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In Focus | Jessica Drummond

Meet Jessica! She works in Marketing for Portia-Ella, a female-empowering cosmetic store that recently opened in Orchard Park Mall!

<who> Photo Credit: Jessica Drummond

Where are you from and how long have you lived in Kelowna?
I moved to the Okanagan from Vancouver Island in the summer of 2018 for the tail end of the smoky season. I was happy to spend my first Okanagan summer last year smoke-free!

Who is your favourite person to spend time with and why?
My partner. He's my absolute best friend, and supports me in ways I could never have imagined!

What is your favourite local store in Kelowna and why?
Portia-Ella! They're my employers, and are incredibly supportive and encouraging people. The store is a hub for female empowerment - all of our staff are enlightening, kind, creative, and individual women who are creating a better world.

Describe yourself in one word.

If you could go anywhere in the world right at this moment where would you go and why?
Eureka, California. It sounds like an interesting place - but I've heard it's actually not a great place. This actually intrigues me MORE. I like to find the beauty in everything - especially the places others don't.

What is your favourite activity in Kelowna?
Paddleboarding in the summer, ice skating in the winter.

<who> Photo Credit: Jessica Drummond

What is the most embarrassing thing that has happened to you?
Arriving in Kelowna for the first time, and my car immediately died. It was a great first impression of myself!

What is the most inspiring thing that has happened to you?
Having the opportunity to speak with CBC national news last summer about my great-aunt and her contribution to Canadian history with Twin Falls Chalet. It was an absolute honor.

<who> Photo Credit: Jessica Drummond

Tell us your favourite childhood memory.
My best friend and I spending all of our time outdoors - building tree forts, swimming in the creek, eating fruit from wild trees and bushes, riding bikes everywhere - with no cell phones. My entire childhood is my favourite memory.

Where do you volunteer or give back to in the community?
I donate my clothing to the Mission Thrift Store (and usually end up buying there too!). I'm still 'new' to Kelowna, but I did lots of volunteer work in Victoria to support the sobriety/recovery community and worked with Music Heals with community outreach (can we start a Kelowna chapter?)

If you could change one thing in the world what would it be?
I wish everybody would recycle. That sounds silly. It's such a simple act that doesn't get done.

Where would you sneak away to in Kelowna to spend some time alone?
Gyro Beach.

Where would you like to see a positive change in Kelowna and why?
I'd like to see a viable solution for anybody suffering from drug and alcohol addiction. There needs to be a shift in consciousness to affect Kelowna and beyond to provide better pillars of support to those who are struggling with addiction.

What do you think makes Kelowna great?
The growth that I've seen in even 18 months here has been incredible and inspiring. Kelowna is thriving and will continue to do so exponentially. It's a community that provides an opportunity to those around it, and pushes community members like myself to fuller potential.

What are 3 things on your bucket list?
When I was 13 we had to write out 25 lifelong accomplishments and goals. By age 25 I had accomplished almost everything on my list. I have had a really great life, and continue to do so. My major bucket list is to continue writing, and eventually have a book published by a company - instead of self-publishing!

Tell us something that not everyone may know about you.
I'm not a natural redhead!

How do people connect with you, personally, through social media? (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, etc.)
You can find me on:
- Facebook: Jessica Drummond
- LinkedIn: Jessica Drummond

<who> Photo Credit: Jessica Drummond

What is the name of your business/organization?
Portia-Ella (Marketing).

Why did you get into this business?
It seemed easy enough to combine my passions for marketing and sustainability. When I was offered the position with Portia-Ella it just made sense and fit into place.

What is the goal of your business?
We strive to bring together the community with positive impact through our cosmetics recycling program, our studio atmosphere, quality products, and goal of female empowerment, and uniting people within our local communities to feel authentically beautiful. It's so much more than just beauty products. It's a shift in consciousness through retail outreach.

What has been your biggest struggle either at work or in life?
When I was younger I struggled with self-esteem, depression and mood disorders. Until I decided one day to shift my mindset, to shift my hobbies, and my focus to allow myself the self-love and acceptance that we ALL have to slow down and remember.

If you could start all over again would you do things the same or would things be different?
I would never change a single thing. I've always loved the quote "Experience is simply the name we give our mistakes" but I don't believe anything in our lives are mistakes if we learn from them.

<who> Photo Credit: Jessica Drummond

What do you always find yourself saying? / What is your best piece of life advice?
Don't Panic.

If you could spend one whole day with anyone in the world who is currently alive, who would you select?
My great aunt Fran Drummond.

Why do you think it is important to shop locally?
Every dollar that goes into our economy goes back into our pockets. The more we spend locally, the more we support locally, and the more we thrive locally. When we purchase local produce, we support local farms (and the prices and quality are better!). When we support local business, we create an unbreakable community of people who thrive off of each other's accomplishments, goals, and build what makes a community truly special.

What has been your proudest accomplishment?
I think my proudest accomplishment is knowing that people in my life feel comfortable opening up and speaking about their hardships with me, and being able to support people through their hard times. It's important that we remember to look out for one another.

Give someone you think that deserves it a shout out and explain why!
My mom and my dad. You two have both inspired and pushed me in different ways and I'm happy I chose you to be my parents.

My choice for the KelownaNow In Focus spotlight is:
Julie Michaud.

Some general comments I would like to share are:
Thank you to the Kelowna community for welcoming me with arms wide open, and pushing me to be a better version of myself. I'm lucky to live in such a beautiful growing city, surrounded by inspirational leaders.

We encourage you to leave your comments and words of support below and submit your own nomination by clicking HERE. You are also welcome to submit a form of your own by clicking HERE.

In Focus is our gift to the community. A way for us to help show our recognition of the people, businesses, and organizations that help make our city great. Thank you, Kelowna!

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