Brandon is a senior writer for the Long Beach Business Journal.
Can you tell us a little about yourself and what made you want to be a writer for a publication such as the Long Beach Business Journal?
After high school, I enrolled at California State University, Long Beach, where I was studying to become an English teacher. After several semesters, I dropped out of school to pursue a career in music and spent the next five years touring the world. In fall 2013, I decided to go back to school. My first semester at Long Beach City College I took a magazine writing class and fell in love with journalism. After that, school was all journalism classes and conferences representing the school’s newspaper and magazine. The morning of my graduation, June 2016 (a Thursday), I had an interview with the Long Beach Business Journal (LBBJ). I was hired the following Monday. To be able to work for a publication in the city I was born and raised, particularly directly after graduating with an AA, when so many people my age and younger struggle to find work in their field of study is incredible.
What is your favorite story you’ve covered?
The LBBJ used to have a section that would feature small businesses – a photo and a quick write up for each. I would interview the owners, write the stories and sometimes take the photos. Small businesses don’t often get a chance to be in the spotlight and the owners were always ecstatic and so grateful for the opportunity to showcase what they have created from the ground up. In all, I wrote about more than 125 small businesses.
Who is your dream interview?
This is an impossible question, really. There are infinite people that would be interesting and worthy of being interviewed. Small business owners, seniors, community leaders, government officials at every level, entertainers, teachers – everyone has a story to tell. There is one story idea I have been sitting on for years that would require me to interview numerous musicians from bands I admire, frequently listen to and watch perform, but I’m going to keep that to myself . . . for now.
What is something you’d like to share with our followers?
I have lived in Long Beach my entire life – 31 years. Before working at the LBBJ, I was woefully unaware of anything that had to do with city government. There were neighborhoods in Long Beach that I didn’t even know existed. There were crises at the city, county and state level that I was ignorant to. My job as a journalist, particularly for a localized publication, has taught me the importance of being engaged with, or at least aware of, what is happening in the city you call home. I love my city more because of it.