Tell us your title and job description
My title is that of a Regional Operations Manager. And my job description is basically to Learn and grow as an important part of a team that cares about its customer and team member base. I’m responsible for monitoring, measuring and implementing best practice initiatives to ensure that productivity improvements are realized across all metrics. Maximizing my team’s efficiency through enhanced analytics and direct interaction. I am a champion for customer experience, ensuring that all team members understand the importance and processes for drive customer experience improvement. Actively responsible for promoting a strong safety culture and understanding of the importance of Health & Safety in the region, ensuring adherence to H&S practices and policies. Building a strong operations team by continual improvement in hiring, on-boarding, training and development of talent. I am responsible for providing leadership and management to team members in order to perform effectively and efficiently. Lead and support the development of a mentality that drives growth through service and improves on technical lead and conversion rates. I develop and maintain relationships within key areas and stakeholders in the business. Develop any potential business development and/or customer service opportunities to maximize market growth in surrounding area, and any other tasks and/or responsibilities that area required to maintain efficient department operations.
How do you feel that the arts impact our community?
Art by definition is the expression of emotions and ideas into a physical form. It empowers and amplifies the voices of our people, of our community, and of our culture. It provides a means to express emotions, frustrations, and aspirations. It is the mysterious cacophony that holds every morsel of our rich history, our important cultural traditions, and our many contributions.
As a tool, art serves as a catalyst for building solidarity and fostering connections. It provides spaces for individuals to come together, share their experiences, and create supportive networks. As an educator, art provokes critical thinking, challenges oppressive systems, and encourages dialogue around pressing issues. As a social critic and activist, it shines the flashlight of truth on our better and worse angels.
Through art we can find a freedom that is immune to chains, systems of oppression, and the ebbs and flows of this great democratic experiment we call America. Art in the end is the manifested preservative that sustains, protects, and guides us.
It's the 50th anniversary of Hip Hop. How has this music influenced you?
Music (Hip Hop in particular) has nestled neatly into a place in my heart where it will forever reside. In many ways my life’s journey has been on a parallel path with Hip Hop’s growth and maturation.
I was 9 years old when I walked into Junebug and Pewee’s bedroom and I heard, “now what you hear is not a test..I’m rapping to the beat…”! That moment everything changed. All of a sudden music made sense. I began to explore the world in a different manner; it was like music turned on the closed captions in real life.
How do you feel the arts impact our culture?
The arts, whether through visual expression, music, dance, poetry, or yoga have the ability to ignite conversations, challenge societal norms, and inspire change. They serve as a powerful platform to shed light on social injustices, racial disparities, and the rich diversity of our shared human experiences. Through art, we can bridge gaps, foster empathy, and create spaces for dialogue and understanding. Art also has the power to heal. It serves as a therapeutic outlet, enabling us to process our emotions, find solace, and create meaning out of chaos. It empowers individuals and communities by giving them a sense of agency and hope. Through artistic expression, we can imagine new possibilities and envision a more inclusive and equitable society.
How did you begin your journey doing yoga?
My yoga practice stemmed from my martial arts background. I trained in Tae Kwon Doe for about 8 years ultimately getting my black belt in the practice. Martial arts and yoga, despite their different approaches, offer unique benefits for physical and mental well-being. Martial arts focuses on self-defense, combat techniques, and physical conditioning. It develops strength, flexibility, and coordination while instilling discipline and self-confidence. In contrast, yoga combines physical postures, breathing exercises, and meditation to promote flexibility, relaxation, and inner peace. It emphasizes mindfulness, self-awareness, and the union of mind, body, and spirit.
How do you feel the arts have impacted our community?
The arts are a reflection in real-time of what our community goes through. Often times, our social cues are taken directly from the art that's being promoted in our community. To me, it's important that as creatives, we pay attention to that impact.
What inspired you to become an entertainer in such a competitive industry?
I think my love of music inspired me to want to be a part of it. The reassurance of my talent has come along the way in performing for audiences and seeing their reactions. I think the industry being competitive is the thing that causes artists to forget their purpose. The reality is we're only in competition with ourselves.
Tell us how you feel about being awarded a Grammy.
The feeling of winning a Grammy is an euphoric one. It's the type of award that really validates the hard work that you've put in and simultaneously re-ignites the desire to continue to work hard. Thinking that all of the doors will magically open up afterwards can sometimes be a letdown so it's important to stay driven.