Photo from Aston Martin via ABC News
A few months ago, I was ecstatic when I came across an article detailing that a University of Kentucky alum was now the President of Aston Martin in the Americas. I thought, “How cool that a fellow Wildcat runs one of the most luxurious motor companies in the world!” But as I delved deeper into the article, I read that it was a woman who now holds the position and that she was the first female president to hold the position in the 105-year history of Aston Martin.
I was in complete shock.
Not only was she a fellow Kentuckian, or a fellow Wildcat, she was a fellow woman who defied the odds in a male-dominated industry. Now THAT is freakin’ amazing!
I became fascinated with Laura Schwab. She quickly became an inspiration of mine, as she is an inspiration to so many women.
As a female who loves exotic/luxurious cars and the industry as a whole, I did a lot of research on Schwab. I wanted to know her history, how she went from a Kentucky girl to the President of Aston Martin, and how someone so successful does their morning routine. So, I took a chance and resorted to LinkedIn. I messaged Laura Schwab and asked her if she would answer a few questions on behalf of the Kentucky Kernel, and here were her responses:
Q: How do you start your day?
A: Early! Our Americas' headquarters is a full workday behind the United Kingdom headquarters, so anytime I'm in California, I'm awake at 4 a.m. on emails and calls. It's useful to get a jump on the day and to be "on" when my UK colleagues are on, even if it's only for a few hours when we can easily correspond.
Q: How do you balance normal life and being President of Aston Martin?
A: I try to remind myself that work and life will rarely be perfectly balanced. Someone wise once said, "You can have it all, just not at the same time." Whether I'm at work, or home with my family, I strive to be present, which helps to feel as though the time I'm spending in each place is actually valuable. If I were preoccupied with work while at home, or home while at work, I might always feel as though the time devoted to each weren't well spent.
Q: How has the University of Kentucky helped you in your career?
A: My time at UK was a dream, being a Kentucky fan since birth. To then attend the College of Law was a true honor. Law school taught me how to be analytical, persevere, and that a law degree from Kentucky could open so many doors for me. I credit my degree for opening my first doors to the automotive industry. I also met some of my best friends in law school, and they have been there through all of the highs and lows in my life and been the greatest supporters in my personal life and my career.
Not only was I absolutely thrilled with these responses, but I was also completely honored that she would take time out of her extremely busy schedule to answer questions from a silly college journalist.
Laura Schwab is such an inspiration to me and to so many other women out there searching to shatter the glass ceiling. Thank you for showing us that we have the ability to do anything we set our minds to.
Laura, congratulations on your position and we look forward to seeing your successes in the future!