Pass the pen: Alumnae nominated spotlight
As part of an ongoing series, we give alumni a chance to share their favorite GPS memories
Aug. 9, 2018 | By Rachel Hommel | GPS News
In this new series, we ask alumni from the UC San Diego School of Global Policy and Strategy (GPS) to share a more personal side of themselves by answering seven or more questions from a potential list of 15. This will be a quarterly spotlight with the alumna or alumnus in the spotlight passing the “virtual pen” to the next person.
This month we feature alumna Leslie Bell-Friedel, MPIA '97 who currently works as the Product Support Strategy and Business Excellence Manager for Caterpillar Marine and leads their strategy development and business process enhancement for marine aftermarket services.
Spending nearly a decade in Germany, she was one of the early active members of the GPS Alumni European chapter, meeting in a new city every six months to reunite with fellow GPS Globetrotters. Now living in Virginia Beach, she is eager to reconnect with her community of GPS alumni at a yet-to be planned reunion next year.
Read on as she shares highlights of her career and how she uses her GPS toolbox along the way.
Q: If you could go back to GPS as a professor or special guest lecturer, what would you like to teach?
A: I would like to teach how to use analytical methods to make decisions. There is a fantastic book out there called “The Thinker’s Toolkit: 14 Powerful Techniques for Problem Solving” by Morgan D. Jones. Everyone should have this book in their pocket and I’ve given away a few copies over the years. I use these methods every day and have become a master of pairwise comparison and decision making tools like the Pugh Matrix (if I do say so myself). Combine this with “How to Measure Anything” by Douglas Hubbard and you’ve got a class that can help you with just about anything life throws at you.
Q: What book have you read recently and would recommend?
A: I would like to recommend “The 4 Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom” by Don Miguel Ruiz. It gets a bit religious, but the four agreements you make with yourself are both simple and profound, and of course harder to do than said. This book was recommended to me by a professional coach and has helped me both with leadership and personal development. What are the agreements? 1) Be impeccable with your word, 2) Don’t take anything personally, 3) Don’t make assumptions and 4) Always do your best.
Q: What did you learn at GPS that has been most useful in your career?
A: This would have to be the level of writing proficiency. As an engineer, I had written technical papers before, but the amount of practice I got at GPS for all kinds of writing really helped my written and oral communication skills. It has definitely come in handy with all the marketing material, industry papers, interviews and presentations I’ve done in my career.
Q: What do you like to do to relax on the weekends?
A: I really like landscaping and am never happier than when I’m elbows deep in muck laying a pathway or building a rock wall. I travel a lot for work so the time I get to spend at home playing outside in the yard is special for me.
Q: If you could live anywhere, where would you like to live?
A: I’ve started to get hooked on sailing, so where I’d really like to live is on a 54ft sailing catamaran somewhere in the tropics. My husband, Micky, would captain and I’d get all the less glamorous jobs, but I can’t imagine anything more fantastic than living “outside” anywhere the wind takes us, snorkeling, diving, etc. from our backdoor. Alas, this will have to wait just a bit longer.
Q: What would make your life easier?
A: I wish I could beam around the world visiting friends and family whenever I wanted. My business travels allow me the opportunity to catch up with people I may not otherwise see very often, but they are not always at the right place at the right time. For an easier life, I either need to force everyone to live a lot closer together, or I need Scotty.
Q: A memorable travel experience you’d like to repeat.
A: Did I mention the sailing catamaran already? Two years ago, we rented a cat for two weeks down in Tahiti and sailed around the Bora Bora islands. Everything about it was AWESOME!
Q: Who would you like to pass the pen to and why?
A: While there are so many fantastic alumni I could nominate, I choose Scott Park ‘90 because he is one of the first graduates and, having gotten to spend quality time with him and other alumni in Europe from 2004-2010, I find that he is not only amazing professionally, but he is also a lot of fun to be around. He’s a good egg.
- Stanford study finds poor air quality responsible for one in five infant deaths in sub‑Saharan Africa
- Office hours: Associate Professor Jennifer Burney
- Class of 2018 graduates embody global citizenry and leadership
- Science Policy Fellows program nurtures effective interdisciplinary scholars
- Building cross-border relationships
- Geoengineering a greener future
- Sponsored Student Spotlight: Adnan Saygili
- Celebrating academic excellence
- Painting the picture of an MPP student’s day
- Gregory Lee looks at the future of digital health and technology
- A sustainable seafood hero
- Pass the pen: Alumnae nominated spotlight
- Campus recognizes alumni as leaders and changemakers
- Innovation in mobile technology
- Ian Johnson chronicles the rise of religion in China
- Writing the book on China’s economic policy
- Broadening horizons through international experience at BCG
- Office hours: Professor Gordon McCord
- New evening option for working professionals
- China's infrastructure investment as a development strategy
- Rethinking the war on drugs in Mexico
- Creating theoretical frameworks
- Nurturing future leaders at TechPolis
- The future is female
- Jamal Russell Black on Veridian Analytics' entrepreneurial spirit
- Love is in the air
- A day in the life of an MCEPA student
- Health and human capital
- Eduardo Porter finds journalistic inspiration at GPS
- Technology assessment at the nexus of STEM and policy
- IGCC receives coveted UC research grant
- Battery storage at the center of energy policy
- Researching how humans and the environment interact
- Office hours: Professor Ulrike Schaede
- Fighting wildfires with web based imagery
- United we dream
- Our 2017-2018 Boren Fellows
- Applying game theory to study behaviors
- Students craft views on climate change at COP23
- Molding future technical experts
- Why GPS: A niche in life
- The art of entrepreneurship
- Solar energy and pursuing the policy dream
- Social entrepreneur and first time author Ken Davenport ’90 of “The Two Gates”
- Why GPS: Discovering a passion for all things math
- Our 2017-18 Dean’s Fellows
- A Living, Learning Laboratory
- A ‘Prep Program’ for success, before day one
- Office hours: Professor Gordon Hanson
- Adding to a truly interdisciplinary academic environment
- Why GPS: Apply now and figure it out later
- Sponsored Student Spotlight: Noritoshi Kurokawa
- West Coast-Trained for a Washington, D.C. Think Tank
- Linked in Latin America
- Facilitating a ‘family affair’
- Nico Ravanilla retreats to Oxford for research
- 2016 alumni remember their first year in the real world