On Thursday I turned 30. Even though I’ve passed this major divide, I am extremely excited for what the future has to hold. For the first time in my life, my passion connects with what I am doing on a day-to-day basis. Who could have thought that attending a lecture celebrating the 50th anniversary of John F. Kennedy’s inauguration would lead to the inspiration for an entrepreneurial idea, which got funded by the Alex C. Walker Foundation, being invited to the Property & Environment Research Center’s (PERC) Enviropreneur Institute, getting hired by Georgia Aquarium as the Walker Conservation Fellow, and moving to Atlanta, all in 9 months? I’m happier than I’ve been in a long time and can’t wait for what the next 30 years have to hold.
While I had originally planned on going out of the country for my birthday, I instead chose to embrace my 30th year by getting to know my new home, Atlanta, a little better. Georgia Aquarium’s Diving Control Board gave me the best “gift” ever by granting me scientific diving status under their program. I then proceeded immediately to SCUBA diving in Georgia Aquarium’s Ocean Voyager exhibit, with four whale sharks! Some of my best friends from my MBA program at the University of Colorado at Boulder came to town and we competed in the First Annual Atlanta Mattress 500, gaining press coverage in the Access Atlanta (http://projects.accessatlanta.com/gallery/view/events/atlanta-mattress-500/ – photos 7 & 10), and helping to support families moving out of homeless shelters. We enjoyed birthday cake from Highland Bakery (thanks, Mom!) and had a fun evening checking out bars in Virginia Highlands.
I’m off to Florida in the morning to meet with stakeholders about the potential market-based solutions to coral restoration. Here are several quotes that I’ve found particularly inspirational for my current activities.
• “We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.” – Albert Einstein
• “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” – Margaret Mead
• “What would you do if you knew you could not fail?” –Unknown
Never forget to live each and every day to its fullest!