Welcome Richelle, IF’s new Chief Development Officer! We love having her on the team. Now you can get to know her too in the Q&A below.

How did you get your start? Tell us about yourself.
I landed my first job was when I was 14 years old at Yippie I-O Candy Company in Jackson, Wyoming. I LOVED it! It was a candy store!! I loved working and I loved having a little spending cash, so all throughout my teens I always had random part-time jobs. I studied Organic Chemistry in college, but to support myself I gained marketing and advertising experience from working at a local small car dealership. After school, my #1 goal was to leave Texas and move to New York, so I naturally fell into marketing roles again. I always say, studying science taught me how to think and solve problems. It’s not as weird of a segue as one might think!

What are some of these random jobs you had in your teens?
I have worked at a candy store, a burrito joint, multiple stores in the local shopping mall, a tanning salon (even though I don’t tan), a car dealership, a retirement home, an embryology lab, and for awhile I was a receptionist for a synagogue (even though I’m not Jewish).

And after that?
Over the years, I have held client services, business development, and strategy roles for boutique branding and graphic design agencies. Before joining IF, I was the Managing Director for an agency where I had worked at for about 10 years — my role there was strategically paving a way forward for the agency, managing client and partner relationships at a high-level, and providing leadership and mentorship to client services and business development teams.

Hopes for your new role at IF?
I consider myself a strategist and a client advocate at heart. My role as Chief Development Officer at IF is to help develop deeper and more meaningful relationships with our clients, and make sure we build engagements which bring out our greatest value (i.e., killer creative content) to make a difference for our clients. I am here to look at the bigger picture, the longer term, the whole forest — to find opportunities beyond the ask, and really facilitate cool innovative partnerships that disrupt, enthrall, entice and engage the intended audiences.

What are some of your guilty pleasures?
Make-up. Tattoos. Bread. Nail art. True crime shows on a Friday night. Going to sleep early and waking up early. Managing my dogs’ Instagram careers.

Favorite Books?
My favorite book of all time is East of Eden by John Steinbeck. But I read a LOT, from mystery thrillers to angsty love stories to young adult fantasy to Russian existentialism to nonfiction about space and gravity — it all depends on my mood.

Must watch TV shows?
I truly believe we live in the golden age of “shows". I prefer watching shows over movies, now because there’s so much more opportunity for plot development. I love a well-written serial drama. Twin Peaks (the original), Breaking Bad, The Wire, Sherlock, Downton Abbey, Stranger Things, Game of Thrones, Westworld.

Press shuffle on your iPhone. What are the first 10 songs that come up?
Controversy - Prince
Can I Kick It? - A Tribe Called Quest
Go Your Own Way - Fleetwood Mac
Miss You Much - Janet Jackson
Isolation - Joy Division
Never Tear Us Apart - INXS
The Spirit of the Radio - Rush
Heartbeats - The Knife
Lost in the Supermarket - The Clash
Say It Ain’t So - Weezer