2 truths and a lie...
- I have red hair and O negative blood type (universal donor), which puts me in the likes of approximately 0.02% of the world population. Talk about being a minority!
- One highlight of the 2nd decade of my life was being selected as the top clarinet player in the state of Illinois and flawlessly playing the solo of Pines of Rome in front of nearly 1000 people.
- I have a life goal of visiting all US National Parks. Currently 25% done!
Ok...so my lie is those are all truths. Sorry! Truth #4: I'm really bad at lying.
Let's get the official stuff out of the way first.
You'll find a recent copy of my resume here.
Please connect with me on social media. I try to post interesting things on occasion, but my social media game is slightly lacking. I have no creativity when it comes to #hashtags.
And now brief history of how I got to today...
I grew up in Evanston, IL, a diverse suburb north of Chicago. Throughout high school, I wavered between wanting to be a musician, a historian and an engineer.
Ultimately I decided to be an engineer, deciding to attend Cornell University after being swayed by the gorges, tulips, and the 700 miles between me and home. Pre-frosh visits to Cornell neglect to give the the naive high school seniors the experience of Ithaca winters and learning that "far above Cayuga's waters" actually means a whole lot of unforgiving hills to walk up everyday!
At Cornell, I chose an uncommon path, creating my own major combining concepts from engineering and social sciences, called Computational Social Science. I had the support of Steve Strogatz from the Department of Applied Mathematics and Michael Macy from the Department of Sociology/Information Sciences. The majority of my engineering classes came from Operations Research where I then looked at its applications to sociology, psychology, and in particular, network analysis.
Upon graduation, I made my way back to Chicago where I joined Nielsen (as in the TV ratings) in the Emerging Leaders Program. This was a 2 year program with four 6-month rotations and afterward, I joined a team in Buy Operations (i.e. the Nielsen Data Factory) as an internal consultant/client liaison. I had the pleasure of supporting many of Nielsen's biggest clients during my 4 years there, which included a 6 month stint living in Arkansas supporting Walmart and Sam's Club. Arkansas, if you are wondering, is WAY better than you would ever imagine and I keep looking for excuses to go back to visit. My time at Nielsen brought me many great experiences and lifetime friends.
I now work as a Strategy Analyst as part of a dynamic Muller Quaker Dairy team. MQD is a three year old joint venture between PepsiCo and the European dairy multi-national, Muller. It has been a truly unique experience thus far...I've eaten more yogurt in the past year than probably the rest of my life combined you cannot walk into a grocery store with me without taking a detour to the yogurt aisle before leaving.
I am also in the final stretch of completing my Master's degree in Information and Data Science from the University of California, Berkeley offered by the School of Information. The degree was conducted entirely online, so I continued to work full time and maintain my life in Chicago. Yes, there are quality online degrees out there! I got more out of this degree from both a personal, academic, and professional perspective than I could have ever imagined.
Professionally, I have aspirations to lead the strategy of an organization rooted in data science, efficiency, and pragmatic optimism. Despite my roots in market research and consumer packaged goods, I have a growing passion to bring these skills to education, in particular higher education, rekindling an interest I had coming out of Cornell but was too scared to pursue.
My personal goals in the near future range from utterly ambitious to stupidly practical. First (practical) goal: finish my condo renovations. My dad and I took on completely gutting a converted timber loft in the West Loop neighborhood of Chicago. It was over a year after I purchased the condo that I was finally able to move in, but I am still living without any counter tops.
I also have aspirations to compete nationally in Olympic Weightlifting. I found weightlifting through CrossFit, decided I liked lifting heavy things more than I liked breathing hard and decided to focus 'full' time on this sport.
I also, as mentioned above, have a dream to visit all 59 US National Parks. I recently checked Yosemite off the list, but my favorite so far has been Glacier National Park in Montana. Living in Chicago is obviously not conducive to completing this goal anytime soon.