First Avenue Ventures

Laurel Mills

Director of Digital Media and Marketing

Laurel Mills is the Director of Digital Media and Marketing as well as Head Storyteller for First Avenue Ventures. In this capacity, Laurel leads Digital Media efforts for Select My Space, SMS+, Market Table, Lobby Display App and The Storytelling Machine. She also strategizes, templates and implements content marketing efforts in the form of videos, blog entries, e-book offers, infographics and social media posts.  

Laurel comes from an editorial background. She served as an editorial assistant with mental_floss magazine, travel and lifestyles editor for, an online community and magazine targeted towards Baby Boomers and managing editor of Lipstick Magazine, a local women’s publication she shaped from inception.  

Laurel has always taken an interest in the digital aspects of these publications, whether it was learning bits of code to manipulate polls for or being one of the first publications to embrace Twitter at Lipstick.

In addition to her work in magazines, Laurel has written content marketing efforts and digital campaigns (including direct mail pieces, microsites, email campaigns, blogs, social media posts and e-newsletters) on a contract basis for many companies – including Cake PR/Volvo, Morgan Creek Winery and Red Mountain Law Group.   

As a journalist, Laurel has published pieces in the, Salon, Dame Magazine, Birmingham Magazine, Flower Magazine, Gizmodo, Jezebel and The Birmingham News. For her work in Lipstick, she won two Green Eyeshade awards from the Society of Professional Journalists for serious and humorous commentary in non-daily print publications.

Laurel graduated from Georgetown University with honors and a degree in Government in 2001. She completed an M.A. in English from the University of Alabama at Birmingham in 2005.  

Laurel serves on the Board of DISCO, a non-profit writing center for kids. She is married to Arik Sokol, a fellow media lover, and the pair have two sons.