Welcome to the TMC interview! So – since joining the team as a project manager seven months ago, you’ve done everything from research to writing to assisting on video shoots. What do you love most about your role here?
I am a photographer and writer who also loves clipboards and lists and itineraries. These two sets of characteristics may seem to be at odds, but it makes me well-suited for this role. I am deeply fulfilled by keeping track of little details, documenting, innovating and double-checking, while also directly supporting the creative process for organizations and companies that share the same values I do. I also get to work with a group of incredibly talented creative professionals who are always willing to let me watch and learn over their shoulder or sit down in the chair myself to try it out. I am very lucky.
You moved from Chapel Hill to work with us here in Greensboro. What is something that has excited you about working and living in Greensboro?
The northbound Carolinian train passes me every morning at 8:24 on its way to New York while I am walking to the office, and I always wave. I love trains.
How do you spend your time away from the office?
My boyfriend lives in Winston-Salem, so we spend weekends together here or there with our dogs. Saturdays are for long walks, thrifting and exploring. Our Sunday ritual is breakfast at home, then going out for second breakfast and sitting with coffee to read for a couple hours. Every house or apartment I’ve lived in since my first year of college at UNC-Chapel Hill has a corresponding favorite spot for walking and another for second breakfast.
I also cherish my alone time. It is restorative. I often use it for crafting, writing, personal photography projects, or what I’ll call “creative observation” – also known as “walking around and looking at stuff.”
Early bird or night owl?
It is exhilarating to wake up early. It feels like I get a bigger serving of the world to myself when I am out of my house at dawn. I always feel lucky to be alive and wherever I am at, and sometimes I need that reminder. My favorite places to spend an early morning are those that are full of people by 10 AM, but mostly empty at 5 or 6 AM – downtown streets, libraries, airports. As it fills up, everyone you see is going somewhere, there is so much possibility, you buy a little coffee at a little shop and do a little crossword puzzle and there is so much day ahead of you.
What are you watching, reading and listening to right now?
Watching season 2 of “Twin Peaks.” Reading “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.” Listening to Kate Rhudy and “Red (Taylor’s Version).”
Where do you see yourself in 10 years? Do you have a dream job?
I don’t believe in a dream job for myself – I’ve never been able to settle on one thing. My mind is like a Powerball machine with all these little balls in constant motion. One ball says Own a Diner. Another, Summer Camp Director. There is also Lead a Girl Scout Troop, Curate an Art Exhibit, Photo Story for Amtrak’s Magazine. Buy a House. Visit a Dude Ranch. Win Big Brother. School librarian. I want to encounter as much of life as I can, rather than working toward one singular goal. In ten years, I see myself with a tattoo, a few published essays, and hopefully able to ride a unicycle like my mom.
What advice would you give someone starting a new job?
Learn how to best communicate with each member of the team, recognizing their strengths and how they contribute to the group. Be clear about what you need in order to be successful in your role. Make sure you know how to use the coffee maker. And if you’ve moved, register to vote and get a library card!
What is something that you have learned about the Tigermoth team?
When they characterized themselves as “serious foodies” during my interview, they were not exaggerating. Traveling out of state? Dave has eaten in that city and knows exactly where you should eat and what you should order. Decide to make a curry for the first time? Lyda will text you step-by-step instructions – with pictures – and a jar of fish sauce will be on your desk in the morning. Business trip dinner reservations require strategy and meticulous planning.
I am their perfect foil. When I say I cannot cook, I am also not exaggerating. My idea of a diverse palate is having three flavors of Uncrustables in my freezer. The result of this union? I’ve tried more new foods over the past seven months than I have in the last ten years combined and have a renewed sense of curiosity and possibility in the kitchen. Just don’t expect to see me on Chopped any time soon.