Communications and outreach specialist


Friday, 03 March 2017

It is with great pleasure that the Nebraska Catholic Conference announces a brand-new position, the Communications and Outreach Specialist (COS), and our newest staff member, Lauren Garcia, who will fill this position.

The COS will assist the executive director of the NCC to foster a robust public understanding of the principles of Catholic social teaching and the mutual public policy interests of our three bishops of Nebraska. The COS will be responsible for devising and implementing strategies for establishing a communications network to advance the NCC’s objectives to members of the media, clergy, diocesan staff, parishioners, legislators, and the general public. The COS will also be responsible for planning and carrying out a program of information/education, grassroots advocacy, and social media development to advance the NCC’s legislative agenda and issue education.

In short, the COS will undertake intentional efforts to do statewide outreach to both Catholic and secular audiences to promote the policy and issue advocacy that the NCC undertakes on behalf of our Bishops. While the foundations for this work have been well established by my predecessors, Jim Cunningham and Greg Schleppenbach, the NCC is particularly excited to have a staff member who will be singularly devoted to this mission of outreach.

I am pleased to announce that Lauren Garcia—an incredibly talented young lady—will be the NCC’s first ever Communications and Outreach Specialist.

Lauren is a Texas native, but I am certain she bleeds Husker Red like the rest of us. She received her undergraduate degree from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in journalism and mass communications, and advertising. While attending UNL, she was actively involved with the Newman Center. Since graduation, Lauren had been working with FOCUS (Fellowship of Catholic University Students). She served in a variety of roles, including campus missionary and a director of collegiate outreach. Most recently, Lauren served as a philanthropy officer for FOCUS and was based out of Lincoln.

Lauren has a knack for building personal relationships, creative writing, and public speaking. She has a deep understanding of the Catholic faith and the critical role of the New Evangelization, and strives to live out holiness. All of these talents will intersect well with Lauren’s ardent desire to engage in the political sphere and promote the policy interests of the NCC across the state. 

As Pope Francis recognized in last year’s World Communications Day message: “Communication, wherever and however it takes place, has opened up broader horizons for many people. This is a gift of God which involves great responsibility.”

The NCC looks forward to expanding our horizons in the field of communications and outreach. We hope that this work creates additional moments for encounters with the Truth—Jesus Christ—who motivates every aspect of our work on behalf of Holy Mother Church and the common good. This will be no small task, but the Lord’s grace is sufficient.

As we continue in our work, we intend to have a more robust, consistent presence in various forms of media, but especially through our Facebook (“Nebraska Catholic Conference”), Twitter (@NECatholic), and website (www.necatholic.org) where you can sign up for our CANN (Catholic Advocacy Network of Nebraska) list to receive regular legislative updates and action alerts. 

I encourage you to take a moment and send Lauren an e-mail ( lgarcia@necatholic.org) to welcome her, wish her the best, and let her know of your prayers. Or give Lauren a call (402.477.7517) and tell her your parish wants to host the NCC to give a parish talk or know what more the parish can do to promote the public policy interests of our bishops.
Pray for us as we begin this new journey!