That is how I felt when I met with McCormick Ranch Lifestyles Magazine founder and editor Alexandra Duemer, a fellow Scottsdale gal like me and fellow Scottsdale Leadership gal like Abbie and Rachel who has one of the most interesting life stories I’ve ever heard.
A McCormick Ranch resident since she was nine months old, her parents were the original developers of the Scottsdale Borgata. An advocate of all things Scottsdale, her tearful testimony encouraging the Scottsdale City Council to re-think its now-in-process plans to demolish and re-conceptualize the iconic Borgata has been a hot topic in the Valley for the past year, as here from the Arizona Republic.
And that just scratches the surface on this engaging and deep-thinking McCormick Ranch mom and entrepreneur.
So, Alexandra, what do you want to tell the blogosphere about yourself, your life and your magazine today?
Well, life is certainly full of surprises, isn’t it? I never thought I’d spend the first two years of married life on a military base. Or raise two children in the same home I grew up in. Or start a community magazine before it became “on trend”!
I come from a very international background, with my mother who’s French (born in Indo-China) and a father who, though born and raised in New York, worked all over the world and met my mom in the Congo. Visitors are always surprised by the zebra skin hanging on my living room wall, but it’s a part of the history I grew up with. And I think those reminders helped open my mind to the world as a whole. I’m also lucky to say that I can travel to any continent and have a place to stay with friends or family.
My wings certainly haven’t stretched as far as my parents, but they chose Scottsdale for a reason, and I feel blessed to be a part of this community. The inspiration for McCormick Ranch Lifestyle magazine (www.mcrlife.com) came after 10 years of working in marketing. I loved the creative aspect, but wanted something more fulfilling and flexible. I realized how important this (now central) part of Scottsdale is because of its 40+ year history and the people who call it home. It’s sort of like 6 degrees of Kevin Bacon … everyone knows someone who has lived here and loves it!
Most people recognize McCormick Ranch for the greenery and lakeside views, but don’t realize how big of an area it is with nearly 8,600 homes. I’ve had the privilege of meeting and interviewing not only local celebrities, but inspiring business owners and residents. My goal was simply to unite the community and give it a voice. The positive response was immediate and, seven years later, I’m still thrilled when a reader takes the time to reach out with a compliment or suggestion.
Alison mentioned the Scottsdale Leadership program I’m currently in, so I have to take a moment and let people know what an empowering experience it has been. Not only have I made some incredible friendships, but I’ve learned the elements of what it takes to make this city run, the challenges we face and the opportunities for growth. What blows me away is all of the talented forward-thinking people and projects we have in the Valley that many of us know nothing about. I can’t stress enough the importance of getting involved and making an impact in whatever capacity speaks to you. As a parent, I constantly find myself navigating between “cherishing the moment” and “teachable moments.” The legacy I hope to leave is one of creativity, curiosity and community.
I’m always looking for story ideas and opportunities for collaboration. (My inner foodie also finds it hard to resist being wined and dined.) The best way to reach me is via email Alexandra@mcrlife.com.