My superpower would be to turn
mean to nice; cruel to compassionate.
Type of volunteer:
Board of Directors, community outreach, and events volunteer
Where is your hometown:
We lived so many places while I was growing up. My parents are from Minnesota. I grew up in PA, NJ, MD, VA, and MN.
In what place have you lived the longest?
Hilton Head and Atlanta are tied – 10 years each. Raleigh, NC for 5 years would be the next.
What is your favorite place that you’ve lived or visited?
Looking back, studying abroad at the Universidad de Granada in Spain. You realize your limitations – and your opportunities – when presented with a broadened perspective.
What convinced you to move to the Lowcountry?
Hilton Head Island presents amazing opportunities for young entrepreneurs and remote workers. After more than 15 years of consulting and around 200 nights a year on the road, it didn’t take much arm twisting to move here. With family as our first priority, we happily said goodbye to our Starwood concierge and airline status for a simpler life – to live close to the beach, bike pathways, fishing, and dolphin watching.
What is your current occupation?
I spent most of my time in the technology career industry – including stints at Accenture and IBM, served as Vice President of the Hilton Head-Bluffton Chamber of Commerce, and am currently part of the global marketing and sales practice at McKinsey & Company. I am also co-founder of the local business SwingFit.
What are three of your favorite hobbies?
Cooking, skiing, supporting HCL and SwingFit
What is your most memorable moment in volunteering with HCL?
Actually seeing HCL in action with a friend’s husband, a military veteran, in need of hospice care. The HCL care team was so caring, bringing in a team of people to support his last days in a way that was simply unparalleled to anything I have ever seen or experienced. I had no idea that for veterans, HCL could do so much to honor them.
Also, my friend spoke very little English and HCL even brought a translator to help make sure the family could communicate easily.
What have you learned in your experience volunteering with hospice?
Families sometimes don’t recognize that they can choose among hospices. Choosing a not-for-profit hospice is important! Why? Medicare pays a hospice fixed-rate each day per patient for routine care, regardless of whether the company sends any staff out that day. But Hospice Care of the Lowcountry is able to put in that extra effort as a not-for-profit.
When compared to nationally prepared statistics for hospice care, Hospice Care of the Lowcountry far exceeds the standard set by other similar organizations.
For more information on what I mean, read an article that I wrote for Hilton Head Monthly here.
What inspired you to volunteer with HCL?
My father who was a big supporter and board member introduced me to HCL. Once he introduced me to the team, I was so impressed and wanted to contribute as well.
Do you volunteer with other nonprofits in the area?
Yes, with a few others.
Have you or your family been personally affected by hospice?
I have had (unfortunately) several young friends pass away and although they lived in different parts of the world, I have seen hospices work in many different ways – mostly in amazing ways to support families.
What is your favorite part of volunteering with hospice?
I love being part of the Board and helping to strategically contribute professional skills in a very personal and rewarding way.
How does HCL’s mission inspire you?
HCL is the gold standard in care. Everyone should know that they have a choice and there are better choices than others. With aging parents and many friends who have left this earth too early, I want everyone to know this and have the best possible care.
What do you wish people knew about HCL?
Families sometimes don’t recognize that they can choose among hospices. Choosing a not-for-profit hospice is important! HCL is the gold standard in care – everyone should know that they have a choice and there are better choices than others.
How has being a hospice volunteer changed your outlook on life?
I believe that death can be peaceful and dignified – with a care team and family to support you and your loved ones. I’m not sure I really understood what was available and what is available to support until I started volunteering – amazing medical professionals, pet therapy, aromatherapy, music therapy, hundreds of caring volunteers, medicine, hospital beds…the list goes on and on. And because it’s government subsidized and what isn’t is supported by generous donations in our community, it is available to everyone.
What is your most irrational fear?
What age would you choose to be permanently? Why?
29 – that’s just what I want to see when I look in the mirror.
If you had a superpower, what would it be? Why?
Turn mean to nice; cruel to compassionate.
What is something you would never do again?
I sat with Madeline Albright and a few top women executives for lunch at the Rainbow Room in NYC. While in awe of them, I realized women can’t have it all. Well, at least, most don’t I walked away with an understanding of the sacrifices these amazing women had made to achieve success. Personally, I shifted my priorities to focus on family.
What is something you wish you could’ve told yourself ten years ago?
As a child, I wanted to be perfect. As a teen, I realized that I was not. As an adult, I learned when you fail, fail fast. You just have to be smart, learn from each failure, and make that your next success!