WOI Q&A: Paula Boggs

Paula Boggs

Former Starbucks Lead Counsel Paula Boggs, one of the Storm's 2012 Women of Inspiration, talks about what being honored by the Storm means to her, inspirations in her life and more.

What was your reaction when you heard you were selected as a 2012 Woman of Inspiration by the Storm?
I was both stunned and thrilled when I got the call from Storm CEO Karen Bryant. I've been a huge Seattle Storm fan for several years and admire what these young women do off the court as much as their fine work on it. I also love the fact that strong and successful women saved the Storm for the City of Seattle.

What does it mean to you to be named a Woman of Inspiration?
Wearing a "Woman of Inspiration" mantle carries with it awesome responsibility. Many phenomenal women, starting with my mother, have guided and mentored me throughout my life. Their imprint informs my sense of gratitude for the many opportunities I've received and my mission for helping others, including other women.

What motivates/drives you to be your best?
At the risk of cliche, my high school track coach would forever intone, "Winners never quit and quitters never win!" With the benefit now of a 35-year rear-view mirror, Coach Foutz was absolutely right - "winning" of course reveals itself in many forms - an 800m race, a relationship, a career, personal growth, volunteering, etc. In whatever context, I strive to be something other than a bystander - I try to be a "doer."

Who has inspired or does inspire you?
The list of those who've inspired and/or inspire me is long. In addition to my parents, that list includes many great teachers and professors, military officers I looked up to as a kid and worked with as an Army Officer, giants in politics, the legal profession and business world, some writers and musicians, some friends of mine, my life partner, humanitarians, people I've worked with, for or who've worked for me over the years and many folks young and young at heart I've come to know through my volunteer work or whose stories I've otherwise come to know.

In your work, how have you seen role models make a positive difference in the lives of others?
Role models can make all the difference in the world. When a person can see that someone "like them" - however he or she defines that term - has done something before they attempt to, it makes the journey so much more plausible.

What role do you think the Storm organization and players play in making a positive difference?
The Storm may be one of the winningest professional teams in Seattle! That in and of itself provides a positive difference in our community. Beyond that, one of the things I love most about Storm games is the number of father/daughters among Storm fans. There are also always a ton of kids there. Professional women's basketball is fast-paced and skill-intensive but it is also marked by great sportswomanship - I love that. I also applaud all the wonderful things Storm players and the organization do in our community. Thank you!

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