Katie Rydz, On BOARD Grad

Name/Profession:
Katie Rydz, Senior Strategy Analyst at BlueCross BlueShield of IL, MT, NM, OK, & TX

What do you love most about having gone through the OB program?
I participated in the OnBoard program in Fall 2014. Initially, I thought the program would be interesting and would provide a great opportunity for professional development. However, I had no idea just how much I would truly enjoy the program. OnBoard brings lofty, sometimes intimidating ideas and practices down to a tangible level. It enabled me to join the board of Underscore Theatre Company and really give back to the Chicago arts community. In addition to the program itself and the opportunity to work with my amazing board, I’ve also met the most fantastic people through A&BC. After everything I’ve gained through A&BC, Underscore, and OnBoard, I cannot help but to stay engaged and help out whenever I can.

What does volunteering add to your life?
Professionally, volunteering allows me to sharpen skills that I do not use in my current career, such as marketing or annual budgeting. On a personal level, I find volunteering extremely rewarding. It allows me to give back to the community I love (Chicago!) and get to know people with a variety of backgrounds.

What are some of your other interests?
Currently, I am a self-proclaimed reluctant runner. I exercise daily, but not without a good deal of reluctance – it definitely takes an extra push to get to the gym every day. I also love travelling and trying new things – new countries, new musicals, new restaurants, you name it!

What goals have you helped organizations reach?
I have helped Underscore Theatre Company set and achieve revenue goals as well as broaden our overall audience base. I’ve also become a pro at selling raffle tickets at A&BC’s annual gala!

Fun stuff: favorite food, pets, season, secret talent?
I love dogs, but I can only have cats in my studio apartment. Several years ago, my mom surprised me with two kittens, Eddie and Charlie. While they aren’t dogs, it hasn’t stopped me from teaching them how to play fetch!

-Katie Rydz, On BOARD Grad