Profile: Lauren Summers

August 10th, 2006 by Hugh

LaurenLauren runs Exbiblio’s HR and is the office administrator, working primarily with Henry “Hap” Happel, but also helping out everyone when there’s a need.

She was the fifth person to join Exbiblio, back in March just before the company moved to its current base in a stylish former hotel on Seattle’s 1st Avenue. She admits that she and some of the other newcomers did not fully understand what the project was about at the time of joining. Fortunately, Janinne (formally a big part of Exbiblio who moved on recently) did a good job of persuading her that it was going to be exciting. Lauren recalls that the early days involved a great deal of discussion about the project’s direction, but soon the developments started roll, and the prototype designs started appearing. New ideas started to emerge at virtually every company lunch – traditionally held on Wednesdays.

Lauren has used the third party C-Pen to scan notes for the research project into Word. Although this is only the very starting point of Exbiblio’s vision, it was the point at which it all became real for her.

Appropriately, she loves gadgets. Her latest favourite “toy” is the sleek Motorola SLVR phone which incorporates iTunes music software and lots of other “cool stuff.”

Exbiblio’s idealistic culture helps her to feel comfortable working here. “I grew up with my mother who was a nurse. When I first graduated I worked for a medical company where the definite purpose was to make money – I didn’t enjoy that. I enjoyed working in academia where was more a social service.” Lauren respects the way that business is done at Exbiblio – for instance, in her role she can see at first hand that creditors’ bills are paid promptly – instead of leaving payment for as long as possible – an all too common business practice.

Lauren and her husband run a design studio out of their home, and she handles the sales from their website. Her husband has designed concert posters for the likes of REM and Wilco – the latter being one of her favourite bands. Lauren graduated in journalism, and still enjoys writing for herself – mostly essays – and reading social commentaries.

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