20 Questions with Norton Center Director of Marketing and Development Mandy Prather
1. Position at Centre?
Director of Marketing and Development for the Norton Center.
2. Where did you grow up (and describe the place in one phrase or sentence)?
Columbia, S.C.—a city built on a swamp.
3. What are your hobbies?
I really enjoy baking and am slowly learning how to be a better cook. I also love spending time on Lake Cumberland, and we have a new pound puppy, Dock, at home who’s been taking up a lot of our spare time. He’s spoiled rotten.
4. What is your dream vacation?
I’d love to spend a month in Italy, travelling around and exploring. I’d especially love to visit Cinque Terre.
5. Favorite artist and/or work of art?
One of my favorite paintings is Edward Hopper’s “New York Movie.” Something about it has always been intriguing to me, and I always envision the woman in the painting going through various different emotions each time I see it—sometimes I think she’s very upset, other times pensive and sometimes I feel she’s simply thinking about where she will go to dinner with her date once the movie is over.
6. Favorite novel or poem?
“The Great Gatsby”—I credit Fitzgerald for my decision to study English literature in college. Also, “The Mower” by Philip Larkin, a short poem I discovered about a month before my wedding. It has stuck with me ever since.
7. Favorite sport (to watch or play)?
8. Favorite TV show?
I confess to being a big “Real Housewives” fan. I also love “Mad Men,” “True Blood,” “Parenthood” and “The Walking Dead.”
9. Favorite album?
I don’t think I could pick a favorite … I’ve got a mix of The Civil Wars, the soundtrack to the Broadway musical “Next To Normal” and Ray LaMontagne in heavy rotation on my iPod right now.
10. Favorite holiday?
Fourth of July. No fussing over what to buy people or if you’ve spent too much money on presents—just the sun, some burgers and a cool drink. Oh, and there are fireworks.
11. Favorite food?
Steamed mussels from Bistro du Coin in Washington, D.C. I want some right now, please?
12. Most prized possession?
My great grandmother’s engagement ring; it’s a simple but beautiful ring with a small diamond in an antique setting, and it was a gift to me from my mom on my 16th birthday.
13. Three people, living or deceased, whom you’d invite to the same dinner party?
Dolly Parton, Michelle Obama and Harper Lee.
14. Favorite aspect of your job?
I get to meet some amazingly talented people. Also, our staff is very collaborative over here at the Norton Center, and I like that very much.
15. Most memorable experience of your youth?
One of my favorites was making puff paint t-shirts with my oldest sister. I thought—and still do—that she was the coolest thing since side ponytails.
16. What would you be doing if you weren’t working at Centre?
I’ve always had a little pipedream of opening up a bakery and bookstore. I also think it would be fun to be the person in charge of coming up with the Google Doodle’s each day. But in reality, I’d probably still be living in D.C., trying to avoid fools on the Metro during my morning commute.
17. Educational experience that’s been most helpful to you?
Most definitely studying abroad in Glasgow, Scotland, during college.
18. Fictional character in whose shoes you’d love to spend a day?
Alice in Wonderland. That tea party looks like mad fun. Or Daisy Buchanan.
19. Favorite place on campus (and why)?
The lawn in front of Cowan during Humane Society Puppy Therapy Days. I just LOVE it.
20. Advice you’d give to a first-year college student to make success more likely?
Be open to the idea of BIG life changes! There’s a big wide world out there … go see it. Also, if you don’t already know how, learn to type the right way.