Reflections | Lifestyle Magazine Reflections Vol14 No5 - Page 36

PEOPLE Governor Chief of Staff Chris Riley (GSU alum), Governor Deal, and Trip Addison celebrate the Eagle’s win over App State. PLACES “W hether it was the mo- “I’m not shy to step into a space that I ment my mom told me don’t know,” he said. “Change is inevitable. to send in my resume or [You have to be] okay with change and feel the moment Governor Deal took a chance confident in what you bring to the team. on a kid who had no political experience Otherwise, change will eat you alive.” whatsoever, that move stands out to me Now Trip’s third role in a foreign de- when I look back at how I got to where I am partment, this new position gave him the now,” Trip said. opportunity to build on his confidence. In the years following Trip’s gradua- “I think the greatest learning curve is tion, it was ultimately Governor Deal’s trust getting comfortable in a new place,” he said. that allowed him to thrive. “I’ve yet to walk into a scenario where I’m “[Governor Deal] believes in delega- the oldest person in the room. It’s a very tion,” Trip said. “He allowed me to lead. different atmosphere. So you learn to listen What was amazing was that he just threw and you learn ways by which people are go- me into situations that were sink or swim ing to learn to listen to you when you actu- but was always there to assist. Some people ally do vocalize your opinion. And I think thrive in that environment, some people that’s a tricky space to be in but it’s some- don’t. I took it as an incredible opportunity thing that you can either learn to thrive in and am forever grateful. His leadership style or you don’t.” was always about empowering his employ- ees. It was very selfless.” After two years with Governor Deal, Trip transferred into yet another role for 34 Re f I t was this learned skill that helped him adapt to his new role at Georgia South- ern. In 2015, he entered a new community which he had little experience. As Deputy both professionally and personally. With the Director for the Environmental Protection intention to start a family, Trip and his wife, Division (EPD), he was required to learn Ashley, relocated from Savannah to Rich- environmental regulation and policy. Im- mond Hill. His life’s next learning curve was mediately, he took the challenge. to tap into something less business-driven