|This article is an orphan, as no other articles link to it. (April 2013)|
Beth Taylor in 2009
|Born||Elizabeth Ann Taylor
October 14, 1954
New Orleans, Louisiana, U.S.
|Occupation||Journalist, Author, PR, Media Relations|
|Alma mater||Louisiana State University|
Beth Taylor (born October 14, 1954 in New Orleans, Louisiana) is an American author, public relations practitioner and journalist who has worked as a television sportscaster, newscaster, producer and director, as well as a general assignment reporter in both print and broadcast mediums. Taylor became Mississippi's first female television sportscaster when hired by WDAM-TV (an NBC affiliate) in Laurel-Hattiesburg, Mississippi. She has also worked in media relations, public relations, video productions, advertising, marketing, and as a communications consultant.
Taylor has spent nearly 40-years in the communications profession.
Early life and education
Born to Rita Joy Bova Taylor and Eddie Anthony Taylor, Beth Taylor was educated primarily in the Catholic school system of the Archdiocese of New Orleans. She attended St. Anthony of Padua School from September 1958 until June 1962, John Dibert School from September 1962 to June 1966, and St. Francis Xavier School from September 1966 to May 1968. Her high school years were spent at the all-girls Catholic Archbishop Chapelle High School in Metairie, LA, from August 1968 until she graduated in May 1972.
Her college career began at Loyola University New Orleans in May 1972. In August 1972 she transferred to Louisiana State University in New Orleans (now The University of New Orleans) where she spent one academic year. In August 1973 Taylor transferred to Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge. Taylor graduated from LSU in August 1977 with a Bachelor of Science degree. Her major emphasis was Journalism, with a minor in Geology.
At LSU Taylor worked at WLSU, (now KLSU, owned by the LSU Board of Supervisors) the student-run campus radio station in 1976 beginning as a student reporter and in her senior year was selected News Director.
Taylor did two student internships, both of which resulted in full-time employment. The first was at what was then WRBT-TV (now WVLA-TV) the Baton Rouge ABC affiliate in 1976, where she went to work after graduation as a reporter, producer, and fill-in news anchor when the station became the NBC affiliate. In the summer of 1976 she was selected as one of two women to intern at The Times-Picayune newspaper in New Orleans. where she spent a year as a staff reporter following the internship.
In December 1978 Taylor accepted the position at WDAM-TV (NBC affiliate) in Laurel-Hattiesburg, MS, which made her the first female sportscaster in that state. Taylor produced and anchored the late local sportscast for seven years, beginning in December 1978. During her tenure Taylor was one of the first female sports journalists to conduct post-game interviews in male locker rooms, including in the National Football League. In 1980 Taylor earned a Certificate of Excellence in sports reporting from the Mississippi Broadcasters Association.
In her 10 years at WDAM-TV Taylor was a sports anchor, General Assignment news reporter, Laurel (MS) Bureau Chief, Assignments Editor, Medical Reporter, and Special Projects Editor. During that time she earned three awards from the Mississippi Associated Press Broadcasters Association. With Taylor as Assignments Editor, WDAM-TV was recognized for the first time as having Mississippi's "Outstanding Newscast" in 1987 with the award presented in 1988.
Taylor is the author of the book Bless Them Father, for They Have Sinned, which was published in the summer of 2012. As a child, Taylor experienced something so traumatic that her brain forced her to forget the events for more than 40 years. That event was clergy sexual abuse at the hands of member of the Catholic clergy.
Her story is an honest, brave, heartbreaking, and hopeful look at her journey to explore and overcome the sexual abuse. She gives her excruciating account of discovery, as she copes with repressed memories which surfaced with unexpected, and unwelcome, flashbacks of sexual abuse. That abuse began in 1958, when she was a 5 year old student. She writes as a journalist, in factual tones, as she and her therapist chart a course to move from confusion and despair to understanding and promise.
During her odyssey, Taylor chronicles went head-to-head with members of the clergy within the Archdiocese of New Orleans and members of the Dominican Order ... a Roman Catholic religious group of men and women officially called the Order of Preachers.
Public Relations, Marketing/Advertising, and Community Service
Taylor began her career as Campaign News Secretary to the Henson Moore for Congress Campaign in Baton Rouge, LA, in 1974 while still a student at LSU. Following graduation in 1977, she worked as a journalist until 1989, when she turned her attention to healthcare marketing as Director of Admissions and Marketing at Pine Grove Recovery Center, an extension of Forrest General Hospital in Hattiesburg, MS. It was during this time she became a recipient of the Outstanding Sales and Marketing Award given by the Hattiesburg Chapter of Sales & Marketing Executives International.
For almost 20-years, Taylor was the Creative Director and owner of Letter B Productions, a video productions, marketing, advertising, and political consulting company in Hattiesburg, MS. During that time she was a businesswoman and civic leader who served on the boards of numerous non-profit agencies including the American Heart Association Go-Red For Women Committee, both the Pine Belt Region and Southeast Mississippi chapters of the United Way of America, the South Central Chapter of the American Red Cross, the Hattiesburg Advisory Council of Big Brothers Big Sisters of America, and the Children’s Center for Communication and Development at the University of Southern Mississippi.
News & Media Relations
As News and Media Relations Manager at the University of Southern Mississippi, Taylor spent many months working on the Gulf of Mexico Deepwater Horizon, British Petroleum oil spill in 2010. She managed a team of researchers and scientists, positioning them as "thought leaders" in the fields of marine science, fisheries, toxicology, and ecology. Taylor secured interviews for the Southern Miss "thought leaders," who were featured in more than 6,400 print news articles and featured on ABC News, CBS News, NBC News, ITN News, the Canadian Broadcasting Company News, MSNBC, CNBC, CNN, Fox News, the British Broadcasting Company News, Australian Broadcasting Company News and other international broadcast news sources. For their efforts, Taylor and her team of public relations professionals earned a PRisim Award and "Best of Show" award from the Public Relations Association of Mississippi.
Speaker & News Source
Taylor is often sought as an expert source in articles related to self-employed women, video productions, marketing and advertising, public relations, clergy sexual abuse of children, and political consulting.
Awards and Honors
Taylor has earned more than 100 international, national, and local awards in the communications profession and for her civic contributions. In 1998 she was presented the Community Service Award from the Gulf Pines Council of the Girl Scouts of the United States of America, and was named one of the "Top 100 Video and Multimedia Producers" by A/V Video Multimedia magazine. In 1999 Taylor was selected to the Hattiesburg Area Development Partnership's class of Leaders for a New Century and was presented the American Advertising Federation Silver Medal from the AdFed of South Mississippi. The Mississippi Business Journal named her one of Mississippi's 50 Leading Business Women in 2000.
In 2011 she was part of the University of Southern Mississippi Executive Communications Team which earned a Silver Anvil Award from the Public Relations Society of America for its entry, “The Southern Miss Story: Enriching the Brand of a Research University Through a Centennial Celebration.”  Taylor also earned three first place awards from the College Public Relations Association of Mississippi  in addition to a 2011 PRism Award and Best of Show Award from the Public Relations Association of Mississippi for work on the Deepwater Horizon oil spill of 2010.
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- "Centennial Campaign Lands Southern Miss Top Public Relations Award".
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- "PINE BELT PROFESSIONALS TAKE HOME STATE AWARDS, Pine Belt Chapter".