By Kristen AmmermanA lot can happen over a decade at RCI headquarters, and a great deal has happened in the life of Tammy Patterson during that time. Ten years ago, in May of 2008, when Tammy Patterson was hired as Finance Manager of RCI, there were 12 people working for RCI (nine in-house and three remote). The “locals” were squeezed into the southeast corner of the second floor at 1500 Sunday Drive, Suite 204, in Raleigh. As of this writing, there are 22 people working for RCI either part- or full-time, and we’ve expanded into an area almost twice the area we initially used. In the interim, Tammy’s view of the PNC Arena, where the Carolina Hurricanes play, switched to that of patients coming and going from the offices of Raleigh Neurology next door as she herself changed offices. (Once again, RCI is experiencing space concerns and plans to move when its lease expires.)
Besides a lot of new coworkers and an altered perspective, there have been changes to the work platform Tammy was introduced to in 2008—our database, IMis (which pretty much everyone loved to hate). Since Tammy is responsible for the invoicing, accounts receivable, and all things money-related, she was one of the point people who became involved when we decided to get a new database, MemberSuite, in 2016. MemberSuite was not an immediate hit in the office. “It’s been a challenge,” Tammy—not one for hyperbole—stated. We are just now beginning to wrap our arms around the tools and functionality of the database.
Another change has been a growth in responsibility. In 2008, RCI had a budget of $2 million. After six years at RCI, Tammy was promoted to Director of Finance. There is now a budget of $4 million. With the hire of CEO Lionel van der Walt this year, quarterly budget forecasting was instigated to more closely track actuals to determine that each department is spending what it has forecasted. Each department is responsible for its expenditures and receivables, but who keeps the running total? Yep, Tammy.
Other new duties include attending board meetings and assisting the new Financial Audit Taskforce, which is currently seeking a new external auditor to ensure financial transparency.
In her personal life, RCI’s director of finance has also seen a lot of changes. Daughter Jessica graduated high school and enrolled at Appalachian State, where she is now a rising sophomore. After only three major switches, she is presently majoring in sociology with a minor in nonprofit management (look out, Lionel!).
During the same time, Tammy also met and fell for her partner of five years, Scott Carter. Retired after 26 years as an electronic warfare specialist with the Air Force, Scott is currently studying HVAC repair. The couple now reside in Apex with their dogs and cat.Prior to RCI, Tammy and her ex-husband operated a locksmith business in Carrboro—and later, Wilmington, NC. In 2002, following a divorce, she moved to Raleigh with Jessica and finished her associate’s degree in accounting. She worked as a contract worker for the IBM Fitness Center in Research Triangle Park, doing accounting work. Then, for three years, she was employed by the Triangle Apartment Association as staff accountant before landing the job at RCI.
When she and Scott have free time, they enjoy hiking, the mountains, chasing waterfalls, and visiting new wineries, as well as neighborhood walks with the dogs. Every year, her family vacations at the beach. And yes, “I like working for a nonprofit, and I like what I do.”
Who knows what Tammy’s next ten years will bring?