Meet the Team: Poonam Douglas
A recent addition to the team here at the Speakers Corner Towers, Poonam has joined as our Executive Assistance, working closely with Nick, our team and the incredible speakers we have in our not so little book of contacts!
We sat down with Poonam to talk about her wonderful travels, her feline friends and what her dream dinner party would look like!
You’ve had some time to get settled here at the Speakers Corner towers. How are you finding working here so far?
I am having so much fun working at SC! The team are really friendly and they all seem to genuinely want to be here and work towards the same goals and most importantly, they always have chocolate. On a serious note, I am never short of work and it is varied: from looking at new ways of using technology, to bringing in new speakers and looking for events space. It’s also a learning curve: coming from a finance background, I have to alter my way of thinking to fit a media organisation – even down to the language in emails.
We’ve heard from a little bird that you love to travel. What’s been your favourite city you’ve visited, and what countries are on your bucket list?
My love of travelling started in Belize which is where my interest in nature blossomed. We honeymooned in the Galapagos, Andes and Amazon; saw tigers in the jungle in India; sperm whales in The Azores; puffins and basking sharks near the Isle of Mull… I could go on but if I had to choose just one I would say Manuel Antonio, a coastal town in Costa Rica. I just loved how elements of the wildlife from the rainforest were integrating into living amongst the humans. We would see squirrel monkeys climbing the trees just by the roadside and racoons (stealing our lunch) on the beach.
My bucket list includes: the rainforests of Madagascar, Botswana, taking a camper van around New Zealand and cruising the fjords in Norway.
Housing two cats and five goldfish sounds like quite a handful! Can you tell us a bit about your furry and scaled friends?
My cats are brother and sister – Jasper and Poppy. They were rescue cats and Poppy used to be terrified of people but her confidence is growing – she’s definitely “my” cat or I’m her human, not sure which. Jasper on the other hand will go to anyone. They are also very greedy cats… Even though we don’t give them human food, they are quite partial to baked beans, cheese and (bizarrely) sundried tomatoes! The fish are the newest members of the family. My husband built a little pond in our garden as we want to encourage nature as much as possible at home - but he had to construct extra protection to keep the cats out!
Who has been one of your favourite speakers that you’ve come across so far?
I’m still new so I have barely scratched the surface with speakers. I saw Nic Hamilton , Naomi Sesay and Mark Schulman , at the Knowledge Guild, just before I joined but made the mistake of sitting too close to the front so I felt every drumbeat! Dr Anne-Marie Imafidon MBE is interesting: she not only speaks about bringing girls into the STEM arena but also the ethics of new technology, i.e. just because it can be done, should it? I also just saw a great talk by René Carayol online.
We love asking this question - what’s your Dream Dinner guest party? Limited to 6 seats at the table…
JK Rowling: Harry Potter – need I say more?!
John Williams: composer of some of my favourite film scores
Mayim Bialik: I grew up watching her on TV as Blossom and as a grown up as Amy Farrah Fowler. To top it off she’s also a neuroscientist
Hugh Dennis for his impressions
Sir David Attenborough for his insights into conservation and nature – if he has time as I’m sure he features in many dream dinner parties
Am I allowed people who are no longer living? If so, Stan Lee because well, Marvel!
Thank you for sitting down to talk to us Poonam, we can't wait to hear the stories from your travels and (hopefully) meet your feline friends.
For further information or to book a speaker, call us on or email firstname.lastname@example.org .
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