Years as a Camper: 8 summers (1992-1999), including one summer in France (1998)
Years as a Staff Member/Positions held: 2 summers on the sailing staff (2000-2001)
Current Profession and Title/Years in role: I’ve been an editor at HuffPost for 11 years; for the past three years I’ve been the Senior Editor, Culture and Parenting.
Can you provide a brief overview of your daily responsibilities at HuffPost? My job is to ideate (a word I despise but it’s useful) and edit stories for the Parenting and Culture sections of HuffPost. I have two reporters who work for me, so I’m in charge of helping them craft stories in those beats. My day-to-day with them includes copy editing and helping package (choosing photos, headlines, tweet language, etc) their stories for those sections. I write three newsletters: How Not To Raise A Jerk for parents; Streamline for what to watch now; and Culture Brief, which is Lifestyle’s newsletter about all things Travel, Home & Living, etc) and run the Parents’ Instagram account, How To Raise A Kid. I also spend a lot of time planning content for the future: right now we’re figuring out 2022 planning, which is harder than usual because no one knows what’s going to happen with COVID.
Do you have any advice for members of our Camp community who are interested in journalism or writing as a career path? Journalism is an increasingly tricky field to get into, and it’s an unstable profession as it is. That said, I’d say take any internship or fellowship offered to you and network while you’re there. Don’t look down on getting people’s coffee or putting in long hours. Read everything and if you want to learn how to write in a publication’s voice, practice at home. Try and try again.
What do you believe have been some of your greatest personal and professional accomplishments? Is there a goal toward which you are currently working? I put on a parenting conference in Brooklyn in 2018 called How To Raise A Kid. We had well-known speakers come and talk about different parenting hurdles. It was a lot of work to put together but it was so rewarding. Parents came up to me afterward saying how much they’d learn, or how they’d definitely put things they’d learned to use. It was great fun.
How do the values or skills you learned at Camp show up in your everyday work and/or personal life? I credit Camp with so much. It taught me humility, the importance of doing the right thing even if it’s hard and to trust myself. To me, those are pretty essential “good” human qualities and something I carry with me daily.
Something else: I sing “The River” and “Taps” to my kids before bed every night.
Is there a person or a situation that had a huge influence on you while you were at Camp? How and why did they/it impact you? I have so many snippet memories of camp: Of running around the mess hall on my birthday; of evacuating to Raleigh during Bertha; of riding in the topless school bus to get sprinkled and Mr. Pibb; of climbing a glacier in the Alps on my 16th birthday; among so so many others. But I think the thing I think about with the most joy is when Tina Sessions, who was in a cabin with me every year, got her Admiral. The day she tested, she left early and didn’t get home until we were doing cabin time. They let us stay up late to wait for her. We were all sitting on the floor with the lights dimmed and all of a sudden she and all these sea counselors came bursting in. The amount of pride they had in her and the amount of pride she had in herself for finally accomplishing something so big was a moment I won’t forget. Everyone was just happy for her. We all jumped up and down and probably woke up a lot of people. What I take with me from that is: support your friends and take pride in their accomplishments, and have some fun while doing it. It’s simple, but it’s one of my great memories.
Favorite Camp meal: I’m a big fan of the cart in the middle of the mess hall (or at least it used to be there!). I’d eat a honey and peanut butter sandwich, and salad with that delicious ranch dressing at pretty much every meal.
Favorite mess hall entry song: “Celebration” hands down.
Favorite special event at Camp: I can’t hear “Sailing” or “The River” or “Istanbul (Not Constantinople)” without thinking of the Cage at night during dances.
Devotion you best remember from Camp: The tale of the starfish, which is about making a difference, even if it’s to one person. I tell that to my kids a lot.
What three words best describe you? Loyal, honest, impatient
What profession other than your own would you like to try? Lawyer, but I’d be terrible at it.
What would you eat if you could only have one food for the rest of your life? No question: pasta.