East Carolina University graduate and Jacksonville, N.C. native Elizabeth Lauten ’07 is serving as a CNN News correspondent, in a guest reporting role for the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla.
Lauten was one of six winners of CNN’s “Your Political Ticket” iReport Convention Contest. She and two other reporters received an all-expense paid trip to the Republican convention, while three others will cover the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte Sept. 3-6.
The reporters will cover the conventions from first-person video commentary and on-air reporting, photography coverage and interviews with convention attendees and local residents.
“I heard about the contest through a friend. It started off as a joke and I said ‘let’s make it campaign style,’ which is different from typical videos,” Lauten said. “I thought I could get it out there and use my old broadcasting skills.”
“It’s kind of crazy looking back at where I am now from being in Jacksonville 10 years ago,” Lauten said. “Things are finally coming around full circle from then. A couple of years ago I wouldn’t have even said that I would be a correspondent for CNN.”
Lauten is social and earned media manager at Purple Strategies firm in Washington, D.C. She also writes movie and television reviews for Miss A, an online publication. Lauten previously served as press secretary for Republican congressman Joe Walsh and as a new media political manager for the Republican National Committee.
“I’m not nervous about going at all because I went to last convention as a volunteer,” Lauten said. “For me, it’s a different angle and I’m looking forward to making the most out of this opportunity and trying out as many things as I can.”