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Writing & Editing

Having been in honors writing classes since I started college, I am often sought for my editorial review and writing skills.  I have written several grants for a local nonprofit.  I have written two thesis papers and numerous legal documents, following highly technical style guidelines.  I was also an Assistant to the Vice President of a state university and responsible for writing her documents and correspondence.   Below are two writing samples; feel free to request more.  Both thesis papers have been published and can be requested from the state library system.

Writing Sample taken from a corporate newsletter:

Vitamin S, Superpowers, and the One-Foot Difference

Research has shown that children fail to learn when they are not treated with regular successes.  They lose interest and quit trying.  I think this is true of adults as well.  Just think about that last failed diet or exercise program.  If we do not feel we are being successful, we just lose interest and quit trying.  Now, think about your employees.  How often do you let them know about their successes?  Why does that front desk person lose interest in the job after she has been there awhile?  Why does a housekeeper just quit trying to do his best?  It is because we all need a regular dose of Vitamin S (success).  Make sure that you give your staff members a dose of Vitamin S at least once a week by thanking them for their efforts.  If you start giving them a dose daily, they might even get addicted to being focused and trying their best! 

And, did you ever have one of those crazy conversations where people say what superpowers they would have if they could?  I do not think most of those powers are available, but I do believe that recognizing the successes of others is a superpower that we all have.  I know that one compliment or kind acknowledgment of my work just makes me feel like I am on top of my little world.  Each one of us has that superpower - to make people feel on top of their worlds - and, sadly, few of us make full use of that power.  Instead, we seem to be better at being critical and pointing out failures, especially with employees.  So, the next time you are thinking about what someone is doing wrong, maybe set your sights one foot higher.  Huh?  A one-foot distance is the difference between a kick in the fanny and a pat on the back.  Frequent pats on the back make for a much more enjoyable work environment.

Writing Sample taken from thesis paper:
A New Defense for Obscene Art: Assumption of the Risk:
            The First Amendment states that “Congress shall make no law…abridging the freedom of speech, …”[1], and the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment prevents legislative entities within the states from improperly denying anyone the guarantees of the first amendment.[2] Some situations exist, however, in which free speech or expression can be regulated and individuals can be made to sacrifice their First Amendment protection for an important governmental interest; but these regulations have to be well drafted.
            First, one must determine if the regulation is based upon the content of the speech or not, i.e., content-based or content-neutral? The answer to this question will determine the type and strength of justification required for the government unit to be permitted such a regulation.  If the regulation suppresses the expression of a particular viewpoint on a particular subject, it is content-based and must be tested under a strict scrutiny test. This is a two-part test which requires that the regulation (1) is necessary to serve a compelling state interest and (2) is narrowly drawn to serve that interest.[4] This is a very difficult test to pass because of a judicial unwillingness to consider any governmental interest as more compelling than protected speech.[5] Case law has created two acceptable categories of compelling interest. The first compelling state interest is to control speech which creates an immediate risk of harm, e.g., a person does not have a protected right to yell falsely “Fire!” in a crowded theater, because to do so creates a clear and present danger to other persons.[6] The second compelling state interest is to control speech of a character which creates a potential risk of harm, e.g., a person does not have a protected right to incite others to imminent lawless action, because to do so creates a potential clear and present danger to others.

Constitution, amend. I.
Constitution, amend. XIV, sec. 1.
Widmar v. Vincent, 454 U.S. 263, 263-289 (1981).
Schenk v. United States, 249 U.S. 47, 47-53 (1919).
[7] Brandenburg v. Ohio, 395 U.S. 444, 457 (1969).

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