Meet Tweet Crew member Nancy Ellen Mills

Nancy w name july 2009 143

Hundreds entered, but only three NASCAR fans were chosen for the first ever Tweet Crew developed by Best Western and Michael Waltrip Racing.

Nancy Ellen Mills of Memphis, Tenn., Randy Martin of Worcester, Mass., and yours truly will trek to Phoenix for the experience of a lifetime: to work as Twitter correspondents for MWR driver David Reutimann during Saturday’s Subway Fresh Fit 600. We will follow the driver of the No. 00 at Phoenix International Raceway and share a behind-the-scenes look with NASCAR fans on the social networking site Twitter. The three of us will be provided with smartphones in order to tweet the latest updates and photos from the track.

Mills, Martin and myself already knew each other from Twitter, but we will meet for the first time Thursday in Phoenix. To find out more about my Tweet Crew teammates, I decided to interview them for Skirts and Scuffs.

In this post, Mills talks about her love of NASCAR and its drivers, connecting with NASCAR Nation on Twitter and the creative approach she took to her Tweet Crew application.

Nancy Ellen Mills has grown up around cars.

Her brother worked his way up from the assembly line to management at General Motors. He’s now retired, but his four sons have at one time or another worked at GM (a few still do). Mills’ father bought a new car every year, so she also recalls spending a lot of time at dealerships.

Picture 114 Now as an adult, Mills said “NASCAR is on the TV every weekend” at her Memphis, Tenn., home.

“You know you love it when you are floating in the pool watching the race on a TV brought outside just for that purpose,” she said.

As Mills told me about her work, I was intrigued. She is a woman of many talents.

Mills is an actress who works in independent films and sometimes appears in commercials. She enjoys doing dramatic readings of books on tape, but says “film is my home,” preferring drama over comedy. She invites fans to check out her work on

But Mills also has a second job: she works as a contractor in infrastructure development, transforming a tract of raw land to a finished subdivision before turning it over to a home builder.

“With the economy hitting our area of expertise so hard, we are trying to think more out of the box,” she said.

When it comes to who she roots for on race day, Mills says she has a special “fanship” for NASCAR drivers Michael Waltrip and Kyle Petty, but has a “universal love” for all the drivers.

“My heart aches when any of them crashes. I am respectfully jubilant for the winner of each race,” she said. “Drivers can do something very few people in the world can do. That’s very worthy of respect.”

ARCHIVE JULY 2008 470 To show her appreciation for the sport’s drivers, she created a list on Twitter called “Racecar Drivers Amaze Me” that includes more than 400 NASCAR fans. She said fans of the sport on Twitter who’d like to be added to the list can contact her.

Mills joined Twitter in January 2009 and admits she didn’t know what to expect. But she began to see how the networking site brought together NASCAR fans from all over.

“I was pleasantly surprised to find the NASCAR Nation was there,” she said. “NASCAR Nation is so united on Twitter.”

She now logs on daily and is grateful for the followers and friends she has made.

IPHONE 2009 JUNE 119“I have a few partners in crime there and we have a lot of fun,” she said. “I find people on Twitter are very supportive of each other. It’s very good to get a ‘good luck with that’ or a pat on the back after something else or a ‘so sorry.’”

A frequent Twitter user, Mills found out about the Tweet Crew opportunity through a tweet from the contest’s account, @TweetCrewTeam. When she clicked on the link and read the contest information, she thought she’d be a good fit for the team.

“I qualified in all the areas mentioned and could not wait to submit a resume to be part of MWR in support of David Reutimann. Who doesn’t love Reutimann?” Mills said.

In her application, Mills included a spirited top-10 list of reasons why she should be chosen for Reutimann’s Tweet Crew, including:

“I’m so 2008 with doing brain surgery, designing interstellar rockets & calculating quantum physics equations, I really just want 2 tweet PLZ”

“I have NASCAR FOR DUMMIES downloaded on my KINDLE ,-) Thank you, Mark Martin OOXX”

“Like @mw55 I love every1 & look on the bright side *^_^*”

And the No. 1 reason:

“Instead o/STARBUX I pull in2 a BEST WESTERN & sneak out w/their coffee”

XMAS 033Mills may have sealed the deal with this promise: “If I am chosen I would return the towels to the Best Western.” (She may prefer drama over comedy, but she’s got a great sense of humor!)

Being on the Tweet Crew means Mills will get to attend her very first Sprint Cup race, the Subway Fresh Fit 600. Though Mills has visited the Phoenix area before, this will be her first time at the track, and she’s planning to make the most of it.

“I’m looking forward to representing Michael Waltrip Racing while at the same time all of the NASCAR Twitter family. I can’t wait to squeeze into the meetings to share tweets and pics with Twitter. I want to leave Phoenix knowing that I contributed to the MWR race effort in a positive way.”

Follow Nancy Ellen Mills at @NANCYEMILLS on Twitter for updates from Phoenix International Raceway this weekend.

Photos courtesy of Nancy Ellen Mills. From the top: Mills at the pond where she lives. Mills with each of her daughters. Mills with the only way she thought she’d ever get to rub elbows with a driver!

Meet Tweet Crew member Nancy Ellen Mills Meet Tweet Crew member Nancy Ellen Mills Reviewed by Rebecca Kivak on Wednesday, April 07, 2010 Rating: 5