About LAURA LAYDEN
My love for journalism sparked in high school.
Recognizing my love for writing and telling stories, my business teacher for a co-op program that allowed students to spend half the day at work, encouraged me to apply for a job at a local newspaper, The South Dade News Leader in Homestead, on Florida’s east coast. I got a job there as a clerk/typist. I had the opportunity to write stories, here and there, and saw reporters there in action. I was hooked.
I went on to major in journalism at the University of Florida in Gainesville. “Go Gators.”
After graduation, I worked for the Hollywood Sun in Broward County as an education reporter. A few months later, I became an assistant editor at South Florida magazine in Miami, where I interned during college.
I was driven back to newspapers when given an opportunity to become a business reporter at Miami Today, covering Miami-Dade County government.
Five years later, I needed a change _ professionally and personally. Newly married, my husband, Roy, and I moved to Southwest Florida, where I became a business editor at the Bonita Banner. About a year later, I moved to the downtown Naples office to become a business reporter for the Naples Daily, covering everything from agriculture to the economy.
When I’m not working, I love spending time with my family.
I have two children, Luke, a sixth grader with a big heart, and Alexis, a first grader with a big, bright smile. They keep me busy playing basketball, singing on Rock Band Wii, swimming and twirling.
I love movies, dancing, biking, gardening, taking photos and laughing with my husband, whose sense of humor keeps me going.Covering business keeps me busy. There's always something new to learn.
Gulf Coast grad known for big heart, big dreams
Published 05/23/2013 at 5:15 a.m.
Gulf Coast High's Schaeffer McHenry is known for bringing her fellow students together. Find out what she's done to be named her school's graduate of distinction.
Visitors brighten Collier's April tourism numbers
Published 05/20/2013 at 8 p.m.
Did the early Easter affect Collier County tourism numbers in a good or bad way?
Fiddler's Creek development suit moved from federal back to Collier court
Published 05/19/2013 at 5 p.m.
Construction in the Fiddler's Creek community east of Naples is ready to rebound, but a lawsuit over how bond money is spent is pending, now moved from federal court to Collier court. New parties have been added to the suit.
As prices decline, gold rush may be ending for Collier, Lee businesses
Published 05/19/2013 at 8 a.m.
The competition has heated up with more gold-buying businesses in town. Yet, falling prices discourage people from selling — and there was only so much yellow metal out there for locals to sell in the first place.
Estero community leaders embark on study of commercial land's future
Published 05/16/2013 at 7:51 p.m.
The Estero Council of Community Leaders has contracted with a nationally known consultant to better understand the community's future needs and to help identify other potential uses for vacant land.
FGCU foundation declines developer's offer of 600-acre land donation
Updated 05/14/2013 at 7:58 p.m.
FGCU President Wilson Bradshaw says the FGCU foundation won't vote on a 600-acre land donation and that he is canceling a non-binding letter of intent to accept the donation, which was endorsed by the university trustees.
Anatomy of a deal: How Lee came up No. 1 in car giant Hertz's search
Published 05/12/2013 at 8 a.m.
It started nearly a year ago, when a business relocation scout approached a Lee County economic development official. A Collier County business development employee was contacted also. The company approached local officials, it wasn't a matter of local officials reaching ...
Hertz looks at temporary office sites along Immokalee Road, U.S. 41
Published 05/10/2013 at 5 a.m.
Hertz's big move to Estero prompts guessing game as to whether they will park a temporary location in Collier County.
Hertz move talk of economic symposium in Estero
Updated 05/09/2013 at 5:44 p.m.
A Fortune 500 company's relocation was a hot topic at an Estero business symposium Thursday.
Estero businesses, residents excited for Hertz relocation
Published 05/09/2013 at 4:54 a.m.
Hertz's move to Estero will place hundreds of Hertz employees and their families closer to Estero businesses owners who have been waiting for the local economy to stabilize.
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