Members of the Academy…..people say to me—“wow-nine years-that’s a long time to be a Spokesperson!!!!” But here are my reasons and how it started.
I was guided by awesome instructors and career counselors at Central Michigan University—as an undergrad. My senior year one of my instructors drove most of my senior year class to Chicago where “FNCE” was that year—in the early ‘90’s. I was awe-struck. How are there so many like-minded people like me in the world? That was my 21-year-old mind. It opened my mind up and my conversations with anyone who was/is interested in nutrition science. #networking
Fast forward to marriage, kids, work, master degree, home ownership, etc. Nine years goes by quickly, yes? It has for me and I want to share my top 10 moments as a Spokesperson for the ADA/ Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics for the past 9 years:
10. Meeting Marisa Moore in Chicago as a newbie; she was my first ray of sunshine as a glimmer into the “current/past” Spokespersons. It’s amazing how close we have become since. Cue tear drop! And now you see her talented writing and food photography on www.foodandnutrition.org and www.marisamoore.com
9. Going to the Spokesperson training with Keri Gans, Kerry Neville and Joan Salge Blake. Only Joan and I completed nine years! In our initial training Keri commented on how she loved my outfit and asked where did I get it? I did not know she was a former fashionista in NY before becoming a dietitian. “Ann Taylor, I said. She says with serious thought, “I forget about Ann Taylor, I’ll have to check it out.” I thought it was funny……love you, Keri and thank you for teaching me how to shop for clothes!
8. Dave Grotto. My dad is also a Dave and I never met a ‘bad’ David. Still true to this day in 2016. Dave Grotto was also a role model as what a Spokesperson should be---that we all should have started in Second City!
7. Budapest. When you go and meet past-Spokepeople in another country. #sponsored #amazing and my first trip abroad as a Spokesperson
6. Dee! We’ll always have farm, Lutheran-life, organ-playing and wine chats!
5. Meeting Ximena. She is another ray of sunshine who I have enjoyed many conversations with. #family #life #birthdays #future #chica
4. Vandana and her smile, but more importantly her photography skills. Thank you for coordinating hundreds of ‘group shots’!
3. Chicago. I grew up in Kalamazoo and went to Chicago many times as a kid. But as a big girl going to the Academy headquarters? Well that was a treat plus having the Spokesperson meetings there many years in a row. I never get tired of Chicago—except when the temperature dips below and the wind blows us sideways. #seriously
2. Toby. Where to start? The joke is she and I roomed together at FNCE and meetings, so I’ve said, “we’re the old and new testament together—we make a good team”! She is amazing in so many ways. Check out how cool she is on www.diabeteseveryday.com
1. Jenny, Ryan, Lauren, Amanda, Liz, Irene, Tom and Doris. Yep—the PR team for the Academy is a team of bright, talented, professional-yet-goofy, hard-working, respected group that intrigued me to stay with them for nine years. We did laugh, cry, have serious conversations, dance, hug and have hundreds of conversations about how to promote the Registered Dietitian Nutritionist as THE nutrition expert.
Thank you to the Academy for an amazing journey. It’s been an honor to represent 76,000 RDNs. This is also my 20th year as a RDN and I can’t wait to see what is next for all of us---life is such an incredible journey! #luvwhatIdo