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Business to Bees:
Jeannette Cabanis-Brewin, Business Writer & Bee Keeper

By Melissa Palmer and Ian Reece

Major in the field that interests you

“If you want to be a journalist, do not major in just journalism. Major in another field that is of interest to you, ” advises Business Journalist Jeannette Cabanis-Brewin.

Ever since Cabanis-Brewin was young, she has always enjoyed reading and writing poetry. At the age of 11, while reading about Haiti’s violent dictatorship, she developed a true interest in journalism. Stories that exposed the violence and corruption Haiti had endured made her want to use journalism to investigate the world of hate and corruption that the United States is sheltered from. This interest and curiosity led Jeannette to acquiring a major in the English field.

First job in business journalism

Cabanis-Brewin began her schooling for her bachelor’s degree at Point Park College in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; however, before graduating she left to begin working in the publishing industry. At the age of 40, Jeannette decided to go back to complete her degree in English at Western Carolina University. She was inspired by teachers, especially Dr. Railsback and Dr. Nicholl.

She got her first job in business journalism as a co-op intern while at WCU. Being around others who shared the same passion fueld her interest in English. Jeannette graduated summa cum laude from WCU in 1995 and was hired by the same company at which she completed her internship. She later did graduate work at WCU in Organizational Change.

Publishing books and poems

Today, Cabanis-Brewin works for the Center for Business Practices (CBP) where she is the editor in chief of the research division of a management consulting firm. CBP does original business research and publishes the results in a variety of formats. Jeannette, with the help of others, publishes one to three books a year and writes an online newsletter, a blog and articles for the business press.

Working with a virtual company allows her to work from home and enjoy more leisure time. Jeannette has published a variety of books and poems outside of her work as well. These articles and poems are environmentally themed and center on the land and animals near her home.

Secret of her success

Cabanis-Brewin still lives in Western North Carolina with her husband and has four daughters. She owns an orchard, maintains a vegetable garden, and keeps chickens and bees. Jeannette finds inspiration in the world around her. She is very passionate about the environment, which motivates her poems and writing. Jeannette won the Longleaf Press award in 2007 with her book of poems, Patriate.

Cabanis-Brewin has been very successful in the world of journalism. Her passion and love for English is apparent in her work. Jeannette advices anyone majoring in English, “Don’t just learn the nuts and bolts of writing. Be an expert in some field. Have background in what you’re writing about and be open to the other side of the story. As a writer you must have curiosity and pay attention to details, while always asking, 'Why?'”

These profiles were created by the Karen Greenstone's English 303 class (spring 2009)
and edited for the web by Mary Adams's English 303 class (summer 2009).

Students in Mary Adams's English 303 class (fall 2009) wrote additional profiles.