Nancy Reed is the definition of a “super mom.” She balances her ever-evolving role as regional account director for Takeda Pharmaceuticals with being an active and engaged mother of three to Kelsie, 23; Kamrin, 19; and Kellen, 14.
Reed started her career with UPS, after graduating from Michigan State University, when she received the opportunity to be part of their management program before ultimately deciding to move on to pharmaceuticals. Since joining the Takeda Pharmaceutical, Reed has worked through the ranks, which has been challenging at times; yet she’s still managed to afford herself the opportunity to explore her talents and show her children what one can accomplish through hard work and dedication.
“I have been so blessed in my career. I was a sales rep then a district manager, and I have been able to take the steps I wanted to take. I think, for me, I’ve seen what I’ve been able to do, and my kids have seen that, and I think that has impact,” Reed said.
Reed’s career has always been important to her. She consistently works to find new ways to challenge herself and create an identity of her own; she credits her proactive career with helping her to be her best self, especially for her family.
“It’s good for me. I’ve always liked to work; it’s part of who I am. I don’t take anything for granted,” Reed said. “My career provides a perfect balance for my life. It allows me to be the best for them and provide the best for them.”
And even with all that she’s been able to achieve thus far, she says the best thing she’s ever done is grow her family.
“They have to be the biggest accomplishment of my life,” Reed said. “They are like my best friends and I never thought that would happen – you hear so many stories of families that fight all the time, or mothers and daughters that butt heads. But what we have is amazing, and I feel so lucky to be able to share so much with them.”
Although Reed couldn’t share these same experiences with her mother, she still cherishes the lessons her mother shared with her.
“I was adopted, and my parents were older when they raised me and didn’t have the best of help, but my mother was a super mom. She was a stay-at-home mom and the bun lady at school, and she did everything. I have so many memories of her, and I am sad she couldn’t see me as an adult or see me with my kids, but I know she would’ve loved it.”
Along with all the memories, the super mom trait stuck too! As such, Reed loves each of her kids for exactly who they are. She knows each of their unique quirks and relates to each of them in incredibly personal ways.
“Kelsie is a planner. She is driven and dedicated. She is understanding, and honestly the friendliest person ever,” Reed shares. “Kam is full of energy. She’s just happy and has a comment for everything, [her personality] just fills a room. And Kellen is the perfect mix of both of them. He’s a charmer, has great manners and is so respectful. As a mom I think it’s so cool to see a little bit of yourself in each of them, but also to see who they are as their own person.”
While her kids are finding their own paths, Reed hopes they carry a few of the lessons she has worked so hard to share with them, as those lessons were shared with her.
“I just want them to be good to people: to help others, to work hard and to think for themselves. If they do those things and stand up for others and try to do what is right, then that is all I could ask for as a mom,” Reed said.
Reed’s daughters agree that her life lessons stick. They also agree that Reed has shared so much more with them than the lessons of a mother. In fact, she’s given them passion, independence and unconditional love.
“She is selfless,” Kelsie said. “She is the first person I call when something happens, good or bad. She remembers every little thing and she knows when things are important to us. She’s always been there. I can tell her anything.”
“She’s like our best friend,” added Kamrin. “She taught us to be ok with who we are, to know our worth and to work hard. I think that’s the best way to say it.”And work hard they have. Reed’s lessons have stuck with her children as they navigate their educational careers and look to start their futures. Kellen does well in school, while Kelsie is about to receive her doctorate degree from Loyola University Chicago in School Psychology, and Kamrin is excelling as a basketball player at Western Michigan University as well as her studies in sports management. “Super mom” did something right, and she offers a little advice to other mom’s trying to find their way, too.
“The biggest lesson I’ve learned is not to hide from you kids,” Reed said. “I’m very transparent with them and when there is a teachable moment and I can share a mistake I’ve made, I do. I think being transparent with them makes them feel comfortable being that way with me. I think that is a big part of building the relationships we have.”