When I met Sara it was clear we shared the same ambition. We were both inspired by our work in the energy efficiency industry, but we both also felt deeply that there something was missing from our work.
As a working mother, I obsess over balance. Any one who knows me knows that I travel for my job, a lot. With every trip, I take the earliest flight out and the last one home, carefully orchestrated so that I slip in and out seamlessly and not disrupt the family balance.
Recently, I watched my daughter Jonah line up her “dollies” and instruct them, “I am going to go on a trip. Don’t worry — I will be home after three ‘sleeps.’When I get home I’ll have a little treat for you.”
While I was proud that my daughter’s version of motherhood was one of an active, dynamic woman, it prompted serious soul-searching. If I was going to be away, I wanted a professional life driven by a clear vision, pure intention, empowerment, and joy.
We launched Illume to co-create a future for the energy industry and for our families and ourselves.
We believed we could build a company that uses energy research and program design to foster social well being and personal balance. We believed we could build for ourselves what we aim to cultivate in our profession: a healthy, sustainable, illuminated life. We believed we could fill in what was missing. Vision. Pure Intention. Empowerment. Joy.
In my career, I have logged thousands and thousands of miles to engage in a dialogue with many amazing thinkers and actors in the industry. I have been lucky enough to contribute to the creation of policy, programs, and our collective movement forward.
There is no shortage of debate about how mothers should build their working life.
Some urge us to lean in while others are brutally frank about what I can’t have. With a great deal of reflection I came to my answer: my joy comes from forging my own path forward and creating a life that I am wholly responsible for. I am lucky to have found Sara and that we share the same joy and vision.
I have no doubt that building ILLUME will have its challenges, I have no doubt that I will have to make choices between work commitments and family life. But I have no doubt that I face those choices with a company and family behind me that will fully support whatever decisions I make.