Archive for the ‘Personal’ category

Chic-Fil-A, Free Speech, and Economic Power

July 29, 2012

I’ve avoided weighing in on the recent Chic-Fil-A drama, as I didn’t think it was anything that would continue to permeate the news and social media.  I was wrong.  Even today, almost two weeks after Chic-Fil-A CEO Dan Cathy’s remarks in which he states “We are very much supportive of the family — the biblical definition of the family unit” as a response to questions regarding monetary donations to groups that oppose gay marriage initiatives, people are still reacting to this statement.

I’ll be the first to state that I think Mr. Cathy’s statements are incorrect and demonstrate a narrow understanding of the term family.   LGBT rights issues, in my opinion, are civil, even human, rights that should not be the subject of laws limiting the rights of LGBT people.  With that said, Mr. Cathy is entitled to his opinion about gay marriage, no matter how misguided people or groups might find it.  I am a proud member and monetary contributor to the Human Rights Campaign, the largest LGBT advocacy group in the country.  I WANT HRC to speak out in support of LGBT rights.  That’s what I give them my money to do.  I want them to increase community outreach efforts, support anti-bullying programs, educational programs, and provide a vital resource for LGBT people on a variety of health and personal issues.  There is no difference between my contributing money to HRC and Mr. Cathy’s contributing money to anti-LGBT groups, aside from the size of our contributions.

My question is: was Mr. Cathy’s statement really a shock as some people seem to be claiming with their criticisms?  Chic-Fil-A has always prided itself on being a Christian-focused, family-owned business.  The fact that the restaurants are closed on Sundays clearly should speak volumes about what the ownership feels regarding the importance of traditionalist Christian religion, and thus, shouldn’t be a far stretch to infer what their views about gay marriage would be.

Some politicians and other organizations have put out statements condemning Mr. Cathy’s position and articulating their own.  Again, that’s their right, and I am glad they are doing this and showing their support for LGBT rights.  Where my problem comes in is in how some people are packaging this issue.  Reports that “Chic-Fil-A discriminates against LGBT people” or similar headlines is not true.  The OWNER of Chic-Fil-A is supporting groups that are trying to enact anti-LGBT initiatives.  The restaurant itself is not discriminating.  From the consumer end of things (as I have no idea about their employment practices), I would ask what the possible benefit of denying service to an LGBT customer would be.  For one, this isn’t an aspect of our identities that is immediately noticed upon meeting people.  In addition, any smart businessman isn’t going to deny service, as denying service equals a loss in profits, completely counterintuitive to a business model.

On a similar vein, concerns were raised by Boston Mayor Thomas Menino, who sent a letter to Mr. Cathy urging him to back out of his plans to open a Chic-Fil-A in Boston.  In an economic recession, and when any job is in high demand, turning away a business is not a smart play, in my opinion, especially when the BUSINESS has done nothing wrong.  Using political power to attempt to dissuade/discourage a business simply because you don’t agree with their policies is not acting in the greater interest of the economy, and sets up a dangerous precedent regarding appropriate use of power.

While you might disagree (as I do vehemently) with his opinions, the best way to make your voice heard is to speak out to family, friends, and others, contribute to groups that support causes you believe in, and don’t contribute to groups that support causes you don’t support.  As consumers in a market economy, we have power.  If you don’t want your money going to causes you don’t support, buy from somewhere else.   There’s plenty of fast food establishments in America offering the same types of food at similar prices as Chic-Fil-A.

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The Value of Vacation & Time to Recharge

June 27, 2012

So, it’s been a while since I’ve posted, and that’s in part because there’s not a whole heck of a lot new.  That’s both a blessing and a curse in some respects.  However, recently, I was fortunate enough to be able to take a 12-day road trip with one of my closest friends.  This was to be my first vacation in the 4 years I’ve been at Siena, and my friend Jen’s first true vacation in at least that long.  In the past, the occasional long weekend was about as exciting as things got, which was usually enough to get away to Boston, New York, or other locations to relax and get away from Albany.

As the departure date grew close, I was nervous about leaving work for such a long period of time.  I’d be away from the office for eight days.  It wasn’t that I was afraid of falling behind, as in truth, this summer has given me considerable amounts of time to be ahead of my timeline for almost every project.  It wasn’t because I was worried about things going to hell in a handcart, as I’m fortunate to work in a great office with 5 (soon to be 6 again) RDs who truly are rockstars.  It wasn’t even the prospect of spending 12 days in a car with someone (all of our friends thought we were crazy and we’d come back hating each other).  Fortunately, that didn’t happen, although we did get a little crazy at points.

It was the simple question “What does one DO on vacation?” that had me perplexed.  I’ve always been someone who doesn’t view my job as “work.”  Simply put, I love doing what I do, and I just happen to be lucky enough to be compensated for it.  The craziness associated with the hours of a live-in staff member has never really bothered me.  In fact, I’m bizarre in that I actually ENJOY it.  Needless to say, the prospect of a vacation and not quite knowing what to do was making me nervous.

As our vacation unfolded and with stops in Charlotte, NC; Charleston, SC; Washington, DC; Gambier, OH; Madison, WI; and Milwaukee, WI, I began to learn the importance of this nebulous term “vacation.”  Being able to have no set agenda and make plan to do things completely based on my own preferences was liberating.  Whether going to the beach and reading a book (SC), touring the Newseum (DC), or taking a bike ride around Lake Mendota (WI), I had the ability to do things that I enjoy but without the attachment of “work” as a label.

So, why write about this?  I wonder what I would have done had I taken real vacations earlier in my career.  Granted, not every trip needs to be an adventure like the one I just returned from, but even taking a week and going to one place is enough to get away and recharge.  Would my approach to my work have been any different in those early years?  In some respects, I would say yes, especially where it relates to encouraging others to take time for themselves.  I’ve never pushed people to take time off, as there is never a shortage of work to be done on a college/university campus, however, coming back to work after a week off had me refocused, reenergized, and ready to dive into my remaining summer projects.

To everyone, regardless of position, take a vacation!  Take a “staycation.”  Do something to get you out of the office and time to recharge.
What have YOU done for time to recharge?  Share it with me in the comments or via twitter @adamcasler

#OneWord2012 Updates

March 26, 2012

Wow!  It’s been two months since I blogged last.  Really need to step it up and get back on the bandwagon.  The easy response is to say that “work was busy” however, I came up with my “OneWord” for 2012 to help me stop using that excuse.

Back in January when I chose focus as my word for 2012, I felt that this was needed to help bring me to a more balanced idea of self and values.  Fortunately, almost three full months into 2012, I think that the choice of focus really is helping me grow as a friend, student, and SA professional.

In terms of my personal life, I have made it a commitment to try to reconnect with friends and not let months go by without returning phone calls or e-mails.  This has led to some great conversations with my best friends, and stepping up and even visiting my friend John, who lives in Boston, twice already this year.  While it might not seem like a big deal, trust me, for me, this was huge, as John can attest to!  I know talk to friends on the phone much more regularly, and despite my continued hatred of talking on the phone, it is good to reengage with people who are so important to me.  I also have been trying to make new friendships as well.  Twitter has been a saving grace with this, as I’ve had the opportunity to gain a new mentor, Torry Bruce (University of the Pacific) and two new friends, Austin Arias and Will Kauff, all three of whom I have truly enjoyed getting to know and am excited to continue these new friendships.  I also had the opportunity to FINALLY connect “in real life” to two additional wonderful mentors, Cindy Kane & Beth Moriarty (both members of the Bridgewater State University community) at a conference at BU back in February.  On a side-bar, I’m finding that these smaller day-conferences or “drive-ins” are actually (to me) much more beneficial than large conferences, as smaller conferences have a specific focus and it’s usually pretty clear what you’re signing up for.  At the national conferences, it’s hard to focus in on issues with a group of people, as everyone is constantly rushing to another session, doing interviews for positions, or catching up with colleagues from across the country.  I’m hopeful that smaller conferences like he BU Confab continue to happen!

At work, I haven’t made quite the progress that I would have liked.  With the chaos of RA Selection, I haven’t devoted as much time as I would have liked to for reconnecting with my residents.  I have been doing some more walk-throughs of the building and impromptu drop-bys, but my goal of making it to more programs hasn’t panned out the way I’d hoped.  With my co-workers, I have been so happy with how they have all pitched in for our big spring operations including RA Selection, Housing Selection, and our committee work (First Year Experience, Second Year Experience, etc).  I feel like we have become an extremely close-knit team and as a result, our productivity is letting us get a jump start on some bigger picture things that we normally would have waited until the summer (if ever!) to begin.

All in all, 2012 is starting off as a great year!  I’m excited to see what else it brings!

How are you doing with your #oneword2012??  Feel free to share your progress with me!  I’d love to hear about it.

Where the Right goes Wrong

December 13, 2011

I want to start this most recent post with a few general comments so people know where I’m coming from on this so they don’t jump to conclusions.

First, I’m a registered republican.  GASP.  A gay man working in student affairs who self-discloses that he is a republican?!?!  Say WHAT?  Despite being a registered republican, that does not mean that I vote blindly along party lines, especially in recent years as I’ve seen true republican ideals hijacked by an extreme right-wing focusing solely on religious issues, forcing a growing number of people in the Republican Party to vote for the Democratic Party as “the lesser of two evils.”  It seems that this concept is beginning more and more prevalent in our political system, as the two sides can’t even agree on the most minor of issues.

So, you’re probably asking why am I writing about politics.  The short answer is that after watching GOP presidential candidate Rick Perry’s “Strong” video on YouTube (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0PAJNntoRgA) I had an instant desire to speak my mind on what I perceive as true Republican values, and to dispel the idiocy that is coming from candidates who appear to be working to pander to a small, but vocal, minority of people and special interests groups who have absolutely no desire to spread true religious ideas, but to impose their personal interpretations of religious texts onto others.  With that said, here are a few “basic” ideas that I feel identify me as a true Republican, lessons that I hope the Republican Party will remember in order to come to their senses and attempt to repair the years of damage they have caused.

Role of Government: True republicans believe in the power of local and state government.  Likewise, I believe that the most meaningful changes for our communities can come from these two smaller entities.  In broad strokes, the federal government should provide oversight and guidance to local governments, but shouldn’t legislate in ways that hinder the economic abilities of local communities, towns, and even large cities.  The people of these areas are best suited to be involved in making decisions that will impact their lives.  The current GOP candidates are more concerned about eliminating entire agencies in the federal government to score cheap points then they are in actually solving the problems facing our country (and plus, if we were to eliminate these federal agencies as some candidates have suggested, how is that going to help the economic recovery?  Still haven’t received an answer to that question yet….)

Economic Prosperity: I do believe in the power of the market, as most republicans do.  With that said, I do not believe we should continue to add more and more corporate tax loopholes for major corporations.  If we as consumers decide to buy a product, the company that makes the product should pay the applicable taxes.  Whether a local business or a multinational corporation, all businesses have a direct hand in providing jobs, infusing money into local economies, and providing goods and services that we as consumers have decided are necessary.  We can’t blame companies for using the systems currently in place.  Corporations did not enact laws giving tax loopholes and other incentives, we did, by allowing our congressmen and senators to approve these measures.  While I recognize lobbying money plays an influence, I would refer you again to the question, who allowed lobbying to become so pervasive…..congressmen and senators that we as voters have failed to send to retirement or other career options for not standing up for our interests.

Term Limits: Not necessarily solely a republican value, but this is something that national polls indicate is a growing issue for the majority of Americans.  While not always the most “fair and balanced” organization, in 2010, a Fox News poll indicated that 78% of Americans favored setting term limits on Congress.  This idea makes sense for a number of reasons.  First, we do it for the president, and if all three branches of government are supposed to be equal, why wouldn’t we do the same for Congress?  Second, politics is supposed to be about a call to service, NOT a career.  Politicians should serve their constituents for a specified maximum amount of time, or until a particular interest to their constituents is resolved, and then leave the political arena.  Third, term limits would ensure that new ideas, new faces, and hopefully more diverse candidates would enter politics instead of the current system where over 75% of Congress is a millionaire, and an overwhelming number of members are white, heterosexual, men.  Is this really the best representation of our country?

LGBT Military Service: I can’t believe this is still an issue, even after DADT was revoked.  Perry’s “Strong” video is a direct attack on the men and women who are LGBT and serve our country.  In fact, at a recent GOP debate (I can’t remember which one, as the GOP debates are so numerous that it appears to have turned into a new reality series I’d like to dub “True Life: The Hot Mess Express”), not one of the candidates came to the defense of a service member who asked about the repeal of DADT.  My thoughts are simple, for those of you who don’t like the idea of LGBT people serving in the military, how about you get off your ass, put on a uniform, and put your life on the line for your country?  If you’re not willing to do that, then back off, and let these brave men and women serve the country that they love, cause you apparently aren’t willing to put your money where your mouth is.

Gay Marriage: I’ve never understood the argument against gay marriage.  Those people who say it goes against their religion MAY have a validate opinion in the context of their religious beliefs.  However, the key factor here is: LGBT people don’t want to get married in your church, we want to get married as a civil right in which we receive the same benefits (economic, social, medical, etc) as every other American.  There seems to be an inability by some to separate the religious and the civil constructs of marriage.  I respect the religious arguments surrounding homosexuality (I don’t agree with them, but I respect a person’s right to faith and to believe what they want), but that doesn’t mean that one particular religious groups beliefs should be enforced on our entire country, a country that I might add was founded on the right of each person to practice their own religion, and to the “rights” of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.  Tell you what, you don’t infringe on my right to pursue happiness, and I won’t infringe on yours (I’m talking to you Newt Gingrich….tell me, what’s more dangerous to marriage, allowing two men or two women who love each other to get married as an expression of that love, or someone like you who has proven multiple times that he cannot remain faithful and respectful to his wives and the institution of marriage?)

In closing, I’d like to leave everyone with a reminder by someone the Right still considers to be one of our best leaders, Ronald Reagan.  While the quote below focuses mainly on church and state, if you focus on the word “belief” in the broadest sense of the word, it demonstrates that true republicans believe in personal freedom and choice, something I am proud to say I believe in.

“We establish no religion in this country, we command no worship, we mandate no belief. Nor will we ever. Church and state are, and must remain, separate. All are free to believe or not believe, all are free to practice a faith or not, and those who believe are free and should be free, to speak of and act on their belief. At the same time as our constitution prohibits state religion, establishment of it protects the free exercise of all religions. And walking this fine line requires government to be strictly neutral.”


Assessing Skill Development in Student Affairs

December 2, 2011

This morning, I read a quick news bullet on Inside Higher Ed noting that President Obama has invited the presidents of several colleges and universities to the White House for a discussion on “affordability and productivity in higher education.”  While I wholeheartedly agree that the affordability of higher education is an issue that needs to be addressed as quickly as possible (but won’t be covered in my blog today), the addition of the word productivity caused me to pause.  There has been a push in recent years to make higher education “more accountable” to the public, and one of those means has been to increase assessment and demonstrate that the work we do in higher education has value and contributes to the holistic development of our students.

In student affairs, we have, in the past, been slow to jump on this bandwagon.  However, in an era of shrinking budgets, political maneuvering for scarce resources and the need to maintain and grow programs that we know are having impacts, assessment has become a core value of many student affairs divisions and departments.  The larger problem with assessment is that our current efforts to assess student learning, co-curricular programs and other initiatives are failing to assess what businesses and employers are looking for in their perspective employee base.

Forbes annually publishes a list of skills/traits that employers have rated as the most important skills for new employees.  The most recent list includes the following seven skills:

1.)    Communication Skills – the ability to listen, empathize, and respond to others.

2.)    Creativity – The ability to easily adapt and adjust to multiple roles and projects in the workplace

3.)    Curiosity and Engagement – Employees who will ask “Why?” and “How?” questions and will look at processes, operations, and systems critically and offer suggestions for improvement

4.)    Writing Ability – Regardless of whether sending e-mails, memos, proposals, reports, or even texts, you are still engaged in professional correspondence which should reflect clear thinking.

5.)    Teamwork – Being able to build a team, establish common goals and responsibilities, and most importantly, address conflicts fairly, quickly, and directly.

6.)    Re-engineering Skills – Being willing to learn new skills on the job and take on new tasks and projects not normally under your area of responsibility.

7.)    Computer Skills – The ability to utilize hardware and software to augment your productivity.

As a graduate of a small, private, liberal arts college, I am proud to say that most of these skills were taught not only by my faculty members and academic program where I was required to take a variety of courses outside of my major (history), but also by my mentors and advisors in the division of student life.  Student affairs professionals are vital players in ensuring that we are equipping our students with many of these “soft” and “hard” skills so they can be successful in ANY career field, as all of the above mentioned skills/traits are the type of transferable skills that every employer wants their employees to possess in one way, shape, or form.

I know that at my current institution, we have had trouble articulating and measuring ways in which we help students learn these skills, so I am curious how colleagues at other institutions have incorporated assessing these variables into their overall assessment plans.  Any help or advice is, as always, greatly appreciated!

Leadership and Civic Responsibility

November 10, 2011

Last weekend, I went home to spend some time with my parents.  They’ve never been the “sit down and relax” type of people, and there’s never a shortage of projects or adventures with them.  This particular weekend, the three of us took a couple of trips up to camp with truckloads of firewood in preparation for next summer.

On the ride home, Dad and I got talking about the upcoming election in our town.  My father had been the Supervisor (similar to a mayor of a village/city) for over 20 years until he resigned in November 2010 after some extremely personal attacks directed at him and the company he worked for.  The long story is that in addition to my father being supervisor, he works for a road construction and paving company in our town, one of only a handful of revenue producing businesses, due to our small size (approx. 1,800 people).  A recent proposal came before the town board in 2009 to examine the feasibility of developing windmills in the town.  Given that there was no law, the town board hired an attorney to investigate best practices and to establish guidelines that wouldn’t hurt the environment and ensure additional revenue came into the town to help lower tax rates.  During this debate, my father, who never took a position as pro- or anti-windmills, came under attack based on his place of employment.  People argued that the company stood to make money based on the large amount of land they own.  What these people didn’t seem to grasp, no matter how hard my father tried to explain, is that this company is a MINING company, i.e. they want to take things OUT of the ground, not build windmills which would prevent mining for stone and materials for asphalt, etc.  People also began saying that my father would personally benefit from this, to which my father again tried to explain that his role as an accountant is not commission-based, and is salaried so there was no incentive for my father to be pro-windmill (although he certainly is and has become vocal since resigning).  After 8 months of enduring these attacks and seeing his company be mentioned in the press (often negatively by a vocal minority of town residents who can’t grasp simple logic), he resigned.

In our conversation, I learned some new things about my father and his approach on leadership and civic responsibility that I had never known.  I suppose I should have, as these values I find myself trying to live on a daily basis:

Leaders Empower Others

  • An effective leader is going to challenge others to find their passions, take chances, try new things, and make mistakes, all in order to learn, change, and grow.

Take Ownership of Your Mistakes

  • When you’re wrong, admit it.  Apologize to those who have been hurt and/or misled and ask for feedback on how to improve for the future.

Be Engaged and Informed

  • In a work environment, care about more than just your department or functional area.  Make connections with other departments and befriend those people.  It helps pave the road for when problems occur in your area and you need outside help.
  • In your community, attend local town board/council meetings.  Ask questions of your elected officials on controversial issues.  If you hold a position of power in local/area, remember the constituents that you serve and what they want (usually a job, a home, low taxes, good services in the town, and a sense of community) and advocate tirelessly for those needs.

Occupy a Voting Booth

  • Voting is the only true way that we have to voice our opinions.  Drafting letters, signing petitions, and other similar types of lobbying/protest are fine and good, but if you’re not stepping into the ballot box, you really have lost your standing as someone claiming to be want change.

Cultivate Your Successor(s)

  • In your work role, you need to realize you won’t be there forever.  Make sure you’re sharing in the delegation of your responsibilities in the event that you leave your position and/or company.  (Ok, disclaimer here, this is something I struggle with still in my role).
  • In the local community, try to find the “next generation” of leaders and encourage them to get involved by serving on community groups, local boards, and other volunteer service opportunities to establish themselves in the community and develop their own leadership skills.

Hope for the Best, Plan for the Worst

  • At work, always have a Plan B (and C & D).  Show your supervisors and direct reports that you’ve given thought to a situation and that there are always alternatives to ensure success.
  • In the community, know that the best of intentions don’t always equal success.  Sometimes voters and other board members don’t agree with you.  Engage in the dialogue, refrain from becoming emotional and judgmental and stick to logic and the facts of the case.  They’ll come around eventually.

These are pretty basic tenets for life, but this conversation was one of the few times where I’ve heard my father speak so passionately and openly with me.  I always have considered him a leader, based on the work he’s doing for our town and for his company, but seeing him actually articulate these values made me feel a very new connection with him.

Thanks for indulging in this post, as it’s a little more personal than some others have been!  🙂

Me, a Mentor?

October 7, 2011

This week was a great week for me; in fact, it was probably one of the best of my career.  On the personal front, I had a visit from my parents, which always manages to brighten my spirits and remind me of the importance of family as a central role in my life.  Even though it was just a quick stop-over for lunch and spending some time hanging out in my apartment, I continue to realize how lucky I am to have two wonderful parents who have supported me through every major event and milestone in my life, and continue to push me to work hard and continue to learn (they’ve been the most vocal proponents of Operation #sadoc).

At work, I had my annual performance planning meeting with my supervisor, and was pleased to see many new projects and tasks added to my role, which continues to evolve and keep me interested.  I never expected to be at Siena for 4 years, but the opportunity to advance and receive new projects as well as work with a top notch student affairs team has kept me here and passionate about my work.

More importantly, I was meeting with a student who is exploring student affairs as a career field.  This student hasn’t been able to attend any of Siena’s “Future Leaders in Student Affairs” workshops this year, so meets with me one on one to start planning his graduate school application process.  We went out to Buffalo Wild Wings (something I do for all of our students who are exploring student affairs….affectionately called the “Life Planning Lunch/Dinner”), and as we were discussing geographic location, graduate assistantships, personal statements, deadlines, and the adjustment to life after college, he dropped the “m” word on me.  He said, “Thanks for being a friend and mentor.”  I was taken aback by this statement.  Me, a mentor?  Surely not.  I don’t have anything of serious value to offer people.  Sure, I like to think I’m quick with a snarky comment to make my staff and colleagues laugh, but serious stuff like mentoring?  Nahhhhhh.  Can’t be.

Then I started thinking about the qualities of a good mentor, and how extremely fortunate I am to have had some amazing mentors in my life to this day.  To me, all mentors must have the following qualities:

  • Ongoing Presence: Mentors must be a continued presence in the lives of the people who look up to them.  It doesn’t mean close proximity, but it does mean a willingness to keep in touch and be an ongoing support system.
  • Challenger: An effective mentor is going to challenge people to think critically about the decisions that they have to make.  Mentors should be sounding boards who are willing to push people to have high expectations and goals, work hard to make a difference in the lives of others, to be a servant leader, and most importantly, to be that reality check for someone and say “No, that’s not going to work.”
  •  Dedicated to Development: Student development is the core of our work.  Making sure that a mentor promotes their mentees continuing development as a young adult and young professional is critical.  Providing opportunities for a mentee to see “behind the curtain” of our work can be beneficial to our students who are looking to enter our field, as it takes a bit of the mystery out of our work and adds a touch of realism.
  • Positive Role Model: Mentors should “walk the walk.”  This includes being willing to admit our own mistakes and share our own personal and professional stories with our mentees.  We ask our students and fellow professionals to “be here, now” with us, we should do the same.
  • Commitment to Reflection & Processing: Things don’t always go according to plan.  Mentors need to be the person that will help reflect and process when things go awry.  This process needs to be ongoing, as active reflection on goals and values is also essential.

The mentors in my life have been outstanding in all of these aspects.  They have been there for me through the good AND the bad.  They’ve made me think about work, life, ambitions, fears, and to take a critical look at myself as a young professional.  I can’t imagine where I would be today if it wasn’t for these people, some of whom have been in my life for years, others for a relatively short period of time.  All have made a profound difference in my life.  For those of you in Higher Education and/or Student Affairs, be sure to find mentors early in your undergraduate, graduate, and professional life, as this will form the basis of a network that will support and challenge you daily.

Lastly, remember to thank your mentors regularly.  This is an area where I don’t often succeed.  So, in closing, let me thank a few people who have served as mentors in my life.  Some of these folks are SA professionals, and I’ve included their twitter names, as you should definitely follow them!

  •  Cissy Petty (@cissypetty): for giving me a second chance, opening my eyes to student affairs as a career field, and for teaching me to be proud of who I am.
  • Dan Nilsson (@DanielDNilsson): for teaching me how to be a young professional, mentor, and friend all at once.
  • Elizabeth Thompson (@feministorbust): for continuing to inspire me to make social justice a priority in my work.
  • Maggie Evans: for continued friendship and support starting in graduate school and continuing today.
  • Hugh Brown: for always being willing to sit and chat about work, life, and everything in between.
  • Stephanie Carr: for being a resource and sharing new innovations and ideas regarding training and selection that have helped me immensely in my role here at Siena.
  • JMU ORL: for saying “yes” and bringing me down to Virginia for an amazing two years of graduate work.
  • Mel Beach: for hiring me and having faith in my abilities and allowing me to take ownership of my work and career.
  • Kathy Brannock: for allowing me the opportunity to take chances at work, try new initiatives, and have the opportunity to advance in my career.
  • Maryellen Gilroy: for pushing me to continue on operation #sadoc and making the resources available for me to do this.
  • Craig Beebe (@craigbeebe): for being a sounding board and a “cheerleader” for my successes.
  • Teri Bump (@tbump): for helping to make connections and serving as an inspirational leaders not just for women (a primary interest for her), but for men as well!
  • Steve Malvaso (@stevemalvaso): for teaching me that being authentic and honest is always a two-way street.

Thanks for reading!  Have a great weekend.