Julie Guidry is the co-founder and executive director of Upstream Arts, a non-profit that uses the arts to help develop the social and communication skills of people with disabilities. With over 20 years of experience in the disability and non- profit world, Julie and her husband started Upstream Arts after seeing how the arts helped their son grow in his ability to express himself and communicate with those around him.
If up could have a conversation with anyone - past or present - who would it be?
My grandmother on my father's side. She arrived in America at 14 with the hope for a better life than the one she left behind in southern Italy. She brought so much family tradition with her, things that my family carries with us still to this day. Little everyday choices that are steeped into my life, and now in my own family's too; we never put cheese on fish, we never sit with our backs to the door in a restaurant, Sundays are for cooking and early dinners, fighting amongst ourselves is a way to work out our love for one another, and direct and timely input, feedback, and opinions are mostly always appreciated...
What are you most proud of?
My family, every single bit of them. I am a proud mama, wife, friend, ally, and advocate. And, the work I get to do each and every day with Upstream Arts, and the wonderful humans I get to work with and alongside.
To learn more about Julie Guidry and other inspiring change-makers in Lake Time Magazine, you can purchase or subscribe online HERE and support this independent publication. By becoming a member you would receive the latest issues PLUS great Lake + Co. Shop perks!