It is already July; it just crept up on me.  It means that summer is basically half over or maybe third over.  So more blistering heat, merciless sunshine, and lazy afternoons.

Before the busy vacation travel time, I was fortunate enough to visit the directors, some of the facilitators, and a social entrepreneur, Jinah Kim, in NYC.  WOW. It was a powerful visit. I got an opportunity to really understand how a social enterprise enriched a local community in Troy, a small town just outside of Albany.  Also, I had a 6-hour brunch with the directors, Mish Southgate and Clara Yoon, and two of the facilitators, Terry Kim and Mariam Rauf. I could not have asked for a more safe space in which we discussed our past lives, present joy/pain, and future plans.  Yes, 6 hours of just sitting and talking - nothing was off-limits, not even my personal life or lack thereof. Fortunately, we were able to sneak in some discussion, for about 10 minutes, about the Fall Roundtable. I had to mix in some business with all the pleasure I was having with these beautiful women.  I was feeling a little guilty. But I have to admit that even if we did not discuss any business, the time was well spent. I was able to personally connect with all of them. Women power talk at its best. And one of the joy of visiting NYC was that I got to see some of Jackson Pollock’s paintings. I do love his paintings.

Then just this weekend, I went to visit one of my most beloved friend, Lisa Kemmerer, at her sister’s animal sanctuary in Sheridan Wyoming.  Lisa is the founder of Tapestry, an organization that is dedicated to mentoring women for animal activism. She takes a very broad perspective, the intersectionality of oppression of all anymals.  The visit was again amazing. The small town of Sheridan was serene. The soft, gentle, curvy hills was calming and the 7 hour drive getting there was therapeutic. Yes, that was 7 hours of straight driving (80++ WY speed limit) without music - all by myself.  We hiked and talked, sat and talked about everything. We talked about broken hearts, meaningful life, and most importantly the future of our nonprofit organizations. I was hoping to get some answers but I came out more confused about my personal life, unclear about where I will be in a year, what I will be doing, and who I would like to share my life.  But thankfully, we had productive discussions on how to navigate our nonprofits so they can become more sustainable - what or how can we market our organizations so we can continue our work. We will soon be implementing the ideas sown this weekend.

June has been meaningful, reflective, and powerful.  I hope to harness and organize all my ideas for the Fall Roundtable in a few weeks so that we can make it worthwhile for all the facilitators and participants.  And at the think-tank roundtable, I hope to develop a model that we can market to small nonprofit organizations and future founders of nonprofit organizations so they can realize their vision for their communities.  It will be an effective and practical model.


Founder. Executive Director

July. 01, 2018

Samantha Joo