May 2011

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work Carrie’s tips Work with me: Carrie Wall B Striving for a better community one step at a time and interest ehind a desk is not usually where you’ll find Carrie Wall. From meet- ings around town to providing hands-on training at various locations throughout the county, Wall is a woman on the move. In a rare moment of down- time, the newly minted CEO of the YMCA-Dane County catches her breath and reflects on just how far both she and her organization have come. It began 25 years ago at the YMCA-Mil- waukee, where Wall, then a young mother with no college degree, took on a part-time job, having no idea just how far it would lead her. Coming from a family that placed high importance on community service, she knew the work was a perfect fit. “It matches my goals, my passion for [community service],” Wall says. As she grew with the organiza- tion, Wall went back to school, raised a family and found work she loves. Today, she is steering one of the longest- serving YMCAs in the nation into its 125th year by shaping a new strategy that focuses on the things she sees as key to community success: youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. Lofty goals, yes, but Wall is confident in her team. “I’ve learned in the past 24 years that [if] I think I can make a difference, then we can,” she says. And with that, she’s off again. “If I am sitting at my desk all day, I’m probably not doing my job,” she says with a smile before heading out the door. May 2011 33 For better balance between work and life Know your priorities and goals “I don’t like to prescribe [tips] to anybody. But what I do is ask [myself]: ‘What’s your goal?’ … My goals are about … maintaining my priorities. Sit down and ask yourself what your own priorities are.” Take a moment to breathe “Sometimes it is just [as easy as] noticing that the bird outside is singing right now.” Photo by David King

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