Sonja Shin Resume
By the Numbers
$3 million+ Estimated ad value of media coverage for Better Family Life (BFL) with Shin as Marketing Director (Oct '16-Mar '17)
342 million+ people around the world Number of people reached in the 416 times BFL was featured or mentioned in the news (Oct '16-Mar '17)
100% Percentage of clients who had media appearances after Shin pitched them to the media
60 Approximate number of times Shin has appeared as an expert guest on local TV news in four years
30,000 Approximate number of viewers watching when Shin appears on Fox 2 News
536,114 Number of times Shin’s YouTube videos have been viewed
1620 Number of YouTube channel subscribers
6 Number of websites Shin designed and built for NASA and Stanford University
Sonja Shin is an award-winning journalist and seasoned media and marketing professional and presenter with strong connections nationally and in St. Louis. Shin has been a TV reporter in St. Louis, Seattle and San Francisco; a producer for The Today Show and NBC Nightly News; and been mentored by Matt Lauer and Brian Williams. She has handled public affairs and business development at NASA in Silicon Valley. Shin also built and designed websites for NASA and Stanford University.
Shin is an excellent writer and speaker who knows how to “translate” complex information into easy-to-understand language for people of all ages. She studied science journalism at Northwestern University and the world’s top science communication graduate program at the University of California, Santa Cruz.
Shin shares health and beauty advice on Fox 2 News in St. Louis every other week, has been a spokesperson for companies like Edward Jones and Maritz, has been a popular blogger for more than a decade, and has a strong understanding of social media with more than a half million views on her YouTube channel.
Shin is developing an app and subscription service to promote self-care and self-esteem in young women to prevent suicide – the #1 cause of death in teen girls. She is a winner of the Washington University Brown School of Social Work Social Enterprise Competition.
Communications & Marketing Director
Better Family Life St. Louis, MO 10/16 to present
- Share youth, health, housing, workforce development, business development, cultural arts and community outreach programs of Better Family Life, a non-profit that helps more than 50,000 children and adults each year by providing services to strengthen families and communities to break the cycle of poverty in St. Louis, especially in the urban core
- Write press releases, organization newsletter and success stories
- Manage and redesign website and social media
- Build database of organization success stories
- Lead organization rebranding
Shin Spot Media San Francisco, CA, and St. Louis, MO 10/03 to 10/16
- Coach clients to be great presenters and give great interviews in the media.
- Work with clients to develop media and marketing plans.
- Pitch clients to the media.
- Develop relationships with reporters and producers.
- Help clients refine their message so they deliver a message that their audience cares about.
- Write copy, bios, company summaries, media pitches and press releases – learn more about media training & strategy here.
- Design and build websites and blogs.
- Create messaging, branding and graphics.
- Handle social media outreach on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.
- Long-term website clients have included:
- Soul-Esteem Center (St. Louis, MO, 2/14 to 10/14)
- Stanford University (Palo Alto, CA, 5/09 to 7/12)
- NASA Ames Research Center/SOFIA (Mountain View, CA, 10/03-4/04)
Host/TV Reporter (see reel)
St. Louis Convention & Visitor Commission St. Louis, MO 4/15 to 8/16
HEC-TV St. Louis, MO 5/12 to 9/14
Edward Jones St. Louis, MO 11/12 to 4/14
1380AM The Woman St. Louis, MO 5/13 to 12/13
KTVI-TV (Fox) St. Louis, MO 6/12 to 5/13
KPIX-TV (CBS) San Francisco, CA 1/11 to 2/11
KPIX-TV (CBS) San Francisco, CA 1/04 to 4/04
KIRO-TV (CBS) Seattle, WA 4/98 to 4/99
KPLR-TV (Independent) St. Louis, MO 8/96 to 4/98
- For St. Louis CVC: Report on noteworthy businesses, organizations and people around St. Louis.
- For HEC-TV: Reported on science, arts, culture and education; examples of reports:
- For Edward Jones: Hosted financial advice videos for customers.
- For 1380 The Woman: Hosted daily two-hour radio show focused on health, empowerment and beauty with Fox 2 News Anchor Angie Mock; chose show content and arranged interviews.
- For KTVI-TV: Filled in as traffic reporter/producer.
- For KPIX-TV: Reported general assignment news for morning newscasts (with live shots every half hour from 5am to 7am), noon newscast and weekend newscasts (live and recorded); conducted live interviews; researched, pitched, produced and wrote reports (examples of reports: earthquake in the Bay Area, reopening of the Palace of Fine Arts, elimination of toll takers at Golden Gate Bridge).
- At KIRO-TV: Reported general assignment, health/ medical, and technology news (live and recorded); researched, pitched, produced and wrote reports (examples of reports: research on impregnating men, program to get free computers, high-tech police training).
- At KPLR-TV: Filled in as morning news anchor, reported general assignment, health and medical, and technology news (live and recorded); researched, pitched, produced and wrote reports (examples of award-winning KPLR-TV reports: Holiday stroke syndrome, seasonal affective disorder, investigative report into laundry and cleaning staff performing nursing duties).
Beauty and Wellness Writer/Blogger/Vlogger
Hello Beauty (blog with about 500 visitors/day) St. Louis, MO 12/09 to present
Examiner.com St. Louis, MO 7/09 to present
MSN.com San Francisco, CA 11/09 to 10/10
The Coveted (blog with about 1,000 visitors/day) San Francisco, CA 10/08 to 12/09
- Appear as beauty expert guest on Fox2 and KPLR news.
- Write about health and beauty, and reviews of beauty products, spas and restaurants.
- Shoot and edit makeup lesson videos with top makeup artists from major beauty companies, like Bobbi Brown and Guerlain (videos appear on Hello Beauty, Examiner.com and on Shin's YouTube channel, where the videos have been viewed more than a half million times).
- Designed and built Hello Beauty blog.
NASA Ames Research Center Mountain View, CA 6/04 to 2/05
- Promoted NASA missions by presenting latest mission news about Mars and other NASA missions to the public in an interactive theater with a SGI supercomputer at NASA Ames visitor center, which has about 200,000 visitors each year.
- Managed SGI supercomputer and negotiated maintenance and upgrade costs, saving NASA thousands of dollars.
NASA Ames Research Center Mountain View, CA 7/03 to 4/04
- Designed and built a new website for SOFIA, Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy website (sofia.usra.edu).
Public Affairs and Development Specialist
NASA Ames Research Center Mountain View, CA 6/99 to 6/03
- Designed and built NASA Research Park website, a nearly 400-page site for Ames Development Office with top-ten search engine ranking; spearheaded site special sections, such as the Media Center for reporters.
- Designed graphics for website and print marketing.
- Helped develop policy and strategies for the marketing, development and fundraising for NASA Research Park and a new visitor center.
- Helped plan, implement and present at special events for the public, the media and government leaders.
- Developed concepts for, produced, edited and designed marketing and outreach publications, such as brochures and the award-winning NASA Ames Development Plan and the External Relations Fiscal Year Report.
- Communicated information about NASA’s activities to the public at events, such as the Reno Air Races.
- Conducted interviews and wrote articles for the center newsletter.
- Worked with and helped coordinate volunteers at the visitor center.
- Managed Assistant to Director of Development and helped manage Education and Development teams.
- Received the NASA Ames Honor Award for Excellence for overall excellence as a contractor (15 people chosen for the award among approximately 1,500 contractors, 2001).
Associate Producer and Researcher
NBC Network News New York, NY 1/94 to 12/95
- Interviewed doctors, scientists, patients and national news figures such as former Mayor Rudy Giuliani and Rob Reiner for general assignment, science and medical news reports.
- Researched and field produced for domestic and foreign correspondents and producers of Nightly News with Tom Brokaw and The Today Show.
- Arranged and field produced shooting of interviews and b-roll around the country.
- Produced on-location live-shot for The Today Show.
- Produced editing of Sunrise and The Today Show news reports.
- Determined newsworthiness of breaking science/medical news for Nightly News and The Today Show.
- Filled in as weekend assignment editor.
Technology News Intern
The Next Step (The Discovery Channel) San Francisco, CA 1/93 to 12/93
- Pre-interviewed experts such as Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, helped choose video, pitched and researched news reports.
- Assisted host and reporter Richard Hart with The Next Step, a series of technology reports seen and heard on KRON-TV and other NBC television affiliates, CBS news radio stations and The Discovery Channel.
University Of California, Santa Cruz, CA Fall 1993
Graduate Science Communication Program, a world-renowned program that admits ten students per year (left early to accept a job offer from NBC Network News).
Northwestern University, Evanston, IL 9/88 to 6/92
Bachelor of Science in Communication Studies with a concentration in science journalism and studies in the Medill School of Journalism. Additional coursework in computer programming, public speaking, marketing, astronomy and environmental history.
- May You Shine, Mental Health App Developer – Provide resources to promote self-esteem and self-care to prevent suicide and self-harm (suicide is now the #1 killer of teen girls)
- Webster University, Instructor – Co-teach a workshop on personal branding in the Business Management department (April 2015)
- Project Greatness, Media and Marketing Lead – Lead marketing outreach for a series of community service projects to empower kids and underserved people in North St. Louis – nearly all the media in town covered our project – see media coverage
- Saint Louis Art Museum, SLAM Underground Task Force Member – Help plan events and get event sponsors
- Webster University, Personal Branding Instructor and Guest Speaker
- Venture Cafe, Workshop Presenter
- Arch Grants, Mentor and Service Provider – Advise grant recipients on how to get media coverage
- StartLouis, Volunteer – Help with events and lead one-minute pitch part of the monthly meetings
- Business Women Connecting, Former Board Member – Advise group on media and marketing
- Society of Professional Journalists, Member
- Press Club of St. Louis, Member
- SAG-AFTRA, Member
Honors and Awards
- Telly, Remy (Houston International Film Festival), Aegis, and Axiem Awards for narration in EdgarVille, an interactive exhibit about the national airspace system, which was developed by NASA in conjunction with the FAA and was exhibited at Rockefeller Plaza, the NASA Ames Exploration Center, airports nationwide and at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum (2004).
- NASA Ames Honor Award for Excellence for overall excellence as a contractor (15 people chosen for the award among approximately 1,500 contractors, 2001).
- Telly, OMNI, Silicon Valley International JOEY, and Axiem Awards for narration of the Journey to the Planets exhibit, which was featured at the Tech Museum of Innovation in San Jose (2001).
- American Heart Association Eugene Field Media Award for KPLR-TV report on holiday stroke syndrome (1997).
- Missouri Nurses Association Media Award for KPLR-TV investigative report on the use of laundry and cleaning staff to perform nursing duties at hospitals (1997).
- Missouri Department of Mental Health Media Award for KPLR-TV report on seasonal affective disorder (1997).
- Ohio State University William D. Stewart Memorial Broadcast Lectureship on competing for airtime on network news (1994).
Skilled in Working With
- Google Docs
- Mac and Windows
“Sonja is a creative, motivated self-starter who can be counted on to get the job done effectively and on time. She brings flair and imagination to her work while staying within job requirements, funding and time constraints.”
- David Morse
NASA Technology Partnerships
Director, Silicon Valley
“We employed her based on her perceived potential. She lived up to that and delivered more. Whoever, decides to work with Sonja Shin will find she brings a new positive energy to the workplace that is a beyond-expectations benefit to the organization.”
- Smash (Asher Benrubi)
Radio Personality & Entertainer
(Former Program Director for
1380 The Woman), St. Louis
"I AM A FAN OF SONJA. She has helped me with my message, with being clearer and with how to present in a smoother way with more impact."
- Tessa Greenspan
One of 25 of the Most Influential
Women in St. Louis (St. Louis
Nominated for Best PR Firm to St. Louis Small Business Magazine by a client:
"I have have found Sonja's coaching and strategies are on trend with current media outlets and very insightful. I can spew out talking points and she puts them into a concise 'pitch' that totally makes sense! She is well connected with the media, and has been seen/heard on local television as well as radio."
- Pam Bredenkamp
Health Coach, St. Louis
"I have worked with Sonja over the last 4 years on software that I have developed. She is an exceptionally talented and dedicated. She is a true professional who I know I can depend on. She has high standards, a strong work ethic and works well on tight deadlines. She is enthusiastic, motivated and personable. I look forward to opportunities when I can work with her. I know that if she is involved with one of my projects, I will be able to accomplish something that is truly excellent."
- Geoffrey Bruce
NASA Education Office
Project Manager, Silicon Valley
"Out of 19,000 writers on Examiner.com, Sonja stands above and beyond. I shared her work and achievements with the entire Examiner.com community as an example of what every Examiner should strive for."
- Lindsay Galloway
"Sonja Shin is an awesome pro who smoothly delivers her lines with just the right emphasis and believability. She shows true understanding of content and is very likeable both on and off camera, so we would definitely use her again."
- Leinicke Group
“Sonja Shin’s skills as an interviewer were vital in assisting me convey a topic I am passionate about. I have historically viewed myself as awkward and/or ineffective when I step before a camera. After getting the courage to view my own video produced by Sonja, I actually brought myself to tears as I was so moved by the authenticity of my own message. Sonja seamlessly assisted me in delivering my heart-felt message.“
- Tracy Floeh
Philanthropist & Animal Rights
Activist, St. Louis
“It was truly a pleasure to work with Sonja in developing solid marketing materials to support my health coaching practice. Sonja took the lead and came up with countless creative solutions to help me effectively represent and expand my business."
- Christine Gonzalez
Health Coach, Los Angeles
“I am so grateful to Sonja for her guidance. Her warmth and encouragement helped me to build confidence and push past my fears of having my voice heard on radio and in video. Working with Sonja was not only an incredible investment for my business but also for my self-development. I highly recommend her.”
- Krista Holt-Shippe
Therapist, St. Louis
"Based upon her job performance, her attitude and disposition, as well as her technical knowledge and creativity, I would clearly recommend her as an asset to any organization. Sonja offers a wealth of ability and dedication to any professional pursuit."
- Phylis Clay Sparks
Soul-Esteem Center Spiritual
Director, St. Louis