Everyone should have the opportunity to “win” at wellness. We are happy to provide customers with the necessary tools to build member engagement and participation. Our Customer Success Champion, Marissa Bell is certainly no exception. She has been known to delight coworkers and customers alike with her pleasant demeanor and engaging personality.
As you get to know Marissa, you’ll discover that she’s always been driven by a sense of community, purpose, and social responsibility.
Sports and Outdoors
Marissa grew up in Northeast Illinois, where half of her childhood was spent outdoors. “When I was little, I’d go without shoes and intentionally walk on gravel to harden my feet to be better prepared to play in the woods,” she says. This preparation was needed. Marissa’s parents took her and her older brother to local parks, camp sites, and lakes, where they’d meet their parents’ longtime friends. “This experience was kind of magical, because it felt like you had all of these ‘cousins’ running around with you at these places,” she says. “It was such a good community of folks.”
The other half of Marissa’s childhood was spent playing sports. “I did Tae-kwon do, gymnastics, softball, horseback riding, fencing, and archery. I loved sports. I love moving, and engaging with others.”
The College Years
Softball was the sport that stuck with her, and her dedication earned her an athletic scholarship to Albion College, where she double majored in Environmental Studies and Spanish.
The highlight of her college experience happened in her junior year – she spent the entire year studying abroad. The first semester was spent studying Spanish in Chile, which wasn’t easy. “Chilean Spanish is different from the Spanish I learned in school. I did not speak the language that well. When I got to Chile, I lived with a host family who spoke English but pretended they didn’t (laughs). It was the most challenging and rewarding experience of my life,” she says.
Realizing that she needed to earn Environmental credits, she signed up for the Institute for Central American Development Studies program, which led her to Costa Rica for the second half of her junior year. She lived on the territorial land of the Terraba, an indigenous group in the Puntarenas region of Costa Rica. “I got to live with them in their village, which was an honor. They, which would help their community thrive. I helped them build a website. This is where I learned the most about environmental studies.”
Business for a Better World
“I am constantly amazed and inspired by people who can love despite all the horrible things life may have put them through. I think the core of humanity is love.”
Marissa graduated from Albion and obtained a Master Program in Sustainable Business Practices at Bainbridge Graduate Institute, near Seattle. This program prepared business leaders to build enterprises that are economically successful, socially responsible, and environmentally sustainable.
After grad school Marissa worked in Customer Service while operating a sustainable cannabis business with her partner. After selling the business, Marissa looked to work at an organization that aligned with her personal values. “One thing I love about Walker Tracker is that, in my eyes, it does no harm. We put out wellness initiatives, which I love.”
We asked Marissa a few fun questions. This is what she had to say.
What is the last book you read?
Wheels of Life. I’ve also been listening to audio books. I listened to Tiffany Haddish’s book, The Last Black Unicorn and it made my soul feel better. She is so brave for putting all of that out there and telling her story. I enjoyed Trevor Noah’s audio book, Born a Crime. Having his personal voice on it was so good.
What things do you like to do to stay physically active?
Yoga, walks, HIIT workouts
What are three things on your bucket list?
My first thing would be to go to New Zealand (I love Lord of the Rings), that temperate climate and environment is nice. I’d like to build a greenhouse with heated floors and a bathtub, so I can look outside and be surrounded by trees.
What’s been your favorite place to travel to?
If you won the lottery, what is the first thing you’d do with the money?
I’ve always dreamt of reopening a camp I attended when I was a kid. They shut it down because they didn’t have the funding for it. I’d love to re-open it. I envision it being a multi generational center so we can get folks of different ages and abilities together.
Could you share a fun fact about yourself?
I love scuba diving!
Are there any quotes that mean a lot to you or represent your approach to life or work?
“The brain may take advice, but not the heart, and love, having no geography, knows no boundaries.” – Truman Capote
I am constantly amazed and inspired by people who can love despite all the horrible things life may have put them through. I think the core of humanity is love.