Meet Our New Community Manager: Rosanna Chipkin
If you haven’t heard already, we’ve got a new Community Manager, and we’re super excited for you to get to know her. That’s why we asked her to write a little blog post to introduce herself.
So, without further ado, we introduce to you Rosanna Chipkin, the newest member of the Salt team!
Did you know that most toilets flush in e-flat? Well I’ve got all kinds of mind blowing facts like that to share with you so, go ahead and raise those expectations waaaaaay up.
All kidding aside, I really just wanted to share a few things about myself so you know who I am, where I’m coming from, and why I’m here. I am going to try and be as open and honest as I can because, if rom-coms have taught me anything, it’s always bad news to start a relationship off with a falsehood.
I was born in South Africa and moved to Vancouver when I was 5. There are lots of days where I don’t think about it at all, but, on the days I do, I am so exceedingly thankful that this is where my parents ended up and that I didn’t have to grow up in a place where we were robbed multiple times while we were sleeping.
I lived in my own world when I was a kid. I had real life friends, but was always much more interested in the giant imaginary world I’d created in my head. The massive oak trees which lined my neighborhood’s streets were doorways to it and I would escape there whenever the dysfunction of my family got to be too much.
I love my parents, but being broke immigrants can add a lot of strain to people’s lives, and my sister and I often bore the brunt of this. To say yelling was a regular feature of our home life would definitely be an understatement.
By the time I reached high school, I had gained quite a lot of weight and was definitely not one of the popular kids. Having a sister who was almost 6 years older than me meant I had been exposed to music, fashion, and popular culture which was completely unknown to everyone at my school, so people called me a weirdo and fat and it hurt my feelings a lot.
I know, sad stuff right? Well, thankfully there were also lots of really good things that would happen too.
After high school I met friends who would become my family and show me what unconditional love was. I met a man who is constantly surprising me with how thoughtful and generous he is (Okay, well, most of the time he’s thoughtful. Some of the time he’s leaving socks on the ground). I graduated from University, with a degree in a communications, at the very top of my class, and got the Dean’s Award for Academic Excellence. I’ve had great professional success working in mechanical contracting and property development and am now the first female manager at my company; overseeing operations for one of the largest HVAC contractors in the Lower Mainland when I’m not working for DBG.
It is all of these things, the good and the bad, which make up who I am. I am shy and introverted and eternally anxious, but I am also a fighter, a pragmatist, and someone who LOVES love. I refuse to accept things “just because” and will question everything I’m told. Not because I’m difficult, but because I've realized I have agency in my own life and love learning new things. I am someone who will feel sad for inanimate objects and laugh when things at their most awkward. I am a perfectionist who can’t spell and, you know what, after 30 years of ups and downs, I’m finally okay with all of that. Well, at least, I am half of the time and, when I’m not, I’m doing all kinds of soul searching work so I can get to a place where I’m okay with it full time.
So that’s me in a nutshell. It’s as good a place to start as any, but there is one more thing I wanted to talk about and that’s why exactly I’m here. In part it is because I love writing. Words give us the power to shape our reality, express our ideas, and share our experiences and, because of that, they can liberate us. That said, what mostly brought me here was you. Yes, you.
The strength and resolve it takes to start something new, to take a chance and invest in yourself and your ideas, is something which I am in awe of and to be a part of a community of people who have done just that is my privilege.
I look forward being a part of the Design Build Grow team and getting to know everyone a heck of a lot better! Please feel free to reach out and introduce yourself to me at firstname.lastname@example.org