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Meet the Trulian: Ali McCourt

A Series to Connect You to the Trulians Behind the Magic

Today in “Meet the Trulian,” we’re featuring Trulia’s senior marketing manager, Ali McCourt. Ali works closely with product teams to market all of Trulia’s products, and she’s one of our regular tech blog authors. Read on to learn more about her experiences and what inspires her, plus so much more.

What inspired you to get into marketing?
I sort of stumbled into it. I previously led Trulia’s social and community marketing efforts and when a few of my colleagues left for maternity leave there was an opportunity to grow my marketing expertise. As long as I’m learning, I’m inspired.

What was your dream job growing up and why?
Growing up near the beach I wanted to be a marine biologist, specifically an elasmobranchologist with a specialty in Great White sharks. A few years ago I dove with them off the coast of South Africa and was mesmerized – I would die happy if I could do that everyday.

If you could have drinks with one tech luminary – dead or alive – whom would it be and why? And, what would your first question be?
I’m not sure if she’s so much a tech luminary as an inspiring businesswoman, but I’d like to meet Jennifer Siebel Newsom. She founded The Representation Project, which is an organization that challenges the way mainstream media and culture contribute to the underrepresentation of women in positions of influence. Her documentary, Miss Representation, has really shifted my perspective of the female stereotypes many of us were exposed to as children, and how that translates our perceptions of societal expectations of female behavior. My first question would be something about her outlook for how we can raise the next generation to think and operate more gender neutrally.

What’s the one gadget or personal tech item you cannot live without and why?
Is it lame to say my digital calendar? I am constantly forgetting things, and feel like I’m always running around, so my life and sanity are tied to my calendar.

What was the last movie you saw or book you read and what – if anything – would you change about the ending?
The last book I read was This Star Won’t Go Out,” which documents a young girl’s experience with terminal cancer. Unfortunately, the end of the book is heavily foreshadowed by that synopsis alone, so it’s pretty evident what I would change. I volunteer with Make-A-Wish, so that narrative struck a cord.

What’s your proudest accomplishment and why?
I wrote an article about grassroots marketing that was picked up by The Wall Street Journal a few years ago. That was a pretty cool moment.

If you could master one talent or skill that you don’t have now what would it be and why?
I’m a notoriously bad chef, though I love to eat. I wish I had a passion (and patience) for creating epicurious masterpieces, but unfortunately that gift only extends as far as baking. I can whip up pretty much any dessert.

If you could have one superpower what would it be and why?
The ability to fly. I often have flying dreams where I’m able to lift my arms and bound over vast areas quickly. I’m always on the go and love time efficiency, so in my opinion, it’s the perfect superpower.

If you could time travel, would you go into the future or past and why?
Definitely the past. I listen to history podcasts every night as I fall asleep. I find historical anthropology fascinating. And in theory, if you could time travel, you could travel to the future and the past, right?