My best work occurs when I collaborate with other smart, creative critical thinkers and can catalyze existing energies, interests and gifts towards something new. I am a strong leader and manager, but also thrive as part of a team, working towards a collective goal. My skills as a facilitator allow me to work and connect with a small team (of 3-6 individuals) up to large-scale events.
Here are some of the collaborative projects I’m most proud of from the last few years.
Based in Seattle, WA, The Justice Lab is an incubator for critical thinking, empathy and local justice. Inspired by the resurgence of salons, the Justice Lab convenes small 8-10 person conversations around a particular topic. Each evening begins with a light vegan meal and refreshments, in order to build rapport between guests. The bulk of the evening will be spent discussing contemporary issues, ranging from digital activism to economic justice, from #BlackLivesMatter to food politics. The Lab is meant to be a space for experimentation, for trying out new ideas, for sharing and learning from personal experience.
The goal of The Justice Lab is to create ephemeral spaces where people feel safe to share their experiences; where people learn to listen empathically to the ideas of others; and where guests can begin to think critically about envisioning a more just city, nation and world. The Justice Lab is supported by the Pollination Project.
For three years I’ve been involved with the PAGE network through Imagining America. I am so proud of our collective work together. We have written together, coordinated a public response to Ferguson and the growing #blacklivesmatter movement. We eat dinner together over Google Hangouts, offer mutual support navigating job applications and institutional politics. We plan and execute the PAGE Summit for Imagining America every fall, and select a phenomenal group of new Fellows each spring. I am consistently floored by the high level of engaged scholarship, praxis and reflection that emerges through this collaboration.
I co-founded the Seattle chapter of Eat for Equity in the fall of 2012 with 2 other Minnesota-to-Seattle transplants. Eat for Equity creates a culture of generosity through sustainable community feasts. The Seattle chapter really emphasized the city’s focus on local agriculture and seasonal cuisine as we hosted about 12 dinners for local nonprofits. We raised almost $10,000 over two years through small scale, casual dinner parties, asking people to come as they are and give what they can. Eat for Equity was incredibly special: we built community, raised awareness, encouraged people to share their skills and time, and fed people absolutely amazing food.