Splashtown San Antonio
San Antonio, Texas - USA
Featured in "World Waterpark Magazine," June 2017
WHAT IS YOUR EDUCATION AND PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE?
I graduated from Austin College in Sherman, Texas with a bachelor’s degree in business management. I have held several manager positions before I permanently joined the management team at Splashtown. I have done everything at my park except wear a lifeguard swimsuit!
WHAT HONORS, AWARDS OR SPECIAL RECOGNITION HAVE YOU ACHIEVED?
I have received several awards from schools and local organizations for leadership and commitment to community.
WHAT MADE YOU GO INTO THIS FIELD?
It was my first job when I was 16. I loved being in the park as child and knew I had to work there. Even through college and a few babies, I always seemed to find my way back.
WHAT ASPECT OF THE WATERPARK INDUSTRY DO YOU LIKE BEST?
I feel most rewarded when I can see a guest smile and know that we have provided the best service possible. I know what those smiles mean from all the fun memories I have growing up at this waterpark.
WHO HAS MOST INSPIRED YOU IN YOUR CAREER?
My owner Keith Kinney has inspired me the most. He put a lot of faith in this young single mom to operate his park. Through his support and guidance, I was able to pursue different projects. I have made some good choices and some not so good ones. Yet, he has always encouraged me to follow through on all of them and see them through.
WHAT HAS BEEN THE GREATEST CHALLENGE IN YOUR WATERPARK CAREER?
Splashtown has been a part of San Antonio history for over 30 years. Being a smaller park, we don’t get to add flashy new rides every year. To be able to compete with the bigger parks here I have to take my guest experience to the next level. I train my team to treat our guest like family. So, when our locals come, they feel like they are in their own backyard enjoying family fun. My out-of-towners experience the warm friendliness of hospitality that we Texans are known for. We say “good-bye” using their names!
HOW DO YOU KEEP FOCUSED AND MOTIVATED?
I stay focused by having an amazing team of managers, supervisors and team. I stay motivated knowing that if I can provide them with the right tools and training, they will succeed at their jobs. I also have three amazing kids that remind me every day that I am strong and can handle anything thrown my way.
WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE SOMEONE WHO IS INTERESTED IN WORKING IN THE WATERPARK INDUSTRY?
I would tell them that there is so much to learn in the waterpark industry. I would tell them that they can’t go wrong when working in a business that includes sun, fun and water!
WHAT BOOKS OR PUBLICATIONS DO YOU RELY ON MOST FOR INSPIRATION OR MOTIVATION?
I am not trying to be biased, but I get great ideas from the articles in this magazine. Two of my favorite motivational books are “Dream it! Do it!” by Marty Sklar and “Love Works” by Joel Manby. I also have a small stack of weathered daily motivational books that have taken me through the years.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE PART OF YOUR JOB?
The favorite part of my job is the interaction with my team. I love having an impact on their first experience working and making an impression on how they interact with our guest.
WHAT CAREER OR BUSINESS WOULD YOU CONSIDER IF YOU WERE STARTING ALL OVER AGAIN?
I think if I were to start over again I would still do something involving helping young adults prepare for the workforce. I would be involved in an organization that works to encourage, motivate and inspire young people (especially women) to reach their full potential.
HOW DID YOU FIRST GET INVOLVED WITH THE WWA?
I got involved with WWA by starting out as a WWA Show volunteer. I still volunteer to this day. I am shy, so this allows me to say hello to everyone when I am helping out around the trade show. WWA has also connected me to some really knowledgeable people who are, in my opinion, masters in their fields. So, when you see me at the trade show say hi!
WHAT IS SOMETHING INTERESTING ABOUT YOU THAT FEW KNOW OR WOULD GUESS?
I guess one thing people don’t really know about me is that I am fascinated by the history of warfare through the centuries among different civilizations.