Trendsetter to Know: Ellen Bilbrey

City you live in: Phoenix

Current job/Employer: Self

A typical day in my life includes… keeping in touch with my children and grandkids, working on client social media, and booking media stories.

I was born… near Hayward, WI

My favorite thing about my city… Hayward is a lovely little Northern Wisconsin town on a lake. It is an outdoor playground in both the summer and winter, although cold no longer holds my interest.

I’m currently listening to… NPR’s interview with the British Poet Laureate Simon Armitage. Amazing.

My family… My husband’s manufacturing company, Daylight America, has been producing high tech skylighting products so businesses can turn off their wasteful electric lighting. Very proud of his work in developing and patenting these amazing energy conservation products.

If I could have dinner with anyone, it would be… Michelle Obama, as has shown us all how we should be gracious, professional, and empathetic.

One thing I cannot live without… is seeing my children and grandchildren regularly. (The picture on the right is of my granddaughter, Karis Wilson, at about 12- years-old when she wanted to be on the cover of Vogue… so of course, we created our own cover.)

When I was younger, I wanted to be… a teacher (which I became and now have Grammy PR School)

I’m inspired by… the work of scientists who work on critical issues for our grandchildren such as climate change and the work of the public health scientists.

The one person who motivates me is… my sister who is so compassionate as a pastor, author, missionary, historian, and amazing mom and grandmom.

If I could change anything in the world, it would be… protecting all children and world peace.

The perfect day would be… lounging at the edge of a remote lake dangling a worm for a fish.

My first job was… slinging hamburgers at a ski lodge at 16 (so I could ski of course).

My favorite escape is… exploring the remote corners of Arizona’s wilderness.

My life… has been blessed with a darling, loving husband, four children and nine healthy grandchildren.

I’m currently working on… websites, social media, and broadcast media for clients

Always… ask a PR mentor when you’re stuck on a problem, don’t worry.

Never… accept a “NO” when you are trying to convince a reporter you have a good story. Find another reporter!!

Favorite Quote: The Heart of a Tree: an excerpt “He plants the forest’s heritage, The harvest of a coming age; The joy that unborn eyes shall see—These things he plants who plants a tree.” Bunner 1855

My biggest dream is… Today I yearn for the knowledge of science to reach the masses with airborne transmission solutions that will free us to enjoy each other’s company and protect more families from losing love ones needlessly. Always wear a mask.

My pet peeves… are those people that put others in danger.

More about Ellen Bilbrey:
I started my career in Houston booking professors on national TV at the University of Houston and later moved to Wisconsin. For a short time, I was a reporter for UPI and the Milwaukee Sentinel.

Switching back to PR, I am an APR and have created national media placements for two biochemist authors. In 1985, I moved to Arizona and became a PR counselor in a firm and later opened Eco-logical Marketing. My practice focused on helping conservation product entrepreneurs. In 1995, I pursued an eco PR job with State Parks to promote parks worldwide such as Kartchner Caverns and 29 other parks for 20 years. Today, I am again doing environmental public relations.

During the last six months of coronavirus, I have filled my Twitter and Facebook social media posts with public health retweets to bring attention to the hundreds of scientists who have begged WHO and the CDC to educate the public about the dangers of COVID aerosolized microdroplets. They hang in the air for up to 16 hours and fill closed rooms with viruses.

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