Catalyst Ranch, Chicago’s most creative meeting venue, is staffed by a incredible team of quirky characters known as Ranch Hands.  Creative individuals are drawn to Catalyst Ranch’s colorful workspace, diverse clientele, and co-workers of similar sensibility. Ranch Hand Spotlight is an occasional blog series that invites you to take a sneak peek behind the scenes at the Ranch.  Meet the fine folks who work together to anticipate and accommodate our clients’ every need from copies to catering! See what they do here at the Ranch and the ways they use their talents in endeavors outside the Ranch!

Today’s Spotlight focuses on Taylor Sommers!

As our Executive Administrative Assistant, it is likely that Taylor will be the first friendly face you encounter upon arriving at the Ranch.  She is creative, friendly, patient, and smart, and I’m starting to suspect she is also some kind of superhero wizard who can not only master our beloved, albeit confusing, copy machine, make a personalized birthday card, and design a film set all at once!

Ranch Hand Stats

Taylor 12-3-14Name: Taylor Sommers

Previous Job Titles: (Outside the Ranch) Production Designer, Event Stylist, Prop Master

Previous Job Titles: (At the Ranch) Ranch Hand

Current Job Title at the Ranch: Executive Administrative Assistant

At the Ranch since: April 2014

Nicknames: T-Spoon, Tay-Tay, T-So

Favorite Color: Mauve… but really.

Favorite things to do in Chicago: Hanging out at the Agora Installation in Grant Park, going to live concerts and plays, and thrifting for treasures!

Favorite piece of decor at the Ranch:  The purple and orange tiled bar in 3W kitchen because it’s so warm and welcoming when you get off the elevator.

Welcome to the Ranch!

Welcome to the Ranch!

Q: What do you do at Catalyst Ranch?

A: I work directly with clients with whatever needs may come up during a meeting, lots of administrative work, and many miscellaneous tasks!

Q: Do you a favorite story of something funny or weird that happened at the Ranch?

A: Trying to explain to people what the Sausage Room is.

Q: What do you like about working at the Ranch?

A: Everything! The people, the environment, the colors, working with clients, and everything in between!

Q: You were promoted not that long ago to the role of Executive Administrative Assistant.  What will you be doing in this new position?

A: First off, I’d like to express my excitement to be taking on these new responsibilities with Catalyst Ranch. Having just moved back here from Los Angeles, it’s absolutely incredible how accommodating and how at home everyone at the Ranch has made me feel, and if I’m being honest, I love waking up and coming to work each day. As the wonderful, and oh so mysterious, Erica embarks on her journey westward, I will be filling in her shoes working directly with clients once they arrive as well as on the administrative side of the company.

Q: What are your favorite things about working at the Ranch?

A: I have always found that learning and collaborating are things I truly enjoy and those continue to be one of my favorite things about this new job. With a very large range of personalities we see on a daily basis, I am constantly learning and adapting. Whether you have a more kinesthetic, visual or, auditory approach to learning, we warmly welcome it all at the Ranch! My mother is an alternative healthcare practitioner and works with the more spiritual side of life, so growing up we learned to embrace everyone and everything for what it is. I am eternally grateful for her teachings and try to implement them into my everyday life. After all, it takes more energy to frown than it does to smile.

Q: How would you describe yourself and past experiences?

If I had to describe myself, I would say that I am an eco-friendly art school debutante.  Attending The Chicago Academy for the Arts in high school as well as the University of North Carolina School of the Arts, I majored in Production Design, building and designing eco-friendly sets for music videos, commercials, and feature films. I have always found creating to be my greatest form of medication and meditation and plan on continuing to share my imagination with the world.


Fun facts about Taylor!

Spirit Animal:  Sea otters (they’re little handymen like me)

Astrological sign: Cancer (sweet, sensitive, and crazy)

Ultimate dream job: Working on a Bollywood film set and building installation pieces to share across the world

Favorite part of Chicago: Agora sculpture in Grant Park and the Lakefront

Favorite Quote: “The woods would have little music if no birds sang their song except those that sang best.” –O.G. Wilson

Retirement Plan: Move to British Columbia and open a sea otter refuge center where I help rehabilitate them back to their natural environment

Q: Thanks so much Taylor!  Do you have a website so we can follow you on all of your amazing adventures?

A:  Sure do!