Katy Moonan is the Founder and Director of ArteSana, a non-profit social enterprise partnering with women in Holyoke to make handwoven products that create opportunity and build a more equitable world. She has worked with numerous non-profits in the Pioneer Valley and abroad. A passionate advocate for community-led development and the arts, Katy was a 2014 National Arts Strategies’ Creative Communities Fellow, a 2016 SPARK graduate, and is currently completing a fellowship with the Coaching Fellowship focused on propelling women leaders. Katy grew up in Mexico but now calls Holyoke home. She graduated from Smith College in 2012 with a degree in Government and Postcolonial Studies.
Katy has some serious cred and is super serious about offering up some real talk in Le vital corps Salon. She dishes on how she's handled some of her biggest decisions like eschewing a career in advertising in NYC to start the social enterprise, ArteSana. We also get a peek at how she's figuring out her leadership style with a strong core team (more like familia) supporting her. (Shout-outs to Diana Rodriguez, Erika Perez, Ivette Aponte, Pastora Torres, and Peggy Shannon.) Katy also shares some perfectly imperfect steps she's taking to find more balance between her work and social life.
Learn more about Katy and her work here Artesana.
Listen to the complete episode in any of these fine places:
Selected link love + resources from the episode
- Connect with Katy on social media: Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | LinkedIn
- The Five College Consortium: Amherst College, Hampshire College, Mount Holyoke College, Smith College and the University of Massachusetts-Amherst
- The Conscious Competence Ladder by Noel Burch
- Paper City Clothing Company
- Article: Spend & Save by Bani Amor
- Kickass Theme Music: “Things Are Getting Better” Written by Rishi Dhir. Performed by The High Dials.
- Stay in the loop about future Le vital corps Salon episodes: Twitter | Facebook | The List (sent monthly-ish including helpful health + lifestyle information)
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Quotes + selected highlights from the episode
All of this wisdom is from Katy herself (with some minor edits for readability).
[00:06:44] That's what it's all about. That's the power of women working together. [2.8]
[00:08:40] The approach here is: In our own sphere of influence, what can we do to make an impact to improve our own lives in our own communities? [7.8]
[00:13:12] Our main thing is trying to foster this culture within Artesana that's all about collaborating and affirming each person's power and agency to make the changes needed in their lives and communities by accessing different tools and resources. [16.3]
[00:20:10] On gut decisions: I think there's so much knowledge that our body and our mind holds in a way that isn't always accessible intellectually. [8.3]
[00:30:48] I've made the conscious decision to really seek out the people who are going to help me be the best Katy that I can be. [8.3]
[00:32:44] I got to be really familiar with being the new girl in school, having a fit in, and figuring out the social landscape. I always was able to thrive. It wasn't easy, especially being the only gringa. I always went to Mexican schools, so I was always kind of the odd one out. One of my coping mechanisms was to be a bit of a chameleon and to accelerate the process of making friends. [30.4]
[00:41:48] On leadership at Artesana: Every ounce of my being is dedicated to making it feel collaborative and really taking time for conversations, brainstorms and making it not hierarchical. The way that I'm trying to make that happen is by being really transparent and really anti-pedestal as the leader of the project. [19.1]
[00:49:19] Well, there's days when things don't go well and I just feel really disappointed in myself or really drained from trying to deal with all the different roadblocks. Those feelings let me know that I need help keeping my head up. I'll call a friend or I'll talk to my partner Carlos. [21.6]
[00:58:54] On her resolution for 2017: Mine is just one very simple one, which is to (at least) four days out of the week at 6:00 p.m. be done working - not think about it, not check my e-mail, and not do anything else. [11.3]
[01:01:23] A powerful lesson she's learning from her partner, Carlos: He'll face some really serious stuff and he'll still be able to say, "Well, the fun is out. We're here living." [7.7]
[01:01:50] When you work full-time, you would look forward to 5pm - no matter what you were doing or how engaged or passionate you were about your job. You look forward to the weekend because you have a life. You have other things you want to do. When you're an entrepreneur and you're self-employed, which I am both of those things, you don't look forward to 5pm. You don't always look forward to the weekend. You have to draw those parameters for yourself. [24.7]
[01:12:25] I started noticing that I was really wasting a lot of energy on being too effusive, energetic and automatically expressive of excess positivity. It's hard to quite describe what I mean, but I came to realize men around me were not doing any of those things. [20.3]
[01:35:49] I heard a quote recently that was something along the lines of "not doing the work that you really want to do is similar to waiting till you're in your 70s to have sex." [12.7]
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