Kayla Whitlock, Junior Accountant

Kayla is one of the most recent additions to the Citizens team, and she has jumped right into learning her role as Junior Accountant. She works closely with our accounting and billing teams. With her financial background and experience, one of her first assignments is to assist with a conversion to a new Accounting Software System.  

What is your favorite thing to do on your off time?

One of my favorite things to do in my off time is to ride the side by side. It is fun to climb over rocks, through creeks & mud, and around trees to get to beautiful views.

How do you plan to use your Volunteer Time Off?

I plan to use my volunteer time off to help The Handmade Music School. They’re a local non-profit formed to carry on the traditions of the old-time, bluegrass, and traditional music and dance from this region. The instructors “hand down” the songs and dances the same way they have been for centuries. This music is dear to my heart and is an important piece of Appalachia heritage I want to help preserve.

What is a little known fact about you?

A little known fact about me is that I was born on Friday the 13th.

What is your favorite thing about your home?

My favorite thing about my home is it is very close to town and makes my commute approximately 5 minutes.

What is the secret to a good life?

I think the secret to a good life is humble love. Breaking it down to the basics – loving your neighbor. If “to love one another” is the foundation for everything you do, all else will fall where it should.

What is the scariest thing you’ve ever done for fun?

The scariest thing I have ever done for fun was the “Blob.” The Blob is a giant air-filled pillow floating on a lake with a tall tower behind it. The idea is to jump off the tower onto the Blob and crawl to the end. Then, another person jumps onto the Blob to displace the air and send the person on the end flying into the air to land in the lake. The one time I did it, I was completely terrified of jumping off the tower without a harness. Heights don’t scare me, but apparently, jumping from them does. Being launched into the air was pretty fun, although I opted not to do it again.

Tell us about something on your bucket list.

To actually write the bucket list. You know, if I don’t write it down, it will never get done. 😂

What was the last show you binge-watched? What made it interesting?

I have been binge-watching Chicago Fire, PD, and Med. I am still working on PD and Med. These shows are interesting because they’re different shows, but they cross-over. It is interesting to see the portrayal of the first-responder system in a large city. Also, there is plenty of drama to keep me hooked.

Are you into podcasts or do you only listen to music?

I love to listen to podcasts, audiobooks, and music. For podcasts, the Happy Hour by Jamie Ivey has become my favorite. It is a Christian-based podcast where she hosts different guest speakers to talk about various current issues. For music, I am obsessed with Sturgill Simpson. His voice and lyrics are genuine. Anything he does is guaranteed to be amazing.

Have you ever disliked something and then changed your mind?

Just food in general. I was the pickiest kid EVER. Something changed as I got older, and now I am always up to try anything at least once. I have even eaten grub worms and cricket powder – not bad, honestly.

What do you remember most about your first job?

Goodness, I could go on for days about my first job at The Floyd Country Store. Over eight and a half years amounts to many memories. What I remember most are the relationships that blossomed there. I enjoyed getting to know other staff members, the regular local customers, and even the visitors from all around the world. Also, my muscles still have the memory of scooping ice cream for 7 hours straight, followed by carrying and putting away 50-100 metal folding chairs – EVERY Friday night. Good times.

Tell us about a pet peeve you have.

A pet peeve I have is bad pictures.

What makes you feel most alive? 

Hiking or riding to the top of a high vantage point to look down across miles of rolling fields and untouched, tree-covered mountains overwhelms me with gratitude for God’s creation. I always walk away reminded how blessed I am to be a small creature moving about here on Earth.