A character study

We were asked to make up a character that could be in the target audience for our product. Meet Rijke De Vries Foreman:

-What is this person’s name:
Rijke De Vries Foreman – a 32 year old woman working in the Department of Finance in NYC as the Head of the Parking Violations Hearing Officers. She dealt with parking rules and violations herself before, but now she mostly deals with her employees. A passionate Amsterdam cyclist is suddenly trying to bring in cash for the city that never sleeps through adjudicating parking violations. Marrying the British diplomat, Eric Foreman, was what brought her to the city. But this particular job? Some coincidences led her into the field when she first moved to the city. Her work ethics, and her straightforward communication moved her some steps up the ladder. Her colleagues are nice, and her office is OK. She doesn’t love the job, but it allows her to jump on her bike and leave at a decent hour every day.

-What is a secret about this person that everyone knows?
When there are meetings in the office with outside guests involved, the cookie box is on the table. Rijke doesn’t ever buy candy or cookies herself. She has a hard time controlling the intake if the goods are right there in front of her, though. When excited about a subject she might talk fast and high-pitched while the chocolate chip cookie crumbs jump out of her mouth. Though her employees might find it amusing, and cute even, visitors might not, so they deliberately try to keep the box of cookies at a safe distance from her chair in the conference room.

Being cute is not a quality Rijke appreciates in herself or others. She wants to be respected by her employees and her boss because she knows how to practise law. And although she gets overly excited when the chocolate chip cookies are on the table, she is definitely respected.

-What color socks is she wearing?
Rijke has a drawer full of pantyhose, thin or thick, wool or nylon, and in various, neutral colors. No funky patterns as she feels those would give her legs a bit too much attention. Attention they don’t deserve. She’s certainly not overweight, but her thighs and calves are on the larger side. Her pantyhosed legs are typically placed in somewhat high-heeled black shoes that she keeps in her office. Comfortable shoes, though high enough so that she looks professional and gains some height. Those extra centimeters – she feels that it makes people respect her more. In reality it gives her that little confidence boost that makes her expect respect from her surroundings. Her expectations are met by most, although she’s not the kind of person that wins a room instantly. She’s grateful that her workplace appreciates hard workers. However, sometimes she wishes that there could be a little more excitement and fun in the office. She’s surrounded by serious people, and obviously, as she is most of these people’s boss, she might have something to do with that.

-What is her most prized possession?
Rijke loves her bike. When her Mom for some reason wanted to upgrade to a newer and lighter bike, she left the wonderfully heavy, black beauty for Rijke. Rijke used it, rain or shine, for 5 years while studying in Amsterdam, and she simply could not leave it behind when she moved to America.

-What’s her biggest regret?
Rijke always looks forward. She doesn’t regret her choices in life, but the hardest decision she ever had to make, was when she turned down the PhD position offered at the University of Amsterdam, to move to NYC with Eric instead. She would get to research rehabilitation and behavior change for tough criminals. There’s a big difference between that kind of behavior change, and the silly parking violations she deals with now. Most drivers get tickets because the rules are too confusing, or because there’s simply not enough parking spaces available for all those cars. But if all New Yorkers just sold their cars and started biking, the problem would be solved!

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