Dietetic Career Spotlight on Regina Ragone, Food Director of Family Circle Magazine.
By SARAH KOSZYK, MA RDN on DECEMBER 3, 2015
Meet Regina Ragone, MS, RDN, who is the food director of Family Circle Magazine. Developing and testing recipes, writing copy, editing, taking food photos, and researching is just a part of her impressive job. Read on to learn more about the editorial side to dietetics. – Sarah
What attracted you to the field of nutrition and dietetics?
I struggled with my weight as a kid until I learned from my mom, who was a dietitian, how to cook and eat wholesome, nourishing foods. She taught me that preparing fresh food that you enjoyed eating was the key to being happy and healthy and I wanted to teach other people how to do that.
Your Job Title:
– Food Director Family Circle Magazine/Partner
Company you are with now:
– Twitter: @ReginaRagone
– Instagram: FITFOODIERD
A typical (or not so typical) day-in-the-work-life for you:
We are always working on 3 issues of the magazine at once—one we are developing concepts for, another that is in process, so we are testing recipes and writing copying for and finally one that is being laid out, edited and shipped. In between all of that, we research the ideas we are working on while we look out for new trends. I am responsible for overseeing the 30-35 recipes that our developed for our food section and tasting/critiquing them as they are prepared in our test kitchen. I or someone else on my team has to go to photo shoots to make sure everything is our food section is photographed correctly. I also have to oversee the nutrition related copy that is generated from our health department.
We are lucky enough to have a lot of companies come to our test kitchen to present new products and I also get to go to interesting press dinners and events.
On evenings, weekends and vacation days I work with my partner Dr. Susan Mitchell to make current topics in nutrition come to life with videos and recipes that appear on our website.
How did you get your current job in dietetics?
From the beginning of my career I knew I wanted to work with food and nutrition and communicate my knowledge to the masses so I focused a lot of my volunteer and internship time in that area (Restaurant Business Magazine/Le Cordon Bleu and other cooking schools and Canyon Ranch Spa). I was lucky that after a lot of perseverance, I finally got a position in a magazine test kitchen. Over the years I held numerous positions at several different magazine as well as a stint at a large food company and two PR firms. Between my experience and RDN credential I’ve been able to carve a niche out for myself in the competitive magazine world.
What skills were you born with and what skills have you learned along the way?
Empathy and a desire to help people. I also have a great sense of humor, which helps on all fronts.
I’ve had to learn organization, a business sense, how to manage people and most of all to be flexible in this changing economy.
What advice do you have for others wanting to be just as successful and fulfilled as you?
Find out what you love to do and find people who do it. I think networking is key so volunteer. It’s a great way to try new things and make contacts that are priceless.
If you could be paid for your job with something other than a paycheck, what would it be?
More time to focus on the projects I love and really care about. There just doesn’t seem to be enough time in the day to do everything.