Sandy Edgerley Akris Women with Purpose

Woman with Purpose: Sandy Edgerley

Can you tell us about the idea of The 'Quin House? Why did you want to establish a club for Bostonians to connect?

My husband Paul and I have been in Boston for a very long time, we grew up in other places but raised our family, developed our careers, and made some invaluable personal and professional connections here.

One thing that struck us is the extraordinary people who are living in Boston and doing really interesting things.

As we became aware of the modern social club concept in other cities, we thought it would be great for Boston – a place to meet each other and form connections. It started as a germ of an idea and as we developed the concept it became a passion.

My husband and I both felt fortunate that we were able to find a location in the former Algonquin Club which became the new home for the modern social club, The 'Quin House - designed to convene a diverse and cross-generational group of leaders, creators and innovators who aim to make a difference in the community.

What do you hope people will take away from visiting The 'Quin?

I hope that people will walk away noticing the vibrancy and the diversity of the people that they meet, and that it enhances members’ lives socially, intellectually, and civically. I think they will also notice the beautiful design that respects the history of the building but in some ways turns it on its head, making way for the new millennium. The art is a very important aspect of The 'Quin – the idea is to live with the art and let it be a source of inspiration.

But mostly I hope that people take away the warm welcome. The 'Quin is sort of a home away from home and we want members and their guests to feel that they belong here. It’s also a feeling that comes from the warmth of our staff and our members.

What energizes you the most at work?

I enjoy coming into The 'Quin and checking on all of the spaces to see how people are using the club. It is a hidden glimpse into what is happening – seeing how many members are at a programming event or enjoying a meal at Café Q. I also really enjoy working with our team - we have an amazing 'Quin team!

Part of what is fun is what is next. What are the things that we can continue to improve so that every day is better than the one before? What do we want to implement in Programming, Art and Culinary in the months and years ahead.

Throughout your career you have always also focused on philanthropic work. Where does this drive to do good for others come from?

I come from a family where giving back was always important and my husband and I have taught this to our children having been involved in volunteer activities for many years. Finding how you can give back and make a difference in the community is paramount. One of the things that has been most exciting for us in this sphere was the launch of The 'Quin’s philanthropic arm, The 'Quin Impact Fund.

Can you tell us about this project?

The 'Quin Impact Fund is based on the idea of collective impact. We are each involved in the community in different ways but what is really gratifying is when we all come together to find solutions to challenging problems. I have always found that in the nonprofit sector you are more successful when you join forces and The 'Quin Impact Fund is a way for our members to do just that.

Are there any ‘words you live by’ that you can share to inspire?

Be kind. Try to look for the best in people and situations. I am a glass half full optimist which is kind of a fun way to go through life!

As a working mother of four, how do you find a positive work-life balance?

My life has had chapters and I prioritized aspects of my life along the journey. When my children were young I was still working in consulting and I reached a point where I needed to step back but I continued to give time to board work. As they got older, I had time to get back to a career and found that I was able to strike a balance and be productive while still having the flexibility to be with my family.

It is definitely not easy to do it all - all at once. But hopefully over a long period of time the balance is there, and it is important to be kind to ourselves as working parents – we are all doing our best!

Why do you believe in the power of purpose?

It is everyone’s obligation to make the world better so if we can think about including our purpose in our everyday lives – the investment of time, energy, passion is just so meaningful and rewarding.

Sandy Edgerley
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