A New Role and a Return Home to Detroit

by Shannon Paul on May 10, 2010

Image taken from helicopter of downtown Detroit skyline

It’s official: I recently accepted a new position as social media manager with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan (BCBSM) — and that move means a return home to Detroit.

I’ll be wrapping things up here in Seattle for the remainder of this month and starting the new role at BCBSM June 7.

As excited as I am to enter this new phase, it’s also bittersweet. I’ve made many great friends in Seattle and I will miss people I worked with for more than a year at PEAK6 Online in the Seattle and Chicago offices. I’ve learned so much this last year, and I’m thankful to have had the chance to attend Gnomedex and several Social Media Club events in Seattle and Chicago as a result of so much time spent in each city.

Leaving is never easy, especially when it involves a cross-country relocation, but returning to the Detroit community and family is something my husband and I are excited about. Plus, I know many of the people I connect with on a regular basis at social media events, blogs and Twitter will still be there.

I’m also extremely excited to begin my new role. What struck me most throughout this process, is that the BCBSM organization is heading down the social media path for the right reasons. They see it as an opportunity to better connect with all stakeholders, including consumers, so they can serve the needs of each. I think that’s very cool!

Working for a nonprofit healthcare organization also means I’ll get to learn all about social media communications with respect to HIPAA regulation — the challenges and solutions. As I continue to learn and grow professionally, I will look forward to sharing what I learn along the way here with you.

The past few years have been a wild ride and I am grateful you’re still here with me, no matter where I choose to call home.

Photo by ifmuth

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{ 46 comments… read them below or add one }

May 10, 2010 Brian Ambrozy 1

Cool! We’ll hit up Sandbaggers when you get back :p


May 11, 2010 Shannon Paul 2

Yeah right! :)


May 10, 2010 Kipp Bodnar 3

Congrats! Good luck on the move home.


May 10, 2010 Arik Hanson 4

Congrats, Shannon! My wife works at Blue Cross Blue Shield here in MN, so once you get going, please let me know if there’s anything I can do to help. Seattle will surely be sad to see you go, but happy you’re returning to the Midwest!



May 11, 2010 Shannon Paul 5

Thanks, Arik! I’m sure your wife has a lot of insight to share. Would love that :)


May 10, 2010 Heather Whaling 6

Exciting news, Shannon. Congrats, and welcome back to the midwest! :)



May 10, 2010 ryabbc 7

I’ve excited for your new adventure. I’ve been really intrigued by the intersection of social media and health (and you bring up the interesting privacy and HIPPA implications) for awhile. Partially due to personal experience (http://tinyurl.com/2b9lgyk)!

I think there’s a lot of good that can be accomplished in this field, but there’s still (an excitingly) large amount of figuring-out-best-practices to be done!


May 11, 2010 Shannon Paul 8

Thanks so much for sharing that link. I agree that there is a lot of potential in healthcare — both in how to use the social web to create more meaningful interactions with respect to health, and in figuring out where the boundaries need to be with respect to privacy, etc.

Thanks again!


May 10, 2010 Kneale Mann 9

Hey Shannon,

Great to finally meet you at Sobcon and congrats on the new gig. By the sounds of things, you and hubs will have a blast.



May 10, 2010 Kristy Bolsinger 10

Congratulations Shannon!!! We in Seattle are of course sad to see you go but super excited for your new opportunity! You’ll rock it!


May 10, 2010 Mack Collier 11

Congrats Shannon! Sounds like a great move for you and I’m sure you’ll be happy to be back in Detroit! m


May 10, 2010 Cosmin 12

Shannon – congrats on the new role. glad to hear you are heading back to Detroit.


May 10, 2010 Tac Anderson 13

I’m sad (you’ll be leaving Seattle) and happy for you (sounds like an exciting challenge) all at the same time.

I’ll miss seeing you around events but look forward to watching the amazing things you’ll be doing.


May 10, 2010 Kenneth Lim 14

Looks like you made your choice based on all the right reasons.

Congratulations, Shannon, and best of luck!


May 10, 2010 cheapsuits 15



May 10, 2010 Peter Chee 16

Congratulations! We’ve been lucky to have you here in Seattle.


May 10, 2010 Daria Steigman 17

Congratulations, Shannon, on the new gig. It sounds like a good fit, and being back home definitely has its advantages.


May 10, 2010 Erica Finley 18

Congratulations, Shannon! I’m hoping we’ll get a chance to connect now that you’re moving back to the D. I’m a big fan of your blog, and I can’t wait to hear about all of the cool things you’re doing for BCBSM!



May 10, 2010 Jeremy Tanner 19

Congrats Shannon! Save a few coneys for me.



May 10, 2010 Nikki Stephan 20

Awesome news, and congrats on the new position!

I completely understand the move is bittersweet, but you know we miss you in the D. :)


May 10, 2010 Ike 21

Good luck!


May 10, 2010 Mike K McClure 22

Congrats, Shannon! We look forward to having you back in the D, just in time for warm weather, too. And from a personal standpoint, I look forward to seeing your work in the healthcare arena.



May 10, 2010 Ashley Star 23

Congrats again Shannon and I look forward to meeting you soon!


May 10, 2010 Barbara Rozgonyi 24

Congrats on your new position Shannon! Looking forward to following your success at BCBSM. Sounds like this is perfecting timing for you and for them.


May 10, 2010 David B. Thomas 25

Congratulations, Shannon!


May 10, 2010 Shawn Collins 26

Good news – good luck with it!


May 10, 2010 Jennifer Richmond 27

Congratulations on your move back! I am also in the process or relocating back to Detroit after many years away. You may want to reach out to friend RePopulate Detroit on Facebook, a friend of mine runs it and is starting a movement for those of us returning. Its is very, very exciting.


May 10, 2010 jamiefavreau 28

Congrats!! Welcome back home!!


May 10, 2010 Shauna Nicholson 29

Awesome! Congrats Shannon! Can’t wait to see you!


May 10, 2010 Karen Swim 30

Congrats Shannon and welcome back! Looking forward to connecting at some meet-ups!


May 10, 2010 Mona Nomura 31

Shannon, I am so happy for you; so well deserved! You will do great things and so honored and humbled we are friends :)

See you soon!!!!!


May 10, 2010 Phil Baumann 32


Just so you know: healthcare is a mess and loaded with really odd personalities (some good, others not so much). Which is to say you’ll do just fine ;)

All the best to you. Make sure you join in on the #hcsm and #RNchat Twitter chats.




May 13, 2010 Shannon Paul 33

Phil – I’ve been following your blog for quite awhile! I will definitely make sure to check out #hcsm and #RNchat on Twitter. Thanks for the heads up and the well wishes :-)


May 10, 2010 Jacki Halas 34

Congrats! Good luck with your move. I look forward to meeting you soon.


May 10, 2010 Maya 35

So sad for us, but nothing like being close to family :)
Happy for you Shannon. Congrats!
And so glad we got to hang out a bit – you are always warm and brilliant.

I hope to see you somewhere soon, but let us figure out a happy hour for you before you leave!


May 11, 2010 Kathleen Norton-Schock 36

Welcome back.
We’ve missed you!!!!

(Ahhhhh…this must mark the beginning of a reversal of the Michigan Brain Drain! I am so glad!)

Hugs, and cocktails soon? (June, July, whatever?)
BTW, I have friends at BCBSM. Let me know if I can help with even more introductions.


May 11, 2010 Lucretia Pruitt 37

Congrats hon!!! BCBSM will be lucky to have you! :)


May 11, 2010 Jon Burg 38

Congrats! Great for you, great for BCBS, great for Detroit!


May 11, 2010 Ken Burbary 39

Congratulations on the exciting news Shannon! Looking forward to having you back in the D. Best of luck in the new role at BCBS!


May 11, 2010 Ari Herzog 40

It seems I just read your blog post announcing your move from Detroit. Now, you’re coming back. How fast time flies when you’re having fun!

You’re having fun, right? ;)


May 11, 2010 Dave Glenn 41

Congratulations Shannon. Welcome back to the D.


May 11, 2010 @abarcelos 42

Congratulations Shannon! Sounds like a great challenge. BCBS (RI) is a client of ours, and we too have HIPPA regulations to adhere to, more on the traditional media side.

Being back with family must be wonderful too!

Best of luck and as always, looking forward to hearing about your journey.


May 13, 2010 Shannon Paul 43


Thank you so much for the well wishes and congratulations. I’ve had a hard time responding to everyone and I feel incredibly fortunate that you all care enough to leave a comment.

Thanks again – I know who each of you are and appreciate your comments very much!


May 15, 2010 @erinlorraine 44

Welcome back to Michigan! Hope the new job is all you are hoping for.


August 11, 2010 Greg Matthews 45

Shannon: I must have been so engrossed in my own move OUT of health insurance that I missed your move INTO it! I hope that things are going great for you; if I can ever share any insights related to my experience at Humana, don’t hesitate to let me know.
Belated congratulations and good luck!


August 16, 2010 jessica 46

anyone that would want to work in that dump is a moron


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