Hello Rachael, thank you for chatting with me for this employee spotlight interview!

I already know what you do, but explain your title and job to the readers. 

My title is creation coordinator, and my role is a hybrid of creation/production/QC.

What do you love most about your job at Essex? 

I love working with mint oils; there’s so much complexity and variety! I have always loved mint aromas and flavors, which has led me to love sensory evaluation of raw materials and creating blends for customers at Essex. Customers ask for a mint blend that may match the quantity/quality they have used elsewhere. Depending on the application, the blend is sometimes more sensory-driven or analytical. It is also fun to learn the chemical components that mint is made of.

Analytics – Dictionary Definitions – the systematic computational analysis of data or statistics.

Menthol – IMAGE (Cool Menthol Pic from the Analytics lab)

Is there a challenge to the job you love? 

Yes, there is a challenge; it takes endless and ongoing learning. Being able to support our breeding program and get to see, touch, and smell the plants before distillation and their oil after is very special and part of my job at Essex that makes the challenge fun.

I know you have one project you worked on during your spare time in Essex. Will you tell us about it and some of the challenges you have encountered? 

The project was a creating a fragrance. Some challenges are working with new material. Working with non-mint, natural, and synthetic aromatic materials. Learning how these materials will interact with each other is a challenge and a benefit.  Trying to communicate through fragrance. An idea or concept, picture, or story I am trying to convey, while also realizing that it’s open for interpretation to the person smelling.

Will you do it again and why?

Yes! There may be regrets or successes that can be learned from. Working with and exploring new fragrant materials is fun, especially if I can incorporate mint. Sometimes, the vision matches, and sometimes, it doesn’t. It’s also fun to be surprised by the results.

Describe an exciting hobby or pastime that you have that increases your abilities at work?

I enjoy scented personal care products. Especially ex’spearmint’ing with home creations like hand sanitizers, bath salts & scrubs using natural and raw materials. Since working at Essex, I’ve reached a new level of enjoy’mint’ and have found that using mint products in my off-time helps me in my work  with the evaluation and creation of mint oil blends. These experiences have also come in handy with customer visits.

What’s your secret talent that no one knows about…but are willing to share here?

It’s not a total secret, but I’m a vintage cat figurine whisperer. They tell me what they want to be and I give them a meow’kover. These are two of a trio of minstrel cat mew’sicians that I inherited from my grandmother. They were tired after decades of touring and wanted a spaw day. Before & after pics.

Thank you, Rachael, for taking time with me today!

(Readers, yes, she uses puns seamlessly and regularly in her thoughts and actions, which we all appreciate.)