Personal Statement

Since I started my career in photojournalism in 1981 in Lebanon, my work has taken me around the globe where I have met and photographed peoples’ stories, covered historic events and documented environments and their impact on our world.  I have been privileged to travel to exotic locals, encounter indigenous people, wildlife and diverse cultures.  The road has sometimes been rough, emotional and physically challenging but I have always come back rewarded by humankind’s resilience and capacity for caring and compassion.  Much of my work has evolved around the movers and shakers of our times in business, entertainment and political realms where I recorded their influence on our changing and often chaotic times.  I have come to appreciate the diverse and rich world we live in and believe that though we may face difficult times, our ability to rise to the occasion and construct a better world is in us all.  I love to travel, interact with people, learn the history of a place and its people and just see this unique and special place we live in. 


Senior Staff Photographer

European Pressphoto Agency

2010 – Present

Los Angeles, CA

  • Covered news, sport and feature stories
  • Set up and ran network of freelancer photographers
  • Managed PR with firms, networks studios and film production companies
  • Edited high profile stories of news, sports and the entertainment business
  • Edited video and photography for the television division

Board Member

Press Photographers Association of Greater Los Angeles

2016 – Present

Los Angeles, CA

  • Organized activities, seminars, and workshops
  • Selected images for annual published photojournalism book
  • Led outreach to law enforcement and firefighters


Shanghai Through the Eyes of International Photographers – Book & Photo Exhibition


Shanghai, China

  • Photographed people, landscapes, architecture, communities, businesses, and rural scenes of the municipality of Shanghai
  • Worked with the Chinese government to provide promotional images of Shanghai
  • Served as a cultural ambassador for the US

Middle East Bureau Manager

European Pressphoto Agency

2003 – 2010

Cairo, Egypt

  • Established regional offices in 11 Arab countries and managed them efficiently while based in the main office in Cairo, Egypt
  • Recruited, negotiated and hired qualified staff photographers in each Arab country
  • Negotiated contracts, HR, and budgets
  • Managed Public Relations in the region and liaised with  agency subscribers and worldwide clients
  • Established and oversaw wire service coverage for the Middle East
  • Edited story coverage in the region

Deputy Chairman and Treasurer

Foreign Press Association

2004 – 2010 

Cairo, Egypt

  • Organizes events and trips for members of the local and international press corps in Egypt
  • Conducted interviews and press conferences with visiting dignitaries and local people of interest including politicians, business leaders and NGOs
  • Managed office affairs and tended to the budget
  • Acted as an intermediary between the Egyptian Ministry of Information and issues of concern to the foreign media
  • Promoted relations with local media by sponsoring annual dinners and meet-and-greet social gatherings as well as films and exhibits

Western Regional Manager

Agence France Presse

1991- 2003

Los Angeles, CA

  • Established and expanded a new office with wider capacity coverage
  • Opened new territories with highly qualified photographers
  • Managed the budget to increase staff capacity and operations
  • Bolstered AFP’s recognition and reputation in the western United States

Senior Middle East Photographer

Agence France Presse

1985- 1991

Cairo, Egypt

  • Covered and edited news, sports and feature stories in the region including extensive travel throughout Africa

International Desk Editor

United Press International                

1983 – 1984

Brussels, Belgium

  • Photographed and edited local and international stories

United Press International


1981 – 1983

Beirut, Lebanon

  • Covered major news stories throughout the region including the Lebanese Civil War, Israeli invasion, evacuation of PLO, and the deployment of US and multi-national forces


French language (Professional Fluency), Arabic language (Working Knowledge), Photoshop, Excel, Final Cut Pro, Instagram, Facebook, Videography, Budgeting, Management   


Lecturer in Photojournalism, UCLA

Lecturer in Photojournalism, West Los Angeles College

Lecturer, American University of Cairo

Presenter “Ethics in Photojournalism”, Collegiate Journalism Seminar

Training and Restructuring, Al Rayyan Newspaper Saudi Arabia

Judging Committee, Photojournalism Society of Egypt

Judging Committee “The Inquirer Photojournalism Awards”, Thompson Foundation

Judging Committee, USAID Egypt

Judging Committee, Foreign Press Association Egypt


“Visa Pour L’Image”, France

“Children Around the World”, Egypt

“Hajj the Pilgrimage to Mecca”, Egypt

“Oman The Culture”, USA

“Nubian Cultural Heritage”, USA

“Down the Nile River”, USA

“Time Stands Still Exhibit”, USA 


National Press Association

Foreign Press Association

World Press




University of California Berkeley

1977 – 1981                        

Berkeley, CA

History, B.A.

Universite de Paris Sorbonne

1979 – 1980                        

Paris, France

Study in Culture & Civilization of France


Self-Published Photo Books

“Darfur August 1985”

“Tunaenda Safari”

“Finding The Message in Mauritania”

“The Hajj: A Journey of Faith”

Published Articles

Aramco World Magazine: ” Devil’s Dung: World’s Smelliest Spice”, “Message Nation”, “Before the Mummies”, “The Desert Origins of the Pharaohs”,” Decorated Houses in Nubia”, “The Producer”


Major International Conflicts

Lebanon Civil War, Israeli Invasion, 1st Gulf War, Iran-Iraq War, Palestinian Uprising, Sudanese Civil War, Persian Gulf War, Deployment of US forces in Bosnia & Kosovo, and US forces deployment in Somalia.

Major Local & International Events

Pope John Paul II trips to Africa, US presidential Election, Presidential Elections in Haiti, Yemen, Lebanon, Sudan, Space Shuttle launches, landings and disasters.

Major Local & International Feature Stories

Academy and Grammy Awards, OJ Simpson Trial, World Series, Super Bowl, World Cup, NBA Finals, US Open Golf, Nubians in Egypt, and Pilgrimage to Mecca.

Click Here for more about Mike Nelson

Click Here to Contact