Tory Burbidge: Today’s Notable Young Professional

Today’s Notable Young Professional is Tory Burbidge, whose job allows her to fund a children’s camp experiences and then continue to sponsor them until they are no longer of camp age. What was the inspiration for her career route? Find out in today’s profile…

Elevator Pitch: Describe your job in a nutshell.
I am the Program Manager at Amici Camping Charity, which was started in 1966 and sends children and youth from low-income families to overnight camps across the province. Amici is unique in that once we fund a child’s camp experience, we continue to sponsor them until they are no longer of camp age. My job is to work directly with the camps and Amici families and find the perfect camp for each child.

Why did you start working at your company? What was the inspiration for this career route?
I started to work with Amici when I finished teacher’s college. I was a substitute teacher for a year and wanted to find a career where I could continue to work with children. Amici is a perfect fit because I am passionate about the power of camp, love working with children, and I feel as though I am giving back.

What is the best part of what you do on a day-to-day basis? The most challenging part?
The best part of my day is speaking with the families and hearing how happy and excited they are for their children. Overnight camp is not an option for these children and when they find out that their child will be attending camp, they are over the moon and extremely grateful. I would also say that working with our volunteers and board members is another highlight of my position. The passion of our volunteers and board members is outstanding and they work so hard to help get these children and youth to camp.

The most challenging part of what I do is ensuring that every child is placed in the camp that is perfectly suited to them. Amici partners with 33 overnight camps across Ontario that are all so different, and placement is a vital step in the process because Amici wants to make sure that the camp and the camper build a strong relationship from the get go.

What is one sign that you’ve seen over the years to suggest that your work/life balance is off?
It has yet to happen! My job allows for an amazing work/life balance.

Where do you see yourself in five years?
I see myself still working with Amici, helping to expand the program and working hard to send even more children to camp. Amici is an amazing charity with a huge amount of potential and room to grow, which I look forward to being a part of.

What is one major challenge that you’ve had to overcome in your career? How did you overcome it?
I think the one major challenge was figuring out what I wanted to do and what made me happy. I think this is a challenge that everyone faces. Maybe I don’t have it all figured out, but I am alright with that. I had wanted to be a teacher once, and when that didn’t happen right away my position with Amici started. I think I have found a great position that challenges me and makes me happy.

What does success look like to you? Does Money = Happiness?
Success is having the perfect balance in life, not money.

What is the most memorable milestone in your career?
I would have to say it was when I started with Amici over a year and a half ago. I have changed positions once while with Amici and I am extremely proud of what I have achieved with the program this year.

Do you have any advice for other young professionals?
Be confident in your abilities and those around you will take notice.

Where is your favourite place to wine/ dine in your city and why?
My husband and I recently moved to the Junction area, so we are having a good time discovering new local watering holes and eateries. Zocalo, Wallace & Co. and Hole in the Wall are some new places we love.

When you’re not working how do you love to spend your “Me” time?
I love to spend time with my husband and four-year-old Brittany spaniel, Tinder. Since moving into our new home several months ago, a lot of spare time has also gone into home projects and gardening.

Where is your favourite place to travel? Why?
I recently travelled to Europe on my honeymoon and I fell in love with Switzerland. My husband went to school there, so it means a lot to him and it’s one of the most beautiful places I have ever visited. The fondue and local wines aren’t bad either!

If you had to choose a theme song, what would it be?
Time to Run – Lord Huron

If you weren’t doing what you’re doing, what would you be doing?
It has always been a dream of mine to open a little flower shop in my neighbourhood. There is something so therapeutic about working with your hands and creating something beautiful.

Do you support any charities? If so, which one(s) and why is that important to you?
Amici Camping Charity of course!

What to you is notable?
Notable is someone who has been able to find happiness in their lives. Someone who is challenged by their career and who loves what they do.

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#LYNL | (Live Your Notable Life)

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