I believe in the power of working in your strengths. One of mine is compassion, which is why went from working in the Army CIO's executive office at the Pentagon to studying social entrepreneurship, leading free UX workshops & instilling compassionate UX to get a small beauty tech startup off the ground on the opposite side of the country.
I care deeply about creating opportunities for women and Black and Brown people in and outside of tech. Opportunities to connect, to feel their best, to inspire, and to be empowered enough to know that they belong in whatever room they are in. The history of the United States (and the world, really) as it relates to women and Black/Brown people is no secret; it's simply an honor to have the privilege to play my part in making a positive impact.
This is why my role at Emma Beauty was so maningful to me. Not only did I have the opportunity to inspire and use tech to help women find products that work best for them on a large scale; I also got to interact with and hear stories directly from them about the impact that beauty has on their lives — on how they feel and experience the world...and each day, I was able to work on making those experiences great.
Good things take time. My experience with life so far has repeatedly proven this to be true. I grew up an Army brat, moving nearly ten times before the age of 18, domestically and internationally. I wouldn't have described this lifestyle as "fun" or "a great experience" if I'd been asked about it as a child. Now, I can say that it was both...and I'm grateful for it.
It built resilience and a love for travel, food, and culture — but most importantly, it helped shape my perspective on what matters most to me. Constantly relocating was painful in the moment. I had to leave friends, family, and even a few pets behind on more than one occassion. However, what grew from that was a comfort with being by myself, stronger bonds, familiar faces from all over the world, and a large helping of patience.
The qualities that I hadn't received in the moment manifested themselves at the right time afterward and have had a profound effect on how I maneuver through everything in life, from business to my relationships with others and myself. The greatest things that I could have hoped for didn't require lightning speed or for me to know all of the answers, they just required me to show up...and that's what I'll continue to do.