Name: Erika Schuster
Title: Event Coordinator
Educational background: B.A Communication from Slippery Rock University
Primary role at the Garden: Assisting in the planning and execution of events. Guest services and gift shop.
How did you start in this career (or transition from another career): After college I worked for several nonprofits in the Pittsburgh area doing event planning and public relations. I then moved on to serve as Marketing Director for a Pittsburgh based credit union for about ten years. I then spent seven years staying home and raising my three small children. Once I got them launched into elementary school I was ready to reenter the workforce. In 2018 I joined the Garden’s Events and Guest Relations team as an Event Assistant. I was recently promoted to Event Coordinator. Helping our guests have the perfect event and beautifully executing it is my goal and it is an honor to work in this beautiful garden.
What you love most about your job: I love the people I get to work with. My amazing coworkers and the guests I get to work with everyday. The people I get to help are happy people! They are planning their wedding or special event. They are excited and motivated and radiate positivity.
Interesting anecdote or fun fact about your job: Our team works long hours together. And as a result we bond and laugh together. It’s not unusual to see us dancing along to the music from a wedding as we are straightening up their cookie table! We also get a birds eye view of two people starting their new lives together. Each day I come to work is a new start for a couple. I also get to take them out on the golf cart to have their wedding portraits taken. This is always so fun to witness the creativity and beauty of our couples and the garden.
What do you like to do when you are not at work (hobby or other): My husband, Brendan, and I have three wonderful kids Cogan, Cate and Cara. They keep me busy with lots of activities and homework! We also have a coon hound/ beagle mix named Daysi and two cats Scarlet and Joilie. We love to take walks and be together.
Who inspired you to pursue this line of work? I’ve always just tried to follow my interests and strengths when it comes to work. If you love what you do, it doesn’t really feel like work!