Hometown: Can I have two hometowns? Woodbridge, New Jersey and Huntersville, North Carolina
Favorite late night snack: Freshly popped popcorn, preferably with black truffle salt. Buy the kernels, put in a brown paper bag for 1:30 in the microwave. Spray with butter, oil or whatever you prefer. Add salt. Perfection.
If you could live in any TV/sitcom home, what would it be?
Without question, Will & Grace. Everyone needs a Karen Walker in their lives. But, I’d also happily live in the kitchen of the Barefoot Contessa. Ina Garten and I would be fast friends. And, I set a mean table.
Most embarrassing childhood memory: When I was in elementary school I broke my arm playing kickball. How does one do this?
Favorite smell in the whole world: My mom’s pumpkin bread. It’s delightful. I have the recipe framed in the kitchen of my house and we bake several loaves every Thanksgiving holiday. My eight-year old daughter made them this year and I was one proud momma!
Name a product or service you love so much that you’d happily be that company’s spokesperson. LaCroix Sparking Water. I have tried every flavor that I can find and we always have at least four flavor options in our refrigerator. Because, that’s all we can carry home from the grocery store. We also serve them in stemware. We are that fancy.
So what do you do?
As the National Director, I am responsible for leading the foundation and reporting our progress to both the congressional leadership and our National Board of Directors. Our responsibility is to deliver the program to young people throughout the country on behalf of the U.S. House & Senate. I oversee all program, congressional relations, audit and fundraising activities. So on any given day you may find me in meetings with our staff, planning an upcoming event, reviewing Gold Medal Record Books, meeting with a member of Congress on the Hill or chasing Sibley (our office dog) down the hallway. She often escapes to the Science Committee. I believe they keep bacon under their desks, but that’s just a theory.
Hometown: Staunton, Virginia
Favorite expression: “Hurry up and take your time.”
Website I visit the most: congressionalaward.org, of course!
I will never be seen without… The fab five: wallet, watch, keys, phone, & ChapStick.
My life as a hashtag: #BeautifulMess
What’s trending in my life? I’m a new homeowner. I see paint and cabinet hardware in my dreams.
So what do you do?
I help develop our overall strategic communication plan, manage our online and social presence, and bring The Congressional Award brand to life through design. I cherish interactions and have a passion for bringing people together through our shared mission of encouraging and recognizing youth achievement.
Hometown: Newark, Delaware
If you could live in any TV/sitcom home, what would it be? I’d live with any of the Braverman’s from the show Parenthood or I’d live in Stars Hollow with Lorelai and Rory Gilmore from Gilmore Girls.
Favorite time of the day? In the Spring/Summer my favorite time of the day is around 6:00 p.m. because I’m normally done with work for the day and am able to go for a quick run before dinner.
Pet peeve: People who walk and text or walk and scroll on their phones. And slow walkers.
Favorite family tradition: Christmas day wrapping paper fire. By far the best family tradition we have, but every Christmas day we collect all of the wrapping paper, boxes, etc. and pile up our fireplace, set a fire and watch a movie.
Cake or pie? Cupcake. Specifically a black bottom cupcake (dark chocolate batter with cream cheese filling).
So what do you do?
As the Program Director, I oversee all parts of The Congressional Award in the Northeast and much of the Midwest. I help participants from the very beginning to the end of the process – from registration to Record Book submission to finally planning the medal presentations. I also assist with our national events in Washington, DC like the Charity Poker Tournament, Golf Classic, and dinners/receptions. My biggest responsibility is the Gold Medal event in June which brings together hundreds of Gold Medalists, their families, and Members of Congress. I enjoy seeing the medalists from across the country come together to be honored for all of their hard work and dedication to bettering their communities and themselves. It is truly rewarding.
Hometown: I grew up in Albuquerque, New Mexico but my most recent hometown is Carson City, Nevada.
I will never be seen without… my latest knitting project.
What accomplishment are you most proud of? My time as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Vanuatu.
3 things you remember about kindergarten: Filling my socks with rocks, running off the stage at a dance recital because of stage fright, and having to clean tables with shaving cream.
Pet peeve: The smell of shaving cream, when people crack their knuckles, and grocery carts with one wheel that won’t turn.
Favorite ice cream flavor: Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough!
So what do you do?
As the West Program Manager, I work with Congressional Award participants, advisors, councils, and congressional offices in the Southwestern and Western regions of the U.S. Additionally, as the intern coordinator, I oversee the hiring and training for our office interns throughout the year.
Hometown: Escondido, California
I will never be seen without… Other than the normal cell phone and other personal effects, I do carry M&Ms a lot of places. They’re a convenient sweet treat that I enjoy having at work!
Where would we find you if you weren’t at work? I love local bookstores and fun board game stores, and DC has those to spare! I especially love going to Kramerbooks in Dupont Circle and Labyrinth Games in Eastern Market. Nats Park is high on my list during the baseball season, especially the week that the Giants play here during the summer.
Hidden talents: I’m great at trivia and having a random fact for every situation (although the people around me might wish this was better hidden!) I’ve also played the ukulele since fifth grade, and love to play every once in a while.
What’s in your Netflix queue? Right now I’m re-watching 30 Rock again (I think this is my ninth time?), but I also like the historical shows that they make themselves, like The Crown and Versailles.
Hero: I have trouble picking one hero who I know, so I’ll move into the realm of history, where it’s easier! Winston Churchill is someone who I’ve always looked up to – the ability to inspire a nation to keep at a fight with such high costs as World War II is so amazing to me, and such a dedication to public service I think is a real virtue.
Hometown: Edison, New Jersey
My life as a hashtag: #wanderlust
Favorite holiday: Raksha Bandhan (an Indian holiday that celebrates the bond and protection between a brother and a sister, where sisters tie a sacred thread on their brothers wrists and get gifts or money in return).
Favorite ice cream flavor: Cookies and Cream
Small, noble feat: I got breakfast at a café the same time Alec Baldwin was getting his coffee there.
If you were guaranteed to be successful in a different profession, what would you want to do? I would be an archaeologist digging for artifacts in the field – as long as there were no bugs close to my dig site.
Hometown: Baltimore, Maryland
Spirit animal: Elephant because they are intelligent, kind, and compassionate.
Something quirky about me: I can move one ear and both of my eyebrows individually…pretty cool right?!
Favorite ice cream flavor: If I am going to Cold Stone, then Cake Batter. If I am going to another place, then Cookies & Cream or Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough. I take my ice cream very seriously!
A great book I’ve read recently: Anything by Khaled Hosseini: The Kite Runner, And the Mountains Echoed, and A Thousand Splendid Suns.
If you were guaranteed to be successful in a different profession, what would you want to do? I am not quite sure what this position would specifically be, but I would want to work to change both previous and current laws that have adversely impacted society and ultimately establish social justice.
For more information on which staff member to contact, visit the Contact Us page.