This summer we will be featuring our current Dingman Center staff in a special blog series. Read along and get to know a little more about each member of our team!
Holly DeArmond, Associate Director
Holly DeArmond is effectively the Dingman Center’s COO—she is instrumental in the strategy and planning necessary to execute on our mission, and does so with aplomb. Holly’s tenure at the Dingman Center began in 2012, before any of our other current staff, giving her a unique perspective on how the Center’s identity and mission have evolved. Formerly an organizer of the much-celebrated Maryland Day, her well-established events, marketing and branding expertise have been crucial to the Center’s success as we know it today. Under her direction, Pitch Dingman Competition Finals expanded to Stamp’s Colony Ballroom, “Fearless Founders” and “Dingman Fridays” became common Smith School buzzwords, and University of Maryland saw its first startup weekend, spark: Where Fearless Ideas Start. In addition to her Dingman Center credits, Holly is currently working to complete the Smith School’s part-time MBA program. Every curve-ball thrown her way she knocks out of the park, and inspires those who work with her to do the same.
What excites you most about your job?
The physical and intellectual environment excites me most. Coming to a beautiful campus each morning with such a diverse group of students, staff and faculty is really energizing. I think the University of Maryland is one of the most diverse campuses across the nation and I feel lucky to be a Terp. At the Dingman Center, we spend our days developing programming to help students launch ideas and I am always surprised by how many different problems and solutions our students pursue.
What are your favorite hobbies?
Spending time with Davy (my husband) and Crockett (our Portuguese Water Dog). The three of us like to be outdoors together…kayaking, hiking, walking or swimming. I also enjoy cooking mostly because I enjoy eating. Chopping relaxes me.
If you could visit one place on earth, where would it be and why?
I am lucky that I have been able to travel frequently as an adult so many of my top places are checked off the list. Chile and the Galapagos Islands are high on our list right now. Both would offer a wonderful outdoor experience which these days is what I am looking for when we get away. I feel like I spend so much time in the office and doing homework, so I’m aching to be outside.
What’s the most interesting thing you have in your office?
The “Olivia was here” art on my wall. Olivia is my niece who spends a week with us during the summer. Last summer, I had to bring her into work for a few hours so she left some “art.”
If you could have dinner with one person (dead or alive), who would it be?
This is a tough one for me as I don’t enjoy making small talk over dinner. I prefer to go to dinner with people I already know well. But, it’s fun to imagine so perhaps Ina Garten. I like food and I like to talk about food so that would probably be a fun dinner. She could also help me order, although I’m pretty opinionated when it comes to ordering…maybe I’ll just stick to dinner with Davy.
What would your super power be?
At the moment, I would like my super power to be the ability to heal.