Suffolk University Speech and Debate Team

I attended Suffolk University for undergraduate studies as well as for graduate school, and through my time as an undergraduate, I worked with a woman named Jodi Nevola who helped to direct the speech and debate team at Suffolk University. When I moved on to grad school, I became a graduate fellow in which I helped co-manage the team, train students, coordinated travel logistics, and helped to judge and coach at various tournaments. My experience working with the Suffolk speech and debate team was one that cannot be measured to anything else because I was able to learn how to become a better public speaker in various fields of speech, I worked with some of amazing students and professors, and gained a life Mentor in Jodi.

Suffolk University hosted, for the first time in history, the Novice National Tournament in which 25 universities from across the United States participated in competitive public speaking competitions and debates. Being an active Alum, as well as still an active judge in Speech tournaments, Jodi asked me to come back and serve as the event photographer for the National Tournament.

In a nostalgic and extremely enjoyable weekend, I was able to photograph hundreds of students, teachers, and happy family members who were cheering on their family. This experience for me was amazing because I was doing what I loved behind the camera, as well as supporting and helping my University in front of the camera. I truly had the best of both worlds in this experience, and it is something that I will remember for the rest of my life. I met Jodi in 2008 and now, 11 years later, I still guest speak in her classes and have already been invited back to photograph future events!

South Boston Street Festival: The History, The Events, The Future

The streets of South Boston were filled with excitement as crowds upwards of 9,000 festival-goers shopped, sang, ate, and danced their way down East Broadway. The sun was shining brightly as the music filled the air from multiple stages vibrant with local artists covering everything from pop and country to jazz and rock and roll. Over 150 local business set up pop-up shops along the edges of the sidewalks while street performers engaged the crowd in competitive Simon says, dancing hula hoop contests, face painting extravaganzas, and the band of roaming pirates challenged families to corn-hole tournaments. I had the amazing opportunity to photograph this event two years in a row, as their sole event photographer, and have been helping with their social media marketing over the last 5 years.

Vibrant Event Productions hosted the 19th annual South Boston Street Festival and Proprietor, Karen Stanley, hosted the event. Karen and I began collaborating together in 2007, when I was helping to organize service trips and community events for the South Boston Youth Ambassadors non-profit organization. Karen helped our organization with fundraising and marketing and in turn, I used to go to her boutique on weeknights and help her stock inventory, sell items online, photograph her merchandise, or just sit and have tea and catch up on our week. Karen sold her shop and started Vibrant Event Productions, and her work ethic and love of the South Boston community has gained her instant success and thousands of happy consumers.

Karen and I still remain very close friends to this day, and have become business partners for many citywide events. Karen hires me seasonally to run her online presence and social media marketing for various events, and hires me as the event photographer and post-event social media promoter. Recently, we have collaborated on the South Boston Street Festival, the Taste of South Boston, the Boston Seafood Festival, the South Boston Local Business Networking Evening, the South Boston Spring Stroll, Halloween Stroll and the Christmas Stroll!

It has truly been an honor for our relationship, our experience, and our collaboration to grow and strengthen significantly over the years. Photographing these events is not just another hired job; for me, it is another opportunity to grow my relationship, friendship, and passion for these amazing, and wonderful, life moments!