"Marie Makes magic things happen with imperfect people."
-April Brenden-Locke, PMP
Project Manager, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife,
About Me (My Fertile Ground)
As a writer and marketing communications coach, I love to connect people and resources or solve seemingly impossible problems. I help you discover what makes you special and how to share that with the world.
I am fascinated by people, specifically stories of grit, resilience, and connection, and I gather those stories on the Finding Fertile Ground Podcast. I'm particularly interested in providing a platform for underrepresented voices...Black or people of color, immigrants, LBGTQIA+, non-Christian, or women...they tend to have the best stories of grit and resilience!
"The crafting of our new website by Fertile Ground Communications was truly a labor of love on Marie’s part. She gifted us with her patience and tenaciousness, guiding our team in a true collaborative effort. Marie’s insightful questioning helped us all better understand what is different and special about our business, and her ability to convey that uniqueness to others in the content she developed will serve us well for
years to come."
- Celia Leber, Founder and Patent Attorney, Leber IP Law
I am one of those lucky English majors who actually gets to use her education in her work. I began by teaching English in Japan for three years. Then I returned home and began working in environmental consulting…first as a technical editor before I realized I could make a living out of writing.
Over the 28 years I worked at global environmental consulting firm CH2M HILL, I wore countless hats…from group leader and proposal writer/manager to leading a team of 70+ talented publications professionals across our Northwest Region.
Then I moved into marketing & communications and discovered another passion: sustainability and corporate citizenship. I co-managed our company’s award-winning Sustainability and Corporate Citizenship Report and led communications for CH2M’s foundation. I got to toot my company’s horn about their sustainability and corporate social responsibility (CSR) accomplishments.
After leaving CH2M, I worked at a small architecture & engineering firm as their first communications manager. I helped kick off their first equity & inclusion program, revamped their website, and pitched a community engagement strategy. I also learned how to get things done on a much smaller scale and without advanced technology.
In my professional and pro bono work, nothing gives me more pleasure than helping others tell their stories and get recognized for their accomplishments. I started Fertile Ground Communications to help others find their fertile ground and bring their ideas to life. I like to help other people shine.
Fertile Ground Communications LLC is a certified women-owned business enterprise (WBE), disadvantaged business enterprise (DBE), and emerging small business (ESB), dedicated to creating a kinder, more sustainable, and just world.
I volunteer my services with nonprofits like The Immigrant Story, whose mission is to foster empathy and build a more inclusive community by sharing immigrant stories, and Portland's first Latino mayoral candidate, Ozzie Gonzalez. Read more about Fertile Ground Communications' commitment to corporate social responsibility.
I love books, travel, music, theater, creative pursuits, living in the Pacific Northwest, and spending time with my friends and family.
I love to channel my positive energy to drive creative action, inspiring people with positivity.
Photo by Kendra Joy Photography
WHAT PEOPLE SAY
"The crafting of our new website by Fertile Ground Communications was truly a labor of love on Marie’s part. She gifted us with her patience and tenaciousness, guiding our team in a true collaborative effort. Marie’s insightful questioning helped us all better understand what is different and special about our business, and her ability to convey that uniqueness to others in the content she developed will serve us well for years to come."
— Celia Leber, Founder and Patent Attorney, Leber IP Law