Team Member Spotlight Q&A with Denise Ester
This week's Team Member Spotlight Q&A was with Project Manager, Denise Ester. Denise joined the team in early 2020 and has been a great addition, helping our customers fully utilize the imPowr platform. Check out her first blog post, Why Thinking Like A Donor is Important.
1. What is your role at Continual Care Solutions?
As the Project Manager at Continual Care Solutions, I am responsible for planning and overseeing projects to ensure customers successfully implement our software platform in the way that best suits their needs. I work with our customers to determine and define project scope and objectives. I help them to create and manage a detailed project schedule and work plan and monitor progress and make adjustments as needed.
2. Why did you decide to join the Continual Care Solutions team?
I have a personal mission of inspiring and making an impact, leaving a positive mark where I go. I knew very quickly this was a team I wanted to be a part of because we are a diverse group of passionate and creative people. The Continual Care Solutions team shares the common thread of caring about our work and how it impacts the world around us. Check out the other Team Member Spotlight Q&A's to see how incredible they are.
3. What is your favorite thing to work on as part of your job?
I have a lot of favorites about my job, because I have never worked for a startup before, but my top two reasons are: building customer relationships and being a person they can trust. As a philanthropist at heart, I get joy knowing that I am helping so many non-profits in my community by assisting them in proving their impact through the imPowr platform. Working in the nonprofit world for many years, I have used many software platforms, none of which are like imPowr and it continues to improve and change our customers' efficiency and workflow. I remember not that long ago being on the other side of the table and the frustration of not being able to do what I needed done in one system.
4. Before working at Continual Care Solutions, what was the most unusual or interesting job you’ve ever had?
I would say the most interesting job I had was my first job at Price Chopper in Watertown, NY. I got that job through my high school which had a partnership through Cornell University. At the time they were looking to grow the roles of women District Managers in the grocery industry. I took classes in school that would give me college credits through Cornell University and had to work my way through every department in the grocery store. I started as a bagger and worked my way up each department. When I became a front-end supervisor, my mother worked as a cashier and I had to give her a written warning for not securing her cash register while away from it. Yes, that still puts a little smile on my face when I think of it.
5. If you could do another job for just one day, what would it be?
If I could do one job for a day, I would want to be a Labor & Delivery Nurse. My youngest son was born at Highland Hospital and I remember having the best nurse assist me that day. She left an impression on me, and I love babies. My family and friends call me the baby whisperer because I can settle a fussy baby and put them to sleep almost immediately. Holding them, swaddling them, and then putting them in their parent’s arms. It is the sweetest thing.
6. What is on your bucket list?
I love traveling, I have two locations that are on my bucket list: Egypt, because I want to see the pyramids since they look amazing on television, and Spain, because after doing my 23 & Me DNA kit I have narrowed down where in Spain my grandfather's family is from. Another thing on my bucket list is taking a hot air balloon ride. When I was a young girl, I lived in Germany and I would see hot air balloons outside my window and I was always mesmerized by them. The urge has never left so I know it is definitely something I must do.
7. What do you like to do in your spare time?
In my spare time, I love to spend time with my two sons, read, and pretty much anything creative: paint, craft, cross stitch, try new recipes, and travel.
8. Where is the best place you’ve traveled to and why?
Two years ago, I traveled to London and Paris, where I learned things that I did not know, like that it takes the London Eye 30 minutes to go around and that the Eiffel Tower is 1,063 feet tall. I remember walking up to it and saying to my friend, "how do people take a picture with this massive thing?". We found out that there is a platform a mile away where you take those beautiful pictures with it in the background. Being a military child, the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace was also a highlight for me.
9. Where is your favorite place to eat?
I love this family-owned Cajun restaurant in Leesville, Louisiana called Catfish Junction. They have frog legs and alligator on the menu and the best catfish I ever tasted. I was a waitress there and the chefs taught me how to cook gumbo, which is a staple in Louisiana.
10. What is one of your favorite quotes?
"You can stay in joy or you can leave in peace. There is no third option."