Meet Ritz, Managing Director

Ritz, has been with FatLab since 2016 but her history with me goes back nearly 2 decades. Her job is to keep our larger nonprofit/association clients that subscribe to our Top Dog web support plan happy. Though many of our other clients may not see her name on support tickets and emails, she is a very important member of our team and I figured it was time that everyone meet Ritz. In her own words…

I am not a techie.

If there was anyone in our FatLab team that’s least tech savvy, that would be me.

Unlike most, if not everyone in our team, I didn’t go to college to learn web development, or study computer science, code or anything technical like that. Not even close. I majored in Communications. My very first job was in television, as an executive producer. Yes, an EP. How I got that job fresh out of college, I do not know, and I don’t really remember now. It’s been 30 years since I graduated from college!

My second job, even less technical than my first, was at a permanent diplomatic mission in Washington DC, working as an assistant to an ambassador. I can’t believe I got that job either!

Anyway, my point is, looking back at over three decades of my work history, I was nowhere near being a techie, but I’ve always appreciated working with those who are – especially our fabulous FatLab team – because somehow, I can understand what they say and as a web project manager for 18 years, I especially enjoy “translating” their tech-speak to our clients’ association-speak.

cooper the dog
Meet Cooper, Ritz’s 3rd “child”

Why am I here?

Shane and I have been working together for 18 years now. During these 18 years, I have been a client of his for about 15 years before finally joining FatLab Web Support full time as a Managing Director in late 2016.

We have probably launched over a dozen websites together, built many custom applications and managed numerous websites together over the years. He knows I have “walked a long mile” in the shoes of my association clients. So, I was thrilled when he asked me to join his team as soon as he heard I was leaving the association world back then.

I’ve always trusted Shane and respected the excellent work and service he provides to his clients. So, I do appreciate the trust back and opportunity to provide the same excellent service to our FatLab clients.

Oh, and of course grateful for the opportunity to work fulltime from the comfort of my “home office.” Nothing beats that!

Getting a Little Personal

ritz penaranda family

On an even more personal note, I have two kids. No, three. Let me explain.

I am a mom to a 20-year-old who is currently away at school and in his junior year in college. He’s always been an adventurous kid, never afraid to try something new. He may have been bitten by the travel bug back when he was in high school because he has not stopped traveling and going on adventures since then. He spends his summers and long holiday breaks traveling to faraway places, meeting new people and trying new things to eat and do. A bit scary for a mom like me but I must admit, I’m thrilled and grateful that to this day, he still lets me in on his adventures and even still enjoys traveling with me.

arlynI am an adoptive mother of a girl when she was 11. She was born with a congenital heart disease and she needed a heart surgery. When my husband and I heard about her condition, we applied for and were granted legal guardianship so she could get the medical attention she needed at that time. During her recovery, we decided to pursue adoption and so we did! She’s now 32 years old and a mother of two little cherubs. So technically, I’m a grandmother too!

Last, but not least, I am a mama to my other son, Cooper, the biggest Shih Tzu in the world. He thinks he’s my son and my 20-year old is the pet. Now that I’m an empty-nester, he keeps me company, demands my full attention, and gives me unconditional love almost 24/7.