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I’m a writer and storyteller who has been ensuring all stakeholders have a voice in shaping effective and fair policy for more than 20 years.
I focus on helping nonprofits and businesses with complex stories share their work and impact with the people they care about (your base and customers, your funders and partners, your mom…)
I started Gordon Mayer Communications in 2016, after a decade helping to lead national advocacy, leadership development and capacity-building organizations. I’ve worked as the development and communications director at Gamaliel Foundation, operations director at People’s Action, and vice president of Public Narrative.
I’ve worked as a free-lance journalist at the Gary Post-Tribune, Philadelphia Inquirer, and copy editor at Chicago Defender, and studied the history of Chicago’s newspapers to earn a master’s degree at University of Chicago. Although I come from a news background, I’ve spent most of my career in nonprofit marketing communications.
When I started working at a community organizing nonprofit, co-workers said, “Let’s have Gordon write the press releases, he used to be a reporter so he must know how.” I didn’t – but figured out pretty quickly that by giving journalists the kinds of stories they needed, we’d earn coverage that both got our name in the news and helped project our message.
After a few years focusing on writing, newsletter editing and pitching, I found myself becoming a publisher, assisting organizations to create content for their own websites, email newsletters, social media channels and more. The past few years I’ve added project manager to the list.
Systems that are invisible to your audiences (hopefully) – like your database, donation system, website, and more — have to work right, and videos and other more elaborate content are accessible to clients but require management to be effective. To make those systems work, I help organizations implement donor and other databases and use WordPress, Drupal, Wix and Squarespace as well as social tools to support engagement and fundraising.
I am a member of the Publicity Club of Chicago and Association of Consultants to Nonprofits. My wife and I have raised two children in Chicago’s Hyde Park neighborhood where I am a proud past member of the Ray School Local School Council. If I’m not working, I’m cooking — or eating! My other hobby is practicing my French (working proficiency) and Spanish (intermediate level).
You can also download my resume.