New Mexico leader Cheryl Fallstead shows dedication to NFPW, enthusiasm for profession

Cheryl Fallstead is a leader in both the New Mexico affiliate and NFPW. She is a real go-getter who sets a plan and uses hard work and determination to meet her goals. She is dependable, enthusiastic and shares her passion of “loving what you do” with all she meets. She is a past New Mexico Communicator of Achievement. She is a unique and unbelievable NFPW member. Meet my friend Cheryl Fallstead.

Name: Cheryl Fallstead

Cheryl Fallstead

Cheryl Fallstead and her two little dogs.

City and State: Las Cruces, New Mexico

Affiliate and any leadership positions:

President of Las Cruces Press Women, President of New Mexico Press Women, and membership co-director for NFPW.

Years a member of NFPW:

Good question! My first conference was 2009 in San Antonio. I believe I became a member of NFPW that year.

Tell us a little about you.

While I always knew I wanted to be a writer, I wasn’t sure how it would all work out. I was also interested in teaching. I got my bachelors in journalism back in 1985 and hoped to become a full-time freelance writer. Within the next decade, I was teaching full-time and became a principal instead. I imagined freelancing during the summer breaks, but that never happened.

Eight years ago, my husband and I moved from California to New Mexico. At the time, I said that I wanted to get back to freelance writing, teach part-time for the community college, and do some volunteer work. It turns out that is exactly what I am doing! I edit a monthly for seniors, write for a variety of magazines, and do some PR work for local music groups. I also co-hosted a weekly radio show with fellow NFPW member Bud Russo, and then for two years we wrote, voiced and produced a daily two-minute segment for public radio stations called “New Mexico Mile Markers.” I teach graphic design, Photoshop, photography and computer illustrator for the community college and volunteer with press women at the local, state and national levels. All according to plan.

For fun, artistic release, and personal growth, I am learning to paint in both watercolor and acrylics. I also enjoy hiking and being outdoors with my husband and two LWDs (little white dogs) and exploring New Mexico.


Cheryl Fallstead, right, with her father Roger McCandless and Heidi Swedberg, center. Swedberg played the unlucky Susan (George’s fiancé) on “Seinfeld” and is now a ukulele performer and instructor.

Any career advice you would give?

Find something you love doing and become very good at it. I spent too much time doing jobs I didn’t enjoy because they paid well. Now I say, “Do what you love. Love what you do.”

Which talent would you most like to have?

I wish I could sing very well! I have great admiration for those people with beautiful voices.

If you could live anywhere, where would it be?

I do love New Mexico, but part of me thinks I would love living someplace like Hawaii. I miss the ocean.

What book are you reading?

We’ve been moving, so I haven’t had a lot of time to read, but I recently started a book written by the mother of a fellow NMPW/NFPW member, Leora Zeitlin. Her mother is Marianne Langner Zeitlin and the book is “Motherless Child.”

What would people be surprised to learn about you? 

Despite always believing I had no musical talent, I started learning to play the ukulele with my dad and a friend. We co-founded the Las Cruces Ukes, a community group of ukulele enthusiasts and recently performed at the lovely Rio Grande Theatre in Las Cruces and received a standing ovation. That was fun! I also performed on stage at a ukulele conference with all the headliner talent (not because I’m so good, but because I won a drawing).

Why is your affiliate and NFPW important to you?

As a freelancer, I don’t often have the opportunity to spend time with other writers – except through press women. Membership and active participation in the organization have introduced me to fellow professional communicators around the country. My fellow members have been supportive and instructional. For example, two members helped Bud and I when we needed to learn how to produce the sound for our radio shows. We couldn’t have done it without their help!

Way to follow you:

My work Facebook is Desert Moon Communications (a page that needs more of my attention). I’m on Twitter at @CherylFallstead (which also needs more of my time).

Explore posts in the same categories: Uncategorized

Tags: , , ,

You can comment below, or link to this permanent URL from your own site.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s