How We Grow

2020 July/Aug How We Grow

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AROUND THE WORLD Almond Board of California 14 Kerri Walsh Jennings: Determination in the Face of a Detour During a luncheon at The Almond Conference 2019 last December, legendary beach volleyball player Kerri Walsh Jennings left attendees excited and highly anticipating the world's greatest athletic games, which were set to take place this July – the 2020 Summer Olympics. In March, however, officials decided to push back the Olympics an entire calendar year, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. While the decision made for disappointed fans who were looking forward to watching athletes from across the world compete on a global stage, none can be more disappointed than the athletes themselves. Walsh Jennings, in particular, was in the middle of training for her sixth Olympics and working towards her fourth gold medal when the COVID-19 pandemic stopped the world in its tracks. Amidst the chaos and gut-wrenching turn of events – not to mention that Walsh Jennings is closing out her career with this final Olympic performance – the athlete defended her role as a true champion, choosing to own a positive attitude in a way that only she can do. A few weeks later, ABC Board member Brian Wahlbrink had the opportunity to interview 1 Walsh Jennings to hear more about her reaction to the event's postponement, as well as her affinity for almonds. Walsh Jennings said that once she heard the final decision around the 2020 Summer Olympics and had time to process it, "It allowed me to shift my mindset and be like, 'Okay, I have this extra year – what am I going to do with it?' And then all these beautiful, inspiring thoughts came into my mind – this is only [an] opportunity." Walsh Jennings a 'pusher' for California almonds Walsh Jennings truly embodies what the Almond Board of California (ABC) has been communicating through its North America marketing campaign – "Own Your Every Day, Everyday" – for the past couple years. "This mantra rings especially true in today's state of uncertainty: When you have obstacles in front of you, it's especially challenging and important to do your best and 'own it,'" said Becky Jeffers, ABC's manager of North America marketing. As Walsh Jennings put it, to "own your every day, everyday" means to "take care of today, take care of tomorrow and every step of along the way, and that'll help you to arrive to your destination in a much more prepared place." 2 Of course, a huge part of Walsh Jennings' ability to "own her every day" is through her regular consumption of California almonds. As she told Wahlbrink, "I'm a mother and so I want to be an 1 Check out the full interview at 2 @kerrileewalsh, Instagram, March 24, 2020 Continue on page 15 To Walsh Jennings, owning your every day means taking care of "today, tomorrow and every step along the way." Walsh Jennings remarked on her "fresh perspective" via Instagram on March 24.

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