Alumna Addy Spiller '00 Economics, a long-time supporter of the Economics Department through the Charter Hill Society for the Social Sciences, shares in a Q&A why she chose to support CHS in a leadership role as an honorary chair and what she appreciates about her Berkeley experience.
Why did you first join the CHS and why did you agree to become an honorary chair?
I joined CHS after meeting Christian Gordon, Assistant Dean of Development for the Social Sciences, in 2016. I was so intrigued with the types of events he was planning to make available to us here in NYC – and he has not disappointed. Intimate conversations with a Nobel Laureate and the President of the NY Fed?! How lucky are we to have access to these impressive leaders because of a shared experience at UC Berkeley? I am so grateful to have been asked to be the honorary chair for NYC – and I plan to work hard to continue strengthening the foundation Michael Sternberg (honorary chair for economics in New York City) has built these last few years.
Since graduating from UC Berkeley, how has your connection changed?
My connection to the school has flourished since I joined CHS. I feel so proud to be part of the UC Berkeley alumni network – especially after getting to know several amazingly accomplished (and fun!) alum in NYC.
What are your hopes for the Berkeley alumni network in NYC?
I want to have our network here be engaged on a more ongoing basis! I’d love to see some regular social events planned, maybe even enable co-working opportunities. I’d also love to figure out how we might engage with and support alumni that own local businesses!
Tell us about what you’re working on right now.
I am leading the digital product development for a startup focused on financing renewable energy growth in the US.
How has the Berkeley experience shaped you?
My Berkeley experience made me the independent thinker I am today. I appreciate now that I didn’t have counselors holding my hand every step of the way. I grew up a lot in my first year at Berkeley and haven’t stopped pushing myself since.
Favorite Berkeley memory?
Probably sitting with friends, having lunch, and playing hacky sack (lol - the 90s) on the Memorial Glade.
What is some advice you would give to graduating students? (or anything, you would have done differently)
I would encourage grads to connect with their local alumni community – especially if they’re moving outside of the Bay Area. It’s always fun to reminisce about the time spent on our gorgeous campus (even more so a few years after you’ve left)!