Geek of the Week – Hanna Wagner
Hanna Wagner is a self-described “data junkie.” A Client Advocate in the packaged goods, automotive, public sector and not-for-profit practice, the former elementary school teacher fondly recalls the early days of the PC—Wordstar and DOS 2.1—and admits that she likes to share her passion for numbers. “I really enjoy using software that makes sense of data,” she says. “I guess that somebody waved a magic wand that said, ‘Thou shalt always strive to make numbers talk sense to normal mortals!’”
But her life is not all numbers. Hanna and her husband John of 35 years are culture buffs who spend their free time at the AGO or the ROM, and also cart home unusual movies from Queen Video that never played the big screens in North America. They like to travel abroad when they get the opportunity, visiting family in Ireland or on the continent. Anchored in their neighbourhood at Oakwood and St. Clair in Toronto—a classic Continental Culture community—Hanna and her husband are very much local in their shopping preferences, frequenting favourite stores such as Patachou Patisserie and the numerous shops along St. Clair, all within a few minutes’ walk of their house. ”We rarely go to big box stores or shopping malls,” she says.
One of EA’s big claims has always been that a neighbourhood defines its residents—and vice versa—and Hanna seems to reinforce that principle in her daily life. While she states there is no real centre of her community, St. Clair Avenue itself is the heart of the neighbourhood. “You see the same faces, people with routines and habits, all up and down the street,” says Hanna. “It’s where you go for your stroll, your small purchases, the library, or to catch the streetcar or subway.”
But, she says, being a good neighbour is also about respecting the space and the needs of those living around you—especially when it comes to parking etiquette. “People are generally tolerant,” she observes. “If there is any faux pas, it could be parking. Hogging an on-street spot week after week is not going to make you friends here.”
With her kids grown and out of the house, Hanna enjoys the freedom and flexibility of an empty-nesting Boomer who lives in what she calls “one of the most interesting cities in the world.” She says that she doesn’t suffer from empty-nest syndrome, but rather feels energetic and ready to resume the life she had before kids, focused on personal growth and enjoying her time with John.
Not surprisingly, when the opportunity arose to better herself in 2006, Hanna was up to the task, heading back to school and a research program at Georgian College, which eventually led her to EA. “I interned here and then was offered a full-time job,” she recalls. ”EA had the name of being innovative, smart and growing.” Luckily for EA, Hanna fit right in with the expanding company, quickly cementing her role among co-workers as a hard-working, reliable analyst. Her contributions to the imaging reports, presentations and training standards are many, but she is also known for her easygoing nature and willingness to help. Her work ethic has been recognized by her coworkers, who voted Hanna EA’s Employee of the Year in 2011.
And she continues to work hard and enjoy her job, bringing those “Eureka” moments she so loves to her clients, while also enjoying the atmosphere around the office. “A big plus of the work is being there when it ‘clicks’ for the client,” she states. “And then, when the client reports the ‘lift’ that is due to our work, that’s the icing on the cake. When a client feels competent using ENVISION, I feel like I’ve done something right.”
– Jack DePoe
Jack DePoe is Director of Interactive Marketing and responsible for administering and enhancing Environics Analytics’ presence in the digital world.