Before building her career at the Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority (PSTA), Stephanie Weaver built her communications foundation as an on-camera journalist, first in North Dakota and then in Florida. Her move to PSTA began a journey in public transportation that has seen some of PSTA's landmark programs and successes, such as the launch of the SunRunner, the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) project. Weaver credits a broad perspective, an endless desire to learn and a healthy lifestyle to her growing success in the Sunshine City.
Years in St. Pete
I’ve lived in St. Pete for the last two years. Before, I lived in Clearwater for two years.
Organizations involved in
I am involved with the Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority (PSTA), the county’s provider of public transportation. That pretty much takes a lot of my time!
What gets you out of bed every day?
I’d say my willingness to make a difference in the community and grow as a person and as a professional. Literally, my cats wake me up every morning to feed them.
Why St. Pete?
St. Pete has always been a fantastic destination and an ideal place to live. I used to visit here long ago, and I told myself I’d like to live here one day. Also, can we just talk about the growth the Sunshine City has endured over the last couple of years? From the hot spots and nightlife, St. Petersburg has become one of the best places to live, work and play.
What is one habit that you keep?
As a former athlete, I try to get a good workout in at least four times a week. Life does get busy sometimes, but even if I get a 15-20 minute walk in, that’s better than nothing. I also am trying to journal my day; something about letting yourself unplug and write down your thoughts is very therapeutic.
Who are some people that influence you?
I would have to say my parents. I am a big family person and I heed every piece of advice that they give me. They keep me grounded and also let me know that there is more to life than work. Better enjoy it!
What is one piece of insight - a book, methodology, practice - that you would share with our readers?
Don’t work in your silos. Bring in different people, outside of your realm of expertise, to the table. People who have different experiences than you view things from a different perspective that you may have not thought of before. In the world of Marketing and Communications, sometimes we get caught up in only working with creatives. Go ask that guy that works in maintenance or the woman in finance – they may have a great idea or give feedback you never thought of before.
What is one thing you wish you knew about your work 3 years ago?
Three years ago, I was barely getting my feet wet in public transportation and there is SO MUCH TO KNOW. From funding to government influence to different services, it’s insane. But with that, there are so many people within this industry willing to help. Ask questions and remember there are really “no dumb questions.”
For me personally, I just finished a leadership course through PSTA and I am excited to continue my growth as a professional. Another thing that I’ve learned and have started to preach to my team is to continue to invest in yourselves. Bet on yourselves because if you don’t, who will?