Interview by Derek Grosso
As Events Coordinator for Susan G. Komen Columbus, Megan Montville assists with all affiliate and special events within the organization, diversifying and expanding community participation, and creating fundraising strategies for special events that help save lives right here in Central Ohio. She also acts as a liaison for KYP, Komen’s Young Professionals organization, which is holding a fundraiser called Cocktails and Conversations on Thursday, September 28th at The Social. An internship during college led her to work for Komen, but it was her mother – a four-time breast cancer survivor who unfortunately lost her battle with the disease in 2014 – who first got Megan involved as a volunteer for the cause, and is her inspiration every day to keep moving forward for a cure.
Name: Megan Montville
Company and Job Title: Susan G. Komen Columbus, Events Coordinator
Give us a snapshot of your career path:
I was lucky enough to intern for Komen Columbus during my time at OSU. I knew I started my career off strong in May of 2016 by working for an organization that gives back and helps those most in need. I plan to follow this path for the rest of my career and work wherever I can make a difference in the lives of our community members.
What’s the story behind Komen Young Professionals and how did you get involved?
The Komen Young Professionals are a group of passionate YPs in our community wanting to be a part of something larger than themselves. Komen Columbus has many amazing events, volunteers and participants; but the Komen Young Professionals come together, use their connections, and plan additional ways to make an impact in the fight against breast cancer. Some members have direct connections to breast cancer, while other members have no connection, other than knowing they can help make an impact. During my first week working for Komen Columbus, I attended a KYP event. I knew I had to get involved and soon enough found myself as the liaison between Komen Columbus and the Komen Young Professionals. It’s been wonderful meeting new members and hearing their perspectives and ideas for furthering KYP’s impact.
KYP’s Signature Event, “Cocktails and Conversations,” is coming up on September 28th. What can attendees expect, and how can we get tickets to attend?
Participants will hear from an engaging panel of speakers about how breast cancer has affected them and what we can do to impact breast cancer moving forward. Everyone is invited to mingle with our speakers and emcee, Karina Nova, from WBNS-10TV, enjoy delicious hors d’oeuvres, take a chance at winning some fabulous raffle prizes and much more. We’ll be at The Social in Downtown Columbus from 6-9pm and can’t wait to meet you! Tickets are available at bit.ly/KYP2017 or at the door the night of the event.
With next month (October) being National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, what are some additional ways to support the cause?
KYP will be at the Columbus Crew Game on September 30th taking part in their 50/50 raffle to help raise money to kick off National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. In addition, Komen Columbus has many amazing events all October long.
What are some of your other events planned throughout the year?
Our group is still finalizing our end-of-the-year activities, but we plan on bringing everyone together again to continue our mission of educating and empowering young survivors, co-survivors and breast cancer advocates. Check out our website to stay-up-date on everything. We’ll also be celebrating our 8th anniversary in November with a fun night on the town!
What gets you up in the morning? And what keeps you going through the workweek?
Coffee gets me up in the morning and energizes me for my busy schedule. The thing that gets me through every day, let alone the work week, is my mom. My mom was a four-time breast cancer survivor, who unfortunately lost her battle to breast cancer in 2014. I volunteered alongside her for eleven wonderful years with Komen. I used my mom’s memory to push me to get further involved with Komen after losing her, and I constantly remind myself of her memory to get through the workweek.
Explain some of your work-life balance challenges and how you achieve success?
Finding a the right structure for work-life balance is hard and I don’t know if I’ll ever find that perfect balance, but unplugging from technology is my main way to help separate the two. To achieve success, I step out of my comfort zone! Whether it’s presenting a new idea, re-creating an old project, or meeting new people, I find it’s best to be bold and avoid of your comfort zone.
What career advice has helped guide you along the way?
The best career advice I’ve gotten is to write thank you cards! Receiving a simple, hand-written thank you card in the mail doesn’t happen often anymore, but will make a larger impact than an email.
What inspires you?
I have met some amazing breast cancer survivors throughout my years with Komen. I may meet young breast cancer survivors in their 20s, and other days I meet women celebrating their 30 year survivorship anniversary. The way these women and their families react to the hope that Komen brings to their lives is incredible. I will never stop being inspired by them!
What’s the coolest thing about Columbus right now?
Hands down, the opportunities; everything from jobs, events, night-life, to concerts, parks and exploring the suburbs.
What is one thing that you think Columbus needs (or wish Columbus had)?
More rooftop restaurants.
Which organizations are you involved with around the community?
During college, I volunteered in Tanzania, Africa through Growth International Volunteer Excursions, an amazing student group on campus. The group changed my life and I love staying involved!
If someone were to ask you what the “pulse” of Columbus is, what would you tell them?
The Short North.