Who is Risa Feldman?
Well for starters, I am a Jersey Gal. I grew up going down the shore, listening to Springsteen. I attended The University of Miami, graduating with degrees in both Psychology and Communications. My first job was in New York City in Sports Public Relations agency, Alan Taylor Communications. I worked super hard to learn the industry and climb up the ranks, and after 5 years I was a Senior Publicist.
Although I did love my PR career, I chose to slightly shift gears to gain more experience in event producing. I joined Festival Marketing where I was part of a team that created and produced high-end one of a kind experiences for American Express cardholders. After a few years, I was contacted about a new position in a sports agency and after many interviews, I was offered Director of New Business Development at Integrated Sports International (ISI). In this position, I created opportunities and negotiated athlete appearances, signature events, licensing deals, and cross-promotions. It was an exciting position and after 2 successful years, I was promoted to Vice President.
A year after my promotion, I decided that I wanted to expand my sports niche and venture out on my own. I launched “New Leaf Events and Marketing” - www.newleafevents.com.
I started out based in New York City, but eventually opened an office in Los Angeles as well. Due to all the people and companies whose path I had crossed in my past positions, and relationships I had formed, I had a constant flow of projects. I wore the hat of positions ranging from Creative Director, Event Producer, PR Strategist, and Talent Liaison. Clients included American Express, Dick Clark Communications, Food and Wine Magazine, Coca Cola, Starbucks, Maui Film Festival, Bermuda Tourism...
In 2000, I was invited to join the Sports Production Team of the 2002 Olympic Winter Games. For the first-time ever, the USOC decided to broadcast live, the announcement of the Bronze, Silver and Gold medalists, immediately after each final event. It was a challenging role, that I chose to accept. I had 2 years to work with a staff of 90, with the goal of flawlessly executing 65 "Field of Play" live TV ceremonies. Due to its success, I was asked to join the 2010 Olympic Winter Sports Production Dept in Vancouver. This time my position was interviewing celebrities about past Olympic memories. These bytes were played in the venues during the games. Both Olympic experiences were ones I will forever cherish, plus it led me to the opportunity to appear on the Today Show as a guest correspondent.
After the 2010 Olympics, i decided I earned a sabbatical, as it had been 14 years of running a company, so I set up a temporary residence in Aspen. It was there that I started writing. I always had a passion for adventures. I was always wanting to try new restaurants, and dishes. I never turned down the opportunity to visit somewhere I had never been. I had always dreamed of becoming a travel/food writer so I took a stab at it and wrote an article about a “Cocktail Classic Event” that was happening in Aspen. I submitted it to JetSet Extra and they chose my article ( after a few edits) as a front page feature!. That one article led to a series of travel and food articles, and soon enough I was being sought after and sent on travel/dining writing assignments from all different media and tourism offices. After a few months, I received a call about an opportunity to be a guest on a restaurants/dining show. I accepted and after my first 3 minute segment, the network ( Healthy Life ) offered me my own 50 minute show, which is now called “Risa’s RoundTable/Epicurean Exploring”. It has been 4 years as a travel/food journalist, 3 years as a radio host, and 2 years of as a travel/food photographer ( a skill I had to pick up and really enjoy!)
To me, life is about constant discovery and experiences. Don't be afraid to go after what it is that you feel a passion for, and if you haven't found that passion, keep your eyes open, that passion may just find you!
Eat Well and Travel Often,