Q & A with John McLeod-Moya!

Posted October 9, 2019

What is your role at ILLUME?
I’m an analyst, but I primarily work on the more qualitative side of things, specifically ethnography, interviews (both on the phone and in-person) and qualitative analysis. I am also getting some great opportunities to branch out and learn new skills from my awesome coworkers, who come from a number of different backgrounds.

Where are you from and where do you live now?
I am a Florida native and grew up in Miami, but now I live in Portland Oregon. It’s about as different as you can get from where I grew up, but I really like it. It’s nice not to be in 90-degree weather with high humidity every day, and the mountains are gorgeous.

Who or what inspires you in your work?
I think the work itself is very inspiring. Not only do I get to apply things I learned as an anthropology major in college to do real world research, something I would have said was impossible five years ago, but I also work in a place that has strong values when it comes to equity, sustainability, and work-life balance. I’m inspired by where I work and the people I work with, and I’m excited to start work every day.

Do you have any pets?
Nope just kids. They’re enough work…I get to play with my coworkers’ dogs though!

What are your favorite hobbies?
I always liked being outdoors; hiking, camping, canoeing, and fishing. Recently I started gardening, and it’s an awesome opportunity to spend time with my 2-year-old son. We also take him on hikes and trips to the Oregon coast.

What’s your favorite quote or motto?
I recently came across the following: “Happiness is not a destination; it is a method of travel.”

What is the best concert you ever attended?
I saw Radiohead in Tampa in college. We got nosebleed seats that were as far left of the stage as you could get without seeing the band from behind. Still, it was Radiohead! And I got to meet Thom Yorke at the end, so it was still pretty awesome. I also got to see Deerhunter open for Spoon in an old theater in Atlanta, so in terms of environment, that was also one of my favorites.

If you could have chosen another career path, what would you be doing?
At one time I considered a career in academia. I have a master’s in theology, because I was really interested in late antiquity. I spent a lot of time in the library writing papers on ancient texts and learning Latin and Greek. It was a lot of fun, but not a very good life for my family.