Interview by Derek Grosso
Name: Christina Vera
Profession: Director of Operations at Femergy®
Neighborhood: Northeast Columbus
Education: Hondoros College of Business
Community Involvement: Trustee of Ohio School Board Association, Board Vice President of Columbus City Schools, Student Achievement Liaison for Ohio School Board Association, Bilingual Education Task Force Liaison for Council of Great City Schools, Executive Committee Member of the Franklin County Democratic Party, and Board Member of the Columbus City School District.
Motto: Have grace with yourself and remember a bad day does not equate to a bad life.The power and benefit of knowing who you are is also knowing what you are not. I encourage you not to make permeant decisions based off of temporary people or temporary situations. Take risk, even if you fail it’s not really failure as long as you lean in,learn from it, and move forward.
Connect: LinkedIn | Instagram | Facebook | Twitter
Christina grew up in Northeast Columbus and has used her humble beginnings to motivate herself and become a prominent member of her community. Christina is an entrepreneur and understands hard work. Educational mentors along the way helped Christina grow into the woman and entrepreneur she is today. She used these influences and passions to found a nonprofit organization with her business partner called Femergy®. This organization provides women and girls resources and skills to help overcome gender barriers that are present in society today. Christina recently shifted her career focus and was elected as Vice President of the Columbus Board of Education.
What gets you up in the morning? And what gets you through the workweek?
I get up every morning with gratitude simply for waking up, in a bed, in my house, with my family. Those are things that I try to never take for granted. Knowing that i’m serving and leading in spaces that I once prayed for and dreamed about is what gets me through the workweek. Reminding myself how I contribute to the world either as a mother, wife, executive , VP etc. that it’s bigger than me, so I have to make it happen.
What advice or mentors have helped guide you along the way?
Having a mentor and or/ coach is a game changer. It’s so important to expose yourself to people who come from different backgrounds and have achieved different levels of impact.
What do you do or where do you go to unwind?
To unwind and recharge you will typically find me near a lake or ocean. The smell and sounds of water is when I am at my most peaceful place .
What are a few of your favorite local spots in Columbus?
I am a foodie so you will often find me at local taco food truck like Taqueria Jalisco on Cleveland Avenue!
When you were a kid, what did you say you wanted to be when you grew up?
A rapper! LOL I know, I know shocking! However, I just new I was going to be in the music industry as song writer or artist. I loved to write poetry, short stories and loved the idea of making those pieces come to life through music.
What books or podcasts are you reading/listening to right now?
True Print for Life Podcast, The Potter’s Touch Podcast, “The 4 Disciplines of Execution” by Sean Covey, and “The Light We Carry” by Michelle Obama
What does it mean to you to be chosen for the Next Up Columbus award?
It’s an honor to be recognized as a recipient of the Next Up Columbus award. As a servant leader, I have had the privilege to demonstrate my commitment and continued impact to the City of Columbus and the state of Ohio. I accept this award on behalf of the woman in my family and those who have come before me, I stand on their shoulders.
If someone were to ask you what the “pulse” of Columbus is, what would you tell them?
The pulse connects people, passion and opportunities for Central Ohio and beyond.
The Next Up Columbus Awards highlight emerging leaders who are connectors and ambassadors in central Ohio and who are making a positive impact on the future of Columbus. The Columbus Young Professionals Club would like to offer special thanks to our 2023 co-presenters, Discover Financial, Ohio Dominican University and Quantum Health for their support of this year’s awards program. Meet the entire “Class of 2023” »