My name is Natalie Wallace, CAE, and I’m an account manager with Redstone Agency Inc, but you might know me as “That girl with the purple/pink/blue/wacky coloured hair”. I enjoy volunteering locally with the Trillium Network, especially with the Holiday Gala committee and the Young Professionals committee. I joined CSAE initially to volunteer on the committees, but have since stayed due to the connections and learning experiences I gain from being involved.
What do you get out of your membership with CSAE?
I get what I put in – I’m the kind of person who can’t handle being a part of an organization and NOT get involved. I love volunteering with CSAE, and I find I gain so much practical learning from serving on committees, as well as insight from fellow association executives. I’m also able to share my own opinions and be heard – it’s a community that I contribute to, and that gives back to me in turn.
What keeps you motivated?
Asides caffeine – my coworkers at Redstone. I work with a phenomenal group of people who are so supportive and inspiring. We challenge each other to think outside the box, do things differently, and we’re there for each other.
What has surprised you most about your professional journey so far?
That most people won’t discredit you just because you have blue hair. I’m kidding (somewhat), but I think what I’ve been most surprised by is the fact that I’ve genuinely become friends with a lot of the individuals I’ve had the pleasure of working with over the last few years. They are people that I would call on if I ever needed a personal favour, or would grab a drink socially with.
What’s one piece of advice you would like to share with others?
Be your true authentic self. Always. People will gravitate to that genuine energy, and the relationships you make will be that much more impactful and beneficial. This industry is all about relationships, so the more authentic you are with them, the further they will go for you. Don’t feel like you need to fit into a mold of what you should be or look like – be yourself. It will take you so far.
What is one thing that may surprise people to learn about you?
I’m pretty sure no one is surprised by anything with me anymore – I have a Bachelor of Arts majoring in Theatre Studies, I play a lot of Dungeons & Dragons (most of which is live streamed), and I had a VERY brief brush with fame when I was a top 50 finalist for MasterChef Canada Season 2. Hopefully ONE of those surprises people.
What are three things you could never live without?
My phone (ha ha, I know, typical), board games, and probably wine.
Recommend another CSAE aspiring leader to be featured:
Aina Budrevics – she’s a young ED who just got her CAE – incredibly brilliant, has volunteered on the YP committee with me. She is how I got through the CAE exam.