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Meet Ian Rice - Concierge

Meet Ian Rice - Concierge

We want to introduce you to one of our new concierges – Ian Rice (pictured with his dog Hazel). Ian was born in Seattle and has lived here most of his life, except for a three-year stint in Jacksonville, FL, when he was very young. What he remembers most about his time there are the lizards and "banana spiders" – just what a four-year-old would remember!

Ian graduated in May from Pacific Lutheran University with degrees in Hispanic Studies and Global Studies (Migration emphasis). He also completed a Peace Corps Prep Certification. Once COVID travel restrictions are lifted, he plans to either work or volunteer abroad with an international organization and this certification shows that he’s mastered language, leadership and cultural competency skills. Ian loves to get to know people from all over the world and hear their stories. While in school, he studied for a semester each in Oxford, England, and Oaxaca, Mexico, as well as a month at the Makah Indian Reservation. He’s fluent in Spanish, which he sometimes uses to help our Spanish-speaking patients at the Center.

Ian seems to take after his Grandma Jan, whom he admires for her ability to find commonalities with everyone she meets. "For example, you might talk to her on the phone, and she'll say: 'I was at the grocery store talking to the clerk, and it turns out we're related!' It is incredible."

When Ian started his job search after college, he wanted to do something that would allow him to make human connections like Grandma Jan – to learn what makes people tick, what their passions are. His mother, who had once worked at Fred Hutch, recommended he look at the cancer community. So he was excited when he found the job at our Center. "I could sense when I came in for the interview that this was a special place," he says. "And that feeling is reaffirmed every day by the patients I speak with."

Ian has recently been doing interviews with patient advocates, learning more about their experience and why they want to participate. It's right up Ian's alley, and the Center hopes to use the information he gathers to improve and expand the Patient Advocacy Program.

When not at work, Ian loves reading. He recommends "The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao" by Junot Diaz. He also loves singing, playing the guitar and is teaching himself how to play bass, which has some very different techniques from guitar. He very much enjoys the outdoors, especially hiking, running, backpacking, and skiing. Some of his favorite areas to spend time at are the San Juan Islands and Flathead Lake in Montana.

And the next time you see Ian, ask him to juggle something for you, as he’s been working on improving his skill!

Ian poses for a selfie with his family.

He loves to spend time outdoors.

You can tell he has an adventurous spirit! Here he's holding a gallina ciega in the Sierra Norte, Oaxaca.