Meet Your Research & HR Administrator: Beck Cotter

Meet the RadiaSoft team in this ongoing Q&A series, where we introduce you to our stellar employees. Learn about their work, their background, and some of the things that make them who they are.

Today, Beck Cotter talks about managing the research and HR projects, some interesting jobs she’s had, and some of the challenging aspects of her work.

What do you do at RadiaSoft?

What do you do at RadiaSoft?

I do a little bit of everything! I’m a member of the proposal development team, 50% of the HR team, 33% of the operations team, and in my “spare time,” I plan all the parties.

What’s your educational and career background?

I have a B.S. in Kinesiology from the University of Houston. My early career was spent in sports television with Prime Sports, and FOX Sports Net Rocky Mountain. The travel required working in sports was not conducive to having a young family so I changed direction to something more stable. Eventually I found my way to the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR), and worked on the COSMIC (Constellation Observing System for Meteorology, Ionosphere, and Climate) mission where I was involved in preparing proposals for the DOE, DOD, and the Air Force. That experience prepared me for working at RadiaSoft.  

What’s the hardest part about your job and why?

Herding cats! I work with a lot of linear-thinking people, and I am very non-linear. Getting an organization to run when there are very different styles of development is difficult. I get all the ducks in a row with proposal submissions (which are VERY convoluted with their compliance requirements), while the physicists are linearly working through their own technical process. It works well because we’re sweet/savory, yin/yang–our working styles complement each other, but can be difficult to coordinate at times.

Where did you grow up?

I was born in northwestern Iowa, and my family moved to southwestern Evanston, Wyoming when I was 11.  

Before joining RadiaSoft, what’s the strangest or most interesting job you held?

Working for FOX Sports! I worked with the Av’s, the Nuggets, and the Rockies for ten years, doing advertising sales. That was during the years that they won the Stanley cup in 96-98. I got tons of free tickets for games and concerts. It was an awesome job for that stage of my life.

Who is your favorite scientist from history and why?

Mae Jemison or Sally Ride!–I would have LOVED to be an astronaut!

Tell us about one of your current projects.

It’s Proposal Season! We’re currently starting the DOE-SBIR Phase II submission process. They have a bunch of new regulations and compliance rules that all have to be understood and followed. It’s always a challenge!

What is a talent, secret superpower, or fun fact about yourself that people wouldn’t guess?

I am terrified of balloons!! I’m ok with Mylar, it’s the rubber ones that freak me out–who knows when they’re going to “POP!”?! I HATE Valentine’s Day or birthday decorations! (Yes, I plan parties with NO BALLOONS!)

What’s your favorite Slack emoji and why?

Baby Yoda! I can use it to say “This Is The Way.” It’s wonderful positivity, in one cartoon image.

What’s something you wish people understood better about RadiaSoft?

I describe what we do as, “Software development related to particle accelerators,” but that can mean a lot more than playing with lasers. We love lasers, but we also develop projects that have applications for industrial magnets, MRI technology, machine learning, control systems, and food-safety irradiation, as well as experiments at places like CERN or SLAC.

Want to learn more about the RadiaSoft team? Visit our team page for full bios.

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