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Ellen Shannon is the vice president of Chapel Hill Magazine and Durham Magazine.
1) What is your favorite part of your job?
The favorite part of my job is being a part of a great team of customers, staff, and townspeople that create Chapel Hill Magazine, its digital products and events. We have such a wonderful team of people, and I'm really proud of what we've all created together. And, I'm really grateful to meet so many terrific people because of the magazine.
2) What do you enjoy most about living in Chapel Hill?
The thing I most enjoy about living here is that there are plenty of fun, diverse, interesting things to do with plenty of fun, diverse, interesting people. You can go to a great play, visit a farm, take great classes, enjoy wonderful food, shop till you drop, visit historic places, enjoy historic homes or beautifully designed new ones, live in an urban or suburban neighborhood, be exposed to great art and art education, take a walk in the woods, and participate in lots of interesting discussions. The diversity of people is amazing and interesting - age, ethnicity, religion, interests, opinions, etc. Being a part of the magazine gives us a bird's eye view of a growing, vibrant city and its people and places.
3) Where is your hometown?
I grew up in New Canaan, Connecticut from the time I was born until I graduated from high school. It's a small town that is a suburban bedroom community for Manhattan. My parents both grew up there, too, and I still have plenty of relatives there. My experience in New Canaan helps me understand and respect Chapel Hill natives - a crucial part of the job on this magazine.
4) Please share your previous work experience/background in the industry.
I started working for a magazine publisher when I was 17 years old, and I'm 53 now. So I've worked in the magazine business for 35 years, and, until I moved here 8 years ago, I was always in the New York area, the epicenter of the magazine industry. I spent a lot of my years working for magazines that covered media, so I've probably seen, read or been to thousands of magazines. I've worked for, and with, some of the most interesting and smart people in the business (including my husband, whom I met at work some 20 plus years ago). Yes, I love the magazine business. Always have, always will.
5) What are some of your hobbies and interests?
Hobbies and interests include visiting and spending time with my three children, exercise, dance, fundraising for great causes, studying digital businesses, spending time with new and old friends, experiencing our wonderful area, coming up with new ideas for our business and our client's businesses, travel, and reading magazines!