CAREERS: Where I Work - Marina Nicola, Technology practicedirector, Olson Ballard Communications

How long have you been working there? Since fall of 2001.

How long have you been working there? Since fall of 2001.

Describe the physical space you work in Because of the way my desk is shaped, my back is to the door. This gives colleagues ample opportunity to startle me on a daily basis. I am seriously considering installing rear-view mirrors.

What is the best thing about working there? Being a Las Vegas native, I did not always appreciate the dynamics of this city.

I assumed every town was 24-7, and had this much traffic and tourists.

I recently moved back from LA, and because I work with people who are not natives of Las Vegas, I have developed a new appreciation for my hometown, since I now get to see it through their eyes.

And the worst thing? Las Vegas may be an exciting city, but on occasion, the quirkiness of it catches me off-guard. I recently went to a professional luncheon where Tony Orlando was the surprise guest. Imagine trying to network while listening to Knock Three Times live.

What has been your most embarrassing moment while working there? My all-time embarrassing moment occurred when a client was going to be interviewed.

Unfortunately, the toll-free number I gave the client for the conference call was one digit off. He accidentally called an XXX hotline. Luckily, the client used this as an icebreaker. Both the client and reporter laughed for a good five minutes before starting the interview.

What is one thing about you that none of your coworkers know?

For a brief period, I was a stunt double in Hollywood. The saddest part is I never had aspirations to be an actress, and I do not exercise half as much as I should.

If you could do your job from any location, where would it be? My ideal location would be the beach. I would be typing on my laptop with one hand, holding a blended strawberry margarita in the other, while chatting on the cell phone with my hands-free adapter.

What are you usually thinking of when you're caught daydreaming at your desk? I am envisioning ways to get my clients on the cover of The Wall Street Journal or Time.

Number of PR dept. employees: 10
Address: 1850 E. Flamingo, Suite 120, Las Vegas, NV 89119
Phone: (702) 836-3000
Web: www.ballardpr.com

If you want to be featured in "Where I Work or "My Big Break, e-mail careers@prweek.com.

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