Sunday, February 22, 2009

Outside of Boston at the Body + Soul magazine headquarters, in Watertown, a crew of sophisticatedly casual dressed women and a few men work behind computers and share ideas while sipping on cups of tea. Terri Trespicio is the Senior Editor at this magazine--focused on whole living, being green, and reinforcing health practices through natural methods—she has spent her workdays in this office for the last five years.

Ms. Trespicio, 35, doesn’t hide her enthusiasm for working at Body + Soul magazine. “I’m in the fortunate position of being able to do what I love for a living,” she said. “I don’t work out of obligation to the boss; I work because I believe in what I do and I own it, and will take all I learn with me wherever I go.” That crafting is evident in the way she mastered her own healthy practices, which include healthy eating habits, keeping a gratitude journal, and practicing yoga. These practices are written about by the B+S team, confirmed by experts on the topic, and published in the magazine. Like much of her past work, it is done out of her own desire to find pleasure in what she does.

First trying her hand at professional creative writing, Ms. Trespicio worked as a copywriter for the nation’s largest wig distributor for women. “I found opportunity in an unexpected place,” she said. She got this position while finishing up her MFA in creative writing at Emerson College. The job provided the eagle-eyed skills necessary for becoming a contributing member of a creative team. “I learned a lot there about working with art and...[how to] create and maintain a relationship with the customer and continue to come up with fresh ideas,” she said. Ms. Trespicio quit after learning all she could within the position.

For Ms. Trespicio success has been based on hard work and tuning in to figuring out her dreams. During several summers in her 20s, Ms. Trespicio would take a few weeks off to travel along side her Uncle, the late Rev. Robert Barone, who was a professor of theology at the University of Scranton. “My Uncle was always my biggest fan,” she said. They traveled to Jerusalem and all over Italy in a study group led by Barone. “The time I spent with him each summer was tremendously influential on the way I viewed my life and its potential,” she said. “When I would tell him I was worried whether I’d be good enough to do this or that, he’d say that everyone has their own background that in turn uniquely prepares them for what they’ll end up doing.”

There is a level of honesty and directness about Ms. Trespicio that is immediately apparent and central to what people like about her upon first interaction. At 29 she went to interview at Body + Soul magazine. “I looked around the room –then a small team of bookish editors, and said “Do you know what kind of person you’re looking for with this editor position?” said Ms. Trespicio. “Because if it’s someone very quiet and subdued, I’m probably not the person for you.” She remembers the interviewers being tickled by the question. She was hired.

Ms. Trespicio is well versed in the gift of gab with having a long list of prominent multimedia skills on her resume from radio personality to television spokesperson. The buy up of Body+ Soul magazine by Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia provided a chance for Ms. Trespicio to develop her energetic personality for live entertainment. Her reputation as the voice of Body + Soul came together when she became the prominent figure doing appearances on local and national television shows. Ms. Trespicio currently host the daily show “Whole Living” on Martha Stewart Living Radio on Sirius XM as well as doing several guest appearances on “The Martha Stewart Show.” She appeared on the same show along side Bill Clinton promoting his book “Giving: How Each of Us Can Change the World.” Ms. Trespicio has appeared on several occasions for the New England news station NECN, for their segment called Health Week, which promotes healthy living including topics ranging from stress management to healthy eating.

“I think it’s too bad that people see “eating healthy” as some kind of insufferable chore, a life of wheat germ and raw veggies,” she said “As someone who embraces and practices a healthy lifestyle, I see food as an opportunity to make a healthy choice everyday—but that does not in any way mean sacrifice to me. I see food and the process of eating, preparing, or anticipating it as a sensual pleasure.”

Ms. Trespicio authentic personality may be the reason she is able to juggle so many tasks at once while collaborating with others. Along with freelance writing outside of the magazine, Ms. Trespicio teaches in the publishing certificate program at Boston University. It was also this year Ms. Trespicio contributed a story on traveling to the Bahamas in the book, “The Best Women’s Travel Writing 2009.”

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