Our Staff + Contributors


Laura Byrne – Creative Director + Editorial Manager

Laura Byrne is an award-winning former television news journalist who spent 15+ years in newsrooms across the state of Florida including Sarasota, Tallahassee, Fort Myers and right here in Tampa Bay where she still freelances on occasion. She covered the political beat, crime beat and every day breaking news during her time in Florida newsrooms, but is now focused on sharing positive news stories and events with families in Tampa Bay. She is a proud mommy of two little boys who keep her on her toes and laughing every day. Her goal is to inspire families just like yours to get out and play and experience all that Tampa Bay and our great state of Florida have to offer! She encourages you to share your stories and upcoming events so we can spread the good news.

Contact Laura

Anu Varma Panchal

Anu Varma Panchal – Associate Editor + Writer

Associate Editor Anu Varma Panchal has a master’s degrees in journalism and more than 15 years of experience writing and editing for newspapers and magazines in Illinois, Iowa and Florida. She has lived in Florida for more than 10 years, and enjoys raising her two daughters in Tampa Bay.

When Anu isn’t writing or editing for area publications, she’s busy driving her kids to all their music and dance activities. She volunteers regularly in her daughters’ schools and Parent Teacher Associations, and spent a wonderful two years immersed in local history as a volunteer in the Tampa Bay History Museum’s Collections department. Although her idea of the ultimate good time is usually found between the pages of a book, Anu also enjoys yoga, her book club, travel, theater and area food and music festivals.

Contact Anu

Brie Gorecki – Associate Editor + Writer

Brie has been writing for websites and local publications for over 10 years. A USF graduate, she has worked for several major companies in New York, Atlanta and here in Tampa. You can read her articles on Tampa Bay Parenting, Tampa Bay Date Night Guide and Orlando Date Night Guide. She’s a Disney fanatic, an animal lover, and is a huge foodie who loves trying all the amazing restaurants around Tampa Bay. She’s a proud mom to a sweet little Star Wars and Godzilla-loving boy, and to her “fur-babies,” a rescue dog and cat from Humane Society of Tampa Bay. She loves spending time with her family, whether it’s a date night out with her husband or a day filled with roller coaster rides at a theme park.

Contact Brie


Sarah Rigby – Director of Operations

Sarah has a Bachelor’s Degree in Vocal Performance-Musical Theatre, minors in Business and Entrepreneurship and an Associates Degree in Graphic Design. Originally from Iowa, Sarah is happy to now call Tampa home. When not keeping TBPM organized behind the scenes you can find her serving at church, sipping a good cup of coffee, or out on the boat with her husband and furbaby, Biscuit.

Contact Sarah

Zoe Joiner – Operations Assistant

Zoe is a happy Tampa-transplant and an FSU grad who traded snow for sand the first chance she had. When she’s not chasing after her toddler with a baby on her hip, find her at the beach, brewery or a concert with her husband. Zoe loves organizing, baking, and crafting with seashells (find her on Etsy), and can pour you a mean cocktail.

Ralf Gonzalez – Account Executive

Originally from Miami, Ralf now lives in Valrico. He is a proud father to two sweet girls. Ralf joined the staff of Tampa Bay Parenting in 2014 and is excited to bring his knowledge of sales relationships to the Tampa Bay Community.

Contact Ralf: ralf@tbparenting.com, (813) 773-0047

James Byrne – Content Specialist

A master of folding fitted sheets and advocate for the Oxford comma, Jim Byrne spent most of the last 20 years in Central Florida working in theme parks, retail, publishing, IT, and project management. He joined Tampa Bay Parenting in 2021 and wants to put his experience to work helping local businesses improve their brand recognition.

He has a strong passion for roller coasters, technology, water parks, and sous vide cooking. His current goal is to sous vide a brisket that’s just as good as one from a smoker, and he’s gotten close! Finally, he firmly believes that if you aren’t laughing most of the time, you’re living life wrong! Reach out to him anytime to talk about football, old BMWs, or cooking. Oh, also if you’d like to have your business featured with us!

Contact James: jim@tbparenting.com, (813) 773-0049

Ciarra Johnson – Social Media Manager/Writer

Ciarra is a Florida native and UCF grad. She spent nearly a decade in television news before moving to Tampa and transitioning to marketing and PR to promote tourism in Tampa Bay. She now manages social media and is a contributing writer for Tampa Date Night Guide, Orlando Date Night Guide and Tampa Bay Parenting Magazine.

Tara Payor, Ph.D. – Editorial Contributor

Tara Payor earned a Ph.D., in curriculum and instruction, from the University of South Florida. She’s a language arts educator and has taught students from the middle school level to adult learners at the doctorate level. A member of the Junior League of Tampa and KNOW Women, she has two children—Harlow and Hendrix.

Maggie Rodriguez – Editorial Contributor

Maggie Rodriguez co-hosts the nationally-syndicated lifestyle show, Daytime on WFLA, Channel 8. She recently returned to tv after taking a 10-year break to raise her two children. During her career, Maggie reported and anchored the news in Miami, Los Angeles, and at the network level in New York as the host of The Early Show on CBS. She now lives in South Tampa, which she calls the perfect place to raise a family.

Julie Tingley – Editorial Contributor

Julie Tingley is a 10-year Tampa transplant who has found her way through many professional and parenting transitions by maintaining focus on her daily inspirations: daughters Ella and Kate. With a vision of a better future for her girls, she introduced the KNOW Women community to Tampa Bay, and founded Wee Macree, a purpose-driven brand for kids.

Kiva Williams

Kiva Williams – Editorial Contributor

Kiva Williams is a wife, mother and serial foodie! Through her blog, The Fun Foodie Mama, she shares the best places to eat, family friendly events as well as home cooked recipes.

When she’s not working on her blog she pours her heart into her newly founded non-profit, Mahogany Kids Fine Arts Foundation. The primary focus of the foundation is to empower minority youth through music, art & dance.

Follow Kiva on all social platforms:
Instagram, Facebook, YouTube & TikTok @thefunfoodiemama
Website: www.thefunfoodiemama.com

Keep up with her non profit:
Instagram, Facebook & Twitter @mahoganykidsfinearts

Anna Tataris de Jesus – Family Fun/Travel Contributor

Anna Tataris de Jesus is an Emmy–nominated television journalist with a passion for traveling with her family. After 15 years on camera, Anna gave up hard news for travel reporting. In 2012, she and her husband Roy, also an Emmy–nominated television journalist, created “The Great Escape Plan” to travel Europe with their daughter Sophia and son Nikolas. Together they create videos for social media and their website TheGreatEscapePlan.com in hopes to inspire other families to travel Family Style.

Karimah Henry – Editorial Contributor

You’ll find often find Karimah sharing her experience raising two active boys on her blog CraftingAFunLife.com and @craftingafunlife on Instagram. She plans fun activities including art projects and science experiments and also shares awesome things to do and places to visit in the Tampa Bay area.