Ask Amy Dosik what her ideal job is, and she’ll tell you she’s already doing it. And as CEO of the Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta, we can’t say we blame her. Today, she shares a bit about her work, her family and her favorite places to grab a meal out when she’s not working or hiking with her husband and son. Welcome, Amy!
Tell us a little bit about yourself—where are you from? How long have you been in Atlanta?
I am originally from Philadelphia, but have always been a Southerner at heart. I first moved to Atlanta for grad school in the mid-’90s, but left for a job in New York City after graduation. After a few too many 90-hour work weeks and tiring of life in a studio apartment, I moved back (for good!) in 2001 and am proud to call Atlanta home!
Tell us about your family—human, furry or otherwise.
My husband, Pete, and I will celebrate 12 years of marriage later this month. We have a 3-year-old son and two spoiled dogs, a Bichon Frise and a Maltese. We also recently welcomed an au pair from South Africa to our family. Life in the Dosik house is often noisy and messy, but always an adventure.
What path led you to your current position as the CEO of the Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta?
Before joining the Girl Scouts, I led a regional business unit at a Big 4 public accounting firm and practiced law in Atlanta and New York. In all of these positions, I had the opportunity to teach and mentor younger employees and help them acquire the skills and experiences they needed to get to the next level. My happiest day as a partner each year was October 1, the day my firm announced promotions. I came to realize that, for me, seeing the young people I had invested in get promoted was better than getting promoted myself.
While I always knew I loved helping young people thrive, I wasn’t sure how to turn that into a career. Then, a few years ago, several major life changes happened in a short window of time that got me thinking harder about how to make my passion for mentoring young people into the focus of my career. Around the same time, the Girl Scout Council in Atlanta announced its CEO search. After learning about today’s Girl Scout movement, I was hooked! While people may associate Girl Scouts with cookies and camp, today’s Girl Scouts gives girls the skills and competencies—from financial literacy to problem solving and team building—they need to be successful in college, career and life. Our girls build robots, go geocaching and travel the world through Girl Scouting. Who wouldn’t want to be a part of that?
Were you a Girl Scout as a child?
Yes, I am a proud Girl Scout alumna and have the badges to prove it! Like many former Girl Scouts, my first business experience was selling Girl Scout cookies. That experience taught me that I could set a stretch goal and achieve it through persistence and hard work. But I’m far from the only cookie success story. I’ve lost count of how many successful businesswomen have told me that they got their start selling Girl Scout cookies!
What does a typical day (if there is a such a thing!) look like for you at your job?
There is no typical day in Girl Scouting, which is perfect for me, since I love variety and new challenges. We have more than 17,000 volunteers who are a part of our Council, so a big chunk of my time is spent on working to make it easier to be a Girl Scout volunteer. I also try to find time to connect with girls as much as possible to understand what they need from Girl Scouting, what worries them about their futures and what we can do better to make Girl Scouting more fun and relevant for today’s girls.
What is the most rewarding part of your job?
By far, the best thing about working with the Girl Scouts is having the opportunity to watch girls try new things and embark on the process of discovering who they are. I often tell people that I have one son and 43,000 girls, and I want the same thing for each of our Girl Scouts that I want for my own child: to connect them with their passion and their purpose, and give them the social and emotional tools they need to be successful adults. Watching a girl progress from a shy Daisy who hides behind her mom at the cookie booth to a confident Ambassador who has made a sustainable impact on her community through her Gold Award project is an amazing process, and I am privileged to be a part of that journey with our girls.
What is the most challenging?
One of the biggest challenges in Girl Scouting today is finding enough volunteer troop leaders. Each year, we have more than 1,600 girls—many from economically disadvantaged parts of Atlanta—on a waiting list who aren’t able to experience the benefits of Girl Scouting. While leading a troop is a year-long commitment, we have great training and resources to help make it easy for busy working professionals. I’m hoping a few of your readers will be inspired go to girlscoutsatl.org to join the Girl Scout sisterhood after reading this article.
When you aren’t working, where are you most likely to be found and doing what?
Our family loves to be outdoors, hiking, swimming or just exploring nature. Family dinner is also a big deal at our house. Even with two working adults, we make an effort to cook and eat together as a family most nights of the week.
What is the best way to unwind after a long day?
Anyone who knows me will tell you I am really bad at relaxing. I’m the person lying on the floor at the end of the yoga class thinking, “Would it be rude to get up and leave right now?” I wish I were more zen!
What is that last best meal you’ve had at an Atlanta restaurant?
As the mother of a 3-year-old, any restaurant that doesn’t have chicken nuggets on the menu is fine dining these days! I love all of Ford Fry’s restaurants, especially the fried chicken at JCT and the lobster Cobb salad at the Optimist.
If money were no object, where would you love to travel?
I’d love to visit Our Chalet in Switzerland, which is one of the five World Centers of the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS). I’m available if any Girl Scout troops need an extra chaperone!
If you weren’t the CEO of the Girl Scouts, what would your dream job be?
Being the CEO of the Girl Scouts is pretty close to a dream job! I get to go to summer camp and have year-round access to Girl Scout cookies! Other than that, I’ve always loved to sing and still harbor a secret desire to be an opera singer.
What is one thing people would be surprised to learn about you?
I am afraid of heights! While I have zip-lined on live TV and done all of the challenge courses at our camps, I still get butterflies in my stomach every time. But I always try to lead by example to show girls that you can conquer your fears and have fun doing something that may seem scary at first.
What are three things you can’t live without, excluding faith, family and friends?
1. My iPad. It’s my library, my media player, my personal assistant and my communication hub.
2. Sunscreen. I spend a lot of time outdoors, so it’s an important part of my routine.
3. A frozen box of Thin Mints. Need I say more?
No, no you don’t. You had us at Thin Mints! Thank you so much, Amy, for taking away from the wonderful work you’re doing to share with us today.
Thank you to Catrina Maxwell of CatMax Photography for the beautiful pictures. See more of her work at CatMaxPhotography.com