Me.

 
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I’ve always worn many hats, by nature and necessity.

As an artist and designer, I never focused on just one image—I envisioned a full layout, or package, and the reception of a finished work. And I never wanted to just be a writer—for professional and personal goals, I always ensured I was an editor, too, honing my skills and controlling the way my stories were delivered. I leaned toward publishing because it was a meeting place for my talents and interests—where design and writing join to highlight stories of culture and entertainment.

While still living just outside Philadelphia, and completing a multifaceted education, I got a gig as a correspondent and entertainment writer for a small newspaper (the Pennington Post). Soon I was an editorial assistant, then the newspaper’s editor, and as funds and staff dwindled, I eventually ran the entire operation myself, from reporting and photography to layout and press deployment. I learned to helm a brand, to listen and cater to an audience, to evolve those needs, and to feverishly multi-task. I held this role until the paper went under, all the while contributing to other Philadelphia-area outlets and venturing to New York each month to gain all the exposure I could in the place I wanted to be. When I moved to New York in 2011, I landed a role as a managing editor with Slant Magazine, while also contributing to major titles like Details, Esquire, and Time Out New York.

Slant allowed me to conceptualize (mainly art-based) content, flex my critical muscles, work with publicists, and interview hundreds of celebrities before I arrived at Out in 2014. This new managing editor role brought new challenges and opportunities, including team management, production management, constant team communication, more intense deadlines, and firmly knowing the essential clarity of brand voice. I had a lot of autonomy, so I took an uncommon creative approach to the role, managing others while also writing cover stories; devising and writing pieces on everything from film to cultural trends; liaising with the digital team; being a public face of the brand; creating branded content; and producing my own editorials, videos, and features from concept to finished product.

Eventually, this strong drive to creative direct and produce expanded beyond Out and led to other projects, including Prose, a budding production company and creative agency I co-founded with two partners. As a side venture, Prose has enabled me to ignite my skills as a curator, a focused visionary, and a resourceful businessperson who’s secured brand sponsors and corralled teams to achieve common creative goals. Compounded with the work I had already done at Out, it was great training for my ultimate role at the magazine: executive editor and acting editor-in-chief. Through what may have been the most challenging period in the brand’s history, I stepped up and got straight to work in not just salvaging the publication, but improving its legacy in areas ranging from representation and diversity to media exposure and youth-inspired content.

I see no ceiling in regard to what I can curate, produce, communicate, and conceptualize. I see more collaborators, more leadership, more challenges, more passion, and more triumphs. Bring on the future.

 
 

Contact.

rkurtosenlund@gmail.com