Member Spotlight: Leslie Yzaguirre

ILeslie Y grew up in Houston and after going away to the University of Virginia, I returned to Houston, met my husband and we started our family there. However, while our kids were young, we also lived in McAllen, Texas and Monterrey, Mexico before we finally settled in Austin in 2001.

Family Life:
I’ve been married for 25 years to Max Yzaguirre, a fun-loving Valley boy from Brownsville, Texas, and we have two boys, Max, 22, and Will, 20. Max just graduated from the University of Montana and will spend his third summer in Montana as a fly-fishing guide. Will graduated from St. Stephen’s last May and spent the past year on a gap year traveling all over – he’ll start at Tulane this August. We love that our kids have located in such fabulous spots for us to come visit!

Work life:
It’s hard for me to remember being anything but “Mom”, but in my former life, I was an oil and gas attorney. Max and I decided that I’d do the stay-at-home mom thing after our first son was born and I’ve never regretted that decision, although I do remember being totally overwhelmed as a first time mom and thinking it sure would have been nice if my baby had come with a secretary and paralegal!!

Biggest lesson learned through my iGnite experience:
Hands down, without question, the best lesson I’ve learned from iGnite is that I can do it – no matter what the “it” is!  I only recently became an iGniter and very naively signed up for Kathleen’s Power Up class as my intro to iGnite — hilarious!! The first class totally kicked my rear, but I looked around at all of the high energy women in the class who were my age and going for it, and I knew that I wanted to go for it, too!

Best advice I’ve received:
Over the years, many people have given me truly impactful advice. But, as I’ve meandered through my 53 years, I realize that a little adage of my mom’s has probably been the most influential to me in terms of my everyday life: “When you smile, the whole world smiles with you, and when you cry, you cry alone.” Not that I don’t have my fair share of good cries and haven’t relied on friends’ shoulders to cry on all too often, but I try to start each day with a positive outlook and hope that I can be a positive influence in the lives of my family, friends and community. I strongly believe that positive energy is always the best way to cope with life’s challenges!

People may not know that…
I absolutely love fly-fishing! Our entire family enjoys the sport, and we’ve had the good fortune to go to some of the most beautiful places in the world to fish. My perfect day would be spent waist-deep in a gorgeous river, casting to exquisite fish, with my husband and two boys right there with me – and, of course, I’d catch the biggest fish of the day!

My favorite color is:
RED! It actually becomes an issue because I have to consciously stop myself from buying yet another pair of red shoes and I’m sure every decorator who walks into my house wonders what’s up with all the red – furniture, rugs, rooms – it’s just my color. I love the warmth and energy red exudes, and it seems to always set the tone for fun – something that I’m committed to trying to make happen.

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