If you’ve called or emailed Shot@Life, or were one of our champions who attended our summit, chances are you’ve been lucky enough to talk to Taylor, our Campaign Coordinator. Taylor provides logistical support for all of our national and regional events, coordinates research and logistics for all of our team’s activities, and never lets our team miss a birthday celebration. Taylor recently graduated from the University of Georgia, with a BA in International Affairs and Political Science. Prior to joining the Shot@Life team, she interned with the International Rescue Committee as well as a national Democratic congressional campaign.
How long have you been with Shot@Life?
I joined the Shot@Life team last August! However, before coming to Shot@Life I interned with the UN Foundation’s Better World Campaign in the spring.
What has been your favorite moment since joining the team?
On the last day of our Annual Champion Summit, myself and two other co-workers (Gabriela and Rebecca) were called to the stage by our Executive Director. Presented with a bouquet of flowers each, we were thanked for all our work on the event. Standing up there and looking out at the crowd as our team and the Champions applauded…it hit home that we’d really pulled off a successful Summit (and my first in this position!).
What do you think the biggest challenge facing vaccine advocacy is?
The complexity and technicality of immunizations. It’s tricky to understand how different vaccines work and why they’re needed, and misinformation around common vaccines (like flu vaccines) only further complicates the matter.
What do you wish people knew about Shot@Life/Vaccines/Advocacy?
How collaborative immunization processes are! It’s really fascinating to see the intersection of civil society, government, non-profit, corporate, and international organizations in the global health world. So many different actors work together to manufacture, finance, and administer vaccines all over the world.
Do you have a favorite story from the field?
I’m not sure if Capitol Hill counts as the field, but I absolutely love leading Champions around the House and Senate buildings to meet with their members of Congress. I’m always so inspired watching the Champions passionately and advocate for global childhood immunizations in such a knowledgeable way to their Congressional offices.
What excites you most about your work?
The best feeling is seeing all the pieces come together. For instance, last week Congress passed the FY18 Omnibus and it provided a $15M increase for Gavi, a $2M increase for CDC Polio activities, and level-funding for CDC Measles and USAID Polio activities. These funding commitments came just a week after our Champions met with their legislators on Capitol Hill to advocate for global immunizations funding to these accounts. Seeing the success and influence of our Champions in action and the support they’ve built on Capitol Hill is a really powerful feeling.
Why did you join the Shot@Life team?
As an intern with the Better World Campaign, I got to help out with certain Shot@Life activities (congressional tracking and logistic support for the Summit). Through my involvement with Shot’s wonderful team, Champions, and congressional supporters, I learned more about Shot@Life’s mission and how many children continue to die from vaccine-preventable diseases. I came to really admire both the team and its drive to raise awareness and funds for childhood immunizations. End story: vaccines really do save lives—and how can you not want to be a part of that?
What’s a fun fact about you that our champions may not know?
The fun fact I always share is that I come from a family of all girls (I have 5 sisters), and that within this family I am part of a set of fraternal triplet sisters! While my sisters are all spread out (Seattle, Ann Arbor, Atlanta, and me in DC), we try and get together as often as we can for sister adventures!