Amy Saunders is ambitious and incredibly inspiring (make sure you read her answer to question nine). She runs a booming PR agency in Toronto, she’s a Masters student, and a Reiki Healer. We applaud her hustle and were thrilled when she agreed to be a #WomenOfAce.
1. What are you up to? ( Your current hustle )
I’m so grateful to say that AlphaPR has just welcomed a Vice President, Danyel McLachlan. I am working to balance my focus between acquiring business, pitching current clients, and also being more vulnerable with my public facing image (like these Q/A’s, and our new newsletter!).
On the side (yes I have a side hustle!) I am a Masters student at OCADU in Toronto where I study Strategic Foresight and Innovation, and I am also a Reiki Healer.
I know, I’m busy!
2. Why is this important to you? ( Where did this passion come from? )
Truthfully, I saw a lot of “problems” in business structures and the communications industries, specifically PR. I’ve been working for large companies for almost two decades and I’ve been able to observe the ways that systems within corporations and organizations operate, and the ways in which I believe they fail. My passion came from wanting to fix the failures that I see, macro and micro, in business systems and our communications within those systems.
For me it comes down to a level of values and principles, and how we operate according to these values and principles in relation to our systems. Do these systems hold up to our values? Do we have values? It’s one thing to say we do, but it’s another thing to consistently measure our systems against our values to ensure we are doing our work and conducting and communicating with justice - the way we say we do.
This, to me, will hopefully pave the way to a better, more equal world. It won’t solve all our problems, but it might help in solving one or two.
3. What was your dream job growing up? How do you think this has influenced who you are today?
I wanted to be an actor. And I was for a brief time. I studied theatre, acting and directing. I have always been very passionate about theatre and film, and I have not left that passion behind. It has informed my expertise in the film and arts PR world. I’m lucky to be able to bring some of my greatest passions together.
4. If you could describe yourself in only three words, what would they be?
Ambitious. Caring. Opinionated.
5. Who’s your biggest inspiration and why?
This has always been a weird question for me. I’ve never “looked up” to a single person because I personally think that it’s dangerous to do that. I think humans are humans, and we are perfectly flawed and should be allowed to be. I can’t put any one person on a pedestal.
As cliche as this might sound, what inspires me most are ideas, art, music, films, and I am constantly inspired by women and my clients. It could be a new and powerful film sent to me by a filmmaker who is about to debut at a film festival, a podcast that brings together women on a certain topic, and it goes on. I guess I am inspired by individuals who create things, and are called to creativity - people who persevere in order to create and share a message despite and because of the circumstances.
6. What does the term “Boss Babe” mean to you?
I’ve had a contentious relationship with this term.
“Boss Babe” has meant to me, in the past, that women just can’t be “bosses.” But, I’ve had an evolving relationship with the fempreneur brand. It’s fun to be a boss babe. It’s fun to weave together my feminism and entrepreneurship. It’s a gift and a privilege. I like to think that that’s what being a boss babe is - having the chance to weave the two things together.
7. How do you empower other women?
I try to empower the women I know by creating a space for healing and dialogue. I am aware that I don’t always do this well and that I do not always do this perfectly. The best thing I can do is try, and create a space for women to try to meet me in this space as well.
I also try my best to utilize my privilege as a white woman in ways that are effective against racism and white supremacy. I do this with donations to organizations such as Black Lives Matter, and taking up less space where I really don’t need to take up space.
8. What is the best advice you’ve ever received from another woman?
“You can’t convince someone who doesn’t want to have their mind changed.”
9. Can you share the biggest lesson you’ve learned from a failure?
Even if you’ve done something with the best intentions, sometimes following your highest path and your true calling, you still might be deemed a villain in someone else’s story.
But that’s okay. It’s your life. You aren’t here to defend yourself. The energy you could put into defending yourself could be better spent growing, healing, aiming for higher stars in your work, and your life’s work.
Focus on you.
10. When you are feeling overwhelmed, what do you do to find peace?
I meditate and do yoga, or go to the gym. And then sometimes, I’ll have a good cry and nap. No joke!
11. What legacy do you hope to be remembered for?
Be fucking nice. And throwing down a good F-bomb here and there.
12. Where can we find out more about you so we can continue to support you?
Stay connected with Amy on Instagram: @theprpriestess