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MARISSA Strayer-Benton

Marissa Strayer-BentonCareer Highlights:
One event that sticks out in my mind as a highlight with Mobius is our Annual National Mentoring Month Appreciation Breakfast in January of this year.  The event was held in Burlington for about 200 people including mentors, program coordinators, executive directors of agencies with mentoring programs, donors, supporters of mentoring, our Spokesperson, Chief Michael Schirling, and most of all, Senator Patrick Leahy.  Senator Leahy has been a champion of mentoring in Vermont for many, many years and he spoke at our event in January to express his gratitude for the work we, as a community, have done. I will not soon forget that moment in my career.  

Community Involvement:
My work with Mobius has been focused on community involvement from the start.  In addition, I have been involved with Burlington Ensemble, I am on the Burlington Young Professionals Steering Committee, and I mentor at the Boys and Girls Club of Burlington.  

Favorite part of job? I absolutely thrive on connections and relationships.  I enjoy connecting volunteers with mentoring programs, businesses interested in promoting mentoring with programs that need more mentors, and program coordinators who are starting new programs with those who have resources to share. To know that a young person in our community is happier and more supported because of a connection I have helped to make is a wonderful thing. 

Most inspiring mentor? I am fortunate to have had many, many mentors in my life.  My parents have always played that role, and as I work my way through life, I’ve been lucky to find a mentor each step of the way.  I’ve always worked in an environment where mentoring is important if not in the mission.  As a rule, I feel that there are many people who have experiences to share; you simply have to know to ask.  

Who is your living hero? I am inspired with the way that my grandfather chooses to live his life.  He lost his wife of nearly 60 years, my grandmother, just about a year and a half ago, and yet he remains strong, hopeful, faithful, and loving. He chooses to live with hope every single day.  

Favorite downtime activity? My favorite part of my day/week is when I am with my husband and dogs outside – hiking, walking, swimming. I’m also very much looking forward to becoming an aunt, my niece is due on November 3rd

Favorite Vermont Escape? Hiking Camel’s Hump with my husband and dogs.  

Favorite social network? Facebook. I’m working to become more familiar with LinkedIn. I still prefer the old face-to-face connection.  

Favorite website? The Mobius website, of course.  I’m not being political here, I feel very proud of where the website is today.  

Vermont Business Person you would most want to network with? I simply can’t choose one I’d like to add to my list.  I look forward to continuing the journey of connecting with people in Vermont.

John Boutin, VBM Publisher, Marissa Strayer-Benton and Pat Moulton Powden, Deputy Secretary of Commerce and Community Development

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