Cristina Cadavid has been a member of the Rotary Club of Belleville since July 2023, introduced to Rotary by President Peter Malone.  Cristina became famous with a hole in one at RLK in 2023.  Rotarian Melanie Cressman introduced Cristina as the guest speaker today at the lunch meeting and described her as "being everywhere".  Her enthusiasm and love of everything about an event is contagious.
Cristina admitted she did not have a power point presentation, but brought something more valuable, picture books of her life story, a rich tapestry of diverse experiences and cultural influences that have shaped her into who she is today.  The origin of her last name, Cadavid, is Spanish as Cristina was born in Bogota, Colombia, founded in 1536 by a Spanish conquistador, a city that is a vibrant metropolis full of history and perched on the eastern Andes Mountain range at an elevation of 2,600 meters above sea level.  Cristina's father still lives in Bogota, her mother lives in Sweden, one of her brothers and her sister live in Spain and another brother that Cristina refers to as her best friend lives in Sweden.  Cristina spent her summers in Florida with her grandparents, but in 1990 made the transcontinental move to Taby, Sweden with her mother and brother.  In 1991 she returned to Bogota and graduated from high school in 2000 and started a career in business administration.  She switched to culinary arts in 2004 and built her hospitality industry career by expanding her responsibilities.   Moving to London, Ontario in 2006 was a big dream, although she was initially shocked by how much snow there was.  Her son Samuel was born that same year and as of 2024 he will be attending the University of Ottawa and Cristina asks herself where the time goes.  But London is where she met her husband Blair and they were married in 2012 with two wedding ceremonies, one in Canada and one in Bogota with friends and family in attendance.  That same year Cristina became a Canadian citizen.  Her second son arrived in August of 2013, the final piece to their family and when Blair was promoted to General Manager in 2016, the family moved to Belleville and started another chapter in their book.  Cristina worked for five years at Rosemary & Thyme, a popular, family-owned restaurant in Belleville's east end.  More doors of opportunity opened when Cristina took Public Relations and Event Management at Loyalist College and graduated with honours.  Through her current role as Fundraising Coordinator at the Community Development Council of Quinte, Cristina is able to give back to the community that she has learned to love.  She sits on various boards and committees, making a positive impact in Belleville and beyond.  She represents the non-profit sector on the Belleville Chamber of Commerce Board and uses her hospitality industry skills on the Belleville Club Board.  As a Rotarian, Cristina sits on the Public Image Committee and Refresh Rotary.  And after 33 years, Cristina is returning to Sweden to visit her mother and brother.  So excited!  And believe it or not, Cristina continues to look forward to new adventures, growth and fellowship through Rotary.  She is honoured to be making a different in the community, using her unique background and skills to creative positive change.
Cristina was thanked by Rotarian Yakov Sobolev, who acknowledged her diversified skill set and the benefit of her energy when planning an event!