon Picks Up Steam (Continued)<br />In Gammon’s past experience as a marathon coach, she saw how training group members rarely ever ran by themselves outside of weekly group runs. “A lot of<br />times people will get together during the week and they’ll find out, ‘Hey, you live in Midlothian, let’s get together for a run,’” she says. “And what happens [is]<br />some people never run by themselves, they always have a group.” <br />Gammon is looking forward to getting her training group pumped up this August not only for the half marathon, but for the relationships that result from training<br />together as a team. “It is so much fun, the camaraderie of the group, and you make friends that last forever,” she says. “I hear from people that I coached years ago.<br />They’ll still call me or email me and let me know how they’re doing. It’s like a big family.” <br />Gammon has always been passionate about helping others through physical fitness, and coaching the half marathon training group is no exception. “Our goal is<br />the half marathon. My goal is to get them across the finish line and enjoy it and keep them healthy.”<br />Sports Backers Quarterly, Volume 2, Issue 9, July/August 2009<br />http://sbqnow.com/index.asp?ID=82<br />
  17. 17. TRIgirls Band Together to Power Spring<br />
  18. 18. TRIgirls Band Together to Power Spring (Continued)<br />Sports Backers Quarterly, Volume 2, Issue 8, May/June 2009<br />www.sbqnow.com<br />
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