Nearly 12 years ago, I was having a difficult time re-entering the workforce after staying home to care for my kids. But there was an opening for a theater technician at the Center and, as a person with a theatre degree who needed a job, the stars seemed aligned.
I then joined the staff of AIDS/LifeCycle in 2015. Throughout the season, I produce events in the form of parties, bike rides, and a bike expo to offer first-timers a glimpse of what to expect in June.
My favorite part of the year is the two weeks surrounding the Ride. I live in utter joy in the utopian love bubble from the moment we set foot at Cow Palace in San Francisco until we reach Los Angeles on Day Seven. I am on the team who arrives to each Ride campsite a day early to set up, makes sure everything runs smoothly when everyone arrives, and ensures we leave each campsite better than we found it after everyone has left.
When the world shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic, AIDS/LifeCycle pivoted to AIDS/[email protected] for the 2020 Ride. When it became apparent the pandemic wasn’t ending, we created a new virtual event, TogetheRide, for the 2021 season. I became a virtual content producer writing scripts, collecting content from our community, conducting interviews, and putting it all together for broadcast. We dove into a whole new world and job skillset. I have personally loved every minute of it.
Working for a cause I believe in and being part of something that is greater than me feels good—I’m making positive change in the world. But it has become even more personal as it’s helped me navigate my child’s transition. I’ve become an ally with a community of supporters and a plethora of information. That is truly priceless for me as a parent and for my child who senses the support surrounding him. Like me, he feels like home.
Hometown: McAllen, TX
Year Started Working at Center: 2009
Staff Position: Special Events Manager – AIDS/LifeCycle