We had the good fortune of connecting with Kat Rumbley and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Kat, what inspires you?
I feel most inspired in the unexpected. In places I wouldn’t think to be inspired. I have found myself on plenty of road trips to the “inspiring” destination and have been energized by the weird roadside attraction instead. It really doesn’t matter where you draw your energy from. All that matters is that it inspires you. And in turn, hopefully it will inspire someone else. The circle doesn’t have to end with you – it can keep flowing.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I chose other because I’m a creative individual both in my work (Marketing Manager at a non-profit) and passion project (Curious Kat).
I wouldn’t say this sets me apart from others but I would say a strength of mine (that has led to success) is my authenticity. And it’s something I’m most proud of.
I think by the time I graduated college, I had completed 7 internships or something crazy like that. I really enjoyed dipping my toes into different areas of marketing and communications. I originally thought I wanted to work in the music industry.
Then I snagged a marketing job at a sea turtle hospital and museum and fell in love with conservation communications. After four years, I needed a challenge. And I found that challenge at a different kind of sandy space: the Sonoran Desert. I would say my journey has been easier than others. And harder than some. That’s just the way life works.
I’ve learned many lessons along the way but the most important one is to be yourself. Like, truly yourself. We all have a superpower. Once you find yours – embrace it, and allow yourself the grace to try, fail, and succeed.
Also, work/life balance is real. I spent way too many years trying to “prove myself” by working late hours and simply got taken advantage of. And it took a huge toll on my mental health. It’s just not worth it.
And the last thing is 99.9% of the time – it’s not about you. Chill out on overanalyzing the emails. Karen is just unhappy in her life and is taking it out on you. Stay in your lane and stay focused!
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Oh my god, I love this question! Tucson is so much fun.
A week long trip?
First, I would take them to the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum so that they could immerse themselves into the Sonoran Desert and learn about our incredible ecosystem and the creatures that live here. Second, we would spend a day up on Mount Lemmon. There are many trails to hike, fudge to eat, and areas to explore! Sabino Canyon would be our next adventure. Then Tanque Verde Falls! I love hiking and exploring the outdoors so most of my activities would be based around this (and Tucson is the perfect place for it). I would also take them biking along The Loop!
The Tucson beer scene is excellent. If my guests were into that sort of thing, I would take them Crooked Tooth Brewing, Pueblo Vida, and Borderlands. The Tucson coffee scene is also amazing. I’d definitely stop by Black Crown, Cartel, Savaya, and Raging Sage.
No trip to Tuscon is complete without tasting some of the local flavor. As a designated UNESCO City of Gastronomy – Tucson food is out of this world (yes, I am biased – whatever). I would make it our mission to check out the 23 miles of Mexican food.
Other activities would include: walking around downtown Tucson, visiting Mission San Xavier del Bac, and thrifting.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
As cliche as it sounds, my parents. They fostered my curiosity and I’m forever grateful. My room was full of books, puzzles, and art. My mom never laughed when I wanted to check out Spanish cassettes on tape from the library. In fact, she encouraged it. I directed musicals with my stuffed animals, wrote stories with my dolls, made forts in the woods, vlogged before it was even a thing, and splashed barefoot in the water searching for tadpoles. And I always asked WHY. It drove my parents crazy (understandably so) but they always did their best to answer. Thanks Mom & Dad!!