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ARA Welcomes New Communications Manager to the Team

Apr 11 2023

ARA is proud to announce its newest team member, Courtney Baird, Manager of Communications & Partnerships. Courtney share this message with ARA members.

Hello everyone! My name is Courtney Baird, and I am the new Manager of Communications & Partnerships for ARA. 

In 2015, I started my professional career as a production assistant for WUSA9 in Washington, D.C. I was working on live newscasts, which meant I floor directed talent, ran the teleprompter, made on-the-fly changes that the Director would give me simultaneously. For most of my career I’ve worked in the entertainment industry for Discovery (now Warner Bros. Discovery). I was purely on the technology side for 3.5 years, making sure all programming, commercials, and promos in the United States, Latin America and Asia Pacific got to air and are aired correctly.

Although I gained a ton of knowledge on the technology side, my ultimate passion, at the time, was to produce programming. So, I started networking within the company and landed a gig with Science Channel where I helped produce multiple series, such as Impossible Engineering and Strange Evidence. After Discovery I spent 1.5 years as a producer for Curiosity Stream where I launched their linear programming to include ads. I then fell back into the hands of Warner Bros. Discovery for a quick 6-month stint as a coordinating producer working on the Shark Week Podcast and a few mini-series for Discovery+. 

Now, with all of that said, you might ask why I decided to move away from the entertainment industry. I can tell you right now that it wasn’t an easy decision, but I wanted to move on to make an impact working for a singular purpose. I missed having a ‘family’ in the workplace, and working contracts does not really allow you to get too attached to people. When I saw this job opening, I knew exactly what I wanted to move on to, and I am so excited to start making an impact within ARA.  

In my free time I go to the barn to see my horse, play piano, or just sit back enjoying life with friends and family. For me, life is all about the simple things. I grew up on a farm, so my love for farming has always been a part of my life. I learned how to work hard, take in the beauty of land and embrace what that land gives back to you. I am very eager to learn more about agriculture and gain an even deeper appreciation for what it takes to make all things agriculture happen. My goal within the next year is to buy a farm in Southern Maryland, but one day I want to have more than 50 acres where I have no neighbors in sight and produce crops of my own to live on.

For me, as soon as I cross over from the city into the countryside, my mind is completely at peace. Other than enjoying my time out there, I enjoy playing the piano, collecting Halloween snow globes, going antiquing, and just enjoy the simple things in life with family and friends.