Staff Spotlight: Brendan Rumball

Co-Founder, Project Manager


What is your favorite travel memory?

My favorite travel memory is watching the sun rise over the vast temple complexes of Bagan in Myanmar.

I spent all night on an overnight bus from the capital city of Yangon and arrived in Bagan at around 4 am the next morning. My travel companions opted to sleep in the lobby of our hostel until our room was ready but I decided to jump on the back of a horse cart and make my way to one of the thousands of temples that dot the plains of Bagan.

I scrambled to the top of the temple and sat there with my camera, eagerly awaiting the sun. The wait was worth it. The spectacle of thousands of temples being enveloped by the morning light while hot air balloons drifted effortlessly above them was one of the most beautiful things I've ever seen!

How have you changed/grown since working for your current company?

Founding Trellis has been one of the most rewarding things I've ever done. I've lost count of all the skills and knowledge that I've accumulated as a result of this experience.

Watching an idea turn into a reality is simply amazing and I encourage everyone to pursue what they're passionate about so that one day your ideas can manifest themselves into something you can be proud of.

If you could go on any program that your company offers, which one would you choose and why?

If I were to engage with one of Trellis' programs it would have to be our international 'Travel and Teach with Trellis' program. I love travelling but I also try to maximize the productivity of everything that I do.

Teaching English as a foreign language is a lot of fun whether you're volunteering or working full-time. Both Vietnam and Japan are fantastic destinations for both traveling and teaching, and Trellis enables you to experience both!

Our 'Travel and Teach with Trellis' program encourages motivated people to travel, give back to the community, become excellent ESL teachers and secure full-time teaching positions in multiple countries! What more could you ask for from a volunteer program?

What makes your company unique? When were you especially proud of your team?

Trellis is unique for many reasons. First and foremost, our innovative partnership with our benefactor in Japan enables us to provide our volunteers with many opportunities that other similar organizations can't offer.

Since we're a non-profit organization, 100% of all program fees go directly towards expanding our educational initiatives; nobody profits off the hard work of our dedicated volunteers or students.

Our programs are socially-responsible and sustainable and are focused on turning our volunteers into the best foreign language educators they can be. We also provide our volunteers with the opportunity to experience multiple countries by engaging with our programs.

Operating as an international organization can be difficult at times, however; I'm proud of my team's ability to transcend language barriers and effectively operate in multiple time zones and locations.

What do you believe to be the biggest factor in being a successful company?

I believe the biggest factor in being a successful company is being passionate about your product or service. Envisioning your company and its operations as an extension of yourself and your aspirations is the first step towards creating success and value for yourself, your customers, your employees, and your volunteers.

In this sense, being successful as both an organization and a person can often be a direct consequence of working towards the change you want to see.