Vail Madrak is one of the new additions to the sales and support team at Strategic Information Resources. She joined our team in October 2016 as a Relationship Manager, which is an important role here at SIR. Vail is tasked with delivering exceptional service & support to key clients, as well as providing expert intelligence about the industry and our products.
Many of our clients have already spoken with Vail on the phone, at their location, or they have met her at industry conferences. What many of you may not know is that in addition to her primary job at Strategic Information Resources, Vail is a member of the New England Patriots Cheerleading squad. She is in Houston this week participating in activities leading up to Super Bowl LI, and will be on the field Sunday during the big game and will be part of the halftime show.
Many of our clients and employees who know Vail have expressed interest in receiving updates about the exciting activities this week. Vail will be providing periodic reports from events in Houston leading up to the Super Bowl. Check for updates to this blog posting!
We sat down with Vail to learn more about how her experiences as a cheerleader, and how they have helped prepare her for her new position at SIR:
“When I first interviewed Vail, I immediately saw a confident and well-spoken young woman.”, said Maureen Devine, President of SIR. “But what really impressed me was that she had a maturity level much higher than what is normally seen in people her age.”
Vail credits much of her growth and maturity to her experiences as a cheerleader. “I was shy, but being part of the squad has boosted my confidence and helped me come out of my shell. I’m now more comfortable speaking with strangers and in front of large groups of people.”
In addition to helping her grow personally, Vail points to her experience with the Patriots as helping her with time management. “There are so many competing demands between practices, promotional appearances, all the games, and now my job at SIR too,” said Vail with a smile. “You need to be super-organized and have a good system to make it all work.”
Customer feedback about Vail has already been very positive. “Since Vail started with us, we’ve had many clients compliment her professionalism, intelligence and communication skills,” added Devine. “She is also receiving high marks for her fast customer responsiveness.”
Vail is very proud of the work that the Patriots Cheer squad does in the community, and SIR applauds her efforts. “The squad has a tradition of going out of their way to provide a high level of community service and responsiveness,” said Vail. “We often attend and promote fund raising events, and work with local children’s hospitals. I’m most proud of my participation in the Dreamride experience, a substantial fundraiser in New England for Special Olympics.”
Congratulation Vail on your success at SIR, and as a Patriots Cheerleader. We’re glad you’re here and can’t wait to hear your updates from Houston.
UPDATE: Thursday – Feb 2nd
Today started with an early flight to Houston. Shortly after arriving at our hotel, we we were off to our first super bowl dance practice in Houston. We’re working on about 20 new routines which also includes our performance in the half-time show. Between travel and practice today, we were all pretty tired….but there’s no rest for the weary! We were off to a Patriots welcome party. The event was especially for members of the team, as well as their friends, family, and employees. Because we were in Houston, the party had a county-western theme. The cheer squad all dressed in cowboy boots and cowboy hats for the festivities. At this event our main obligation was to mingle with people, hand out and sign posters, and take lots of pictures with people.
It wasn’t all work though. We all country line danced and had the opportunity to talk to some really great people. It was a blast! We’re going to try to get some sleep now. We need to be up at 3:30 am for good morning America! 😊
UPDATE: Friday– Feb 3rd
We started the day waking up at 3 am. The squad got ready and headed over to film Good Morning America. At GMA there were fans, the Falcons cheerleaders and Rob Gronkowski. We had so much fun being on camera, and seeing what happens behind the scenes. It was so cool and special to be able to be apart of a show I watch so frequently.
After GMA we went to film Inside Edition with Olympic gymnast and gold medalist, Simone Biles. We performed for her one of our routines, and taught her a small combination of ours, and then she showed us a little something she does in her routine. She’s such an inspiration and it was so great not only meeting her but appearing on inside edition with her as well.
Next we went to on-field practice. At this practice we went to the stadium and did a run through of most of the entertainment that will be at the super bowl, and went over how things will work in general. It was so cool stepping on the field for the first
time, knowing in just a few short days we will be there performing for the Super Bowl.
After the on field practice we went back to our hotel where we had a two hour dance practice. We really are working hard to make sure our routines look great for game day. Off to bed now to get ready for another 3:00 am call time!
UPDATE: Saturday – Feb 4th
Saturday morning we had another early call time, because we were lucky enough to appear on Fox and Friends. Although it was surprisingly cold for Texas, the outside set was pretty cool. At Fox and Friends, we were asked to be a part of several different segments. We were often seen in the background shaking our poms, and cheering. We also performed some choreography, which was filmed for the show. I would say the most memorable experience from this event was meeting Joe Namath, and standing aside him as he was interviewed. He was such an inspirational speaker and it was an honor to meet such a legendary athlete.
After Fox and Friends, we went and had a quick lunch before heading to the Patriots fan rally. Once at the fan rally we walked around, talked with fans, took pictures, and signed and distributed posters. We then went to the stage where we performed. Mr. Kraft and Rob Gronkowski spoke during the rally, and then we performed another routine of ours. Scotty McCreery also performed at the rally, which was exciting as well.
Once the rally was over, we headed back to the hotel where we had a two-hour dance practice. We then rested up before getting ready to attend the Maxim Super bowl Party. The party had great performers, great food, and just over the top, extravagant details. We got to walk the red carpet before entering the party, which was something exciting and fun for us all. We did not stay too long, but for obvious reasons, we had a very important game the next day!
UPDATE: Sunday – Feb 5th (The Big Day!)
Sunday morning we did not have any obligations until practice at 9, which was a treat considering our other very early call times. We had a very successful last practice. We have had practice at least two days a week since last April, so it was bitter sweet, knowing our season was at its end. We then got ready, and headed over to NRG Stadium. There was police escorting our bus over to the stadium, and as soon as we walked off the bus, the media was right in front of us taking pictures, filming etc. We got to our locker room, which happened to be the Texans players’ locker room, and settled in. We had dinner, finished getting ready and then headed out to the field. It was the most surreal moment, walking out of the tunnel onto the field, and looking out at the people filling the stadium. It was an emotional and memorable experience for all of us. The National Anthem performed by Luke Bryan was another very amazing experience. The game itself was interesting. Of course being so far behind was nerve wracking and a little disappointing. We found it difficult to cheer, and excite the crowd with such results. It was also a very different dancing experience for us. The sidelines were much more packed then what we know at Gillette, making it a little bit more difficult to perform. Then before we knew it, it was time to perform on the field. We took what was and will be the biggest stage of our entire lives. Performing our routine was such a rush, and something I will forever be grateful for. We then raced inside the locker room and changed our uniform quickly, before rushing back out to watch the half time show from the sidelines. Lady Gaga’s performance was amazing and being so close for the show was so incredible.
The second half of the game was obviously more exciting for us then the first half. I honestly never lost hope, and I had this gut feeling we would have a major come back and win it all. All of a sudden, it was apparent how many Patriots fans there really were in the stadium. Everyone went crazy once we started catching up. When we won, my teammates and I hugged each other, screamed, cried and just went crazy. We ran onto the field and celebrated like no other. Snow angels in the red, white and blue confetti was just one form of celebration on the field. I made sure to grab handfuls of confetti and shove it in my boots to take home with me. After watching the speeches, we went back to the locker room. I remember not wanting to leave the field; I did not want this insanely exciting experience to end. After we left, we headed to the Patriots after party. The team, their families and friends, and the employees all attended the party. John Legend, Old Dominion, Pitbull, and Lil Wayne all performed. I got my way into the front row for a few of the performances. We celebrated an amazing weekend, game and win all night long, before catching a flight back to Boston the next morning.