I first met Balken several years ago when she agreed to write a gardening column for Salt Lake Metro (now QSaltLake), where I served as editor. Those were great days, and I'll always remember Balken's friendliness, upbeat attitude and professionalism. Besides activism and acting, gardening was another of her many areas of expertise.
I felt lucky to have had the opportunity to work with her, and since then, I've come to admire her as a woman of many talents. They couldn't have picked a better woman for the job, Brandie!