Amy

Fonarow

Science Communicator
Technical Journalist
Writer, Editor, and Proofreader
Photographer and Video Producer
Social Media Manager
 

Work Experience

Setting Things Write - Freelance Writer, Editor, Proofreader, and Photographer

Remote, currently based in Petaluma, CA   Nov 2012 - current

• Distill scientific and environmental concepts for diverse public audiences by producing interviews, articles, outreach, and presentations that engage, inform, and energize
 
• Conceived of, proposed, conducted, transcribed, edited, added links to, captioned photos for, and queried media outlets regarding the publishing of an exciting interview of Maui marine scientist Darla White, published on 12/27/20 by SevenSeasMedia.org and on Medium.com

• After being interviewed on film about coral reef composition and health, wrote four long-form solution-focused articles to accompany the video and explain how we can assist the world's reefs, and why we would care to. Client: Conscious Content

• Gathered much of the latest marine research by attending lectures held by the Maui Nui Marine Resource Council, Maui Ocean Center, Clean Water Committee, Surfrider Foundation, Friends of Hanauma Bay, and the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands Coral Reef Ecosystem Reserve Advisory Council

• Independently composed a monthly Water Column that attracted over 1200 readers with coverage of ocean health, enjoyment, and community involvement. Interviewed community members and wrote articles on local environmental issues. Client: Kailua411 online newsletter
 

• Edited and proofread an ongoing series of Hawaiian history booklets, posters, and calendars written to educate adults. Ensured all public-facing literature was accurate, understandable, consistent, and correct in terms of punctuation, spelling, diacritical marks, grammar, and format – whether the text was written in English or Hawaiian. Client: Maui Hawaiian Heritage League

Vitalant Blood Donation Center - Donor Operations Coordinator II

Santa Rosa, CA   Feb 2021 - current

• Connect with former platelet donors by telephone and e-mail, warmly encouraging each to step up once again and give of themselves to assist hospital patients in their community

Vitalant Blood Donation Center - Donor Relations Specialist - Temporary

Santa Rosa, CA   Jun 2020 - Jan 2021

• Coordinated flow of donors in person throughout the process of donating lifesaving blood, plasma, or platelets

• Created a system to efficiently and singlehandedly maintain a comprehensive focus on donors’ good health and comfort, branch cleanliness and safety, and unparalleled customer service in this frequently fast-paced and high-pressure environment

Maui Ocean Center - Marine Naturalist  

Wailuku, HI   Dec 2018 - Oct 2019

• As part of the aquarium's Education Team, developed and delivered accurate and engaging educational presentations and tours, interpreted park exhibits, answered visitors' questions, and helped to maintain a clean, fun, and scientifically informative environment both during the day and for special night events, including our "Sleep with the Sharks" overnight program​

• Regularly assisted with in-park activities such as Story Time and Crafts for the little ones, Science Sundays for ages 8 and up, and the Coral Explore Station for all those interested​

• Edited new exhibit placards and information, both when asked to do so before going to print (which delighted me to no end), and at other times informally - after installation

• Conducted educational outreach activities at the Sheraton and Andaz hotels, at times transporting and maintaining the safety of a small contingent of tide pool invertebrates or corals for the occasion​

Maui Ocean Center - Marketing and Event Coordinator  

Wailuku, HI   Feb 2018 - Dec 2018

• Created, developed, implemented, and maintained relationships and events inside and outside the park to further our conservation and cultural reach and inspire devotion to Maui Ocean Center - all while working alongside a diverse team of naturalists, engineers, housekeepers, retailers, food and beverage personnel, writers, social media managers, photographers, graphic designers, sales staff, curators, and aquarists

• Coordinated monthly beach and reef cleanups throughout the island – often with an added site-based educational component, regularly attracting 40 - 80 community volunteers of all ages who removed loads of trash from gorgeous places

• Under FAA Remote Pilot Certificate #3965126, gathered aerial footage of Maui Ocean Center and the progressive construction of the Humpbacks of Hawaii 3D Sphere Theater


• Organized, edited, wrote, and distributed marketing and event materials in the park, throughout the community, and online

Boss Frog's Dive and Surf - Web Content Writer/Aerial, Underwater, & On-The-Beach Photographer/Video Producer/Social Media Manager  

Haiku, HI   Oct 2015 - Dec 2017

• Until December 5th, 2017, ran all Boss Frog's social media accounts: three Facebook business pages, Instagram, Twitter, Google +, and Pinterest. Since May 2016, Boss Frog Hawaii Facebook likes increased from 1688 to 3554, and Instagram followers increased from 268 to 573 (as of December 3rd, 2017). My Facebook posts often received a paid boost from Hawaii Web Group, which considerably increased our reach.

• Gathered aerial, underwater, and land-based footage

• Working in Magix Vegas Movie Studio Platinum 14 and Windows Movie Maker, produced 60 short YouTube videos, including one documenting Hawaiian green sea turtles at Ho'okipa, and a vlog covering a climb onto and jump from Pu'u Keka'a (Black Rock)

• Working in tandem with our graphic designer in WordPress and following SEO, keyword, and Yoast specifications, wrote and edited over 110 pieces of unique, engaging, shareable content for our online visitors, including 45 comprehensive beach pages for three Hawaiian islands, a detailed Fish ID Guide, 19 extensive blog, beach, and island map articles, over 60 descriptions of island activities, all content on CalypsoMaui.com, and most of the information on MolokiniMaui.com.

• Traveled to beaches on Maui (25), Kauai (12), and the Big Island (8) to gather footage and detail each one in order to create our current beach pages on BossFrog.com

Gecko Group Publishing – Writer, Editor, and Proofreader

Lahaina, HI   Aug 2015—Dec 2015

• Interviewed marine researcher Dr. Philip Clapham and wrote articles about Maui’s marine life for the 2016 edition of Maui Whale Watch Magazine, released annually

• Interviewed Maui business owners, composed short articles on each, and researched and wrote about local businesses and community events for the 2016 editions of Maui Magazine and Maui Favorites, also released annually

Lahaina Cruise Company/Hawaii Ocean Project – Program Coordinator/Naturalist

Lahaina, HI   Nov 2014—May 2015  

• Created and coordinated public events, composed newspaper articles, and spoke of whales, the marine researchers HOP supports, and the company on land, on the boats, and even on air on KAOI Radio 1110 AM (1-2 PM Wednesdays)

• Revamped, implemented, and coordinated membership program; briefed tourists on excursions, edited website, responded to Yelp! reviews, coordinated and participated in daily cross-promotion with Fleetwood’s Restaurant, and helped train new sales department team members

Story of Hawaii Museum/Arts Education for Children Group – Community Educator/Silent Auction Coordinator

Kahului/Lahaina/Kapalua, HI   Dec 2013—May 2015  

• Requested and collected silent auction donations from local business owners and community members to support the 2014 and 2015 Maui Hawaiian Steel Guitar Festival

• Assisted throughout the 2014 MHSGF silent auction at the Ka'anapali Beach Hotel, and coordinated the same in 2015

• Edited community-facing literature and museum exhibits

• Continually involved community members and visitors in the dynamic scope of Hawaiian history and culture using enthusiastic engagement, both onsite at the museum in Queen Ka'ahumanu Center, and in the traveling history exhibit at the Montage Kapalua Bay Hotel

Various Roles in Social Services, Health Care, Guest Relations, Sales, Retail, and Food Service

Marin & Sonoma Counties, CA and Oahu & Maui Counties, HI   Aug 1993 — current

Volunteer Experience

Kahoʻolawe Island Reserve Commission – Restoration Volunteer

Kahoʻolawe, HI    Aug 2019 

• During this three-day access on the uninhabited Hawaiian island of Kaho'olawe, I assisted with erosion control efforts and the planting of native fauna

• I was one of a team of eleven volunteers from Maui Ocean Center.

• We were supervised by and took direction from employees of the Kaho'olawe Island Reserve Commission.

Reef Angels – Collector of Discarded Fishing Gear

Maʻalaea, Lahaina, and Kaʻanapali, HI    Apr 2014—Oct 2019 

• With a small group of dedicated friends, regularly hiked down to two popular Maui fishing sites and jumped in the water in order to carefully cut and collect discarded fishing line and lead weights from around coral heads to prevent the entanglement of marine life

• Free dove to work from the surge zone to about twenty feet down

University of California at Davis Bodega Marine Laboratory – Docent

Bodega Bay, CA   Jun 2010—Jun 2011

• Absorbed, assimilated, and translated into lay terms scientific research being conducted on site to educate tour groups of all ages

• Explained natural history of the Pacific Ocean with special focus on the Pacific Garbage Patches and NOAA’s marine debris partnership with Covanta Energy

• Added a follow-up e-mail to tour protocol to answer guests’ unresolved questions

The Marine Mammal Center – Work Crew Member 

Sausalito, CA   Summer 1994 

• Assisted in restraining, tube feeding, hand feeding, medicating, and releasing pinnipeds, including elephant seal pups, harbor seals, and California sea lions

• Recorded data, including eating habits and behavior

• Maintained a consistently clean and healthy environment for the animals

• Interned forty-five hours per week

 
 
 

Technical Skills

  • WordPress

  • Yoast/SEO

  • Keyword Use

  • Open Office

  • Microsoft Word

  • Microsoft Outlook

  • Facebook

  • Instagram

  • Twitter

  • Google +

  • Pinterest

  • YouTube

  • Internet Research

  • Free Diver/Snorkeler

  • Open Water Scuba Diver

  • SJ5000 Underwater Camera

  • Magix Vegas Movie Studio Platinum 14

  • Windows Movie Maker

  • Mechanically Inclined
  • Always Delighted to Learn More

Education

2004 - 2006

Hawaii Pacific University

Bachelor of Arts in psychology

Much of my educational and volunteer background is in marine biology, so I playfully refer to my bachelor's degree as being in 

"marine psychology."

For six years until moving back to California, I kept my finger on the pulse of marine conservation issues in the community of Maui, doing my best to assist when and where I could. Throughout my online content, and while sharing the water with fellow ocean users, I promoted proper reef etiquette.  To continue learning, I attended meetings of the Maui Nui Marine Resource Council and the Clean Water Committee.  I also testified before the Maui County Council as an ocean advocate, cut fishing line from coastal reefs with friends, and picked up land-based litter when I had the time.

Coursework in marine biology

1995 University of California at San Diego

 1996 - 1997 University of California at Santa Barbara

2004 Hawaii Pacific University

2014 University of Hawaii Maui College

As a high school junior, I was part of the Marine Biology Field Experience Program at UCSD.

 

After graduating high school in 1996, I began coursework at UCSB toward a Bachelor of Science in marine biology.

As an adult student in 2004, I studied at HPU and continued more marine biology coursework, including Oceanographic Field Techniques with Captain Brian Quinn. 

I received Open Water SCUBA certification through PADI in 2006.

In 2010, I completed the classroom portion of the Motorboat Operator Training Course through the Department of the Interior at Bodega Bay, CA.

2014 led me to enjoy the introductory course of the Marine Options Program (MOP) with Donna Brown at UHMC.

I am a (former, as I must renew my license) FAA certified drone pilot, which is how I capture my aerial footage.  I was initially trained in December 2015 by my Boss Frog's supervisor, Chris Kasper.  I have trained myself since then, both through in-air experience and by reading. I love reading manuals! I have piloted approximately 70 flights (mostly filming along beaches) as of January 17th, 2020.  

 

See my portfolio below to take a look at my writing, aerial & underwater photography, and video production & composition.

I look forward to working together soon.

 
 

Contact Me

afonarow@yahoo.com
808.838.9527

Petaluma, CA

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