Friday, August 7, 2009

Meet Meredith Brown


My name is Meredith Brown and I have the great privilege of being the Manager of Donor Relations here at United Way of Northwest Arkansas. Many of you faithful followers may not know me because I am brand new. I have just finished up my second week. Although I was born and raised in Houston, TX, (by two native Arkansans) I have found a home away from home here in Northwest Arkansas.

I recently graduated from the University of Arkansas with a degree in Advertising and Public Relations as well as a minor in Marketing. A friend told me about the Donor Relations position and strongly encouraged me to apply. I quickly sent my resume to Amy, VP of Resource Development, and was surprised when I was invited for an interview.

I had always known about United Way but I still needed to do my research and be caught up with what was going on now. After many hours of investigating and research and notes on United Way I had an even bigger problem on my hands. I realized how much I wanted to be part of this organization. How could I express the way I felt without seeming insincere?

While I was in the elevator I said a prayer, “God, please calm my nerves, give me the strength to use my words with purpose. Let me understand that the right person will get this job, even if it is not me.” Ding!

My first interview was with Amy. My first impression of Amy…she’s a model with a big heart. The interview questions were what I expected but the conversation with Amy wasn’t. I had never been in an interview where I felt so comfortable.

I felt great after the first round, but a little sad because I just felt like something fit. I hoped it wasn’t the last time I would be there. I kept reminding myself, “The right person will get the job, even if it isn’t me. United Way needs a great person and I’ll find something else…Oh, but I really want it.”

A few days later Amy called to invite me back for a second interview with two other people. For this interview I had to do a United Way presentation. For my second interview I met Brooke and Susan. I immediately liked Brooke because she had four different highlighters, three different pens, her planner and a notebook. I love organization so I was definitely taking notes because she was on the ball. Susan sat next to me so it wouldn’t be a firing squad style at the table, so I really appreciated that. All of them made me feel comfortable and challenged. I knew they were encouraging and positive people I could work with.

A few days later, Amy called me while I was running errands and said, “Meredith, we would like to offer you the position at United Way.” It took everything in me to not scream with excitement. I couldn’t believe it.

The following day the office was having a staff retreat and I had the opportunity to participate. It was so great to meet everyone all at once. I immediately felt included.

I knew I had made the right decision when I went to my first campaign kickoff at Ozark Electric Company (OEC). Jen Boyle from Samaritan Community Center spoke to OEC’s employees about our community’s. Her words gave me goose bumps. I knew I had just joined an organization that has the power and people to inspire change.

I’m looking forward to having many stories to share with you of how I LIVE UNITED. And I encourage all of you to Give, Advocate, and Volunteer so you have your own story.

1 comment:

Andrew said...

Great to know about this..Thanks for nice information..


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Andrew
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