What is the best advice you received when you were beginning your career? Do what you love and follow your passion. My father was adamant that I follow my passion and do something I love. My mother modeled this for me, too. She pursued her dream of becoming an RN just two years after graduating high school. She was a nurse for more than 30 years.
How do you use social media to grow your network? I utilize LinkedIn professionally and Facebook for personal contacts. I love to support businesses that keep me tuned in to what is going on in our community, while also having detailed information about other professionals at my fingertips.
How do you maintain balance? I find it helpful to schedule everything, including self-care and family time. I am protective of family/personal time, even if it means turning off my email for the weekend or evenings.
What has been your wisest investment? Training and continuing education opportunities.
How has your past work experience shaped you into a leader? With each leadership opportunity, I add more and more to my skillset through trial and error. I remind myself that the power of a positive attitude is contagious, but a negative attitude can be even more infectious.
What is the best part about your job? I get be part of potential life-changing impact. As a music therapist, is I get to be creative in my helping role. Music and the arts are tools that help clients reach deep within themselves and work through issues in their lives.
How has mentorship made a difference in your professional and private life? It provides a safe, confidential place to process, problem-solve, and explore ideas, but a good mentor will always make sure you are incorporating an appropriate amount of self-care as well.
Which living person do you most admire and why? My maternal grandfather. At 82, he has faced many challenges and manages to remain positive and pleasant. He is an inspiration that it is possible to overcome any obstacle.
Which over-used word or phrase makes you cringe? “OMG.” It makes a person appear unprofessional and silly.
What is your business philosophy? Invest in good people, treat them with respect, invite feedback, and extend grace.
Which quality do you most value in an employee? Good communication.
What personality trait has most helped you succeed? Perseverance. I have encountered some unexpected challenges in my career – some that made me want to give up. Because I managed to make it through, I believe it propelled me to grow professionally.
Who is your favorite author? I love David D. Burns, M.D., a cognitive behavioral theorist. I also enjoy Joan Garry, a blogger, who has a wealth of experience in the nonprofit world.
What did you learn from your best boss? To have high expectations for people. It inspires them to work hard. Your worst? The damaging effects of micromanagement.
How can Amarillo improve its business environment? I feel it is important to have a heightened awareness of community resources and strive not to duplicate services. Instead, work to collaborate with other organizations to be more effective in our community.
Most important tech tool: iPhone – it holds my calendar, contacts, to-do lists, music, I can check my children’s grades, and having Amazon at my fingertips is a dangerous convenience.
Best time management tool: A calendar has always been my best tool. I check it every evening to plan the next day, and look ahead to plan my week and prioritize tasks.
I can’t live without my: calendar and watch. I would be lost without either.
My favorite thing about Amarillo is: The support of local business and local non-profit organizations. We have a very giving community.
Most unusual job or task: When I was 17, I was hired as a ticket writer at a local car wash. One day, it was raining so I was advised to clock out and wait for customers before I could clock back in. In a six-hour day, I was paid for one-and-a-half hours. It was a learning experience about labor law violation and disrespect of employees.