BOOST is turning 15! We will be highlighting our BOOST Bloggers, Ambassadors, Leadership Team members, and Partners weekly through the end of November to say ‘thanks’ to our outstanding team members for their contributions to the in and out-of-school time community.
As we approach our 15-year anniversary, we are reminded of how much we value and appreciate our TEAMBOOST partners and want to share their stories – their journeys through the in and out-of-school time field, their goals and accomplishments, career highlights, and a few fun things about their lives.
Learn all about Leadership Team member, Kristen Gonzalez
Kristen is the Program Manager at Harmonium, Inc. – Klassic Kids in San Diego, CA. She has been on the BOOST Leadership Team since 2018!
How did you enter the OST, expanded learning, and/or educational field?
Started working for the Park and Rec Department in the city I grew up in.
What motivates you to do this work?
To give students hope for more, to give staff the tools they need to instill the idea of hope in students.
What are you currently reading or watching?
Reading: Enough Already by Valerie Bertinelli, and Watching: anything with Law & Order attached to the title.
Share some of your greatest accomplishments.
Finishing college at 34, with two school-age children, and working full time.
What are some big goals you are working toward?
A big goal is to expand the programs I manage into other schools.
What are your top three leadership qualities?
3. Willingness to jump in where and when needed
Name a leader that you admire and why?
Abraham Lincoln – He treated everyone with honesty, courage, grace, empathy, and justice. He had the ability to understand that it took a team to get things done and recognized the success of the team. He was motivational and inspiring with positive messages to all.
Share an inspirational quote that resonates with you.
“We don’t have to be perfect, just engaged and committed to aligning values with actions.” Brene Brown
As a child, what were your career aspirations?
Haha…I wanted to be a waitress, no idea why just thought the job looked fun.
What causes are you passionate about?
Women’s Rights, Mental Health, Hunger & Equity in Education.
What is one of the highlights of your career?
There have been many, but I really think the highlight is starting at the bottom of the totem pole in this career and working my way into the position I have now.
How do you show kindness to others and/or share ways others have shown kindness to you?
My love language is gift giving…it could be just a card of thanks, a small token of my appreciation to big celebrations. I want others to feel seen and heard and the best way I can do that is with gifts.
What career legacy do you want to leave?
Want to leave those ah-ha moments, when something happens on-site and they remember a training that I provided.
What’s the biggest mistake you made on the job and what did you learn from it?
Thinking I knew it all and not listening to mentors… I learned that I am part of the greater good and that no one can work in their silo.
Tell us what you had for breakfast!
Toast with marionberry jam.
Thank you, Kristen, for being a part of the BOOST Leadership Team for the past 4 years and for sharing your leadership with the field!