Lesley has a knack for getting to the story behind the story. A former broadcast journalist, she has a unique way of getting rich story-making details from people by the third question.
Lesley uses her passion for stories and knack for data-driven planning to craft award-winning communication strategies, advice and counsel for K-12 education leaders. A former president of the National School Public Relations Association, Lesley leads the Nichols Strategies team in all things communication.
She was formerly the Public Relations Coordinator for the Tuscaloosa City Schools, where she earned three Gold Medallion Awards, the highest honor from (NSPRA) for her strategic communications work. Lesley was awarded Gold Medallion Awards in 2016, 2018 and 2020. She was also the 2020 AASA, The School Superintendents Association’s Women in School Leadership Award recipient. Lesley earned her Accreditation in Public Relations in 2013.
She holds a Masters in Strategic Communication from Troy University and a B.A. in Telecommunication and Film with an emphasis on broadcast news from The University of Alabama.
Lesley has an affinity for reading and learning new things, and it is not uncommon for her to check out too many books at the library.
When she is not counseling Superintendents, Lesley is chauffeuring her two children to various extra-curricular activities. Lesley and her husband reside in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, with their aforementioned children and dog, Oakley. Roll Tide.
Why Public Education
My mom, dad, grandmother, great-grandmother, cousin, and aunt are all public school educators. I ran from it and instead went to journalism. In the end, I was pulled back into the family business, where I believe that public education represents the first, best, and only hope for many children.
Public School Flashback
My best memory is in high school, where I did it all: cheerleader, marching band, Scholars Bowl Team, student council, theatre, track, and yearbook. There probably wasn’t a club or activity I didn’t at least try. That’s why I am all in for ensuring that students and their families know about every opportunity available to them … and that only happens with strong communication efforts.