President, United Way of Decatur and Mid Illinois
Who was your first mentor in life?
I’ve had quite a few but my first professional mentor was Harry Cook, Partner at BWC Architects/Engineers. He had the confidence in me to invest in me and help guide my career to lead me to some really great opportunities. I know you didn’t ask, but, my second professional mentor was Brian Byers. Working for Brian taught me so much about people and our community. I really grew through his guidance. I wouldn’t be have my dream job today without these two people in my life.
What was your most memorable lesson?
A near death experience taught me to live life to the fullest and enjoy every single day. Live every day like it’s your last…but don’t spend all your money like it’s your last.
What does community mean to you?
Community is our friends, families and our neighbors and every person that lives or works here. Being a part of this awesome community is a way of life for me. My decisions whether professional or personal are guided by my role and the well-being of our community.
Why are you involved in the community?
I love this place! I’ve lived and worked here my entire life. I’m involved in our community because I want to help people. I see improvements, and new developments, and I see lives being changed. It’s inspiring to be a part of such an innovative and caring community.
What advice would you give to people who want to do more?
There is something here for everyone. Right now there are 52 volunteer opportunities on the Community Volunteer Portal at uwdecatur.org (click on Volunteer). One volunteer opportunity can change someone’s life…and yours.