Stride Spotlight: Meet Patrick—our Documentary Filmmaker & Finance Whiz

Stride helps people who work for themselves be more productive and successful. This week we chatted with Patrick, one of our Member Experience Associates, about his personal connection to the people we serve, his time in Indonesia, and his go-to Spotify playlist.

Can you introduce yourself and your position?

I’m Patrick, Member Experience Associate, Finance.

Where are you from?

I grew up in Oberlin, Ohio, a small, liberal college town in Northeast Ohio. My mom’s a journalist-turned-community-organizer, and my dad’s a homebuilder, carpenter, and entrepreneur. Both of them have freelanced for much of my adult life.

What were you up to before you joined Stride?

After college, I spent two years teaching English at a university in Banda Aceh, Indonesia. While I was there, I used my filmmaking skills to help local environmental conservation organizations tell their stories. This work ended up taking me all over the province, from palm oil plantations, to coffee farms, to a night spent beside a river in the Sumatran rainforest. I learned as much from these folks as I did from four years in college.

What got you interested in working to support self-employed professionals?

My mom and dad have both worked as contractors for most of my adult life. After moving back to the states, I spent a few months working on residential construction with my father. It didn’t take long for me to realize how many balls he was juggling as an entrepreneur. I was helping my dad with bookkeeping and noticed how difficult it was to keep track of all this stuff. I heard about the Member Experience position at Stride and saw that I had something unique to offer based on that experience.

How would you describe your job to a 5 year old?

I help people. Sometimes I fix things.

What’s the best part about your job?

I’m always learning. Today, I taught myself how to make flowcharts on a computer to model one of our support process. Last week, I had to dive into a handful of dense tax forms and distill them down to something a high school student could read. And for the last few months as a whole, I’ve been developing skills in data analytics in order to identify the most effective ways to improve the quality and efficiency of our support. Stride’s a very supportive environment to do this sort of thing in. My coworkers are bright, skilled, and very generous about sharing what they know.

What’s on your Spotify playlist right now?

I’ve been listening to a weird mix of Dizzy Gillespie, late Duke Ellington, American sludge metal and contemporary funk. It’s all about those polyrhythms.