Seattle City (spot)Light: Quan Tharngtrakul

Quan Tharngtrakul joined City Light in 2015 as a receptionist in Human Resources. From there, she moved to Talent Acquisition before landing her current role in Transmission & Distribution Operations. “I’m an Administration Specialist lll and support our network, substations and service operations teams,” Quan explained. “My responsibilities include compiling management reports, meeting and event coordination, scheduling, travel requests and other items our director and management team need.”

Quan grew up in Anacortes and attended college at Western Washington University where she graduated with a degree in international business. “I was kind of tucked away up north until I started my job at City Light; it’s what got me to move to the big city!” she said with a laugh. Quan and her fiancé, Erin, live in Kirkland and are busy planning their September 2019 wedding.

In this week’s (spot)Light, Quan talks about her job, her hobbies and her move to the Emerald City.

Quan in Whistler, British Columbia

“I like my job because I work with different groups across the utility. I have a lot of friends who are in this role within their own divisions; it’s fun to coordinate with them and brainstorm how we can improve our processes. We’re a strong network for one another. It’s also great that I work under a female executive (Michelle Vargo). I really like that I support Michelle directly. I learn a lot from her and the people around me. In fact, every group I’ve worked with has been filled with good, supportive people. They’ve always encouraged my professional development with trainings, workshops and other opportunities.”

“Moving to Seattle was a big culture shock for me. People assumed that I was familiar with the city because I’m from the Northwest, but it’s so completely different than from where I grew up. I never had to deal with traffic. I never took public transit. When I first moved here, everyone seemed to know what they were doing! It was intimidating, but I’m glad I made the move. Before Seattle, I was working in my hometown and basically in the same environment of my upbringing. I wanted to try something new. I applied to City Light on a whim; it was for a temporary six-month position! But it got me out here and now I’m in a full-time role.”

“The majority of my family is in Thailand, but my parents and grandma live here. We have a small Thai restaurant, Bangkok Bistro, in Burlington; a good midway stop on the way to Skagit! I grew up helping at the restaurant and developed a love for cooking. I cook a lot of Thai fusion food at home. Right now, I’m trying to get into baking. I love the Food Network and have even made cookies for CLEA!”

“I can’t imagine living anywhere else.  I love the natural beauty of the Northwest. I enjoy photography and this area has a ton of cool photo opportunities. I like doing landscapes and stand still shots. Also, food. I’ll take photos of my meals and send them to my friends. My fiancé and I also love to do jigsaw puzzles. We go big and do the complicated ones; anything above 1,500 pieces. Right now, we’re working on a Stars Wars puzzle that’s turning out to be pretty awesome.”