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Biography

Darla Blakes, M.S.

For nearly a decade, Darla Blakes, MS has been a storyteller. She’s been telling the stories of artists, products, projects, and public and private entities. Telling the stories that move the special and unique off of virtual and physical shelves and into the intimate and personal lives of others. A scholar and practitioner, Ms. Blakes has engaged this work as a specialist for this new age of rapidly changing marketing, branding, and public relations. A Gen Xer whose unique position serves as a bridge between the traditional and the advanced, Ms. Blakes philosophical approach to channels, messaging, and story frames is one that is tuned in to the trends of the tech savvy millennial as well as the old rebel guard of the Baby Boomer. Accordingly, she designs campaigns that build off of classic, reality-based marketing models with targeted social media strategies, maximizing her reach to the markets of desire. From designing brand advocacy social media campaigns for The Melisizwe Brothers that grew their monthly subscribers by 100% and increased their Facebook followers by 40K in less than four weeks, to project managing the marketing and P.R. campaigns of three back-to-back album releases by singer-songwriter Teri Tobin in a single marathon year, the latter leading to a SoulTracks Readers Choice Award nomination and an Independent Music Award win. An honor graduate of Southern New Hampshire University with a Masters of Science in Marketing and a Graduate Certificate in Social Media Marketing, Ms. Blakes is also an affiliate member of the Society for Marketing Professional Services, an elite marketing association.

In addition to working with such companies as IBM, KPMG, Accenture, La Madeleine, Towers Watson, and the Alliance of Professionals and Consultants, Inc. in varying capacities, in 2009, Darla Blakes launched her boutique marketing and public relations firm, Tobin Blakes Group. Through her past business relationships and current entrepreneurship, Ms. Blakes has developed scores of relationships and partnerships with media, influencers, and content originators to support an ever-growing client base of strivers, creatives, tech innovators, and business developers, helping each to tell their most effective story and strategically engage their desired client base to become internationally recognizable brands.

 

Ms. Blakes is also a Professor of Marketing at Southern New Hampshire University (COCE). She is a member of the esteemed National Society of Leadership and Success and pays it forward as a mentor to other leaders just as she was mentored in her hard-won achievements. A mentee of leadership and organizational development experts like Alan “Bud” Taylor, whose critically acclaimed Customer Driven Change has influenced countless leadership experts, Ms. Blakes also credits her leadership success in adroitly managing the careers of artists Toni Redd and Teri Tobin to mentors Lloyd Richmond, owner of Platinum Finger/Zoe’s Baby Music Publishing, and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Curator, Joel Newman. Collectively, these men poured into Ms. Blakes their industry knowledge and strategies while encouraging her own then-pioneering efforts in online marketing as a vehicle for client success. Following the examples of her grandmother and recently deceased husband, John H. Blakes, Jr., Ms. Blakes lives by a five-prong mantra of faith, tenacity, initiative, reciprocity, and professionalism as her guide to wellness in both leadership and life. These tools, studies, and mentors uniquely inform her lifestyle and wellness blog housed at darlablakes.com, one intended to support the wellness and weight loss journey of thousands of followers.

A passionate fighter in the war against breast cancer and diabetes, Ms. Blakes has volunteered with such organization as the Susan G. Komen Foundation and the March of Dimes. A lifelong learner, Darla Blakes also possesses a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Le Tourneau University in Longview, Texas, where she graduated cum laude. An aspiring model, author, and master baker, Ms. Blakes is a resident of Las Vegas, Nevada, where she is continuing the work of challenging lives and spinning inspirational tales for clients of all walks of life.