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ABOUT ME

I tell people’s stories. I have the unique privilege of telling the stories of people’s lives to make the world a better place. This is what I tell my daughter when she asks what I do. And it is 100% true.

I am a life-long reader and writer with a heart for the hurting. My goal is to use my gifts and skills to further the work of nonprofits  and charities. Through my media skills, I work to develop a brand, connect with donors, and fundraise effectively.

YEARS OF MY EXPERIENCE

I have more than 10 years of experience in writing, media, and nonprofit development and fundraising.

MY BACKGROUND

With more than 10 years of experience in media and fundraising, I am a skilled team leader in the field of nonprofit communications. I have a heart for the hurting and strive to use my talents to create a better world, one project at a time.

After living in every time zone in the contiguous U.S., I settled in coastal Virginia. I am an avid reader and writer. I also live on a small homestead where my husband and I cultivate a large garden and raise a small managerie. We are often found camping and exploring in the mountains or the beach.

– Holly (Drake) Combs

2012 / Master of Arts in Journalism

Regent University Outstanding Graduate Award recipient, summa cum laude

2007 / Bachelor of Science in Equestrian Studies: Writing and Publications

Rocky Mountain College Honors program participant, magna cum laude

Professional Development

Bridge Conference, 2018 Anti-Corruption: Global Edition, 2016 Sharing HOPE in Crisis, 2010 College Reading and Learning Association tutor certification, 2006

Current / Director of Integrated Media

Operation Blessing International Virginia Beach, VA Director of Integrated Media, 2014-present: Led a team of 7-10 in media content and fundraising strategy and execution, including monthly Blessings Magazine, direct mail appeals, e-mail marketing, website content, and social media. Supervised art designers, copywriters, web developers, video producers, freelancers, and outside agency relationships. Content Producer/Writer, 2009-2014: Produced and edited copy for web site, monthly magazine, blog, social networking updates, e-mail marketing, direct mailings, and photo galleries, brochures, etc. President’s Award for Excellence, 2013; Employee of the Month Award, 2015, 2011

2008 / Staff Writer

Graphic Publications, Inc. Millersburg, OH Staff Writer: Wrote 10-12 articles per week for several area newspapers covering county court, county/city government, special events, nonprofit organizations, and human interest.

2005 / Writer & Tutor

Rocky Mountain College Billings, MT Staff Writer: Covered local/campus events, writing 3,000-4,000 words per issue for campus newspaper. Writing Tutor: Helped undergraduate students develop literary and academic papers. *College Reading and Learning Association certified tutor

2009 / Writing Coach

Regent University Writing Center Writing Coach (graduate assistant): Conducted one-hour coaching sessions with clients in undergraduate and graduate studies, working on writing skills from conception to completed manuscript. Created and presented training workshops related to writing skills. Teacher Assistant: Graded essays, assignments, and exams. Reviewed assignments with students for Academic Writing Seminar class.

2007 / Freelance

Content Writer: Hike It Baby website, Wooster Weekly News, content for website developer (241 Computer Services). Book Reviewer: Straight Off The Page, Blogging for Books, the Tyndale Blog Network, Bethany House Blogger Reviews, and Christian Broadcasting Network. Book Award Judge (2008-2017): Reviewing books for Christian fiction Christy Award. Freelance Editor (2008-2009): Editing academic works such as theses and dissertations. Self-Publishing Consultant (2007): Assisting authors through the self-publishing process.

LETTERS OF COMMENDATION

  • President's Award for Excellence 2013

  • 'With the web server launching yesterday, I don't know if anyone stopped to thank you for all your work on making that happen. You did all the heavy lifting to make that come to fruition!' - VP of Media & Development

  • 'I just saw the March issue. It's really outstanding! Kudos to you and the team.' - President of NGO

  • 'Holly, you are very talented!' - Senior Planned Giving Specialist

  • Employee of the Month 2011, 2015

  • 'We appreciate your work ethic and your creativity.' - Former Supervisor

  • 'Excellent job. This is perfect. Thanks for (as always) doing a great job spiffing up my piece!' - Editing Client

  • 'I really love our team and working with you, Holly.' - Graphic Designer/Employee

RELEVANT SKILLS

Team Management
Strategy
Digital Fundraising
Project Management
Direct Mail Fundraising
Writing
Creative Direction
Editing
Brand Management
Digital Content
Social Media
Magazine Editor

Samples of Work


These are a few samples of the work created under my leadership and direction.

Planning for the future.


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CONTACT ME

Please contact me regarding your needs in nonprofit media and development!

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