JOB: Associate director for marketing and patron services at Krannert Center for the Performing Arts. She has been working there since 1992. Her office is tucked away just off the center's large lobby. The former grade-school P.E. teacher's job keeps her running all over what is her playground today: the theaters, shops and services that make up Champaign-Urbana's showplace of the human spirit.
OTHER PASSIONS: Writing and nature. She recently bought seven acres on the Sangamon River to better enjoy the outdoors and work on her novel.
What do you do on your job?
I oversee all areas of the Krannert Center related to the public. That includes the ticket office, Intermezzo Cafe and Promenade Gift Shop as well as front-of-house operations. I am also responsible for all marketing functions, including identifying patron needs and overseeing all advertising in print, radio and television. I try to do what I can in order to make the patrons' experience the best it can be.
What do you like about your job?
I believe in the arts and what they can do for the entire society as well as for the individual. And I absolutely love my job because it's so diverse. I am able to be involved with widely different areas on different days. One day I get to work on marketing research and the next day work with Intermezzo and catering. In food services, we're constantly trying new products and new things. The café has a constantly changing menu. We've changed the ambiance and recently added a high-end stereo system and music.
What are the most interesting things you have experienced on your job?
I love working with the incredible staff here at Krannert. The people who work here are an amazing group. The creative spirit and the talent in this building are phenomenal. We get to sit down and have coffee with some of the visiting artists who are working here. I'm constantly enriched by the people I work around and work with.
Was there anybody who particularly impressed you?
Recently Leslie Nielsen was here to present "Darrow for the Defense." I got to go to lunch with him. He's a committed professional and a warm, caring person. It was wonderful to sit across from someone so earthy and not realize you're sitting across from a megastar. There are so many nice people who come here.
Do you see many of the performances at Krannert?
I probably attend 70 to 80 percent of them. I try to go to everything that I can. I think it's critical for me to attend so I can know what the patron experiences. It's also a wonderful perk of working here.
What do you like to do when you're not working?
I like to write. I'm also interested in the environment and have taken a few classes in environmental science. I enjoy visiting with friends around a campfire and sitting in the woods to write. Right now I'm working on nature writing: incorporating observations of nature into a story line. My perspective is that human society has gone too far from its needs. The connection with the earth is just as important as food, water and shelter.