Finding a Home at Visions: A Spotlight on Vendor Support Analyst Kristin Shumaker

Kristin Shumaker has worn many hats during her time at Visions, including Student Services Representative, Independent Study and University Prep Charter School Secretary and Administrative Assistant to the Chief Operations Officer.

Now, Kristin has moved on to fulfilling the role of Vendor Support Analyst. This position oversees our entire Enrichment Vendor program, working with organizations in the community to provide enrichment activities for our students. This analyst role is unique, as Kristin’s not only responsible for a heavy amount of back-end work, such as managing vendor contracts, maintaining vendor profiles, and overseeing our vendor sponsorship program, but she also plays an important role in managing vendor relationships. With over 600 current Enrichment Vendors spanning everything from art to academic enrichment to animal husbandry, it’s important that Kristin maintains a personal approach with each one.

“Unlike most, if not all, of the other analyst positions, the Vendor Support Analyst position is heavy on customer service. Most days, my phone rings multiple times, and it isn’t uncommon to come to work on a Monday morning with 30 or more emails in the Vendor Support inbox,” Kristin explains. “One of the things that I think is essential in my job is to make each vendor feel as if they are our most important vendor, whether they provide services to hundreds of our students or just one.”

Still new to the analyst world, Kristin is continuing to learn every day. Fortunately, she knows that with so many resources and people around her, she can lean on her team for support.

“My team is always willing to share their expertise with other teammates or anyone else in the organization. This is very important to me as a newbie analyst because chances are when I run into an issue, one of the other analysts can help me find the solution, or at least lead me down the right path,” says Kristin.

Making Her Mark

Regardless of role, Kristin has always found a way to leave an impact. Whether it was guiding the Records team as a Lead SSR or building the number of vendors from 200 to over 600, she has had a hand in the success of staff, students, families and the Visions organization as a whole.

“Kristin has done an amazing job since being hired as the Vendor Support Analyst last June. When Kristin began this role, we had a little more than 200 active Enrichment Vendors. Now we have 614!” shares Michael Brubaker, Senior Director of Operations. “In addition to getting additional vendors, Kristin has strengthened our partnership with existing vendors through her excellent service, effective communication, and her diligent work ethic. Through this work, Kristin also has enabled students in all three academies to enhance their education this year through the use of 24,000+ Enrichment eVouchers to date. I truly appreciate Kristin’s work and the positive impact that it has had on Visions’ students, families, and vendors.”

During the past eight years of working at Visions, Kristin has undoubtedly flourished, due in no small part to the fact that she knows the leaders on her team value her as an employee. Feeling like her voice matters and knowing that her colleagues trust her has allowed Kristin to grow in her role and continue making a positive impact.

“There are many people at Visions that deserve a shout-out, but I am especially thankful that [Chief Operations Officer] Tom Tafoya provided me the opportunity to come home to Visions as his Administrative Assistant after I left to pursue what seemed to be an appealing position at another charter school,” says Kristin. “During that semester that I was working for the other charter school, I realized that the grass is not always greener, and it sure is GOOD TO BE VISIONS!”

Work-Life Balance

Kristin’s husband, Michael, has been by Kristin’s side since 1989 when they met on a blind date on Valentine’s Day. Thirty three years of marriage later (34 in July!), they have two sons, Justin (31) and Nathaniel (23), and have spent countless hours reading, listening to Scotty McCreery and visiting the ocean together.

“One of the things that I like the most about Visions is being able to maintain a work-life balance,” says Kristin. “For the most part, I can leave my job at the office when I leave the building and focus my time on other important things in my life like my family and my well-being.”

As a previous stay-at-home mom, Kristin experienced first-hand how “priceless” time with her family is. Now that she’s back in the workforce, she emphasizes how fortunate she is that her roles outside of the office – wife, mom, daughter and more – are respected and valued here at Visions.

“I am blessed to work for an organization that values my work but also values my time away from work and understands that when life happens, employees need to take care of themselves,” Kristin shares. “After I lost my dad, [HR] told me to ‘be gentle’ with myself and to know that grief doesn’t have a timeframe. Those words prove to me that Relationships and Respect, two of Visions’ values, are lived out everyday from the top down.”

Fun Facts About Kristin:

She was born in Wisconsin.

She has a BA in Liberal Studies from CSU, Sacramento.

She played the French horn in middle school and high school.

She has had her photo in the newspaper twice – once when she was 5 and her family was waiting to watch a parade for the Milwaukee Brewers, and another when she was in middle school and was the Mission Oaks Park District’s volunteer of the week for their Camp Have-a-lot-of-Fun summer program.