I am the author of Liberty Brought Us Here: The True Story of American Slaves Who Migrated to Liberia and coauthor and editor of Speed Family Heritage Recipes, a historical cookbook. My article "All My Heavy Afflictions: Black and White Women in the Colonization of Liberia" appeared in the Liberian Studies Association Journal (Vol. 45), and "From the Bluegrass State to Africa: Kentucky and the Colonization Movement" was published in the spring 2023 issue of Kentucky Humanities magazine. I was also a contributing writer for Portugal Living magazine.
I earned a bachelor's degree in communication from Pacific Lutheran University in Washington state before starting a nearly 20-year career in corporate communication and public relations. I then launched Savvy Communication, an editing business I operated for ten years. I am now retired and living in Coimbra, Portugal.
I have frequently been invited to speak on a range of topics, including writing advice, self-editing, conducting research, and vetting and working with editors. I've spoken before diverse groups, including the World Affairs Councils of Louisville and San Diego, the Liberian Studies Association, and numerous university classes, writing workshops and conferences, book festivals, churches, and museums. Contact me to arrange a virtual event.
In 2020, I fulfilled my dream of retiring in Europe and I now live in Portugal.
HOME: Coimbra, Portugal
COFFEE: galâo, the Portuguese coffee/milk combo
FAVORITE WRITERS: Erik Larson, Harper Lee, John Steinbeck, Jamie Ford, Jodi Picoult, David McCullough, Barbara Kingsolver, and Ann Patchett
Liberty Brought Us Here: The True Story of American Slaves Who Migrated to Liberia (University Press of Kentucky, 2020)
Speed Family Heritage Recipes, coauthor and editor
Numerous essays and short stories; see "Publications" tab