Downtime with Jaime Eder

How a director at Visit Central Oregon unwinds

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What are you reading?  

I’m currently reading Under the Whispering Door by TJ Klune. It’s a funny and poignant novel that makes you think about making the most of life (and the afterlife).  

What are you watching? 

I was late to the game on “Shameless,” so I’ve been binge-watching that on Netflix. But it’s 11 seasons, so now I’m backed up on other stuff.

What are you listening to? 

Also late to the game on the “Smartless” podcast — it’s hilarious. But usually I’m listening to music, which is just about anything except for new country.

What is your must-have gadget?  

For better or worse, my iPhone, though having a preteen daughter who begs me daily for her first phone definitely makes me think about my own screen time and being more present. 

What are your hobbies/interests?  

When I moved to Bend, I started mountain biking and I love it. I also love to snowboard, knit, paint with watercolors and refinish furniture. 

What was your childhood or earliest ambition?  

I wanted to be a photographer for National Geographic.

Where is your favorite place to vacation?   

I’ve been to the Minam River Lodge, outside of Enterprise in the Eagle Cap Wilderness, a few times and have to say it is truly magical. It’s a gorgeous part of our state, but I also love how remote it is — with the only access being an 8.5-mile hike, horseback ride or charter plane. Once you are there, there’s no cell service or Wi-Fi, so it’s a perfect place to unplug and unwind.

What is your biggest extravagance?   

I don’t know if this is necessarily an extravagance, but I love to splurge on a night out at one of the amazing restaurants in Bend (Rancher Butcher Chef or BOSA, just to name a few) and maybe catch a show at Hayden Homes Amphitheater.

What motivates you to come to work?  

Working in destination management, I’ve always been inspired knowing that ultimately the work I do helps drive economic growth for communities across Oregon. In my current role, although there is no easy solution for the challenges that the tourism-industry workforce faces, I feel that having someone on the ground advocating for ways to support the existing and future workforce is helping make a difference. 

Who is your professional role model?   

A boss I had a few years ago, who became a mentor and friend. She was a strong leader who challenged me to work outside of my comfort zone but also empowered me to grow professionally. She is smart, organized, knows her stuff, gets things done and isn’t afraid to take risks.

What ambitions do you still have?   

Over the last few years, my work has taken me into the public-affairs space. Honestly, working with the government intimidated me at first (and still does to a degree), but the more I’ve learned, the more I find myself interested in engaging in policy work. Whether that is from an advocacy place or as a policymaker — who knows, maybe I’ll run for office someday! 

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