Meet the Team Mondays
Every Monday for the next several weeks we will be showcasing the amazing team at Hempstead Hall. We want to know you better, so we thought we'd get the conversation started by sharing a little about us. Tune in each Monday to see a different team member's answers and get to know The Hall a little better.
Amanda Lance, Director of Hempstead Hall & Workforce Development
Nicknames: Amanda Suzanne (thanks, Ally B) and I always wanted to be “Mandie” (with an “IE”) but that never really caught on.
Family: parents are Steve & Cindy Lance, together they own Lance & Associates Real Estate and Cindy is the Vice Chancellor of Finance for UAHT; they have always pushed me to better myself, work hard, support our community, and take pride in whatever it is I do. Clay Lance is my brother and he works with one of our great community partners, Farm Credit. He inspires me to always give it my best.
Hobbies: Spending time with friends and family, travel (when there’s time), cheering for the Atlanta Braves, listening to live music (really enjoy anything from Red Dirt to rock to EDM to big band – there’s a place for it all!), and watching anything that Aaron Sorkin creates (trying to get through “The West Wing” ONE MORE TIME before it leaves Netflix)
Favorite place to go in Hempstead County: I love seeing the changes coming to downtown Hope! The Farmers’ Market, Bob’s Antiques, Elm Street Antiques, Tailgaters, HeBrews, & The Picket Fence are bringing small businesses to life in a BIG way. It’s incredible to see what happens when we all work together for a common purpose!
Favorite place to go in the region: There’s so much to do in the southwest corner of Arkansas! From seeing all that is happening in downtown Texarkana, USA to visiting a revitalized small farm at Coulter Farmstead to all of the programs coming through Hempstead Hall – there is always something happening to keep us entertained, inspired and relaxed.
Favorite quote: I usually flip through a few inspirational quotes throughout the month, but the three that are sticking with me right now are:
"The most important thing is to enjoy your life - to be happy - it's all that matters." – Audrey Hepburn
"No act of kindness however small is ever wasted." – Aesop
"What separates privilege from entitlement is gratitude." – Brene Brown
Event you’re most looking forward to at The Hall: That’s like asking someone to pick their favorite child! I’m excited that we provide such an eclectic mix of programming. Fairy Tales on Ice is coming up February 21 and this is such an unique experience How many times do you get to see ice skating in Hope, AR? Plus the crew with I.C.E. is fantastic and it’s always great to work with them. And then there’s the original play being staged by the SWActors (SWAAC’s community theater troupe) on March 13. This is going to be a wonderful opportunity to see just a fraction of the talent we have throughout our region. I’m particularly excited to show the wide range of talent that lives here: from dance to singing to acting to everything in between. This will be a very special event in our theater AND it’s ONLY $5 per person! Then, we will be hosting TEDxUAHT on April 4. Talk about an unique event! This will be the first TEDx event hosted in the region and gives our campus a platform to “share ideas worth spreading.” I cannot wait for the all-day conference where we will discuss the history of Hope, the challenges we face, the positives that are happening, and get motivated to collaborate for a brighter future. “Hope Lives Here” and I’m so happy to be a part of that Hope. And just wait for May: we have the Four Tops and the Glenn Miller Orchestra coming to town!
Describe your job in your own words: Being the Director of Hempstead Hall & Workforce Development for the University of Arkansas Hope-Texarkana has been a humbling experience for the last year. Everyone always thinks of the fun, glitzy events that happen in the theater, but over this last year I have seen first-hand that Hempstead Hall’s greatest purpose is helping to continually develop a trained workforce. I have learned so much about our region and the way our independent organizations weave together to help create this skilled workforce, and there’s still so much more to learn! My job mostly consists of developing and nurturing partnerships across a broad range of groups so that Hempstead Hall can serve southwest Arkansas in the best ways possible for many years to come.
Best part of working at UAHT: The people! I enjoy every day I get to come in to see Akili, John, Chloe, Chassidy, Alison and Kat – this group of people works extremely hard and their dedication to perfecting their respective areas inspires me daily. Oh, also, I get to see my mother every day at work, which is pretty cool.
One goal for our region: I would love to see more collaborative efforts. There is SO MUCH happening here and I wish we would all do a better job of combining our resources to provide a cohesive set of events for the region. I believe if we all worked together instead of competed for everyone’s time, money and other resources, we will truly see a fantastic community grow by leaps and bounds!
Favorite musical artist: Again, so hard to pick just one! Right now Taylor Swift's new album is on repeat for me, but I also love Panic! At the Disco, George Strait, Guns ‘n’ Roses, Poison, New Kids on the Block, Chance the Rapper, Randy Rogers Band, Josh Abbott Band, and Pat Green. It’s a little all over the place.
Favorite movie of all time: Charade. It’s this thriller with Audrey Hepburn, Cary Grant and Walter Matthau set in 1960’s Paris.
Who is your hero (real or super): This is easy: my parents. Not only have they taught the values of education, hard-work, determination, generosity, and kindness to me, they have given me a loving family that is always supportive and fun to be around.
People would be surprised that I: know how to ballroom dance. (Not saying I do it well, but I can foxtrot, waltz, cha cha and swing just a little thanks to a fun elective course at the University of Arkansas back in my undergrad days.)