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My journey with the Alzheimer’s Association began on a brisk Sunday morning in early October of 2010. I was a junior in high school with no idea where I would go to college or what career path I would pursue, but I did know I needed volunteer hours to maintain my place in the National Honors Society for the school year.

That morning, I pulled myself out of bed bright and early (not a small feat for a teenager on a weekend!), bundled up, and headed to Corporate Woods with my mom to volunteer at the registration tent for the Kansas City Walk to End Alzheimer’s. At that point, I had no way of knowing the significance the Alzheimer’s Association would hold in my life in the near future.

Fast-forward four years, I was a junior at the University of Arkansas studying advertising and public relations. Once again, I found myself in a place where I was unsure about my future career path, and was hoping to find some clarity by gaining experience through a summer internship. I was given the opportunity to intern at the Alzheimer’s Association, specifically helping out with the 2015 Kansas City Walk to End Alzheimer’s. On a brisk Sunday morning in early October of 2015 at the registration tent at the Walk, I finally knew that I wanted to work in the nonprofit sector.

After graduation, I eagerly moved back to Kansas City and started my career as an Alzheimer’s Association special events coordinator. Working in development has helped me to grow creatively and strategically and working with such a dynamic and skilled peer group at the Association has helped me grow professionally.

My favorite part of my job is the daily interactions I have with event participants. Every person who chooses to attend or fundraise for an Alzheimer’s Association event has a unique reason for doing so. It is humbling to hear these reasons and they motivate me to do my part to move the mission of the Alzheimer’s Association forward every day.