How do you maintain an organized schedule, while staying stress free?
I've been doing this stuff for a long time, so I have developed my own system for staying organized that has worked well in the past. I am a visual person, so I like to color code things. I've made colors mean certain things, so when I see a particular color on a note, I know what it means without reading the page. I am very meticulous with (Kevin Brinegar's) calendar, and I am very succinct in the way I enter items into the calendar. I don't assume that he will be able to meet with everyone who requests his time, so I check with him before putting anything on his schedule. This helps to make everything clear and keep everything running smoothly.
What is your role with the Indiana Chamber's board of directors?
I am the secretary for the board of directors. There are currently 187 board members that I have to ensure we have updated contact information for. I make sure that everything is correct to the best of my ability in our company database. Occasionally, there is information that I am in charge of sending to board members for Kevin.
I also work with the executive committee, which consists of 18 board members. I have constant contact with these members, and I send information to them on a monthly basis about meetings. For the monthly meetings, I have to ensure that the room is set up and all the information is ready for the members when they arrive.
Another big part of my duties is the nominating committee. I work on nominating committee most months of the year because it is a really long process. Kevin and I (with the committee) have to gather viable nominees for the board, and then we have to get them placed.
How did your position with former Indianapolis mayor Bart Peterson prepare you for working at the Chamber?
I worked for Bart for 24 years, eight of which were when he was mayor, before coming to the Chamber. In that position I was given a lot of freedom to be creative and figure things out on my own because there was no system at the time. As the president of his family's corporation, he was the first person to have that position and I was the first executive assistant. We were both creating the positions as we went because there was nothing there. I didn't even have a computer.
This is when I started developing my system, and I was able to decide how I wanted things to run. We were in a similar system again when he became mayor because we arrived at an empty office. I had to develop a strategy to deal with his busy schedule. With these experiences, I was able to get a handle on being succinct and not wasting time.
By being with Bart as mayor and at the governor's office under (Evan) Bayh, I had been in the government scene for a long time. When I came to the Chamber, I knew a lot about what goes on in the government and in those offices.
Your two daughters are your pride and joy. Tell us about them.
My oldest daughter, Aubrey, is 26 years old and she is an actress who lives in New York City. She also sings and dances. She graduated from Ball State University with a degree in musical theater. She is so talented it is not even funny. She has been in New York for four years trying to break into the theater world. It is a difficult business to break into, but she knew that going in and she loves it anyway. She even loves New York so much that I don't think anything could ever bring her back to Indiana. She is a part-time nanny and a waitress at Ruby Tuesday on Times Square.
My other daughter, Emily, is a sailor in the United States Navy. She has been in the navy for six years now. She has spent her last year and a half stationed at Norfolk, Virg., but she was in Italy for the three previous years. She teaches radar at Norfolk. In the past year, she has also become a singer by being a part of her church's choir. She is the most generous person I know. The three of us have a great time when we are together.
What movie family reminds you of your family?
The family from 10 Things I Hate About You reminds me of my family because the dad was raising his two daughters alone, as I did with my own daughters.
Favorite movie: Dirty Dancing
Favorite childhood TV show: Dark Shadows
Greatest accomplishment: My two daughters
Favorite book: Circles of Stones by Joan Dahr
Favorite vacation spot: New York City
Favorite food: Biscuits and gravy