Back in July I visited the WSU Puyallup Research and Extension Center and as soon as I pulled onto the campus I knew this is where I wanted to be working. After my meetings and tours, I called Paul and told him that I just loved the feeling I got when I pulled onto the campus. The 160-acre main campus is located just west of downtown Puyallup. It has big old barns, brick buildings, fields, gardens, tractors and gorgeous views – it makes me feel right at home!
After touring the research facilities I was sold! I was so impressed with what is going on here at the Center and couldn’t believe more people didn’t know about it. I left Friday afternoon and that next Monday morning I received a call from the Center’s Director. He said he heard we were thinking about maybe moving over to the west side of the state and was wondering if I would be interested in coming to work for him. Um, goose bumps… it was totally meant to be! So, a few phone calls later, we had a game plan and I was starting as the Assistant Director of the WSU Puyallup Research and Extension Center on November 1st.
My main focus is external relations – community and industry engagement and partnerships; development; and fundraising for the Center. I’ve been here for just over three weeks and am absolutely loving it so far! The people here are so friendly and genuine, I’m learning a ton, and have a ton more to learn.
If you’re ever in the Puyallup area you should come visit us! We have Low Impact Development Stormwater research projects including permeable pavement, rain garden and mesocosm research facilities that are really interesting to see; Organic Farming Systems and Nutrient Management research; Master Gardeners who help local community members manage their gardens and landscapes in a science-based, sustainable manner with on site display gardens and a Children’s Garden that we are definitely visiting soon; Christmas tree research; and so much more.