Lots of Love For All of You: Celebrating Martha Cummings

Erika Brame

Editor’s Note:

Office Manager Martha Cummings is a staple of the Terakeet culture, building a supportive office culture, and sending warmth, love, and virtual hugs to employees near and far. We asked employees to share the ways Martha has impacted their lives at Terakeet, from onboarding to weekly Circle-Up dances. Read on for more.

To meet Terakeet Office Manager Martha Cummings is like being enveloped inside a hug that’s inside another hug. If she’s not giving you an actual hug in person, her warmth and kindness radiate off her screen and directly into your heart.

During company-wide meetings, you’ll find her dancing along with her dog, Sophie. She keeps the team connected with company events and fundraisers – especially around the holidays and her daily duties that go beyond the computer screen.

Martha manages operations at the office in Syracuse, NY. Here she keeps our HQ running smoothly with her impeccable organization and communication and keeps the team happy with well-stocked snacks, coffee, and office tours.

She also leads Terakeet’s annual holiday fundraising for the Boys and Girls Clubs of Syracuse. But the ways she positively impacts our team culture are immeasurable.

Martha says her favorite part about working at Terakeet is sharing her joy with the team. 

“What I strive to offer to our Terakeet Culture are the very same things that helped create a deep and meaningful work experience for me these past 12 years at Terakeet.

Each day I try to:

  • Remember the amazing power of a hug.
  • Stop and listen, not just with my ears but with my heart.
  • Smile with my eyes to feel and convey that meaningful connection.
  • Compliment in the most honest and genuine way.
  • Show my deep appreciation by doing little acts of kindness.  

By doing these simple things, I hope I offer the message that each one of us matters and is valued and loved. Love You Lots!” Martha shared.

Building a company connection

While she’s keeping everyone filled up on coffee, snacks, and love she’s also helping new hires connect to the company.

It’s no easy task onboarding and connecting with each and every new Terakeeter – especially over Zoom – but Martha does it with ease and grace. Recruiter Sam Lewis has experienced Martha’s radiant love firsthand.

“Starting a new job can be a bit scary so I won’t ever forget meeting Martha on day one. Not only is her warmth calming and reassuring but you can learn a lot by how she leads with kindness and vulnerability. Her impact can be felt well outside the confines of Terakeet and her interactions here but throughout her work in the community too.”

Upholding a culture of support

Her outstanding work with multiple employees, as well as the Boys and Girls Club leads many employees to see Martha as an embodiment of our core values: Teamwork, Grit, Excellence, Partnership, and Impact.

Sr. Account Director Katie Romagno says Martha is always thinking about others and finding ways to connect the company to the Syracuse community.

“Martha has so much warmth and grace and also is so clear and thoughtful with her messaging for our organization, I continue to chase her in that regard… She is a big hug and also a firm reminder to get our donations in for the Boys and Girls Club each holiday season.” 

Martha is also the mother of CEO & Co-Founder Mac Cummings, who has spoken publicly about how his mom has impacted his own life:

“I think a lot of what happened in my childhood set me up to be a leader. I just didn’t realize that at the time. My mom (Martha) was a home-ec teacher for 35 years at Onondaga Central. If there is one way to describe her, it’s this idea of unconditional love. That allowed me to have curiosity but also a lot of courage to do whatever it was that I wanted to do. She was very encouraging of that.”

Offering a consistent presence

Martha has been the same bright light since the beginning. “Through the evolution of Terakeet, including all the ups and downs, Martha has been a constant positive force and source of positivity,” Project Controller Dan Heil said.

Katie also describes Martha’s love as something she appreciates every day.

“She’s always thinking of how she can support us and care for us. Even as we continue to expand in our company size and national footprint, her love and support for us never wavers.”