Well, I guess it’s time to face the sobering reality… it’s Megan Tompkins’ last week at BRaIN.
It’s not like we’ll never see her again. She’s headed to an OEM sales position down the road at Shimano. And Lynette Carpiet, equally brilliant and even-tempered, will fill her shoes nicely.
And yet, we will all miss Megan’s hand on the editorial tiller at BRaIN. Ms. Tompkins is (unlike many of us Bike People who just type away until we run out of words) a Serious Journalist.
An honors graduate from Dartmouth, Megan had little patience for the you-scratch-my-back-I’ll-scratch-yours trade journalism so prevalent in so many industries. Including our own, and I confess to contributing to it.
Nope, with Megan, it had better be a relevant story, and your sources had better be both unimpeachable and willing to go on the record. None of that “anonymous industry insider” crap.
Megan could pin your ears back, always in a gentle way that made you feel like she was not only right, but you would be a better writer and the industry would be better informed if you did it her way.
Given all these wonderful qualities, her most impressive feat was integrating herself effectively into our male-dominated, knuckle-dragging industry culture.
She had some experiences early on that would have sent a delicate type packing back to the surf industry from whence she came.
Lucky for all of us, her determination and even-tempered nature led her to stick around and not fight through, but rather rise above, the Good Ol’ Boy industry culture that drives so many talented women away.
Evidence of which: She actually WANTS to stay in the bike biz! Like many of us, she’s made a lot of great friends and she appreciates our laid-back, if not always buttoned-down, industry style.
Personally, I will miss our regular chats about BRaIN deadlines, and about so much more, including the respective state of our golf games.
So Megan’s world will get smaller but deeper at Shimano. We may not see as much of her at industry events.
And when we do see her, she’ll always have a smile and a kind word. So good luck in your new endeavor Megan! Maybe you’ll have to start a blog to keep in touch with all your industry friends!