The summer issue of Wake Forest Magazine closes with “The Artist’s Way of Metaphorically Seeking,” an essay by Charlotte entrepreneur Mary Tribble (’82) in which she writes about how she decided to sell her respected Tribble Creative Group after a U.S. Postal Service truck t-boned her car on the way to yoga class on Christmas Eve 2008.
“For five months after the accident, I tried to get my life back to normal,” she writes. “While I mended my body through rehab, surgery and more rehab, I virtually abandoned my company. The resulting drop in business, combined with the recession, brought the opportunity for change to a head. A key employee was ready to buy. And finally, I was ready to sell.”
The announcement about her decision made front-page news in The Charlotte Observer. In December the deal closed.
Her essay discusses how she has been exploring “the wide-open options” and how her education at Wake Forest as an art major has helped her remain flexible in thinking about possibilities.
“What’s next?” people wondered. The answer came this week. Dan Murrey, executive director of the Charlotte In 2012 host committee, named seven members of the committee’s leadership for the 2012 Democratic National Convention. Tribble will be chief of event planning, an enormous responsibility for promoting Charlotte to the world and making sure the convention meets the Democrats’ expectations.
“It’s serendipitous,” she told me. “What are the odds that I would sell my company, be available and the DNC would announce Charlotte as the convention site?” Already she is waking up with ideas, intent on seeing the convention leave a long-term impact. “All the eyes of the world will be on Charlotte for those four or five days,” she says, “and we can create a lasting legacy for Charlotte and the state.” (Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper said the 2008 Democratic National Convention had a $266 million regional economic benefit in direct and indirect spending.)
Tribble credits her good fortune to “totally being open. It’s another new chapter.”