Peter Redmond, a Facilities Coordinator and published writer, shares his love for cooking, NYC, and what Pride Month means to him.
For this year’s Pride Month, we are illuminating and celebrating the LGBTQ experience by sharing Dropboxers’ personal stories. Everyone’s story and identity evolve together over time, a mixture of both their innate genetic makeup and experiences. The fond memories and formative moments we hold onto as part of our history inform who we are and who we strive to be. With that in mind, Pridebox, our LGBTQ employee resource group, chose the theme “Connecting our History with our Future.” In celebration of Pride month, we’ll be featuring Dropboxers and sharing their stories that connect their past to present.
Q: What is your name, what office do you work out of, and how long have you been at Dropbox?
A: Peter Redmond, NYC, start date: 3/20/18 (the first day of spring). I started the week the company IPO’d (that’s a verb, right?), so that was pretty exciting!
Q: What is your current role at Dropbox?
Facilities coordinator. I’m responsible for making sure everyone in the office is happy and taken care of, from food to security to temperature, etc.!
Q: Anything that you have done/accomplished at Dropbox that you’re proud of?When did you do this? What was the impact?
A: I had the opportunity to speak on our “Be Your True Self” panel last year during Pride (before I was hired). It was a great way to connect with the queer/tech community, and it gave me an inside view of Dropbox and our commitment to diversity and visibility.
Q: What are your hobbies? Or what can we find you doing outside of work?
A: I cook a lot. I like to host dinner parties and have friends over for game nights. I’m an avid podcast listener and lover of trains, which is the perfect combination.
Q: Any accomplishments you’re proud of outside of work?
A: I’m published! I write for a queer food magazine called Jarry.
Q: What is something interesting about you that not a lot of people know?
A: New York has been very formative in my life. I visited for the first time when I was 10 years old (pre-9/11) and immediately fell in love. Fast forward to my teenage years, and I celebrated by 16th and 18th birthdays in the city, started my college course at Parsons, and eventually moved here to start my career!
Q: Anything else, you’d like to share?
A: I worked in the gardens for the mayor of my hometown in high school.
Q: Why did you decide to join Dropbox? What did you do before?
A: I had my eye on Dropbox for a long time, and being on the panel last year made it clear that I needed to find a way to work for the company! Before landing in the tech world, I worked in hospitality, interior design, and politics.
Q: What surprised you most about Dropbox when you joined?
A: How nice everyone is! And driven.
Q: What does “creative energy” mean to you?
A: It’s that inexplicable force that fuels you to keep going and continue to strive. It’s usually captured at the most random moments (in the shower, middle of the night, morning commute).
Q: How do you unleash your creative energy in your day?
A: Anything from making coffee in the morning, taking a stroll on an empty block, organizing my desk, or even cleaning out my inbox. There are so many small acts that allow me to unleash my creative energy. And writing! That’s a big one.
Q: What does Pride Month mean to you?
A: Pride Month is a celebration and commemoration of all the achievements that the community has made and a recognition of the work still left to do and voices that need to be amplified.
Q: Are there any present-day inspirational LGBTQ figures in your life?
A: I had the joy of seeing Don Lemon at a recent tech conference in NYC, and I think the visibility he brings is so important. And Ritchie Torres is a city council member in the Bronx who is out and doing amazing work.
Q: This year’s theme is Connecting Our History With our Future. Can you share a memory from your past that holds significance to you as part of your process of forming your identity, or a memory that stands out when you think of your younger self?
A: The memory that comes to mind first is being 20 and working in a hotel in Philadelphia. It was a crazy time and a lot of fun. The environment was supercharged, fast-paced, and international. The different personalities that walked through the door enabled me to be myself, even though there was an air of performance I had to put on being in front of people all day, every day. My co-workers and I were really close and shared a lot working so close together. It made me feel less afraid to be different.
Q: Can you tell us about a time when you were faced with a stereotype and how you experienced it.
A: Working in hospitality taught me how bold and brazen people really are. You have to navigate strategically and cautiously sometimes because people can and will make you a target if you let them. Restaurants are known for being very boundary-less, and I’ve definitely had customers or co-workers make assumptions about me. Some things you laugh off, while others may warrant pulling someone aside and having a heart-to-heart about how a comment or action was hurtful or taken out of context. It really just depends on the situation.
Q: Last question! Anything else you’d like to share about who you are, what you do, your personal life, or your time at Dropbox or Pride Month that you haven’t shared already?
A: It’s such an incredible time to be alive and queer. While there is still a lot of adversity present in our world and a lot more fighting to do, the notion that we don’t have to hide anymore or be silent or misunderstood is really what keeps me going. Growing up, I couldn’t imagine being out at work or to my family, and a generation ago my uncle who passed of AIDS definitely could not imagine the life I’d live today. I’m very grateful.
Check back soon to meet more Dropboxers. In the meantime visit us at dropbox.com/jobs. Dropbox is growing, grow with us!