Kate: reacHIRE Graduate

2 min read

Kate | Power in Networking

Pre-break: Director of Operations
Post-break: Senior Director of Development
Length of Career Break: 12 years

Kate and her family

Kate and her family

Kate at KIPP event

Kate at KIPP event

Following the birth of my third child in December of 2001, I thought it would be best to stay home and invest time in my children. At the time, I anticipated I’d be out of the workforce for about five years; however, as time went on and I took on more and more leadership roles as an active volunteer in my children’s schools, five years soon became 12.

It wasn’t until my youngest child was entering middle school and my eldest was heading off to college, that I focused on relaunching my career. I thought it was important to provide a strong role model for my children. I also missed the daily camaraderie of working with colleagues, and inevitably needed to help my husband fund 12 years of impending college tuition payments.

“I am so grateful for the intensive training I received through reacHIRE. From updating my technical and computer skills, to fine tuning my presentation and interviewing strategies, I was able to regain the confidence necessary to ‘get back out there!”

So, I began the hunt! My job search turned out to be more daunting and slower than expected. So, when my friend suggested I explore reacHIRE, I eagerly applied and was then accepted to join reacHIRE cohort III. I am so grateful for the intensive training I received through reacHIRE, and for the other women I met in my group who were going through the same challenges I was. From updating my technical and computer skills, to fine tuning my presentation and interviewing strategies I was able to regain the confidence necessary to “get back out there!”

One of the greatest takeaways from the reacHIRE training was the assistance in preparing an elevator pitch that helped optimize my personal brand. I had eventually narrowed down my pitch to my interest in working in marketing strategy, analytics and communications for a nonprofit. I had practiced this in front of my brother a myriad of times, just so I could perfect it. And wouldn’t you know it? One day my brother shared it with a friend. His company just so happened to be looking for someone with my career goals and experience, and the next thing I knew I was interviewing for the Marketing/Communications part-time position at KIPP (the Knowledge is Power Program). Lucky for me, it was a natural fit!

I started part-time at KIPP. After a year, I was promoted to my current full-time role working for the Senior Director of Development. I am presently responsible for building awareness for the KIPP brand through public relations, social and earned media, our website, video, and via events and newsletters. I also specialize in fundraising through grant writing, publish our annual report and quarterly appeals, and just about anything else that lands on my desk. I truly enjoy going to work every day because there is endless inspiring content to work with. I love sharing stories about our students and the leading work that our staff delivers to our students. My short-term goal is to continue growing with KIPP and become a director. A longer-term goal I have set for myself is to work in higher education. I am sure I wouldn’t have landed this position and accomplished what I have, if I hadn’t gone through the reacHIRE program. Thank you so much, reacHIRE!