What is your favorite placement?
I have treasured all of my placements because I’ve learned how to be a better leader from all of the remarkable women that I’ve volunteered alongside. Yet if I had to pick, it would be the Salvation Army Common Ground placement because it’s where I had my first and most memorable “JLM moment.” The Salvation Army is Memphis’ only shelter dedicated to women and where the Junior League of Memphis provided educational programs for the residents. One night while we were hosting one of these programs, I heard my name called from across the room. I turned and was greeted by a familiar face that I was surprised to find living there at the shelter. It was an acquaintance that I met through work. I was heartbroken to even think about what she must be going through. Yet she was so appreciative that we were there helping to make a positive difference in her life. I was so touched by her kind words and was so proud to be involved with an organization that was helping so many deserving women in our community. This moment reinforced my commitment to the JLM and put a face and personal connection on the outcome of the great work that our JLM women do every day.
Why did you get involved in the JLM?
I joined JLM for three reasons: 1. To serve the underserved while advancing the Memphis community; 2. To broaden my perspective and to learn new skills and 3. To make new life-long friends.
What have you learned from being a member of the JLM?
Being a JLM member has given me the opportunity to challenge myself through a variety of experiences and activities throughout the league. This experience along with the relationships that have been built has also given me the confidence to tackle new opportunities in other areas of my life (like going back to school to get an Executive MBA). Through my placements, I’ve learned how to embrace conflict and I’ve become a better and more purposeful listener.
What advice do you have for other members about choosing a meaningful placement?
My suggestion is to give some intentional thought to where you want to grow as a leader and go from there. For example, if you want to improve your strategic thinking and forecasting abilities, then you can nominate yourself for a board or senior management council position. If you want to work on prioritization and organization, then pick Merry Marketplace. Or if you want to have direct contact with some of the benefactors of our community programs, then check out GROW. There are so many wonderful options to choose from so I’d also recommend talking with other members to hear about their experiences as well. You can do a quick search by placement in the JLM membership online directory to get names and contact info of other members. Or folks can contact me too.
What’s been your favorite GMM location and/or speaker?
There have been so many yet Coach Bill Courtney is one of my favorites. He’s the football coach that inspired the academy award-winning documentary, Undefeated. He taught me not to be a “turkey person” and that “serving and attempting to inspire others is a responsibility, not a choice.” Wise advice that I try and live by every day.
What is your occupation?
I’m honored to serve as the Executive Director at ALSAC/St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital where I assist a team of fundraising professionals who raise money through direct marketing channels (TV, digital, direct mail and phone). It’s a mission that’s close to my heart because families shouldn’t have to worry about paying medical costs while their child fights to live.
Who has inspired you in your career/field?
The women I work alongside at ALSAC/St. Jude and the women that I volunteer alongside at the Junior League of Memphis. The authenticity and wisdom demonstrated through these dynamic impact makers leaves me in awe every time I see their mighty works in action. This servant leadership inspires me to be a better human.
What is your favorite Memphis restaurant?
Who’s your favorite sports team?
The Dallas Cowboys
What is your favorite quote?
“It’s infinitely better to fail with courage than to sit idle with fear, because only one of these gives you the slightest chance to live abundantly. And if you do fail, then the worst-case scenario is that you’ll learn something from it.” – Chip Gaines
What is the last book you read and would recommend?
I’m a huge fan of upcycling, farmhouse chic and Fixer Upper so I just finished Chip Gaines’ book – Capital Gaines: Smart Things I’ve Learned Doing Stupid Stuff. It is amazing and so empowering. I finished the whole book in 3 hours!