Chris Russo Blackwood has always had a passion for solving mysteries. In 2012, she became intrigued by the uncanny coincidences and drama surrounding My Brother’s Keeper and began chronicling the myriad facts in this case that would become the basis for her first book. Working side-by-side with her friend, public relations executive Ann Edelman, and Ted Kergan, the victim’s brother and protege, whose dogged determination kept this case alive for decades, Chris uses her all-compassing knowledge of people and places indigenous to South Louisiana, both now and in 1984, to weave this rollercoaster tale of Gary Kergan’s murder and the 30-year relentless pursuit of the two killers by his brother, Ted.
Chris is a Louisiana Women in Media Lifetime Achievement Award winner, having spent 40 years as a journalist, 22 of those as a Baton Rouge city magazine publisher, website creator and event planner. She began her career as a feature story writer, then editor, for The Advocate, Baton Rouge’s daily newspaper. She left the newspaper in 1989 to create her own city magazine, InRegister. During more than two decades of chronicling social and cultural issues for the publication and its website, Chris was recognized by Sales and Marketing Executives International as “Marketer of the Year” in 1991, by the Public Relations Association of Louisiana as “Communicator of the Year” in 1994 and by Baton Rouge Business Report as one of the “Most Influential Women in Business: in 1999. Chris also brought her magazine’s pages to life as host of her own weekly television show, “InRegister on the Air,” on Baton Rouge’s ABC affiliate from 1995-1997.
In 2009, she sold her publication, seeking new avenues for her restless creative nature. Following a career-long path of entrepreneurship, Chris has conceived, owned and marketed a number of niche businesses, including her latest, RussoRoss, a boutique featuring “Clothing for women who weren’t born yesterday.” She and her husband, Bill Blackwood, live in Baton Rouge. Together, they have seven children and six grandchildren.