Zsófia Juhász, Marketing & Communications Manager, AmCham

  • 29 Nov 2016 11:00 AM
Zsófia Juhász, Marketing & Communications Manager, AmCham
For the past eight years I have been co-creating platforms that drive positive change for Hungary, together with my colleagues and 368 members of AmCham Hungary. As the head of communications, I am involved in defining and executing the strategy and vision of AmCham, a non-profit organization that has been working in the past 27 years to make Hungary a better place for investment. In practice this means we organize over sixty events a year, we meet business and government leaders to enhance meaningful dialogue and we have a lot of fun, while changing the world, one step at a time.

Before my current role I spent a few years working with GE, the US Embassy and the now non-existent American Club. For some reason my studies and my work experience has always been closely tied to the US. It is a never ending love story for me, which might mature into eventually moving in together some day…

As a professional hobby I am a founder and creative mastermind behind Lakásbutik (aka. Appartment Boutique) together with two great friends, Rózsa Dobozy and Orsi Heuthaler since 2012. It is a mashed concept of a designer pop-up store and a second hand boutique, inspired by circular economy, conscious choices and minimizing waste. As a group of fashion savvy friends we started the project for fun, but today we have had over 1,000 people attend our events. We have collaborations with mainstream and also up-and-coming designers and always donate to charity after each event.”

What else? I am happy and I am where I need to be. This is all you need to know about me.

1. Where did you grow up?
Our HQ has always been Budapest; I lived a pretty normal family life growing up, spending a lot of time in Tök with my father’s side of the family. My grandma moved to the US when I was born, so it has been an essential part of who I am, and I have been visiting annually ever since. She just moved back to Budapest to stay closer to family, but we will keep going to see friends.

2. If you could be an expat anywhere in the world, where would you choose?
San Francisco, no question about it. Love the city, love the vibe, the culture, the things you can do. If I wanted to something more adventurous, I would say Thailand and Vietnam for a year maybe, but that is more of an extended holiday idea.

3. What would you miss most if you moved away from Hungary?
The first rays of sunshine over the Danube, when you cross Margaret Bridge in the morning. Taking a lazy bike ride to Nap bácsi on a September weekend. Enjoying a fröccs in Badacsony. Seeing the magnificent Basilica from my office window. Living close to so many of the people I love.

4. Friends are in Budapest for a weekend - what must they absolutely see and do?
For first time visitors I would start the day with a bath in Széchenyi, followed by a long walk through the park, then via Andrássy all the way to the Danube, stopping for an easy lunch in Klassz. Watch the sunset at the Castle after walking across the Chain Bridge, trying a krémes at Ruszwurm. Spend the evening by the riverside sipping on a craft Hungarian IPA, avoiding the craziness of the downtown. For day two I would take them to Lake Balaton to see Salföld, Köveskál and Mindszentkálla, because it’s so unique and pretty.

5. What is your favourite food?
Krumplis tészta, the way my mom makes it, with loads of sour cream. Something I haven’t eaten in years, since she always makes fancier food for family dinners…

6. What is your favourite sport / form of exercise?
Riding my pink vintage Basso bike and doing yoga and pilates occasionally keeps me sane.

7. What is your favourite place in Hungary?
Wherever we visited last and wherever we will go next.

8. What career other than yours would you love to pursue?
People who love me know that my ultimate “career goal” is to open a small bed and breakfast inn and a small pie bakeshop. I even dream about it sometimes.

9. What’s a job you would definitely never want?
A job where I am kept out of the loop, not seeing the big picture. That would drive me insane.

10. Where did you spend your last vacation?
Barcelona and Tarragona in Spain for a mini holiday in November.

11. Where do you hope to spend your next one?
A honeymoon in Australia is something we are dreaming of.

12. What was your favourite band, film, or hobby as a teen?
I was desperately in love with John Travolta, but that’s not a real hobby I guess.

13. Apart of temptation what can’t you resist?
A new recipe that uses cumin and cilantro, spices I might love too much .

14. Red wine or white?
Summer white with soda, winter red.

15. Book or movie?
Good book, good movie. The content matters, not the form.

16. Morning person or night person?
Owl, all the way. Waking up hurts.

17. Which social issue do you feel most strongly about?
Social injustice and hatred. Hurting people for the wrong reasons or no real reason at all.

18. Buda or Pest side?
I am more attached to Buda.

19. Which achievement in your life are you most pleased about?
Each and every successful event we organize, which I know help in making stronger connections, friendships and eventually help make a change in Hungary by encouraging dialogue.

I am especially proud to have organized two US Election Night Parties in 2012 and 2016 with over 1200 – each. It is a crazy amount of work, but one of the most memorable nights of my life.

20. What would you say is your personal motto?
A quote by F. Scott Fitzgerald: “For what it's worth: it's never too late to be whoever you want to be. I hope you live a life you're proud of, and if you find you're not, I hope you have the strength to start over again.”

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