Blog Culture/Agency Life

Giving Thanks in 2021

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Whether you’re in it for the food, football, family, Black Friday shopping or Macy’s Day Parade, Thanksgiving has finally arrived here in the U.S. for those who celebrate. With a little extra time off and the smell of pumpkin pie filling our homes, it’s the perfect time to reflect on the past year – acknowledging hardships and challenges, and expressing gratitude for the blessings and people in our lives.

At PAN, we have a lot to be thankful for this year! In 2021 so far, we’ve hired 55 new employees across all offices, while empowering and investing in our existing staff with promotions, new roles, benefits and more. We’ve launched our HyFlex model and are especially excited about our growing PAN Virtual community – enabling us to better accommodate, attract and engage talent across regions. The PAN executive team has expanded our commitment to DEI, continuing to invest in recruitment, retention and new business opportunities. This year, we’ve had new trainings for unconscious bias, and our DEI discussion group has enjoyed new content that sheds light and education on experiences of BIPOC, Latinx/Hispanic and LGBTQ+ communities. All of these commitments – and the hard work of our business development and marketing teams – have helped us better serve, retain and attract new clients.

With a little extra time off and the smell of pumpkin pie filling our homes, it’s the perfect time to reflect on the past year – acknowledging hardships and challenges, and expressing gratitude for the blessings and people in our lives.

Like I said, a lot to be grateful for here at PAN. We also like to reflect on what we’re personally grateful for here at PAN. While we do that, we encourage everyone at PAN and elsewhere to acknowledge the real history and meaning behind Thanksgiving, and that the land we live on is indigenous land. For anyone looking to read more about the first Thanksgiving or find an indigenous cause to donate to this year, check out last year’s blog post for more resources, here: Thanksgiving 2020 and Plymouth Rock… Not What We Pictured.

Without further ado, let’s check out what PAN employees are grateful for in 2021!

“This year, I’m thankful that I was able to join the wonderful PAN family. I’m also thankful that I can travel home to spend time with my family, eat tasty food and go to my first NFL game!” – Bailey Watroba, Senior Account Executive, Boston

“I am extra thankful this year to celebrate the holidays with my TWO little turkeys, Vivienne and Charlotte, and for the dry shampoo, coffee and undereye concealer that keep me looking alive each day ? Also, for being lucky enough to know Marki Conway and getting to learn the Gen Z lingo together so we could feel less ‘vintage.’ No cap. Thank you, Veeam OGs ❤” – LeeAnn Coviello, SAS, Boston

“Thankful that we could create a fabulous Virtual Community at PAN!” – Elizabeth Famiglietti, EVP HR, Boston

“I am so thankful that after being separated for the past 2 years from international borders closing during the COVID-19 pandemic, my Australian fiancé and I will finally be reuniting again this Christmas in the US. I am also SUPER thankful to my new PAN family for being so accommodating when I’m organizing time off with him, and to PAN for giving us the week off following Christmas to have even more quality time with my fiancé and family.” – Christina Gregory, Senior Account Executive, PAN Virtual

“I’m thankful for everyone who joined PAN this year and embraced our teams. When you have been at PAN since the Bush administration like I have (true story), one of the things I value the most about the agency setting is meeting new people and giving them the support they need to grow their careers here like I have. One of the silver linings of 2021 is that we’ve had plenty of opportunity to do that.” – Adam Novak, VP, preferably Maine but I guess technically Boston

“I’m thankful for PAN for picking up the team MK tab.” – Kate Adams, Account Executive, Boston

“I’m so thankful for all of the positive changes that happened in my life this year and am even more thankful for the people that have been here with me through it all.” – Brittany Poulin, Senior Account Executive, Orlando/Virtual

“Lots of things to be thankful for this year! Lockdown restrictions ending in the UK, being able to travel again (I missed my regular hit of Spanish sun and food!), buying my first home and being able to decorate it however I want, getting promoted to Account Director, being back in the office with my talented PANfam, connecting with more of my US colleagues and making friends stateside, and as always, my amazing family and friends (human and dog).” – Sofia Cabrera, Account Director, London

“Oh boy! Lots to be thankful for in 2021. First being science, which has given us back the ability to see each other in the office, go to concerts, and just generally enjoy life a whole lot more than we did in 2020. Still, as always, thankful for the PAN West team and our running document of which style of potato each employee would be (team sweet potato fry). Cheers to 2022 and the resurrection of in-person PAN pubs, holiday parties, and cross-office travel!” – Emily Hubbard, Senior Account Executive, San Francisco

“Incredibly thankful that 2021 made us a family of three, and grateful to PAN and my supportive colleagues for allowing me to spend many wonderful months at home getting to know my little girl. Also thankful we’ve been able to go back to the office more this year, because I missed my one true PAN BFF and work neighbor, Marki of course.” – Kathryn McMahon Arrigg, Director, Boston

“I am thankful for the personal and professional changes 2021 brought. I’m grateful PAN virtual has allowed me to take the next step in my career and work with incredible individuals, while also allowing me to move back to my hometown to be close to family. Also, shoutout to my puppy Goose, my wonderful friends and boyfriend, and appetizers & cocktails during happy hour – all of which I’m eternally thankful for.” – Olivia Mannion, Senior Account Executive, PAN Virtual

“Well, it’s really hard to be grateful this year because I haven’t been able to see Marki in the office even once… sigh. But, I am grateful that I am still blessed by her presence here at PAN from a virtual perspective. Also, shoutout to my family, fellow Louisville alum and all things golf.” – Mark Nardone, EVP, Boston

“What a year! I’m grateful that my husband and I got to celebrate our wedding day with almost all our loved ones in attendance. I’m thankful for my support system (family, friends, PAN), which played a huge role in helping us recently move from Boston to LA and getting me to the next level of my career. Last but not least, I’m grateful for all my super smart and creative colleagues, who inspire me and make work fun every single day!” – Alex Connelly, Senior Account Supervisor, Los Angeles/PAN Virtual

“This year, I am thankful for all of my colleagues at PAN who have taken time out of their day to teach me a new skill, show me how to use a new platform, or just share tips & tricks they’ve picked up from working in PR. In 2021, I entered a new field with almost no experience but ready to learn, and I am entering 2022 a PR professional with the support of the wonderful PAN fam!” – Maria Lovato, Account Coordinator, PAN Virtual (Raleigh, North Carolina)

“I’m thankful for becoming a meme. One step closer to going viral!” – Kate Adams, Account Executive, Boston

“After a tumultuous 2020, I’m thankful I found a supportive company that genuinely cares about each individual employee, and the blessings that have come with a HyFlex working model – living closer to family, better work/life balance and furry coworkers always under my desk.” – Samantha Smoak, Senior Account Supervisor, PAN Virtual (Nashville/Orlando)

“2021 was a year for the unknown – a year full of peaks and valleys. Despite the valleys though, I was able to reach peaks with a view so spectacular that I can’t help but feel thankful. One year married to the love of my life and best friend, the cutest dog (arguably in the entire world), a best friend who has supported me through everything that this year threw at me and makes me laugh every day, a job that continuously provides for me and my family (through an exciting promotion, generous time off, surprise bonuses and more!) Even the small things – fresh flowers on a sunny day, perfect cups of coffee on a lazy morning, laughs so hard your stomach hurts, rolling a natural 20 in D&D, you know… that kind of stuff. ? Just so much to be thankful for!!” – Shannon Shewbrooks, Senior Account Executive, Orlando

“I’m grateful for sushi as a breakfast meal, and homemade kombucha because I’m a Brooklyn hipster at heart.” – Lauren Kaufman, Director, Integrated Marketing and Analytics, NYC and PAN Japan

“I’m thankful to work with great people, who also share a love for terrible television and great books. Shout out to PAN Bravo Historians and my fellow PAN Bookworms.” – Vito Gallo, Account Supervisor, NYC

“I’m thankful for Marki, who, like me, has the appropriate appreciation for proper em-dash usage.” – Samantha Smoak, Senior Account Supervisor, Virtual (Nashville/Orlando)

“I’m thankful for Hawaiian shirts and the finest establishment in all of Massachusetts, Grimsby’s in Melrose.” – Eugene Carozza, SVP, Boston

“Thankful for the boys of my family, Jon, Wyatt and Colton and for keeping life interesting. Also thankful for Marki Conway for putting out this blog every year.” – Laura Beauregard, Director, Orlando

“I’m thankful for random ‘anthropology’ lessons from Alex about meniscus/i, my first full year without having killed a single house plant, and such a wide range of GIFs for me to accurately convey my exact thoughts while we’re all working virtually. In all seriousness though, I’m so thrilled to have joined PAN this year — there’s no doubt in my mind that I’m working with the best teams in the businesses (both personally and professionally), an agency that recognizes and rewards our hard work, and a roster of meaningful and exciting clients.” – Travis Van Horn, Senior Account Executive, NYC

“I’m super grateful that our Family Feud game hosts were very bad at math and Team 2 came out on top! It’s always fun to beat Marki at anything, but especially at trivia.” – Eva Barry-Murphy, HR Business Partner, Boston

“I am thankful that I’ve had the most amazing experience at my first job out of college. It’s not every day that you find a group of people who want to listen to Taylor Swift nine hours a day on a continuous loop while working in the Empire State Building.” – Roxanne A. Menchaca, Assistant Account Executive, New York City

“I’m thankful for the PAN PAWrents / PAN #Pupdates groups on Teams, especially when Ray posts pics of Sharky Shark! Also, Marki’s adorable pups in their little June Pride outfits!” – Kirsten Ashton Welch, Senior Account Supervisor, Orlando

“I am so thankful I get more time with my dad after his Cardiac arrest. I am completely grateful to his wife who was home at the time, she saved his life. I am truly blessed with the children I have they mean the world to me. I am also very thankful to PAN for getting us through the pandemic (and the year after), not only financially but emotionally also. Lastly, my team I am blessed to be working with such a great group of talented, smart, driven, funny people.” – Kim Spiller, Billing Manager, Boston

“I’m thankful for PAN’s seamless remote onboarding experience (shoutout to Syd!) and my incredible coworkers. I’m also grateful for the early sign-off perk on Fridays which allow me to enjoy some sunlight during the winter months when it gets dark at ungodly times.” – Judy Lee, Senior Account Executive, New York

“I am grateful for the people at PAN who have been supportive, kind and welcoming since I joined the family in July! This is no other place I would want to be in my first job post-grad, and I am grateful for the mentorship, learning and all the smiles and joy my teams have provided me!” – Allie Garrett, Account Coordinator, Boston

“I’m grateful to work with the most supportive co-workers in the world and the hands down best HR professionals of my entire career. I am especially grateful for the support my fellow HR team has given me as a first-time mom during a pandemic. #sendhelp” – Brianna Benjamin, HR Director, Boston

“This year, I am grateful that loungewear has become the new business casual, we can finally enjoy live music again, and that grocery stores have been added to DoorDash for those times we’re low on baking soda.”  – Jen Bonney, Senior Creative Director, Boston

“Thankful for Marki. That’s it. That’s the Tweet.” – Jenny Radloff, VP, Boston (when I’m not running marathons in Phill like A CHAMP)

“I am thankful for finally seeing so many new faces in the PAN Boston office, getting to live my dream of living in Boston, and of course, having the most supportive and fun dedicated team there is #TeamMarki 4ever!!!” – Julienne Hughes, Assistant Account Executive, Boston

“I’m thankful for Target and people who give me gift cards to Target and PAN for giving me a day off to go shop at Target.” – Kate Adams, Account Executive, Boston

“I’m thankful for having the opportunity to safely return to office and see colleagues in-person this year.” – Brandon Thomas, Vice President & NY General Manager, New York City

“I’m so thankful to have Marki as one of my dedicated employees!” – Megan Kessler, SVP, Boston

“Thankful for great clients, amazing teams, work-like balance and a fantastic agency that makes it all possible!” — Matthew Briggs, Vice President, Boston

“I am extra grateful for my family this year! While they’ve seen me every day for the past ~20 months, I feel very luck to spend “unprecedented” quality time with the people I love the most.” – Kally Lavoie, Account Supervisor, Boston

“Approaching my first year anniversary, I’m so grateful that Tim W. found me via LinkedIn this time last year, and that MK and Ashley Waters took a chance on me :’) I love my #TeamMedia and PAN fam and literally can’t imagine a better agency to call home. Also, having Ash Waters as a dedicated is the absolute best thing that has happened to my career since I discovered my love for media relations.” – Alicia Saragosa, Senior Media Relations Specialist, PAN Virtual (Chicago)

“The past two years have been a whirlwind. This year, I’m grateful for PAN and its healthy culture and amazing teams, for my new apartment and its proximity to America’s greatest invention, 99-cent pizza, and for my first-ever pet, my beloved kitten Nico. Happy Thanksgiving everyone!” – Sana Haque, SAE, NYC

“Thankful for PAN’s Hyflex model that allows the flexibility to work from home, mainly because I’m able to eat soup as a snack throughout the workday.” – Laura Beauregard, Director, Orlando

“I’m thankful that Kirsten learned how to make Marki’s incredible tacos. They are FIRE.” – Sean Welch, Director, Orlando

“I’m thankful for coffee machines that work and awesome coworkers who are quick to jump in when coffee machines DON’T work.” – Kate Adams, Account Executive, Boston

“Thankful for indoor pools and everything Cape Cod. BTW, who wants to have a pool party next summer?!” – Adam Cormier, VP, Boston

“Blessed to finally celebrate my daughter’s wedding with family and friends.” – Elizabeth Famiglietti, EVP, HR, Boston

“I am so blessed to have my daughter. She is absolutely the little girl I was supposed to have in my life. Supporting her special needs has profoundly changed how I see the world. She has more to teach me, but I am grateful for all that she brings to me.” – Michele Frost, VP Integrated Marketing, Boston

“I’m grateful for being able to see my family for the holidays this year.” – Emily Rubin, Intern, San Francisco

“I’m thankful to be back in NYC at the PAN office and that I get to work with such wonderful people. Also thankful for Marki, for reminding of my name, title and location.” – Meghan Orencole, Account Supervisor, NYC

“I’m grateful that this year I graduated college (#gopack), learned how to incorporate more self-care and mindfulness in my daily routine, and started my first big girl job – I’m so thankful to begin my journey here at PAN with some remarkable people.” – Thania Menjivar, Account Coordinator, PAN Virtual – Texas

“I’m grateful that Marki introduced me to night-time sunglasses that are supposed to be used for driving, but honestly are so fly I’d prefer to wear them all the time.” – Elsa Crozier, Account Executive, Boston

“I’m beyond thankful for the opportunity to join PAN’s virtual community this year and for all of the amazing, brilliant people I get to work with every day! I’ve felt at home with PAN since day one.” – Laurel Mengers, Account Executive, PAN Virtual

“I am so thankful for a supportive and collaborative virtual team. It makes coming to work (10 steps to my office) even more worth it.” – Meg Dedyne, Senior Media Relations Specialist, Chicago

“Thankful for an agency that prioritizes mental health and work/life balance. Thankful for my incredible dedicated team who impresses me every day. Grateful to climate change activists, particularly indigenous communities who are at the heart of preserving our Earth’s resources. Also thankful for night-time driving sunglasses, office coffee machines, getting ‘just one drink’ with colleagues after work, and being able to mingle in the office hopefully even more in 2022. And finally, thankful for Lauren Kaufman’s Showtime login.” – Marki Conway, Director, Boston

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