1- 😊 Thank you for accepting our invitation to answer some questions as an international woman of our network! To start with, tell us a little about yourself, the work you do, your hobbies, the most remarkable place you have visited abroad, things like that.
-Thank YOU for inviting me. I am honored to be the Lady of August!
I call myself an American Dutchie because I was born and raised in the Netherlands but raised by an American mother. People always ask whether I feel more Dutch or more American. I feel like I am a melting pot of both, but my personality is more American than Dutch.
I am a lawyer, and I am proud to say that I have opened my own law practice this year. I practice international business law. I draft and negotiate international and national contracts for expat entrepreneurs and international businesses. I also help set up and restructure companies and branches in the Netherlands.
In my free time, I enjoy going out for brunches, dinners, and drinks, but especially brunches! I am always up for a shopping spree, but I also love to go for coffee walks in the city and the Vondelpark.
That is basically all I do on vacations: eat, drink, shop, walk, repeat. I would say the most remarkable place I have visited is New York. I love the atmosphere there. I felt the grind everywhere around me. In New York, you either survive and eventually make it, or this city will eat you up. I love that!
2- Where do you come from, and why did you choose Amsterdam as your new home?
-I come from Rotterdam, a city located south of Amsterdam, known as the port of Europe.
I have chosen to move to Amsterdam because it’s an international city and, therefore, I have always felt more at home in Amsterdam. It’s a melting pot, just like me.
Also, I practice international business law, so it makes sense to be in Amsterdam for business purposes.
3- How long have you been living here, and how is it going with adapting to the multicultural Amsterdam style? Do you see any differences between here and your hometown?
-I have been living in Amsterdam full-time since April 2022. The people in Amsterdam are noticeably more polite and a lot more accommodating than the people in Rotterdam. I think that is because they deal with internationals more.
Rotterdam is a city of hard laborers. People from Rotterdam are even more direct and to the point than Dutch people from other parts of the Netherlands. They have a saying, "Niet lullen maar poetsen,” which means “shut your mouth and work.” It is probably where I got my work ethic from.
4- Socially: Do you hang out mostly with fellow Dutch or American girls, or is your social life more multi-culturally oriented?
-My social life is more multiculturally oriented, but I gravitate more towards internationals, especially Americans and British people, than Dutch people. In my experience, it has been easier to connect with them because of my personality. Dutch people are a bit more closed off, and it takes time for them to open up to a real friendship.
5- How did you get to know the Amsterdam International Women, and how has your experience with the network been so far?
-I was looking for business networking groups in Amsterdam on the Meetup app, and that’s when I came across AIW.
My experience with AIW has been great so far! As I have said, I love going out for brunches, so AIW seems like the perfect match! It’s been great meeting so many different people from different cultures, hearing about their experiences, and connecting on different levels.
Everyone is here because they genuinely want to connect with others. It feels great to be part of a community where you have a sense of belonging, no matter where you are from. I believe that we all crave that, which you provide with AIW. So, thank you for that!