Untours European Vacation Rentals - Ellen Peters
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Ellen Peters

Accounting Director
Depending on the time of day, I can be found either behind a desk or on a stage. After crunching numbers and jockeying spreadsheets from morning to afternoon, I leave the office at 5 for my second life as a professional choral singer. As a core mezzo-soprano in the Opera Company of Philadelphia chorus, I've been onstage at the Academy of Music dressed as a 15th century Venetian dignitary, an 18th century French shepherdess, a 21st century Italian fashionista, an ancient Egyptian citizen, an early 20th century Parisian flapper, and in numerous other elaborate disguises. I've sung with various groups like the Philadelphia Singers, the Crossing, Mendelssohn Club and the Church of the Holy Trinity, Rittenhouse Square.

My liberal arts education at Vassar College has led me through varying jobs and careers. Working with the delightful staff at Untours has been the happy culmination. I started at Untours in 2000 as an Accounts Receivable and Payable Manager, then as a member of the French Untour team, the Office Manager and finally the Accounting Director. Spending my days manipulating credits and debits fulfills my penchant for problem solving. This penchant is also indulged by my geocaching hobby. On weekends and during vacations, my boyfriend and I program our GPS to find hidden caches, which take us to unexpected off-the-beaten-path places, in perfect alignment to the Untour travel ideal of finding interesting and non-touristy locations.

Above and beyond the travel perks, I'm thrilled to be working at Untours because of the philosophy of the company's founders, Hal and Norma Taussig. Simple things around the office make the company's focus on "people, planet, and profit" obvious in day-to-day life. For example, with the blessing of all the employees, I have introduced worm composting, or vermiculture, to the office. In a bin in the corner of the kitchen, hundreds of worms work hard digesting the scraps from people's lunches to create a nutrient-packed compost, which is then divided among the employees for use in our home gardens and houseplants. Paper, glass, metal, batteries are all recycled in the office. Untours also provides financial benefits to encourage walking, bicycling, taking public transportation, or carpooling to work. All of these things keep the triple bottom line in focus every day in the office.

When I'm not at the Untours office, singing, or geocaching, I'm at home with my partner, Jim, in West Chester, PA, along with our three rescue cats, too many houseplants, and a backyard with a den of foxes, a family of raccoons, a scurry of red squirrels, a murder of crows and countless other native bird species.



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