April 18, 2005
CARLY’S THOUGHTS: Her resume includes working with Olympic teams, top coaches and athletes. She came from the celebrity filled city of Malibu, California (Pepperdine) to the southern city of Tallahassee, Florida. Obviously, these are two totally different extremes: both in climate and ways of life.
Tamara has always been a hard worker, she is always the first to the field and last to leave. She is a fun loving person. My van on road trips (Known as the “Chill van” Campo, D, Kim, and Carey) quickly adopted her and has had some great memories together on our road trips this year. She has a strong set of values and morals and I love being around her because of her admirable character.
She has done an outstanding job since accepting the position this year as the new Sports Information Director. Florida State is blessed to have her. Since Tamara is always busy interviewing other people I thought it would be fun for her to get interviewed. I hope everyone enjoys getting to know Tamara Metcalfe.
CB: What do you miss about Malibu, California?
TM: Malibu has to be the most unique place on the earth. I actually grew up in Dallas so as a young girl I always dreamed of going to Hollywood and the beach area therefore when offered a job there, I immediately accepted the position. What I learned right away is Malibu is a way of life. It’s very small and only the wealthy live there. I definitely miss the view from my condo that sat on top of a mountain and overlooked the beach. I miss getting excited each time I went out to eat or to the grocery store in hopes of seeing a celebrity. In fact, I saw them so often it got old after awhile. Other than that, I miss wearing shorts year around and just the relaxed atmosphere. No one wore makeup or cared how you dressed. It didn’t matter. Also, I was at Pepperdine and it’s a Christian school. I miss the fact that you can confess your faith so proudly and you were surrounded by others that had your same beliefs. There was a chapel on campus and I would visit it at lunch or went to the park that overlooked the ocean. I think once a day I thought to myself, “Wow, God made all this.”
What do you like best about Tallahassee, Florida?
TM: Tallahassee is a lot like where I grew up, which was a small town south of Dallas called Midlothian. The people here are friendly and compared to Los Angeles, the traffic isn’t too bad either. Also, it’s a lot more affordable around here and I can’t complain about the gas prices compared to California. Other than that, I’m thankful each day I walk into the Moore Athletic Center and the Sports Information offices. I think the facilities are magnificent and the fans of FSU are like no other. My favorite thing about Tallahassee that I noticed right away when I moved here is the feel of pride this town has for all its universities. You always know when it’s game day (laughs)!
What is the typical day at work like for you?
TM: The great thing about media relations and working in the public relations world is everyday is different. The seasons are much different, too. In the fall, it’s more serious and hectic around football time and the spring and summer is much more relaxed. On a typical non-game day, I’m setting up media interviews for my respective teams, writing press releases, answering email, designing game programs and so forth. In fact, I do so many different things that I can’t even think of half of them. On game days, I usually wrap up everything for that night and make sure the radio or TV crews have everything they need like notes, etc., and then I head over to the field or gym. Once there, I multi-task like no other by taking care of coaches, players, staff, media, and visiting schools with any and everything. After the games, I’m always the last to leave once I write the game story or recap. On game nights, I usually leave around 10 or 11 o’clock. It’s a long day but one that I love.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
TM: I actually went to school to be a sports reporter, but after working for USA Basketball and at Texas Tech, I found out that I loved the public relations side of sports. There are so many things to love about this profession. By far, my favorite thing is the student-athletes I come across. I enjoy watching all of them grow into adults. When I worked for USA Basketball, Illinois point guard Dee Brown and NBA standout Emeka Okafor were on one of our teams. This was early on and obviously they went on to have great careers. It’s been a joy to see them excel and grow into men. Other than that, I like to travel so that’s a perk with the job. Also, I just enjoy people in general and just getting to visit and talk with people whether it’s the media, athletes, coaches, etc., is great. I guess the last thing is I’ve met a lot of cool people over the years. By far my favorite person is former UCLA coach John Wooden. I got to work at the Wooden Awards last year and hosted the winner Jameer Nelson. It was a great time. I’ve worked many Women’s Final Fours with the WBCA and have met the top coaches in the country. I could go on forever…there have just been lots of events I’ve been blessed to attend.
Who helped and welcomed you the most here in Tallahassee and made your adjustment easier?
TM: I have an office of about eight people that are just wonderful people to work with. Our Associate SID, Tina Thomas, made my adjustment real easy. She took me under her wing and got me prepared for the rigorous world of FSU athletics (laughs). The volleyball staff was great, too. Todd Kress and Rita Buck-Crockett rank right at the top of two of my all-time favorite coaches. I have met some great friends so in all, everyone helped me adjust pretty fast.
When you need guidance or advice who do you go to?
TM: I always go to parents, Joe and Vicki Metcalfe. They are my best friends in life and are two brilliant and successful people. I always tell them that when I grow up I want to be just like them! They are power investors, entrepreneurs, business owners, real estate moguls…in other words, they do it all. So, whether it’s personal or work advice, I go to them. I think the reason they are so successful is because first and foremost they know how to treat people. The saying they live by is, “Treat VIPs like regular people and regular people like VIPs.” Other than that, my sole guidance comes from scripture; It’s available 24/7.
What is the biggest obstacle you have overcome in your life?
TM: I was severely shy until about the seventh grade when I started doing television interviews and competed in speech and debate contests. It was really hard for me for many years to get in front of the television to report or do speeches in front of people. It’s something I overcame and now it’s very easy for me now. I was so shy that when the teacher called out attendance, I wouldn’t say “here” because I didn’t want to speak up. I also used to be obsessive compulsive and wanted everything to be perfect. If I started to write on a piece of paper and one letter didn’t look how I wanted it to, I’d scratch the whole thing out and start over. If I didn’t do well on a test or anything, I’d fret over it for days. Thank goodness I overcame that or otherwise I’d never make it in the fast-paced sports industry!
What has been your greatest adventure?
TM: My dad, brother, and I went skydiving a few years ago. I’m adventurous, nothing usually scares me but I have to admit that once I got up in the sky I was nervous. However, I think I got more out of watching my dad and brother turn ghost white and scared for their life before we jumped!
What is the most beautiful place you have ever been?
TM: I was fortunate to spend time in Havana, Cuba, with USA Basketball. It is the most beautiful place and the day that Americans have the opportunity to travel there again it will turn into a tourist hotbed. I’ve also been to Cancun, Mexico, a few times and that is one of my favorite beach spots.
In your opinion, where is the ideal honeymoon destination?
TM: My grandmother is Irish so I’ve always dreamt of traveling there and staying at one of the castles like the Abbeyglen or Ashford Castle. I think it’d be so romantic and magical to visit all the hillsides, take wine tours and visit the Cliffs of Moher. It just seems so peaceful and colorful. I love the country so much I want to name my first daughter Ireland.
Where do you see yourself 10 years from now?
TM: Ten years from now I hope that I’m married with a few kids. If I’m not, I’ll be quite devastated! (laughs). I also hope I’m living near my family in Texas and loving life no matter what I’m doing. If you asked me the same question a few years ago, I probably would have said I’d have a great job making a lot of money in 10 years. However, a part of growing up is changing the way you think and now that I’m away from my family, in 10 years I better be living near them.
If you weren’t SID, what would you want to do or be?
TM: My dream is to either go back into television reporting or teach
people how to public speak. Also, I’ve also always dreamed of owning something girly like a clothing boutique, salon, or a gift shop. My mom will be opening up a day spa/salon soon, so I’ll let you know if I’m still interested in doing that after she does it for a while.
CARLY’S THOUGHTS: Hope everyone liked getting to know such a special member of our support staff and one of my personal friends.
Stay tuned soon for an interview with one of my teammates, the Top 6 For Service Award recipient.