We had the good fortune of connecting with Tracey Winey and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Tracey, as a parent, what do you feel is the most meaningful thing you’ve done for them?
As a parent, the most important thing I have done is believe in my children. I believe in their ability to make a decision, to choose their own path, to right a wrong, and to create an environment that empowers others to thrive. Sometimes I don’t agree with their choice or want them to do something that they chose not to do. The best way I know how to convey my love to them is to allow them to be accountable, for the good, bad and ugly. Through years of unconditional love and holding my kids accountable for their actions, my kids are discovering their authentic selves. This is how our family works. We aren’t perfect and often times it isn’t pretty, but we are truthful, hardworking, encouraging and above all; loving.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
My personal six word memoir is: Unexpected turns; grateful for the detours. I did not plan to be a teacher. After receiving my Bachelor’s Degree, I wanted to travel-so I did! After living in Hungary, Colombia and Japan, I moved back to the States, not knowing what I wanted to do. I love learning and I realized I really love working in an environment where learning is always happening. I went back to school and received my Master’s in Education with an emphasis on Instructional Leadership. I LOVE teaching. I laugh every day. I have learned and relearned, and am still learning the power of education. The struggle is how to convey to each person I work with (students, staff, parents community) how wonderful they are and how much this world needs their unique talents. I am not always successful at this. Sometimes, time is the reason, sometimes I don’t slow down enough to focus on this, and I’m sure there are many other reasons why this doesn’t happen…but, holy smokes…when it does, it is true magic. Everyone has a purpose RIGHT now. Often, kids think in the terms of the future, but I think in terms of right now!!! I am honored and encouraged to be part of the present moment with a team that is constantly making the world brighter through intentional actions. Engineering Brightness merges intelligence, creativity, compassion, engineering and collaboration to shine humanity’s brightest light.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
My favorite spot is my back porch in mid summer. Sitting around the fire pit, surrounded by the blooming lilacs, producing garden, running dog and kids in and out is a true sanctuary. Local and small business enterprises are evident from the plates that were made by my friend, to listening to music from local artists, to enjoying drink and food that were locally sourced with old and new friends alike, makes my heart soar. Our door is always open and we continually have room for one more, c’mon in! My soul really lives in the mountains. Hiking a simple path or bagging a 14’er is a major passion of mine. Depending on the visitor, I can go either way. Kayaking-yes please! My dog, Frank, and I fit perfect on my two seater. Fort Collins is an area that we can easily borrow a kayak or a SUP and bring a friend or two along. Exploring a new nature area is an adventure I am always up for and Chris is always willing to grab an extra rod for a friend. Top off a hike or day on the water with camping and I’m in heaven. Beauty lies in so many areas of Fort Collins. No trip would be complete without visiting Old Town and stopping in at a few breweries. The murals, the pianos, the friendly people are a must stop destination. Please, come visit!!!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My story is beautifully messy and orchestrated by God above all. My husband, Chris, kids MJ and Cooper, family, and friends keep me real and inspire me to be better. My Preston Middle School Crew and Engineering Brightness Team is comprised of so many unbelievable generous and intelligent people from around the country and world wide; specifically Guatemala and Liberia. I am so grateful to John Howe, Engineering Brightness co-founder for always believing in people and giving us opportunities to shine. I marvel at the incredible people who have selflessly contributed to my life and very much look forward to the new people I have yet to meet!