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Conversations with Heather Physioc

Today we’d like to introduce you to Heather Physioc. 

Hi Heather, so excited to have you with us today. What can you tell us about your story?
I am a lifelong Kansas City resident. I was raised in the Grandview area and now live in West Plaza with my partner (Luke), dog (Poppy), and cat (Ahab). I also spent about 10 years living in the Overland Park area. 

I am now Managing Director of Discoverability, part of the Connections department a VMLY&R. I lead an award-winning group of more than 45 experts in 10 offices across North America in three distinct specialties: Organic Search (SEO), Paid Search (SEM), and Performance Content. My personal focus area of expertise is organic search, with specialties in international search and data-driven search intelligence. 

I have a Bachelor’s of Journalism from the University of Missouri in Columbia, and an Executive Master’s in Business Administration (EMBA) from Rockhurst University in Kansas City. I also teach digital marketing at the Master’s level in the University of Kansas Journalism School IMC program and speak internationally in the digital marketing space. 

In my spare time, I am an avid hiker, frequent traveler, amateur landscape photographer. I particularly enjoy hiking 14,000-foot mountains and long-distance hikes at lower elevations. I publish my photography and writing from travel excursions at KCTRVLR.com. My primary causes that I invest time, effort, and dollars into are democracy and voting rights, as well as environmental and climate change issues. I’m an active member of the League of Women Voters, and half the proceeds of all my landscape photography prints are donated to environmental conservation organizations. 

(For example, I am currently en route back to the U.S. from Honduras, where I served as an international election observer with CESPAD and Global Exchange. This included meeting with former president Manual Zelaya, meeting with the attorneys for the Guapinol Water Defenders, and monitoring election proceedings for fraud and other human rights violations. It was a great blend of my passions, and it was very moving to be a part of the historical moment when Honduras elected their first woman president, Xiomara Castro.) 

Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not, what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
Overall, I have been incredibly fortunate in my life. I grew up with a hard-working single dad; it was just him, my little brother, and me, so that required me to grow up faster than I may have needed to otherwise in order to take care of my brother while my dad worked. Throughout my career I frequently found myself working in male-dominated fields that present both conscious and unconscious barriers for women, including music journalism and the technology field. There were certainly obstacles, but tackling those challenges shaped who I am today, so I have nothing but gratitude. 

As you know, we’re big fans of you and your work. For our readers who might not be as familiar what can you tell them about what you do?
Two-time entrepreneur, now leader of the Discoverability capability at VMLY&R. Amateur landscape/travel photographer and writer. 

What matters most to you?
One of the most important things I think about is how to make an impact. It could be as grand as doing my part to impact the environment through my photography and writing, or as small as making sure my dog has the best life possible. I just want to live an authentic, impactful live that has meaning, and makes the world even a little bit better place because I was here. I try to give everything I have to everything I do every single day. 

Contact Info:

Image Credits
Orhun Uygur – for the image of me speaking on stage with the blue/purple hues in the background

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