Rickie Roberts lives and breathes media.
Broadcast, print, digital, social — if it’s media, Roberts says, she can sell it and manage it. Her advertising career, which includes a 13-year teaching stint, has taken her to half a dozen states and even more companies.
After 36 years, she’s done it all, but she wants to do more. As The Daily Record’s new advertising director, she’ll get the chance.
Roberts, 59, comes to The Daily Record during a period of change for the newspaper, which is owned by Minneapolis-based Dolan Media Company. Roberts will lead an almost entirely new staff of sales representatives, which she said she views as “a great opportunity to bring new eyes to any given product or process.”
Roberts said she plans to bring her extensive and diverse experience to bear in the new role.
“I’ve spent my entire life selling and managing media through a lot of change and a lot of growth, and I’m looking forward to bringing that same focus here,” she said.
Roberts spent the early years of her career in broadcast, including managerial roles at television stations in California and Massachusetts. In 1995, she started as an adjunct professor at Temple University in Philadelphia, teaching media sales and management.
She stayed at Temple until 2008. By that time, her three children — now ages 20 to 29 — no longer required as much attention.
“I had three young kids, so teaching four classes was easier than [a full-time job], but when they grew up, I was itching to get back into the office,” she said.
So, is Roberts a workaholic?
“Absolutely,” she says. “I have a passion for my work and I love what I do. When I’m not working, I miss it like crazy.”
Roberts has worked in Baltimore before, as a sales manager for the Baltimore Sun Media Group’s magazine division from 2012 to 2013. After that, she headed to Carbondale, Illinois, for a temporary assignment as regional advertising director for GateHouse Media Inc.
On the weekends, Roberts heads back to Haddon Heights, New Jersey, where she lives with her husband, Brian, and their American bulldog, Oscar (she has an apartment in Baltimore during the week).
She also likes to swim. She’ll do 75 to 100 laps per session, listening to audiobooks on her waterproof iPod. Her philosophy in the pool isn’t much different than her philosophy at work.
“Running got to be too hard on my knees, so I started swimming,” she said. “And I really adore it. Once I started, I just couldn’t stop.”