Out of Office

The last decade has been pretty insane! I moved to the US for what I thought would be a year. Little did I think I would be afforded the many opportunities I was given: I have worked on over one hundred deeply meaningful projects with over one thousand amazing people. Georgia Tech, Illinois Tech, Caltech, MIT and Harvard Business School - there was never a dull moment. From aerospace engineering to business, geopolitics, economics and finance. I learned more than I thought was ever possible.

However, as much fun as this has been, it has also been massively intense. Somewhere in these 80 hour work weeks I lost my sense of wander about the world, along with my bright eyes and bushy tail. More importantly, I spent a decade sacrificing my relationships with the people I care about most for work.

So- time for change! As of last week, I have left my life in academia behind to become a sailor on the seven seas! I want to do something that allows me to really explore, challenge myself in new ways and lets me to learn without pressure. And sailing can do all of those things.

My plan is to try to become a pro sailor for long-distance, offshore races. It won’t be easy, but weirder things have happened! I’m moving to Palma (Mallorca) where I’ll train and do inshore racing when I'm not in the middle of the ocean. I couldn’t be more excited about the next stage of my life, where I’ll be putting friends and family front and centre, while doing something that I love.

I guess my “out of office” notice is going to be on for a while, and I have canceled my Zoom subscription. If you want to chat, just phone me (no calendar invite needed) or better yet- come hang out with me on a boat!

I want to highlight some people who might not know they inspired this new challenge. Captain Orlagh and Joan Mulloy, two unbelievably fierce female sailors who are forging a path for people like me. And Bradley Farquhar whose Olympic goals have shown me that you’re literally never too old to follow a dream, no matter how big.

A massive thanks to my family and friends who continue to put up with my shenanigans. So many people have impacted my life in the last decade, but I would literally not have made it through the highs and lows without Kirsty, Madi, Semele, Lotte, Meghann and my amazing family.

And a special mention to Dan, who introduced me to sailing and with whom I collected my first (but definitely not last) America's Cup trophy!

Peace, friends! S.