Debra E. Ross, Publisher, KidsOutAndAbout.com
Debra E. Ross is founder, publisher, and CEO of Kids Out And About, LLC. The company publishes KidsOutAndAbout.com, launched in 2001, and BeyondTheNest.com, launched in 2016. The sites, which are presented under the umbrella of EntertainmentCalendar.com, provide comprehensive calendar and resource lists celebrating each of 45 local regions across the U.S. and Canada. KidsOutAndAbout's focus is on activities for kids, teens, and families; its readers are 85% parents and 15% grandparents. BeyondTheNest focuses on arts, culture, and recreation for grownups. Originally founded in 2001 as a community web site for parents in Rochester, NY, KidsOutAndAbout.com started expanding out of Western New York in late 2010. The combined sites currently attract 6 million unique visitors per year, and over 400,000 opt-in readers receive a weekly e-newsletter filled with things to do both in their local area and virtually. Deb's weekly "Notes from Deb" column at the top of the KidsOutAndAbout.com newsletters is celebrating its 20th year of publication in 2021.
As publisher, Deb leads a team of content managers whose mission is to celebrate each local region's best opportunities and thereby help sustain communities. Click here for a coast-to-coast 2021 media kit.
Community Organizations / Volunteer Efforts
- Current chair for the Rochester area
- Member of the National Task Force on the 2024 Eclipse
- Member, Visitor Industry Council since 2010
- VIC Chair, 2018 (theme: Measuring Success (colloquially known as "Fun with Numbers, by Deb")
- Past chair of various committees, including Families with Kids and Museums & Attractions Recovery
- Vice Chair, Board of Trustees
- Chair, Marketing Committee
- Vice Chair, Visitor Engagement Committee
- Liaison to Brand Refresh task force
- Liaison to U of R Goergen Institute for Data Science partnership projects
- Probably other stuff
A Magical Journey Thru Stages not-for-profit community youth theatre
- Vice Chair, board of directors
- Lead volunteer for 2020 Online Toy Drive (raised $71,000)
- Family media sponsor and on-air presence for annual toy drive since 2010
University of Rochester Goergen Institute for Data Science: Capstone project mentor for data science students
Other media appearances
Deb appears regularly on television and radio in upstate New York and, since the pandemic made Zooming such a thing, around the country. Since 2009, she has been the weekly Friday morning guest on Stephens Media Group's Rochester stations WARM 101.3 and Fickle 93.3. She is currently the Saturday morning guest on WEBR (Buffalo). During the 2020 pandemic in spring and early summer (when demand for online activity was highest), she was the producer and presenter of a daily radio segment for PRX about what was happening online for families with kids.
Seasons and Reasons: A Parent's Guide to Cultivating Great Kids
Deb's book Seasons and Reasons: A Parent's Guide to Cultivating Great Kids, was released in March 2015. It is a compilation of short essays on parenting that recognizes that we fundamentally parent by the season: A family's rhythms are governed in large part by the weather, school schedules, and holidays. Chapters include:
- The Necessary Skill of Time Travel
- Zoned for Discomfort
- Haul that Sled with your Brain
- The Road Back from Stupid
- Table-Surfing Mad
- Failure as the Best Option
- Taking the Fish to Church
- Fear Works
- A Watched Maple Tree Never Explodes
...and about 70 more.
Debra's next book, currently in development, is entitled Raising Future Entrepreneurs.
Talks, Lectures, and Presentations
Deb is available for public talks on the following topics:
Business / Regional Tourism
- 2024 Total Solar Eclipse: What's coming, how our community is organizing, how you can be involved
- Social media access & other trends of family audiences, 2016 - 2020
- Coronavirus and comfort: Changing data about what makes the public feel safe
- Event access trends before & during the pandemic: Do virtual experiences rule?
- Measuring business success
- Raising Future Entrepreneurs
- Your Kids Will Be Rich
- Effortless Cultural Literacy: Going Out and About With Your Kids
- Working from Home While Homeschooling
- Help Your Kids Fail
KidsOutAndAbout / BeyondTheNest regional sites
Deb lives in Rochester, NY with her mathematician husband David Ross. Together, they successfully launched two daughters, Madison and Ella, who are now young adults. For more information or to schedule Deb for a talk, contact her at email@example.com.