This past February, Meg Pennington, Account Manager of the Pacific Northwest Region, celebrated 16 years with PDI. Her career is one that is remarkable and gives insight into the mobility opportunities within the company.
Born and raised in Portland and Manzanita, Oregon, Meg always knew she wanted to be an interior designer. She had an affinity for architecture and interiors. She remembers when she was a child, her parents would let her pick out a magazine as they stopped for gas on their way out of town. Can you guess the one she selected? Home design magazines. In high school, a career aptitude tests determined Interior Design would be at the top of her career list, and without a doubt, her pursuit to become part of the design industry began.
Meg began her path to a long-term interior design career by studying at a local community college. She later moved down south to sunny California to further her studies at a design college in Long Beach, CA. In 2001, Meg joined PDI as an intern, and after graduating, she was invited back for a full-time assistant position to Founder and CEO, Jen Hooper. She recalls the memories of hours upon hours of putting together preliminary presentations. This was all before the digital era. Everything was cut and glued to presentation boards as well as printed and pasted onto black stock paper. To her, “they were [her] babies.”
Over time, Meg’s career flourished as she transitioned from Jen’s assistant to a design assistant, then designer, and finally senior designer. Today, Meg is PDI’s account manager of our newest region, the Pacific Northwest (update: as of April 2018, Meg is also the account manager of Colorado).
Now you’re wondering, how did that transition happen?
Meg and her husband are both from the Northwest and had always talked about going back north someday–that is, “if the timing was right.” Indeed, the right time came. Meg saw an opportunity in the Pacific Northwest housing market. “After seeing and hearing the housing market growth happening in Oregon and Washington, I thought [it would] be a great opportunity to get involved and put PDI on the map.” She presented the idea to the management team over a lunch and the idea was fully embraced. She says, “I couldn’t be more grateful for the support they have given me. It’s scary enough making a big move; they made it all worth it.”
This past year in November of 2017, the first Pacific Northwest project, Maple Hills by CalAtlantic Homes in Covington, WA, was completed (photos below). PDI is definitely excited about all the upcoming projects in Oregon and Washington!
Q&A with Meg
Initially, what drew you to work with PDI?
To have the freedom to design an entire home within a color direction and furnishing style; and not just a room or two.
What do you like most about the company?
How we have become such a close family. Having and giving support when it’s really needed makes me so proud.
What has been your favorite project at PDI?
That’s a tough one and very unfair. Most recently, I would say Boulder Vista by Meritage Homes AZ. I had great pleasure in selecting everything from Restoration Hardware. Their products are so beautifully well made. The home turned out stunning.
What do you see as your greatest accomplishment working at PDI?
Being here as long as I have and being recognized/nominated 7 consecutive years for projects that I was a lead on.
If you could change one thing about working here, what would it be?
I wouldn’t; it’s an amazing company and family. We have the freedom to design and execute homes for buyers fulfilling the American dream of being a homeowner. Even though we are a very small part; it’s very rewarding.
How do you define success?
Being completely happy and passionate about what you do. Waking up and knowing you are enjoying a career that you love and not just a J.O.B.
What kinds of hobbies and interests do you have outside of work?
Now that I have children, it’s all about spending time with them. Seeing the world through their eyes is the most magical feeling. We love to travel and are huge Seattle Seahawks and Oregon Duck fans. I also love going to concerts, wine tasting, watching movies, and the once-in-a-while girl’s weekend.