BETCHA’ DIDN’T KNOW:
–3 WORDS THAT DESCRIBE SACRAMENTO? Warm. Friendly. Home.
–FAVE LOCAL CAUSE? I am scaling back my commitments as we are expecting a second baby, but I plan to continue serving on the board of Yoga Across America because I care deeply about their work. At the core, it’s about bringing health and wellness to communities that may not normally have that support. Specific programs include free camps for kids at the food bank, classes for students at inner city high schools and for cancer patients at treatment centers, and introducing yoga as a coping tool for soldiers who may have serious stress disorders when they return from their missions.
–WHICH SACRAMENTO WOMAN INSPIRES YOU? I have long been an admirer of Tina Thomas. Her prominent role in the legal community has been trailblazing for women, and in addition to her national prominence in her specialty (land use) she has volunteered countless hours to advocate for the homeless. She has also helped raise a lot of money for a variety of important programs in this region.
I also admire Judge Consuelo María (“Connie”) Callahan, who is now on the bench of the 9th Circuit United States Court of Appeals. She’s another trailblazer, and I enjoy watching the way she combines intelligence, grace and warmth into a leadership style that is very feminine and very strong. Sometimes we are led to believe you can’t be both.
–WHAT DO YOU WANT TO SEE IN SACRAMENTO IN 5 YEARS? An improved public school system, especially in the areas of our city that struggle the most. This one improvement has the potential to change lives and families, and we would see the benefits for generations. A good start would simply be reducing class sizes and getting our students the individual attention they need and deserve.
–FAVORITE SACRAMENTO “GUILTY PLEASURE”? The fresh berry bread pudding at Les Baux.
–IF I WASN’T IN MY CURRENT CAREER…I daydream about everything from teaching yoga to becoming a lawyer.
–LADY MENTOR GROWING UP? I guess my very first role model was Nadia Comaneci, the Romanian gymnast who won three Olympic gold medals and scored a perfect 10, the first woman (girl!) to do that in an Olympic gymnastic competition. In grade school I would try to channel her energy when I felt challenged. She had so much grace, strength and steely grit — a combination I still admire and seek out in friends and role models.
–BEST PIECE OF ADVICE YOU’VE EVER RECEIVED? When I was coming to the end of high school and feeling the pressure of “needing” to decide a career at the age of 17, my dad told me to simply choose a college that I would enjoy, take classes I loved, and follow my passions with extracurricular activities. He promised that I would find my path that way. It took all the pressure off, and he was right.
–ONE PIECE OF ADVICE YOU’D GIVE TO A SACRAMENTO WOMAN IN HER 20’S? Don’t be afraid of hard work. It’s the key to success, and there is no other way to earn the deep contentment and happiness that springs from genuine accomplishment.
(Photo credit: Brenda Bisharat)