Welcome to our series, #WHYoming.
We are highlighting people from around our communities and asking them a few questions. We want to learn a little about them and see why they chose this great state to raise their families, start their businesses, or simply to ask — Why Wyoming?
For this week’s #WHYoming, I had a chance to talk with Alissa Davis, Educational Sign Language Interpreter at Sweetwater County School District No. 2. Alissa has worked with several kids in both Green River and Rock Springs throughout her career. She considers working with these students and watching them grow to be a great joy.
Alissa was born in Rock Springs and her husband, Tate, is from Green River, so naturally they decided this community was the perfect place to raise their three children. In addition to Alissa’s job as an Educational Sign Language Interpreter, she also has a business called DavisDesign307, in which she creates home decor, earrings, ornaments, and more. This weekend she will be participating in a vendor market called Blackbird Lane at Expedition Island.
It is a pleasure to meet Alissa and even more of a privilege to get to know her. She is someone who has dedicated her life to helping others grow, whether it’s the students she works with or her own family. Sweetwater County is lucky to have her, and I hope you enjoy reading all about Alissa.
Alissa, what do you do for a living?
I am an Educational Sign Language Interpreter in Sweetwater County School District No. 2. I have worked in both Rock Springs and Green River with a wide variety of students. I have been interpreting for over 10 years.
How did you get into your field of work?
I have a severe hearing loss due to a childhood illness (spinal meningitis) which caused me to lose my hearing. I wear hearing aides in both ears. As a child, I was fortunate to have parents who were advocates for me from day one. My parents made sure that my siblings and I were in the best possible environment to succeed. As I attended Northpark Elementary in Rock Springs, I had the best teacher of the deaf and sign language interpreters. They changed my life and I know without a doubt, I would not be where I’m at today.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
I have been blessed with the best students to work with. I get to experience their “aha” moments, facilitate conversations and the relationships I get to build with all the kids in the classes is something that I love. I love going to school with all the kids and seeing them grow up.
I hear you also have a business called DavisDesigns307. Can you tell me a bit about your business?
I have been creating home decor items for a long time. It started with just making things for myself and grew into making things for everyone else. I started with a sewing machine, a silhouette, grew into a laser, and now I’ve expanded with bigger machinery. I make anything from earrings, ornaments, custom signs for the home and a lot more.
What inspired you to start your business?
My mom has always been really crafty and I grew up with always being able to make stuff alongside her. I love being able to make customized things to fit my house and my theme. I also love being able to change decor to whatever I want at that moment. It makes me feel wonderful to know when I’m a part of other people’s houses too, there’s something really cool about driving by someone’s house and seeing a porch sign that I made.
Do you have anything coming up for DavisDesign307?
I am one of the vendors at Blackbird Lane which is actually a collaboration between my friend Renee Pilling and I. Blackbird Lane is a vendor market where Renee and I have 23 vendors who will be selling their stuff at Expedition Island in Green River on Friday, November 25 and Saturday, November 26.
How did you end up in Green River?
I was born in Rock Springs, Wyoming and met my husband Tate Davis when I was 16. He lived in Green River and we’ve just been here since. We have three beautiful girls, Macy, Gerrielle and Blaire.
What do you appreciate most about our community?
I love seeing people being so willing to support others in this community. Everyone is so kind here and it’s wonderful to feel involved with something bigger than yourself.
What are some of your hobbies?
I love reading books, watching movies, camping, traveling and going to concerts.
If you could give one brief piece of advice, what would it be?
Make good choices. It sounds so simple but it’s really served me well. Think about the long term effects of everything you do and see if you’re okay with the outcome.
Where is your favorite place to hang out in Sweetwater County?
I love taking my kids to the movies. I love going to the movie theater especially now since they have closed captioning devices which makes it a wonderful experience for me. It’s always clean and a relaxing experience for us!
Who would you want to play you in a movie about your life?
That’s a hard one! I would probably have Jennifer Lawrence because she can laugh at herself, she’s confident and doesn’t care what anyone else thinks about her.
What are some of your proudest accomplishments?
I am incredibly proud of the life I have created for myself. I’m proud that I have three strong, independent daughters. I have spent over 10 years helping deaf and hard of hearing students learn and that will always be a huge accomplishment. I was able to graduate with a B.A. in Elementary Education while working full time, two kids and pregnant with my third and running my craft business.
What’s something unique about you?
I have a good eye for how things should look. I can look at different mediums and see how it should be arranged.
Why do you choose to live in Wyoming?
I love Wyoming because it’s a beautiful place to live. I love seeing all the animals out in nature, the snow and cold weather. I love the safe communities to raise my family.