BIRTHPLACE: Yatesboro, Pennsylvania. (near Pittsburgh)
EDUCATION: Undergraduate studies at Carnegie-Mellon University. BFA from Chatham College
YEARS WORKING IN TRANSIT INDUSTRY: 6.5 years
YEARS WORKING WITH SFRTA: 6.5 years
PROFESSIONAL HISTORY: Publicity Manager for Carnegie Hall, Radio City Music Hall, Rockefeller Center, the Rockefeller Group. PR Director of the Philadelphia Orchestra. Marketing Director for the Florida Philharmonic Orchestra and Ballet Florida. Director of Marketing and Customer Service for the SFRTA/Tri-Rail since October 2000.
BIGGEST CHALLENGE IN MARKETING TRANSIT AT SFRTA:Changing the perception that the only people who use transit are people who have no other choice for their transportation needs. I’m constantly surprised at the number of high end, luxury automobiles parked in our lots each day. These are people who are making a conscious commitment to use mass transit. The biggest challenge of marketing the RTA is the fact that without a dedicated funding source, it’s difficult, if not impossible; to accomplish the projects we were formed to implement. The challenge becomes a matter of managing credibility and expectations.
COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT: Being on call 24/7 doesn’t leave much time for community involvement, but I occasionally offer advice to arts organizations on a pro bono basis when asked.
PERSONAL BACKGROUND: (family, pets, hobbies, pastimes, etc) I was a professional opera singer before turning to public relations in 1979. My husband, Malcolm, is a former opera singer who is now a full time Cantor at Temple Kol Tikvah in Parkland, Florida. My son, Andrew, is in his second year at Broward Community College. We have a beautiful tri-color sheltie named Fallon. I have an identical twin sister who is in the travel business. My favorite pastime is getting on a ship with her and going somewhere exotic, or anywhere at all for that matter.
CHILDHOOD AMBITION: To be an opera singer
INSPIRATION: My Dad, whose favorite phrase was (still is), “Everyone puts their pants on the same way.” He taught me to treat everyone with the same level of respect. This has truly been the best lesson I could ever learn, whether dealing with an irate passenger or one of the world’s greatest musicians.
FAVORITE BOOK:The latest Carl Hiaasen book, whatever it is. He’s the only author I buy in hardback because I can’t wait for the paperbacks to come out.
FAVORITE CANDY: Hoffman’s dark chocolate covered pretzels