First, welcome to our area. What excites you the most about being the new employee at Uptown?
Every time I meet somebody associated with Uptown, they have immediately made me feel like part of a family. There is an intangible energy within Uptown that exists far beyond the walls of the Uptown office and its employees. It is a collaborative effort between the investors, business owners, students, city officials, police and residents working toward a collective goal of improving Uptown. In short, being a part of the community that has that type of passion is what excites me the most!
What's your path? How did you get here?
I am a Michigan native that went to play collegiate volleyball at a small school in Springfield, Ohio, called Wittenberg University.
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Post college, I moved to Houston, Texas, for a position with an advertising agency that landed me a job with Octagon, a global sports marketing agency.
While with Octagon, I coordinated and executed major sporting events, including the Toyota Texas Bass Classic (a professional bass fishing tournament) and LPGA Tournaments and Champions Tour (PGA) Tournaments. At those events, we partnered with Columbus event management company, Outdoor Events (Warner Neal & Charlton Norris), when I received my first taste of southern hospitality.
I ended up visiting Columbus several times over the past year and fell in love with the small-town feel and big-city amenities Columbus had to offer.
In one of those perfect, all-the-stars aligning moments, a position with Uptown became available, and it was exactly what I desired: the perfect synthesis of my two passions, event planning and community development. The rest is history!
What's one thing you hope to bring to Uptown's events that aren't already offered?
First off, Uptown does an amazing job of hosting a vast array of events in Columbus. Being a Columbus transplant, I hope to bring a fresh perspective and constantly push the envelope on how we can build a better Uptown from an events perspective. With that said, I have two primary goals: No. 1. I desire to work toward making Uptown a more vibrant, dynamic destination for all walks of life.
I want there to be at least one amenity (retail store, restaurant, concert, recreational activity, etc.) that anyone in Columbus cannot live without visiting every weekend. No. 2. I want to effectively work with the local resources we have in Columbus to create one paramount event that defines Uptown and makes it an attractive annual destination for visitors.
You've mentioned being a part of a community is important to you. Why?
There is no greater feeling in the world than being part of a team that is collectively working together and sacrificing for the betterment of the collective whole and that is exactly what Uptown's community embodies to me.
I know you're new to the area, but so far what is the best-kept secret in the Chattahoochee Valley?
I don't know if it will be a secret for much longer, but the Inspiration cold-pressed juice from Ride On Smoothie & Juice Bar. It is AMAZING!