Get to Know the AAMI Standards Team: Teshia Payne, technical writer/editor

Tell us a bit about yourself—where are you from, what did you go to school, etc.?

I’m from Alexandria, Va. I attended TC Williams High School and graduated in 1993. I graduated from Strayer University Online in 2008.


When did you join AAMI?

August 2020


What got you interested in standards work?

After working in the government contracting arena for more than 20 years, I was tired of the contracting world. It became too unstable. I applied for a position as an editorial manager at the American Gear Manufacturing Association. At AGMA, I worked in the technical division, where we developed standards for gear manufacturers and facilitated their Fall Technical Meeting. I enjoy writing and editing, especially the formatting portion of the job. It has always been a passion of mine. I enjoy finalizing a document; to see the finished product is like a work of art to me. I didn’t really think that there was anything out there for me besides technical writing or proposal writing. Most writing, editing positions want you to have extensive experience, so I never really looked for publishing jobs. I decided to just try my hand and apply with AGMA. Standards is kind of like “a whole new world,” from the Aladdin song.


What kind of work are you doing in the department?

I am formatting and editing AAMI publications.


What’s something strange or interesting about working in standards?

What’s interesting about working in standards is that it really is another world. You literally can create a career path from working in standards development.


What do you like to do in your spare time?

In my spare time, I am usually reading, consulting, journaling, writing, meditating (I do a lot of self-reflecting), listening to binaural beats and lastly, I may even watch the idiot tube too, but that is like my last resort these days. However, there are some really interesting shows on my “watch list.”


What do you miss most about in-person standards meetings?

Honestly, I’m more of an introvert. I don’t really feel a difference in in-person vs online meetings. I think it’s great.


What’s your favorite quote?

“Your task is not to seek for love but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.”


Least favorite?

Selfishness, closemindedness, and lying.


If you were stuck on an island with only a compass, a volleyball, and one standards document of your choosing—which one is it?

I would choose a standard on how to survive in the wilderness!