Transforming Today's World Magazine Volume 4 Issue 1 - Page 36

The Power of SOUND KELLI MCLAUGHLIN Interviewed by Freya Pruitt How did you get into radio? “I spent 10 years in the Insurance and Financial services business when my girls were little. The industry was good to me. However, I needed more opportunity to be creative and Music and Marketing are my true passions. I answered a tiny little ad in a New England newspaper for a radio account executive. That was just the beginning! I was in New York on 9-11 with a meeting scheduled that day in building 7 at Solomon Smith Barney. I thank God my meeting was a lunch meeting and not the usual early breakfast. I was at our home office in White Plains and my colleague and I were walking out the door to head to the train station to go into the city. Our receptionist came outside to stop us and said we might want to wait a minute. She was listening to the small transistor radio sitting on her desk and heard the first reports that there had been an accident and fire at The World Trade Center. There was still no news at that time a plane had hit, so we were waiting to hear what was going on. That radio saved my life, because of that radio report, we all decided to wait. If I had not heard the announcement on the radio, I would have been underground at the WTC train station while the two buildings were collapsing. Like so many other Americans’ that day changed my life forev- er. It has taken me about 9 years to completely process how that day really affected me. If I had been on that train, I would have died.” For several hours my kids did not know if I was alive or dead. They knew Mom was going to the WTC that day. How did it change your life? “Well, I decided I didn’t want to live in the anonymity of city life anymore. I wanted small town community living without sacrificing all the great culture a city has to offer. When I finally got back home, I put plans in motion. I went back to Houston, packed up my children, sold my house and moved to a small college town in Western Massachusetts. I went back to finish my education. I wanted my girls to see more of the country and experience different cultures and ideas. 9-11 put a different perspective on my life. I wanted to do more with my life than just work a j-o-b. I wanted more meaning and purpose. I wanted to be passionate about my job.” Did 9-11 change how you raised your children? “It changed how I did everything. I think 9-11 hit 36 VOLUME 4 – I SSUE 1 | m