About Vanessa

I was born on Manhattan’s Upper West Side to a writer father and artist/prima ballerina mother. I spent formative years battling culture shock moving between New York and the extreme bucolic splendor of Washington State’s Olympic Peninsula. After earning a B.A. from NYU with a major in classical civilization and minors in journalism and art history, which proved excellent for solving crossword puzzles. I started a career in radio and newspapers in Gallup, N.M. that would eventually lead me back to the Pacific Northwest.

There are various jobs I did you won’t see on my resume: waitress, bartender, and owner of a dating service. I once lived in tiny cabin on the woods, off the grid, and spent a lot of time figuring out ways not to freeze. I froze anyway.

Eventually I became freelance travel writer, playwright, producer and commercial/voice-over actor. When I needed a bigger universe, I found one in 2005 – Los Angeles. There I began a career as corporate communicator and social media strategist companies that include one of the most environmentally progressive utilities in the world, and one of the leading nonprofit health care providers in California to communicate on behalf of its robust philanthropy programs. I was also a personal finance columnist at Forbes.com. Oh! And I have a sustainable travel and lifestyle blog I hope you’ll visit, www.greenmeansgotravel.com

During all this, I somehow became lucky enough to become a mom to a magical baby girl, Grace Magnolia.  I wrote a book about getting there called ROCK NEEDS RIVER

Vanessa McGradyAbout Vanessa