Speaker Profile: Laura Hartwig

As WordCamp NYC approaches, we are featuring some of our speakers on the blog. Be sure to get your tickets before they sell out!


I’m a WordPress Website Developer for the MarkNet Group in Brewster, NY, where I enjoy building WordPress websites for clients and training them how to use them. I was a co-organizer of WordCamp CT and am a co-organizer of the WordPress Westchester Meetup Group. In my free time I love to watch stand-up and attend classic car shows.

What’s your WordPress “origin” story?

I started creating websites with HTML and then moved to Joomla. When I found WordPress in 2011, I never looked back and have been using it ever since. There is nothing else that is easy enough for clients to maintain themselves that has so many possibilities. For someone who is new to WordPress, it allows you to start off knowing just a little and grow to learn much more and expand your capabilities to what seem like endless possibilities, all the while having a great looking, great functioning website.

What are your top 3 WordPress plugins? Why?

  1. Anti-spam by Webvitality – Just install it and it works
  2. Captcha by BestWebSoft – Super easy way to protect your site and none of those annoying letters that are impossible to read. There is no reason NOT to use this plugin.
  3. Easy Fancybox – if you’ve got images or pdfs you want to open on your site, it’s a much nicer way to handle them. I also like to use it for links to other sites that would normally open in new windows, like a link to Opentable for a restaurant.

What would you tell someone to convince them to attend a WordCamp?

One of the things I love so much about WordPress is the people who make it happen. I’m self-taught, so I’ve spent a lot of time online pouring through tutorials and forums. Without all the people out there sharing their knowledge, I would never have been able to have this job that I adore so much. At WordCamps, there are these incredible people who donate their time and talents to helping others. I can’t imagine where else you could learn so much for such a small investment. It’s a great place for figuring out answers and getting inspired.

Fill in the blank for other attendees: “If you __________ then you should come talk to me at WordCamp”

  • want to know more about Gravity Forms
  • want to talk about classic cars
  • want to share a really bad joke with someone who will appreciate it
  • are attending WordCamp – please come talk to me!

Where can we find you online?

I’m not hard to find online as long as you don’t confuse me with the Chilean Wine Maker (no relation).