We had the good fortune of connecting with Bonnie Duhé and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Bonnie, have there been any changes in how you think about work-life balance?
Maintaining the balance between work and life I feel like is a constant struggle. I used to think it had to be even all the time to make it work but I have come to realize that it really fluctuates daily. There are times of the day I have to focus on work and other times that I have to turn that off and focus on life. Some days are heavier on one side or the other but both are important. I love my job and my family, I have to make time to focus on both. Sticking to a routine and a schedule helps me to maintain that balance for the most part. Some days, however, are just going to sway in one direction or the other and I think it helps to have open and honest communication with both my family and my employer on where I am on that curve that day!
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I am uniquely blessed to work in a unique niche of the educational world. STEMscopes™, created by Accelerate Learning Inc., is an award-winning, research-based national leader in PreK-12 STEM curriculum. Used by over 4.5M students across all 50 states and internationally. I started out as an elementary classroom teacher and am currently the Senior Manager of Math Development. I get to work with the most intelligent, engaging, and passionate teachers in the field and it is in no short part because of them that we have gotten to reach so many students across the nation. Nothing in life is easy but I deeply believe in taking opportunities as they are presented to you and working hard to get where you want to be. I have also been blessed to have an amazing mentor through my transition in my career at Accelerate Learning. Amanda McGee has been a rock and the strongest leader I know. She has really shown me what it takes to be a good leader and is the hardest worker I know.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
My husband and I are both foodies and we seem to focus much of our free time on finding places to eat! Our favorite go to spot for years has been El Tiempo Cantina which has the absolutely best Tex Mex around! You would be missing out if you didn’t treat yourself to their crabmeat nachos and steak fajitas! We recently moved out to the Houston suburb of Richmond and have found a new favorite, Anthonie’s Market Grill. It is a bit of a drive from Houston but it is a fantastic spot in the middle of a field with life music and amazing food! Well worth checking out if you have the chance!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
There are so many people that have been important and vital to helping me along the way that it is hard to pinpoint! I think I can’t say anything without starting with my family. My mom and dad were always my biggest supporters. There is a story from when I was a baby where I got stuck in a box. My grandfather tried to get me out of the box but my mom stopped him and just leaned in to encourage me to help myself by saying “if you got yourself into the box Bonnie, you can get yourself out of the box!” First lessons in creating grit! Then amongst the many teachers and leaders, I had along the way, I need to mention one who really stands out for me. That was an amazing woman named Lisa Webber. I met Lisa when I was in a crazy busy part of my life. I was teaching, tutoring, finishing my master’s degree, and going through the ConocoPhillips Rice Elementary Model STEM Lab while taking a new position as the Science Specialist on my campus. Lisa was amazingly supportive, encouraging, and helped me in so many ways. From coaching me, to letting me cry to her, and even helping me run my first Science Nights. I was then blessed to get the opportunity to work with her when I started at Accelerate Learning, STEMscopes. Although our paths rarely cross these days, I would not be where I am today without her. Thank you Lisa! Without naming everyone who has helped me along the way, because there have been many, I have to add in my husband, Nick Duhé, here. We run a crazy ship juggling two small children, our careers, and our social outlets. There would be no way to be able to handle it all without every single ball dropping without having a strong partner to juggle with!
Kimberly Surawski photography