For Women’s History Month, we want to highlight just some of the amazing women across the Cast & Crew organization. This time, we chatted with Sally Knutson, CFO, EVP of Finance. She’s also the Executive Sponsor of our Women at Cast & Crew Employee Resource Group. Check out her interview below:
CFO, EVP Finance, Cast & Crew
How long have you been with Cast & Crew?
Since December of 2006.
What has been a proud moment in your career?
I am most proud of the women I’ve mentored over the years who are now CFOs. They certainly did the work and earned the recognition, but I do take pride in the small part I played in guiding, training, and mentoring them. I believe in surrounding myself with people who are smarter than me, simply sharing my experiences with them to enhance their breadth of knowledge and hopefully providing opportunities for career development and evolution.
Who are three inspiring women you would invite to a dream dinner party (and why)?
I have to say, I love a dinner party. And in my personal time, I’m known for throwing some of my own, bringing together people from totally different walks of life (makes for interesting conversations and new connections). Curating a dream dinner party of inspiring women would be such fun. I will go with a mix that could be the start of a country song: the princess, the blonde, and the country singer. Are you intrigued? These women have so much in common, like helping others, a love of fashion, and (most of all), being successful female role models:
- The Princess: Princess Diana was an inspiration to people in all walks of life. I will add here that my parents were British immigrants, and my mom was a college-educated woman born in the 1920’s, so this one is a bit personal for me. (By the way, I would invite my mom from Heaven to this dinner as well.)
- The Blonde: Elle Woods, Reese Witherspoon’s character from Legally Blonde, used challenges in her life as fuel to discover her dreams.
- The Country Singer: Dolly Parton is an icon, and certainly best known for her 25 number-one singles, but the Dollywood Foundation cannot be overlooked, as it inspires underprivileged children to achieve educational success.
Can you imagine the dinner table conversation (and, of course, the outfits)? Epic!
What women leaders or trailblazers have you admired, and what did it mean to you to have them pave the way?
There have been so many woman leaders that have been trailblazers. It’s hard to pick just a few, but I will go with two who represent certain themes: business and political success. They’ve each made noteworthy impacts on women around the world. Here are some of my favorite quotes from them:
“The most courageous act is still to think for yourself. Aloud.”
- Coco Chanel, who built a multi-billion-dollar empire and set the bar for glamour around the world.
“The world of the future is in our making. Tomorrow is now.”
- Eleanor Roosevelt, our longest serving first lady, who was given a standing ovation by the U.N. Assembly upon their adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
What does Women’s History Month mean or represent to you?
It is so important to take the time to learn from those who have come before us. The women who will be celebrated this month have paved the way across all facets of our society, from human rights to ingenious inventions to simply making us pause and enjoy life. I appreciate it and every one of them, and can only hope we all can inspire the generations to come, especially those we can personally touch.
What is a favorite book, TV show, or movie that we should be reading / watching for Women’s History Month?
After the fabulous dream dinner party, we all curled up on the coach and enjoyed Legally Blonde. Elle / Reese truly appreciated it.
Thank you so much to Sally for taking the time to share a bit of her own history. Be sure to follow along as we continue to shine a spotlight on the many incredible women across our organization. We celebrate your achievements during Women's History Month and every day of the year!