For the past 30 years she has specialized in Transfer Pricing, helping companies that do business with related companies in other tax jurisdictions to ensure that the prices of the goods, services, and intangibles in their intercompany transactions are consistent with the "arm's length pricing" requirements of the governments that tax the resulting profits, and helping the companies defend their prices when governments question them.
Valerie sang alto in her high school chorus, but participating in the chorus did not include learning to read music, so she didn't try out for anything after high school. Eventually, her church choir really needed an another alto, so she bought a small Radio Shack keyboard and practiced the alto part of each new hymn, until she could feel reasonably comfortable sight-reading the notes, even though she still can't tell you what key they are in. Along the way, she discovered that no matter how exhausted and tense she might be, Wednesday evening choir practice was the perfect way to unwind the stress of making partner at a big accounting firm.
Much later, when her widowed mother had moved to this area and her needs had become both intense and hard to predict, Encore rehearsals became an especially valued social activity because they were a commitment, and thus could be enjoyed without feeling guilty.