Kristin Quinn ’08, accustomed to conducting interviews, said it felt “weird” to be on the response side, talking about her two passions: 1. advocating for Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis research and 2. writing.
A resident of Arlington, Va., Kristin is communications and publications director for the U.S. Geospatial Intelligence Foundation. After earning an Oswego degree with a double major in journalism and creative writing, she completed a master’s in newspaper and online journalism at S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University, and moved to Washington, D.C.
1) How you wound up in D.C.:
When I got out of grad school, the job market was poor, but D.C. was insulated from the slump. When I got a job at a trade association magazine, my best friend from Oswego, Danielle Dills ’07, let me sleep on her couch.
2) How you moved up:
My first job, writing about the printing press industry, helped me build a resume, and from there I was hired to write about aerospace and defense technology for Gannett Government Media.
3) What you learned traveling for that job:
I was a lot more independent than I thought. In 2011, I covered a conference in Germany. I had never been overseas, so it was pretty scary. But it’s empowering to look back and realize I did that all on my own.
4) Now you interview high profile people:
I was excited recently to write about Director of National Intelligence James Clapper. But after years of interviewing people from all walks of life, I have become less intimidated by status. We are all the same, all trying to do our best.
5) Where we read that article:
In the 2013 Issue 3 of Trajectory. I’m managing editor of the magazine.
6) Why you volunteer for ALS research:
First, ALS runs in my family. It took my grandfather and my aunt, and it is now affecting my mom. Beyond the personal, though, is just to let people know more about this fatal disease.
7) When you testified about ALS before the U.S. Food and Drug Administration:
Those running the hearings were concerned I would get emotional, so I switched into professional mode. It’s important to raise awareness that a cure is needed, and I wanted to give an articulate account of my experience. See Kristin’s testimonial video.
8) Those at risk for ALS:
ALS can affect anyone, anywhere, at any age. Chances are there is someone living with ALS in every community.
9) What people can do:
Get involved with fundraisers that help support research for a cure or that help patients with the high expenses of living with the disease.
10) Best Oswego memory:
Working into the wee hours of the morning at the Oswegonian down in the dungeon of Hewitt. We had a great team from the Class of 2008, and we always had a good time reporting campus news.