In the coming weeks, we’ll be announcing some changes to our Uncover KC staff. And while I’m excited to share that news in due time, I want to take a moment to recognize two amazing people — Lauren Obermueller and Jenn Bowden.
Each of these women have meant so much to both this organization and me personally. Though their departures sadden me, I’m beyond thankful for every piece of energy, emotion and effort that they gave to this cause. UKC would not be here today if not for these two.
Let’s start with Lauren. She came to us more than three and a half years ago after completing a stint of international social work. At the time, I was still working by myself on friends’ couches, in local coffee shops and area libraries. We had no money, no office and no benefits. Yet, Lauren believed in our vision and she believed in me. I’ll never forget that.
Lauren is caring, intelligent, driven and meticulous. She dives deep into details and could catch the little things that I would inevitably miss. Her empathy and courage to speak her mind helped me view things differently, and often for the better. We spent hours together, building out the programs and organizational infrastructure that UKC now enjoys today. She legitimized this nonprofit.
Whether it was laughing at clips from The Office, arguing over the littlest details of a project or simply sharing random thoughts, Lauren became the cornerstone I needed. She also became a great friend.
I’m going to miss our talks, your dedication to hope and perhaps most of all, your passion to help others Lauren. Thank you for always being there.
Jenn Bowden joined UKC over two and half years ago when her and her husband moved here from Canada. At the time, she was looking for a way to meet new people and help her new city. And though our organization was growing, it still lacked long-term sustainability and financial security. Yet, like Lauren, Jenn believed in our vision and she believed in me. Again, I’ll never forget that.
Jenn is passionate, smart, loving and charismatic. She has a wonderful gift of being able to connect with anyone, which fit perfectly with our education and corporate programs. Thanks to her inclusivity and hard work, our programming went to new heights. In fact, Jenn took our whole organization to another level. She breathed new life into this nonprofit.
From building out our education curriculum to developing authentic relationships with our partners, to leaving food in my car, Jenn created the energy and joy I needed. She also became a dear friend.
I’m going to miss our laughs, your commitment to serving others and perhaps most of all, your thirst for improvement. Thank you for improving my life Jenn.