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Company: The Lightning Jar
Title: Executive Director
Age: 27


Favorite Part of Job: I get to work with people as they decide to pursue their dreams and grow their businesses. The combination of meeting new people, learning about different fields, and problem solving keep me interested.

Most Inspiring Mentor: Mentors are hard to come by – there are plenty of people I look up to, but it’s harder to find someone with the time to invest in helping you grow. My college advisor Dr. Bell comes to mind. She taught me a lot about being a good leader and building relationships.


Tell us something fun about yourself that few people know: I rode a bicycle 4,100 miles from Portsmouth, NH to Vancouver, BC with an organization called Bike & Build. Along the way we built affordable housing and granted the $30,000 we fundraised to affordable housing organizations. It changed my life – I strive to replicate the feeling I had that summer every day.


What three words best describe you: Methodical. Enthusiastic. Ambitious.


What song on your playlist are you ashamed to tell your best friend: I’m not embarrassed by the songs I listen to but maybe the number of times I listen to each. I’m in a pretty serious Hamilton phase again…


Favorite Vermont Escape: The Harriman Reservoir in Wilmington is beautiful.


Favorite Downtime Activity: I like to reinvent leftovers and make food that is messy. Even better if it’s shared.


Favorite Super Hero: I’ve always preferred villains. They tend to me more interesting characters. Right now, it’s Loki.


Favorite Social Media: Instagram. It’s a surprisingly positive platform.


Person you would like to share a Vermont beverage with: My sister – we’ve been living in different states for almost ten years now. She’s my sounding board and advisor on almost everything.


If you had unlimited access to funds, which causes would you support: I’d like to increase access to arts education in public schools and help reduce the burden of student debt on college graduates.


What is the best career advice you have received: Would you rather be right or happy? It’s a frame of mind that I apply to most situations and try to remember when working towards shared goals.


Where do you see yourself professionally in ten years: I’d like to own and operate my own business. I’ve got a few ideas but haven’t settled on any yet.


What else would you like to accomplish in the next 5-10 years: The Lightning Jar is still a young organization. I’m excited for what’s been accomplished so far, and in the next 5 years I want to see it established as an anchor in our community.


What motivated you to live and work in Vermont: I started here as an AmeriCorps VISTA and stayed because of the opportunities Southern Vermont provides. My work here has an impact.


Career Highlights: 

- Coordinating the Harvest 4 Kids initiative to raise money to supplement summer meal programs for Bennington youth with the CAPA Food Clinic

- Launching the Bennington Comprehensive Internship Program

- Writing the grant application that funded the Bennington County Cultural Plan

- Planning Bennington Arts Weekend on behalf of the Bennington Area Arts Council

- Securing a seed grant for the Lightning Jar to hire its first full-time staff member


Community Involvement: My work with the Lightning Jar requires some pretty heavy community involvement. I enjoy supporting others in their work, whether it be local artists, nonprofits, or businesses, and find that I’m better able to do my job by staying involved in others’ events and initiatives. Volunteering with local nonprofits and community events allows me to create opportunities for our members. When someone needs a service one of our members provides, I can connect them.

Additionally, I serve on the Shires Young Professionals Advisory Board, the Bennington County Choral Society’s Board, and have been the President of the Bennington Area Arts Council for the last year.


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