Hi, I'm Marissa.
I'm a writer, content strategist and creative leader with 11 years of experience making memorable content for brands, causes, and government agencies. I use they/them/their pronouns.
I LOVE GOOD STORIES.
A former journalist, I’m passionate about telling clear, compelling, data-driven stories that create authentic, human connections. My work connects regular people with issues, brands and organizations that affect them — and brings users closer to products that make their lives better.
Key ingredients: Fact-checking, empathy, and more empathy.
I GET THE WORK DONE.
I’ve led digital storytelling projects that brought science and technology concepts to life; written product copy to nudge users toward more inclusive writing choices; and even helped a Cabinet secretary find his digital voice.
I’m comfortable coaching teams, but also love rolling up my sleeves to do the work myself. And I have lots of experience communicating dry, complex topics to regular people, so I know how to strike the right balance between wonky and relatable.
Need help with content, social media or organizational strategy? What about copywriting, editing, ghostwriting, UX writing, developing a vision or strategic plan for your next venture, or positioning your brand to do something amazing? I could definitely help you with that.
April 2018 Packed the cat and moved to California to develop a user-focused external job posting content strategy for Google. Currently writing product copy for an internal tool to scale the strategy across Google’s global hiring org while eating my way through San Francisco.
January 2017 Left government and started my own strategic consulting company, providing strategy and support to people and organizations who need help finding their words, want to strengthen their digital brand, or want to create a new one from scratch. Want to work with me? Get in touch.
August 2013 Joined the Public Affairs team at the U.S. Department of Energy, where I managed branding, content, code and pixels for Energy.gov, the agency's primary public-facing website and consumer brand; coached a cross-functional team of digital communications pros; and advised the U.S. Secretary of Energy on strategic digital content and branding initiatives (some serious; some super serious). In 2016, I helped launch a rad podcast.
May 2013 Received my Master’s of Public Policy from Georgetown University. Master’s thesis used publicly available data to define the relationship between federal transportation infrastructure spending and bicycle commuting rates in major American cities. (Spoiler alert: More $ = more bike commuters.)
2010-2013 Created and implemented both targeted and kitchen-sink digital marketing strategies for two nonprofits — SmartPower and Clean Energy States Alliance — and led national marketing campaigns to encourage consumers to buy clean energy and develop more energy efficient behavior at home.
2007-2010 Began my career as a print and online reporter at the Washington Post. Launched the Reliable Source blog and wrote on-deadline stories for the Style, local and national news sections. Covered a White House state dinner; once talked to David Attenborough on the phone.
2005-2007 Freelanced for local media outlets in Washington, D.C., while interning at USA Today, the Society of Professional Journalists, and on Capitol Hill. Managed a staff of 30 as editor in chief of the American University student newspaper. Got bachelor's degree from American University at some point in the process.
2001 Made $7 an hour mopping floors and working the cash register at the neighborhood toy store. The receipts came out of a dot matrix printer. It took forever.