Tell us a little bit about yourself and what God has called you to do? I am a self-proclaimed “leadership junkie” who believes deeply that leadership begins with influence and that each one of us has God-given influence that we are entrusted to steward faithfully. I also believe that those in positions of leadership have the sacred responsibility of leading well. I spend my days working with leaders and organizations to help them live and lead from their God-given best.
Where do you live and have you lived anywhere else? My husband and I currently live in the San Francisco Bay area. We have been here for 3 years and lived in Nashville, TN for 18 years prior to that. I was born and raised in Wisconsin. My husband was born and raised in Georgia. North meets the South and we’re conquering the Wild West.
How do you carve out time with God everyday? Because I travel often for work, this can look very different from day to day. When I am at home, I get up early, make a cup of tea and spend an hour reading, journaling and praying. When I’m traveling, it all depends on the schedule for the day… sometimes my best time with God is on a plane.
What is your best organizational/planning tip? Create simple systems to manage your life. Make the routine things very simple. For example, I rarely misplace my keys because they clip onto my wallet. My wallet and keys are always together. That sounds really trivial but if I counted the minutes I save because I’m never hunting for my keys, it would significantly add up. Another really important thing is that rather than creating ‘to do’ lists, I schedule things that I need to do on my calendar. That way I know when it’s going to get done and it helps me commit to only the things that I really have time for.
What is your family’s favorite go-to easy meal? I know Debbie Eaton said this already, but ours is tacos as well. My husband loves tacos and never tires of them. Easy win for me!
Tell us your favorite God story (in your own life)? This one is very recent for me . . . as I mentioned, my husband and I moved to California three years ago because we sensed that God was leading us there. When we got there it was nothing like I expected and I really questioned whether I had misheard God. I became very angry with God and frustrated with our circumstances. For two years I kept begging God for answers and he just seemed silent. I found myself really wrestling with my faith and with my ability to trust God. Several months ago some circumstances transpired that made it very clear that when God moved us away from Nashville it was a blessing that we could not have anticipated. I was reminded of how small my view is and how God truly is working all things together for my good, even when it doesn’t always feel like it.
What are your 3 favorite books, other than the Bible of course? The 21 Most Powerful Minutes in a Leader’s Day by John C. Maxwell, Strengthening the Soul of Your Leadership by Ruth Haley Barton, and Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery.
What is your favorite Bible Verse? Galatians 6:4-5 (The Message) “Make a careful exploration of who you are and the work you have been given, and then sink yourself into that. Don’t be impressed with yourself. Don’t compare yourself with others. Each of you must take responsibility for doing the creative best you can with your own life.”
We are dying to know . . . in your opinion, what makes a great leader? A great leader knows that leadership is not about them or for them. Leadership is all about others. Extraordinary leaders recognize that every day they have the power to change or affect the lives of the people around them and they truly see their leadership as sacred work. My personal definition of extraordinary leadership is: “a leader who has searched to discover his or her authentic self and from that place influences others to accomplish great dreams through: intentional relationships (heart), spiritual awareness (soul), wise counsel (mind), and relentless vision (strength)”. I believe great leaders emerge from an overflow of loving God and serving others well.
“Make a careful exploration of who you are and the work you have been given, and then sink yourself into that. Don’t be impressed with yourself. Don’t compare yourself with others. Each of you must take responsibility for doing the creative best you can with your own life.” Galatians 6:4-5 MSG