If you opened your own business, what would it be?

Oh man, I used to help run 2 in addition to working full time.  I’m really happy I don’t have to anymore!  I have been wanting to create an organization of couples that brings causes and commits money every quarter for needs in our community.   I believe that so many of us have extra money, are yearning to make a difference but don’t know how to.  I was getting really close to making it a reality last year.  Then I had another baby – so in time. 

What advice would you give your younger self?

To read up on gender differences and women’s natural tendency to lack of confidence earlier.  Understand your self worth.  And, wait to find a companion that has similar interests, great friends, loves his family and acts with a solid core.  Wait beyond college!  It WILL happen.

Exceptional Skills –

Leading teams (softball, choir, work) in a positive manner.   I also feel like I can understand most people’s perspectives even when they’re different from mine.  Unfortunately that’s where I’ve been hurt most, when I’m surrounded by people focused on tearing me down to feel their power or worth.  Hence, my advice to read up on women’s lack of confidence to avoid believing their untruths. 

What makes you feel fulfilled?

Spending time with friends and family.  I love finding excuses to get together and if we can be active, learn or go deep together, even better.

When asked to describe yourself, what’s the first word that pops into your mind?


Favorite Book –

Just Open the Door.  Probably because it’s the latest book I’ve read.  But, I love Chapter 10 in it.  It’s all about bringing your authentic selves, being vulnerable to build relationships -  showing up for each other, getting together regardless of what you, the house or state of anything else looks like.

What makes my heart race?

Getting my dad his first bible and reading a chapter each night with him over FaceTime with my son.  Maybe one of my proudest accomplishments.

Organization or cause near to your heart –

Women’s Crisis Shelters, getting women access to therapy and any organization that builds up women, letting them know they’re not alone.

What keeps you up at night?

Literally?  Work.  Boring 😉

What is a belief you once held but no longer do?

That domestic violence only happens to the uneducated or volatile.

What are you interested in connecting with other women about?

Sharing our struggles, triumphs and life, in general, to realize we’re not alone.  To be there for each other and build each other up.  And, to embrace what makes us a ‘typical’ girl.  I’m learning that I’m definitely a girl in how I go about things.   But, maybe that’s okay.  Maybe that’s what our companies and world need a little bit more of.

Sara Van Wyngarden

Software Engineering Manager

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