Managing administrative operations, supervising all non-attorney personnel, overseeing the Firm’s finance functions and supervising the facilities are just part of the daily responsibilities Taylor Day firm administrator, Debora Cates, undertakes. Now in her 12th year with the firm, she discusses her biggest challenges, accomplishments, facing her biggest fears and what’s next for this adventurous administrator.
What’s been the most rewarding thing you’ve accomplished here?
The most rewarding thing, I hope, I have accomplished would be my choices in hiring staff members. We have the nicest group of people I have ever worked with as well as being professional and hardworking.
What’s been the most challenging part of your job?
The most challenging part of my job is trying to keep everyone happy. I know it is not possible, but it still bothers me when someone is disappointed.
You recently returned from a trip to Costa Rica, where you tackled your fear of heights by zip-lining. What made you decided to try that?
I had three reasons:
- When the opportunity came up to zip-line I decided I wanted to do something brave because I could not think of anything brave that I had done in my life. The one exception might be having a baby at age 44.
- My Dad was in the 101st Airborne Division while stationed at the U.S. Army Base located near Fort Campbell, KY. I was always so proud of him. He was the bravest person I know. I think he would have been proud of me zip-lining knowing that I am afraid of heights. I like to think he was in heaven yelling at me to go for it. My Mom was probably screaming, “What is she thinking!”
- I wanted my son, Jonathan, to be proud of me and to know it is possible to push yourself even when you are afraid. As Mark Twain wrote, “Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear, not absence of fear”. I promise you, I experienced plenty of fear while zip-lining over the Costa Rican tropical rainforest.
Were there any other memorable events from the trip?
Whitewater rafting was one of the highlights of that trip. I probably should have been afraid, but it was so much fun with absolutely stunning scenery.
What’s next on your bucket list?
I want to take horse riding lessons, take a trip to Italy and tandem skydive in 2019.