Cecilia Sohi

How would you describe the culture at Dark Horse?

Everyone is friendly and kind and respectful. Exactly what anyone would want in a company! It must be because so many of us have worked with DHC colleagues in the past. Most Horses came here knowing the sort of work relationships we like and are now lucky enough to rekindle.

You came here because of someone you knew?

Yes! I’d worked with Krista [Kauppinen, VP of Legal Affairs] at BioTime in 2015.  I felt like we just clicked from day one. We worked together there for only a year, but stayed in touch ever since. I always wanted to work together again, and the opportunity presented itself when Dark Horse grew enough to need someone focusing on contracts. It was the perfect entry point into the work culture I wanted.

How did you decide to become a legal assistant?

Well, I was an anthropology major – but I quickly learned that field is really competitive. It seemed like I would have less of a work/life balance than I wanted, so I started looking for work that would line up with my childhood interest in biology. When I was in elementary school, I took a tour of the Beckman Coulter facility in Orange County. We lerarned about Arnold Beckman’s pH meter (the first ever!). I thought it was so intriguing. After college I ended up getting a job – as luck would have it – working in their legal library. I met my (now) husband working as an engineer there, and eventually decided to go with him to live my dream in the Bay Area. After a foggy start, I joined the legal department at Exelixis working with patents and contracts. Thankfully, my husband made it through law school, and he’s the lawyer in the family. I considered law school, but for me, I get the most satisfaction by focusing on the nitty-gritty details, which is what I do every day at DHC.

What’s one of the most unusual industries in which you’ve worked?

The motion-picture industry, definitely. It was a new experience for me and I suppose I thought it would be a bit glamorous, you know? I was focusing on healthcare contracts for workers, on union and employer sides. I loved the new challenge and learning new things, but once the pandemic started I realized my efforts wouldn’t be sustainable. It’s not a work-from-home-friendly industry, and with school closures, I needed to be able to work and take care of my kids simultaneously. The freedom to work remotely here is one of the many perks of working at DHC!

In your off-hours you’ve figured out a way to use a common hobby to help you live more sustainably. Tell us about that, please?

My aunt gave me a crocheted potholder 4 years ago and I was impressed that she made it herself. I bought a ball of yarn and knitting needles and taught myself how to knit with YouTube videos and some trial and error. I’ve been knitting and crocheting ever since.

My 5-year old daughter asked me about climate change, which turned into a great bonding/learning opportunity. We watched Greta Thunberg’s TED talk and listened as she described how much more climate change will affect her younger generation.  That got me thinking about it from my daughter’s point of view. I like to plan, so I started planning out ways to help our family live in a more green fashion.

I thought about how some yarns are biodegradable, so I tried making things like dishrags and loofahs with hemp yarn. My husband is the guinea pig and enjoyed my creations, like a loofah I made of 100% cotton. Unfortunately, that one just got too heavy in the shower; he told me it was like washing yourself with a wet sweater ball!

But hemp yarn really worked for sponges/dishrags. No matter the outcome, it’s a meditative hobby – very soothing. I do it before I go to bed as a wonderful way to unwind from the day.

Did you use a pattern for these?

I made it up as I went! When you’re crocheting, you have a certain freedom of structure within the piece. I used a little trial and error until I came up with something that stayed together, worked well to clean dishes, and was easily washable/reusable. Now we can use biodegradable homemade hemp dishrags/sponges (see picture above).

Do you mind sharing the pattern?

Sure! All you need is a 5.5mm crochet hook and some biodegradable yarn. I use organic hemp size 5 (or bulkier). I used double-strands in crocheting these so you could use two different colors if you’d like the visual variation.

To start chain 6, just turn work and simple crochet in each chain. Repeat for 12 rows or until you reach your desired size. No sweat!

A sampling of Cecilia’s hemp yarn sponges/dishrags!

A sampling of Cecilia’s hemp yarn sponges/dishrags!

Join the Quarter Horse Newsletter

We’ll send you a quarterly newsletter all things DHC!
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.