During seven years with Messenger Post Newspapers, Rachel covered the education and general news beats, earning three first-place NYS Associated Press Association writing awards, two in the depth reporting category, and one in features.
She also shared a first-place only writing award for the NY Newspaper Publishers Association for an article on bullying that served as lead/anchor for a series the paper ran on the topic. She was also a proud member of the news team that covered the March 2006 visit of President George W. Bush to Canandaigua, and used up her so-called 15 minutes of fame when an NPR reporter aired her take on the president’s pronunciation of the town’s name.
During her time with the Messenger, Rachel served on the creative team that helped guide relaunch of the paper’s web site, and became one of its first bloggers. The moniker for her blog, the ReD Zone, came courtesy of then-colleague Pete Bekisz, Keuka’s marketing manager, who designed and built the original mpnnow.com site. Her writing and web skills came into play managing and marketing private weddings, corporate events and public fund raising events for non-profit Sonnenberg Gardens and Mansion State Historic Park in Canandaigua, over four Garden Seasons.
Today, Rachel is back on the “news beat,” writing profiles of the people and programs of Keuka, with emphasis on academics and achievements. Those articles are often illustrated with her photos, too. She also serves as assistant editor of Keuka magazine and is a co-adviser to the news staff of the Keukonian student newspaper.
Outside of Keuka, Rachel works as a freelance editor and serves as chapter leader of CWG Word Weavers of Western NY, a Rochester-area writing critique group she co-founded in 2009.