(Not!) All Business
Meet Rosslyn's Senior Engagement Director Karen Vasquez
Karen Vasquez, Senior Engagement Director, joined the Rosslyn BID in August. A native of Binghamton, N.Y., she now lives in Arlington with her husband Javier and two kids, Allie and Nicholas. She graduated from Penn State (WE ARE!) with degrees in Accounting and International Business, and, much to her parent’s chagrin, a master’s degree in tailgating.
Rosslynva.org: What does your perfect day look like?
Karen Vasquez: Waking up in a non-U.S. location, going on a quick run, parking myself on a beach with the latest issue of The Atlantic, grabbing a little lunch, touring a cool city, buying something beautiful at an art gallery, enjoying afternoon cocktails, dining at a 5-star restaurant and then dancing till dawn. Perhaps a helicopter ride home. This seems 100 percent possible.
Rosslynva.org: Who are your role models? Why?
KV: I have always admired strong women who broke important ground for other women, and who showed us, among many other things, that having careers and families were not mutually exclusive. From the Ruth Bader-Ginsburgs and Gloria Steinems of the world, to the many others who were far less famous, they all did incredibly important and powerful work. I believe we are indebted to them beyond measure.
Rosslynva.org: What do you like best about your job?
KV: It's incredibly cool to look around a place that you really feel strongly about and know that you had some small part in its success. I’ve worked for 15 years in Arlington and now I get to make a difference at a very hyper-local level, implementing a type of program that you don’t normally find BIDs doing. It's pretty nifty.
Rosslynva.org: What has been your biggest accomplishment at the BID?
KV: Ask me again in six months.
Rosslynva.org: What’s your guilty pleasure?
KV: Pizza. Except I suppose one has to feel guilty about it for it to be considered a guilty pleasure. I suspect I do not...
Rosslynva.org: What’s your philosophy toward work?
KV: Work should not fundamentally define your life, but you better enjoy what you do and the people you work with because you’re gonna be there a lot.
Rosslynva.org: What are you good at?
KV: Answering interview questions. Only sort of joking there… I have been told that I’m pretty good at ‘splaining things.
Rosslynva.org: What do you hate to do?
KV: Answer interview questions. Just kidding. There’s very little I hate, with the possible exception of poor grammar. I do have a strong aversion to doing things that seem pointless, are lacking in sincerity or are simply an exercise in covering one’s posterior.
Rosslynva.org: What’s your fondest memory from childhood?
KV: Traveling to a small town in Ohio every summer to see my extended family, my brother and I rolling about in the back end of our station wagon for nine hours with nary a seatbelt in sight. We swam every day, ate our weight in popsicles, and found their use of the word “pop” endlessly entertaining.
Band/Musician: Liz Phair
TV show: Game of Thrones
Book: I have different favorites at different parts of my life. Each was my favorite at the time because it was part of who I was at that time. And really, how could I possibly choose between Ramona and Beezus and The Handmaid’s Tale?
Movie: Fast Times at Ridgemont High or Singles. Both still hold up, both have a killer soundtrack.
Color: "Yellow! No, Blue! aaarrggghhhh…." (bonus points for those who get this reference)
Website (besides rosslynva.org): I’m a shameless Facebook lurker, though I will occasionally post something, but only if it's self-deprecating or just plain funny.
What else should we know about you? I have already divulged too much…
Photo at top: Karen on a recent trip to Siena, Italy. Here she is at the Piazza del Campo.