Name: Cathy Copeland
Birthplace and/or where you grew up: Fort Wayne, Indiana
Where do you currently call home? Harrisonburg, Virginia
Occupation: Adjunct Instructor of Writing & Rhetoric at JMU
Favorite part about the job: The students!
Your first job ever: Working as a video-store clerk at a local grocery store chain.
Favorite Book/Currently Reading: Favorite author: Shakespeare Favorite book: Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban Currently Reading: The Road South: Personal Stories of the Freedom Riders by B.J. Hollars
Comfort Food: Popcorn
What’s playing in your car right now? When the kids are in the car, it's Disney soundtracks all the time. When the kids aren't in the car, I listen to NPR. When the kids aren't in the car and I'm away on a road trip, I can finally listen to a great Podcast.
Addicted to podcasts? What are the top three you listen to? I don't get to listen to them that frequently, much to my sadness. But I do like Bingemode: Harry Potter and Science Friday.
Next journey? My husband and I are planning to go to Italy for our 10th wedding anniversary in a couple of years. But, before that, we'll go on lots of family trips to Indiana, Alabama, and maybe even Disney World. :)
Favorite Virginia destination? Williamsburg and Virginia Beach were both wonderful locations for an extended weekend trip. If we're just looking for a day trip, visiting a vineyard in the Shenandoah Valley or Charlottesville area is great!
First political memory? Listening to the fallout (In my home state of Indiana) of Dan Quayle misspelling "potato."
Best advice you ever received? Reading opens your world.
If you could have dinner with anyone currently living, whom would it be and why? Queen Elizabeth II. She's led a fascinating life, met so many people, and thrived despite her whole life being dissected on a daily basis for the public. Can we please have tea at Windsor Castle? I'd love to have the corgis there too!
One thing most people would be surprised to learn about you? I can't decide what would be the most surprising....so here are three things:
I helped put a full-grown alligator in a hotel bathtub one time.
My husband and I were on House Hunters--the episode is titled "Quirky in Virginia."
I majored in Biology in college (before doing graduate work in English literature) and loved helping to sequence portions of the human genome during an internship at Vanderbilt University in 2000.
Ambition, political or otherwise? I want to continue to help people. It might mean working to educate, working to advocate, working to inspire, or all three! Whatever I do, I'm determined to do my best and help as many people as possible.
Favorite part about the PLP so far? The ability to see so many different areas of Virginia and learn about the challenges and successes that every area faces. But I love my fellow PLP classmates, the Sorensen Institute staff, and the community leaders that talk to our classes. I enjoy spending time with such an energetic and diverse crowd of people.