5 Questions with...Alison Spasser!

  • Team Schusterman

June 17, 2015

We are so excited to welcome Alison as our new Communications Associate in our Atlanta office! Learn more about Alison here.

1. Tell us what excites you most about your new position with the Foundation.

I’m so excited to join such a talented and creative communications team, especially at an organization with a mission I believe in so strongly. The Foundation has such a long, impressive history of doing good in the world and I’m humbled to be able to contribute to that legacy in any way that I can. Getting the chance to write every day is great—getting the chance to write every day about meaningful causes is ideal.

2. What key lessons from your past experience do you plan to apply in your new role?

I have an undergraduate background in biology, and in the sciences, there’s a very famous concept that now guides all experimental research: you can’t get so attached to a hypothesis that it becomes your “intellectual child.” If you’re determined to prove your theory above all else, your results suffer.

Expecting a certain outcome is dangerous—sometimes things turn out the way you think they will, sometimes they don’t, but there are always valuable lessons to be learned and your efforts are always worthwhile. This idea is so applicable to my new role at Schusterman—and in life, I’ve found—because keeping an open mind and being ready to pivot when something deviates from the path you’re expecting is a crucial skill.

3. What's your favorite part of the writing process?

I’m not going to lie, I love to edit—I’m one of a rare breed of human who finds moving commas and restructuring paragraphs enjoyable. But I think, most of all, I enjoy getting the chance to tell stories, not only to make sure that voices are heard, but to illustrate a need for change. Finding ways to encourage audiences to care enough about a cause that they’re moved to action—whether it’s retweeting a link or signing up to volunteer—and showing them how lives will be impacted is easily the most rewarding part of working in communications. (Getting to edit those stories is just a bonus.)

4. Where can you be found on a day off?

When I’m not at home, reading or binge-watching television shows for unhealthy periods of time, I’m probably outside with my dog, Louise, who can expend more energy in a single afternoon than I have in my entire life. I’m also a huge sports fan—if it’s baseball season, chances are I’m watching a St. Louis Cardinals game or furiously checking the scores on my phone. The ESPN app has probably shaved years off my life.

5. What should potential dog owners know about caring for a loveable pup?

The most important thing is to understand what you’re getting into before you commit (and when you’re ready, to rescue a dog in need!). It’s probably going to be much harder than you were expecting—but also so much better. A dog is a ton of work, but it’s the good kind of work, the kind you’ll never regret, even when you’re faced with the impressive destruction a puppy can inflict on the part of your house you’re least expecting. You probably won’t get to enjoy those leisurely off-leash walks on the beach right off the bat, though. I’m not convinced those ever actually happen!