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Damien Willis
Works at Las Cruces Sun-News
Attended University of New Mexico
Lives in Las Cruces, NM
493 followers|114,594 views
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Here's the story I spent part of the day working on. These kids were amazing. The ones I spoke with were so articulate, and they UNDERSTOOD the importance of the work they were doing. I love stories like this. Here's one for anyone who has ever complained that we don't report the GOOD news in our community... Check it out! #Charity   #Service   #Community   #Cemetery   #Children   #LCPS   #LasCruces   #NewMexico   #DoGood  
LAS CRUCES >> More than 30 students from Hermosa Heights and Valley View elementary schools showed up Friday afternoon with brushes, paint and garden tools to clean up the pauper cemetery on
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My Latest: This afternoon, Barbara Hubbard was awarded +Pollstar's first-ever Lifetime Achievement Award. I caught up with Barbara at home on Tuesday, before she left for Nashville, and spent much of this week crafting her story to share with you. I hope you'll take a moment to check it out. +Robin Zielinski also produced a great video to accompany it--except that I talked all over it. #Pollstar   #LifetimeAchievement   #Concerts   #Promotion   #ACTS   #LasCruces   #LCNM   #PanAm   #Reba   #RebaMcEntire   #LCCVB  
LAS CRUCES >> In a large ranch house situated on 40 acres west of town, Barbara Hubbard sat at her dining room table.
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Here's one of the stories I spent most of the day yesterday chasing. I arrived at work to an email from Captain Jimenez of the NM State Police, denying Superintendent Rounds' claims that the agency was consulted before the decision was made not to cancel school yesterday. NMDOT told me that they provided no more information than the conditions & closures they sent out to their entire distribution list, but made NO recommendation as to whether school should be cancelled.
Friday was a doozy, but I took very seriously the responsibility of telling the other side of the story. It's front-page today, but you can also read it at the link attached... #Snowmageddon   #LasCruces   #LCNM   #LCPS   #SnowDay   #NewMexico   #School   #Education  
LAS CRUCES >> Thursday's snowfall has led to fallout for Las Cruces Public Schools Superintendent Stan Rounds after New Mexico State Police and the New Mexico Department of Transportation
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Americans only want to hear about deflated footballs right now.
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#Breaking   After ten years, the White Sands Int'l Film Festival is calling it quits. The money left in the coffers will be donated to benefit the media/film programs at a couple of local schools.  I hope you'll check out the story I've been chasing down for the last couple of days, and share your thoughts. #LasCruces   #LasCrucesSunNews   #WSIFF   #Film   #FilmFestivals   #LCNM   #IndependentFilm   #IndieFilm  
LAS CRUCES >> After ten years of entertaining film enthusiasts in Southern New Mexico, the White Sands International Film Festival is rolling in the red carpet and calling it quits.
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Damien Willis

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Looking for a job?  There are about 1,000 in Las Cruces that are looking for YOU, too.
 
That's the number of new jobs in Las Cruces! Up to 1,000 new jobs in southern New Mexico are looking for ready applicants. You can be ready by attending the Job To Career Readiness Bootcamp July 16 at DACC Career Services! Register by calling 575-527-7538.
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"I needed to accept what was put before me--be it a watery grave in Ireland's only fjord, or a return to the city and its grayer intensities, or a wordless exile in some steaming Cambodian swamp hole, or poems or no poems, or children or not, lovers or not, illness or otherwise, success or its absence. I would accept all that was put in my way, from here on through until I breathed my last."  ~Kevin Barry   #KevinBarry   #Quotes   #Acceptance   #Failure   #Poetry  
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And Trey Songz is "stuck in Montreal with nothing to do." Quite the story...
UPDATE: After this story was published, Chris Brown deleted his tweets. You can still read the text below.
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My latest: Friday's approval from the NMSU board of regents moved forward a plan to build a hotel next to the Las Cruces Convention Center. #NMSU   #Hospitality   #CVB   #Conventions   #Hotels   #Development   #EconomicDevelopment   #LasCruces   #LasCrucesSunNews   #LCNM   #NMPure   #NewMexico  
LAS CRUCES >> Plans to build a new hotel adjacent to the Las Cruces Convention Center could be a little closer to becoming a reality, after New Mexico State University's board of regents
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Last week, by sheer coincidence, I spent a lot of time writing about Mesilla Valley Habitat for Humanity. In this morning's Business section, you can read my profile on Habitat's ReStore, and the work that a small thrift store is doing to improve our community. I hope you'll take a moment to check it out. #HabitatForHumanity   #LasCruces   #ReStore   #Charity   #Business   #Profiles   #Journalism   #DoSomeGood   #DoGood   #Helping  
LAS CRUCES >> Outside the Habitat for Humanity ReStore, 2301 South Main St., boxes of donations line the entryway — clothing, toys and other household items.
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Damien Willis

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If you are interested in the future of digital journalism, this is something you MUST READ.  Twice, Jonah Peretti has helped revolutionize the way information is created, curated, and shared--with HuffPo, then Buzzfeed.  This is a LONG interview with the founder/editor, and it is enlightening.   #NewJournalism   #DigitalMedia   #DigitalJournalism   #Internet   #ViralJournalism   #HuffingtonPost   #Buzzfeed  
The media mogul (twice over) on being both contagious and sticky
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"You were all I could think about today."   #Love   #Heartache   #Heartbroken   #MissingYou   #SimplyStated   #LikeHemingway   #Touching  
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People
In his circles
1,403 people
Have him in circles
493 people
Briana Bagwell's profile photo
miname continental's profile photo
Craig Williams's profile photo
H.S. Morgan's profile photo
Sana Naaz's profile photo
GARETH PAUL SPIDER WHITE's profile photo
Dj Gezza's profile photo
Dana Howell's profile photo
Jimontai Lyles's profile photo
Work
Occupation
Reporter, Journalist & Columnist - Former Radio Program Director, Music Director & DJ - Freelance Writer & Copyeditor - Community Organizer
Skills
Writing - Radio Programming - Music Selection & Scheduling - Commercial Production - Editing - Marketing - Team Building
Employment
  • Las Cruces Sun-News
    Education Reporter, 2015 - present
    I am the Education reporter for the Las Cruces Sun-News. My beat includes Las Cruces Public Schools, the Gadsden Independent School District, Dona Ana Community College and New Mexico State University. I also do Feature reporting from on occasion.
  • #Inspired Mornings: Las Cruces
    Founder, 2013 - present
    Our goal is to bring together CREATIVE TYPES in Las Cruces, NM, across ALL disciplines. Whether you're a writer, graphic/visual artist, director, producer, musician, designer, actor, photographer, fashion designer, etc., we NEED you!
  • GETright Copy
    Owner & Personal Author, 2009 - present
    I am the owner of GETright Copy, a multifaceted service for the music and entertainment industries. Primarily, I write artist bios and provide copyediting services. Recently, however, we have also taken on some radio commercial production projects, as well as television voiceover work.
  • Las Cruces (NM) Sun-News
    Entertainment Columnist, 2004 - present
    Each week, I write a 500-600 word column which appears in "Pulse," the weekly entertainment tabloid in the Las Cruces (NM) Sun-News. Topics are of my choosing, and have ranged from the death of Norman Mailer to the role of the grill in a man's life. I have written about The Game's beef with 50 Cent, have interviewed Marlon Brando's best friend, have interviewed Krayzie Bone and written profile pieces on Buddy Guy, Hunter S. Thompson, Don Imus, Stanley "Tookie" Williams, Ana Castillo, The Imagine Peace Tower and more.
  • KHQT-FM (Hot 103)
    Program Director/Music Director/Afternoon DJ, 2001 - 2014
    I was responsible for all on-air programming for KHQT-FM (Hot 103), from talent development & coaching to brand management and station promotions. I selected and scheduled the music that we played on the station, and maintained the music library. I also hosted the station's afternoon show, weekdays from 3p-7p.
Places
Map of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has lived
Currently
Las Cruces, NM
Previously
Albuquerque, NM - Fort Sumner, NM
Story
Tagline
Newpaper Reporter & Columnist / Former Radio Program Director, Music Director & DJ / Freelance Writer, Copyeditor & Proofreader / Community Organizer
Introduction

I am a creative person, still searching for a medium. I am a passionate and proficient writer, and am slowly learning photography and design. I'm interested in typography, psychology, and etymology.

Somehow, these passions have led me to a 13-year career "on-the-air," and my writing has found a longtime home in the pages of the Las Cruces Sun-News. I've emceed numerous clubs and concerts, interviewed President Barack Obama (and First Lady Michelle), and scores of celebrities--some of whom I'm fortunate to count as friends. 

Still, I seek more. I'm always looking for ways to add more. I want to write more. I want to voice and produce more commercials for a larger audience. I want to learn everything I can, and put it to good use.

I want to give back to my community more. I want to organize more charity events, and build communities of writers and artists and photographers and musicians. I want to leave behind a dramatically better world for future generations. 

My objective is to stay busy, and to make the world a better place through my efforts, both at work and play. And to never stop learning.

Bragging rights
Former Program Director, 13+ Years On The Same Afternoon Shift, 525+ Consecutive Weekly Columns (Without Missing A Deadline), New Mexico Broadcaster Association DJ Personality Of The Year (2005), Las Cruces Sun-News Reader's Choice Award (Local Newspaper Columnist 2012), Las Cruces Young Professional of the Month (September 2014), Executive Marketing Committee - Las Cruces Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
Education
  • University of New Mexico
    English, 1996 - 2000
  • Ft. Sumner High School
    1992 - 1996
Basic Information
Gender
Male
Damien Willis's +1's are the things they like, agree with, or want to recommend.
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