Sadrakula hits ground runningNew Main Street Washington director happy to return to the Midwest
Even though she had been exploring Washington since arriving Friday afternoon, Sarah Sadrakula, the new executive director of Main Street Washington, said she learned a lot from the walking tour of Washington Main Street board president Jean Wehr gave her this morning.
Her first day on the job, Sadrakula said that she is hitting the ground running. She said that she already has three meetings scheduled for this week. She plans to meet with the Washington County Supervisors on Friday. She is working to update herself on the coming Main Street attractions, especially Showcasing the Nights of Washington (S.N.O.W.) coming up next month.
“We’ve been going over the basics, policies and procedures and some of the things Main Street is working on,” Sadrakula said. “I’ve been getting introduced to a lot of people.”
Sadrakula said that the moving truck with all her belongings is coming on Wednesday. Until then she is “camping out” in her “very empty” house. Wehr took Sadrakula to coffee Monday, as Sadrakula’s coffeepot is packed.
Wehr said that she spent most of the morning filling out paperwork and then showing Sadrakula around the downtown area.
“As you see people, you introduce her,” Wehr said.
Sadrakula, who recently received her master’s degree in historic preservation, is taking over the role vacated by Amy Vetter on Oct. 22. She is moving to Washington from Brighton, Mass, where she had been living.
Wehr said that Sadrakula’s master’s degree, teamed with her boundless enthusiasm, had been what put her over the top in the search for the new director. Wehr said that Sadrakula has also had experience working with the Main Street program in Boston, Mass.
“I worked for a non-profit as an intern that used the Main Street model to go and help Main Street programs find funding,” she said. “They were an outside agency. They weren’t with it specifically.”
She explained there is no statewide Main Street program in Massachusetts, and Boston had its own program. She said it uses the same four principles as Main Street Iowa.
Sadrakula said that she has been doing some extra research on non-profit management to prepare for the new job. She said that her main focus for right now is going to be remembering people’s names. After that, she will learn all there is to know about Main Street projects.
“I think I can handle it,” she said.
Sadrakula said that she is especially looking forward to the Celebrate Washington event coming up next summer. She said that she hopes to expand it.
Receiving her bachelor’s degree in history and museum studies from the University of Iowa, Sadrakula said that she had wanted to get back to the Midwest. Growing up in Hudson, Wis., a town only a short distance from St. Paul, Minn., she had become accustomed to life in the Midwest.
With her father being an alumnus of the University of Iowa, Sadrakula had been a lifelong Hawkeye fan. She said that when she first set foot on the campus to begin her college education, she fell in love with the area.
“It’s coming home, is what it is to me,” she said.