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Need a hand? Barbara Arnold, a seasoned business executive and educator, is ready to help…from strategy to nuts and bolts. Want to know more? BIO. Work samples? PORTFOLIO. Her BLOG focuses on Mentors who have given her a hand and Proteges she has guided. Leader. Educator. Communicator. That’s Barbara.


Lead, Follow or Get Out of the Way. Barbara has experience in the education, energy, high tech, healthcare and nonprofit markets. She has led virtual teams around the world and rolled out initiatives globally. She also has built, managed, and dismantled teams stateside face-to-face. A spokesperson for major corporations, she has coached executives on corporate communications strategy, including media relations, employee communications, government relations, and community relations. She is a keen manager of people, resources, money, and time.


Whether teaching adults after hours at a major corporation, or military who are earning their bachelor’s degree on a fast track, or undergraduates at a public state university, Barbara inspires her students to realize their dreams. Her warm and caring manner belies the fact that she demands the best from her students and won’t accept mediocre performance ever. She also stays ahead of the curve with regards to curriculum. For example, she integrated social media and technology into her marketing, advertising, public relations, and sales curriculum; at times ahead of her students and definitely in advance of the accreditation team. Known for her interactive teaching style, students have videotaped her on their cell phones and threatened…


Barbara has served as a spokesperson for major corporations and nonprofit organizations. She knows how to write it, pitch it, place it, and grab it for the impressions and the expressions. She can “translate” complex concepts into plain English. She has coached executives and taken them out of their comfort zones. Like the button-down white shirt exec who wore jeans for the first time for an employee conference. Transformation. Or the nuclear engineer who learned that to communicate his technology to the masses, he needed to bring it down to the level of his 12-year-old daughter. Understanding. Barbara even knows there are times the communicator keeps her mouth shut…during M&A and IPO silent periods.

April 16, 2011

Springtime in Wisconsin. Forty mph winds! Snow! High winds blew down a very tall pine tree in front of Schofield Hall at UW-Eau Claire. Missed the building. No one hurt. Time to visit Green Oasis Gardens Grand Opening, take a look at my hanging basket, and pick up some potting soil.

Scott Cutlip

When I first met Scott Cutlip, I really didn’t know who he was and how famous he was. He was so down-to-earth and approachable. I was a student at the University of Wisconsin-Madison walking down the hall on the 5th floor of Vilas Hall, when he happened to call me into his office. He was a professor and had that rumpled, elder statesman look. I was a journalism major who wrote for the Daily Cardinal, a kid in t-shirt and jeans.  He sat me down and asked me if I’d ever considered a career in public relations. I answered that I didn’t even know what public relations was. And, he handed me a brochure called “Why Girls…


My dad was a bridge builder. He was a character too. Anyone who met him always remembered him. He had that kind of personality. What I’m most grateful to my dad for is his sense of adventure. He was a risk-taker. And, he lived life to its fullest, whether diving or flying. If not for my dad, I might have stayed in the Midwest my entire life. Because of him, I had the courage to step out of my comfort zone, and go on adventures around the world. Thanks Dad!


My mom was a teacher. To teach is to touch a life, and my mom touched lots of lives, myself included. She dreamed of being a dress designer, made many of her own clothes, and even created her own Florida casual wear resort line called “Doodlebugs by Dode.” Her parents encouraged her to get a teaching degree to fall back on. She took their advice, and never looked back. A home economics graduate, she taught hundreds of teenagers how to cook and sew. In her spare time, after her children were raised, she taught adults, primarily women, the lost arts that she knew so well: embroidery, knitting, and needlepoint. She gave me so many gifts, too many…


Welcome to the Heartland…where the rivers flow on with creativity…and bridges span the waterways…connecting people and closing gaps with words. Right now, with the spring thaw, the river is surging and bubbling up over its banks on the verge of cresting. Come with me for a walk along the shore. We can watch the eagles soar. Or join me in a kayak…riding the waves, going with the flow, and paddling…just barely…with the ducks. In my heart, I am a communicator. Listening. Processing. Soliciting Feedback. Through the twists and turns of my career, communications has been at its core. Along the way, mentors have guided me, and I’m grateful. This is my story; enjoy the ride.

Barbara Arnold

Competent. Compassionate. Connector. Change Agent. Coach. Comeback after Caregiving. Look at what she’s done! Get ready for her next act!