Tag Archives: St. Stephen’s

Member Spotlight: Melissa Morrow

I was born in Houston, Texas. I have lived in and loved Austin for 27 years.

Family Life:
I have been happily married to Greg Morrow for 27 years, and we have twin 17 year old daughters, Izzie and Valerie, who attend school at St. Stephen’s, and a son, Elliot, who is 9 years old at Eanes Elementary.

Work Life:
I am the Executive Director of the West Austin Youth Association, also known as WAYA. We provide youth sports opportunities including soccer, volleyball, basketball, flag football, lacrosse, baseball, gymnastics, as well as preschool. It is a super fun place to work and play.

The biggest lesson I’ve learned through my iGnite experience…
On the days I workout with iGnite, I have more energy, patience and fun!

The best advice I’ve been given…
When I was expecting twins, a friend who had twins told me that every time someone offers to help you, always say yes. I think that is great advice even if you don’t have newborn twins.

In my free time…
I love to play volleyball and soccer.

My guilty pleasure…
Watching action movies at 2:00am.

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Member Spotlight: Amanda Schmidt

iGnite - Amanda SchmidtRoots:
I was born in Chicago but became a Texan at the age of 2 when my Dad took a teaching position in Dallas with the business school at SMU. I grew up in Dallas and graduated from Highland Park High School and then from Smith College in Northampton, MA in 1986, after which I worked in Spain for a year. I landed in Austin for law school at UT in 1987 and have lived here ever since.

Basic family stats:
I am married to Dick Schmidt, and we have 3 daughters: Samantha (sophomore at Northwestern University), Sophie (senior at Westlake High School) and Lucy (freshman at St. Stephen’s).

Current/Previous Occupation:
After law school, I got to clerk for Justice John Powers on the Austin Court of Appeals for a fantastic year after which I practiced commercial litigation for ten years, mostly at the firm Clark, Thomas here in Austin. After trying to practice a litigation practice with mom responsibilities and feeling like I wasn’t doing well at either thing, I retired when our third child, Lucy, was born. For the last 15 years I have worked as mom and participated in a variety of volunteer jobs through schools and philanthropies.

Biggest lesson learned through iGnite experience:
I have learned a lot of life lessons from many of the dear women I have gotten to know in iGnite. I’d say the most important lesson I’ve learned is to surround yourself with positive people who support you and don’t waste your precious time with people who drag you down.

Who inspires me the most and why:
My mother is a terrific role model to me and my biggest inspiration. If asked this question ten years ago, I would have picked someone more illustrious like Amelia Earhart for following her dreams and breaking accepted norms for women, but in the last few years I have come to realize what I should have known all along: my own mother lived her life the way I hope to live mine. She was a wonderful and supportive friend to many people, and she maintained an extremely positive outlook on life, living it to the fullest, even after losing her lifelong partner (my Dad) and her youngest daughter in the course of 15 months.

In my free time, I like to:
Other than work out with iGnite, I love to read, see movies, travel (especially to snow-covered mountains) and just hang out with my family.

If I were an ice cream flavor, I would be:
Chocolate because it brings so much enjoyment to so many people; chocolate is a real mood booster!

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