Finding something to be enthusiastic about and helping other people find that same enthusiasm is something that I’m good at and that I enjoy doing. Life is all about discovering the things that you care about and are enthusiastic about that make your work genuine.
I had the opportunity to participate in a strategic planning process at my college (Ithaca College) while working in an admissions officer position. That experience led to my passion for thinking strategically about opportunities, options and consequences. I love thinking creatively and gathering information to establish a plan.
I love wandering around and discovering new places, especially walking through neighborhoods and getting a feel for what makes people “tick.” I lived in Minneapolis for a while and worked for a theater on individual giving and stewardship. I was thrilled to find that there is an amazing cultural scene there. It is very well supported by the state, foundations and individuals. Minneapolis was developed by entrepreneurs, and it was the entrepreneurial spirit and creative culture that made it a pretty cool place to live.
My experience in development ranges from the arts to sports diplomacy and international affairs. Working at VPP brings all of my experiences together because of its bold philanthropy, strong programmatic strategy, and active and enthusiastic supporters.
My parents are college professors, so education has always been really important in my family. I also believe that we can have the greatest impact in the area of youth development. If we do nothing else, supporting the future generations, helping them succeed and making sure they have the resources that they need to be successful in this country is imperative.
I love to spend time with my family – they support me in all aspects of my life. I also like to hike and dance in my free time. I take a hip hop class. It’s a great intersection for all types of people who can come together because they love dance.
I like to have a strategy and plan toward a goal. The fun of what I do is figuring out how all of those pieces come together. What I like about VPP is that we work with organizations to figure this out. It’s great to be able to figure out how we can work collaboratively to solve a big challenge.
What I am learning in my career now is that we’re all always learning, and that’s okay. It’s okay to not know and exciting to find out. We’re not told that enough. At VPP, I’m learning more about the applications of the financial world in social impact. The application of the venture capital model on the founding of VPP is fascinating to me!
It is great to be able to add value to VPP by focusing on sustainable funding so that we can continue to reach more young people and meet their needs.