Patsy Stephenson has been with Visit Austin for eight years and has worked in the hospitality industry for 20. Patsy was born and raised in Austin, spent a few years in Dallas, but “high-tailed it back” to Austin as soon as she could. She coordinates walking tours and acts as a guide for public and private tours around Austin. One of her favorite memories was when she created a special tour for new workers in the Downtown Austin Alliance’s newly formed Ambassadors program. The Ambassadors are not only charged with keeping the streets clean, but they also providing a warm welcome and added information to visitors. She felt proud to be the one who was able to help them become knowledgeable about downtown Austin. Even a year later, she still gets friendly hellos from those Ambassadors when out on the street.
Patsy suggests all visitors catch a live music show in Austin. She always makes an effort to recommend places likely to be a good fit for each particular visitor. She especially loves seeing the faces of young parents light up when she is able to tell them about family-friendly venues.
“I’m proud that Austin was designed from the beginning to be the capital city of Texas, and that we have super heroes like Sam Houston and Stephen F. Austin to inspire us. I’m also grateful for the unique characters like Susanna Dickinson, Alphonse Dubois, O. Henry, and Willie Nelson, whose life stories make it easy to be a tour guide. I’m proud of Austin’s citizenry, who have created a beautiful city hall and an enlightened form of government, and who keep electing excellent leaders who are valiantly working at holding onto Austin’s quality of life in the midst of rapid growth. I’m proud of Austin’s historic sites, and I hope we can hang on to most of them – people don’t come here to see skyscrapers.”
Photographed at the Austin Visitor Center.