is a strategist + designer + facilitator + technologist
What does that mean?
I center the work it takes so that people can make meaningful decisions around the processes, services, and products they (might) make.
I design and conduct research, analyze and evaluate – and, combined with human needs, co-create information, often in the forms of: service blueprints, experience journeys, user stories, product roadmaps, taxonomies, matrixes, and of course insights and informed recommendations.
For me, I love that technology can help organize and support our lives. BUT I know it is NOT neutral. So I use design techniques that center people impacted by decisions.
Read my Medium case studies // Check out my CV // Say hello on Twitter
With technology, I:
- design services and digital interfaces to be efficient and inclusive.
- support secure systems and autonomous use of the internet, in particular digital security for vulnerable communities.
- develop interfaces, software, and workflows that are accessibly optimized for humans and driven by need.
- architect data schemas and open-source software systems for efficient, transparent use.
- build digital catalogs and archives for cultural creators and institutions.
- Organize and document the ever-loving crap out of everything I touch!
I currently run a design strategy consulting firm, Staircase Strategy, and work with clients from global NPOs to enterprise firms who want facilitated leadership for cross-functional teams in the discovery, design, and testing of innovative strategies and solutions for complex problems. In the interest of taking a future-of work approach, this is a four-day workweek experiment I’m running, for 2022.
I recently worked as an Experience Strategy Lead on a Research and Service Design team at a regional bank, creating and measuring a CX maturity model, partnering with both customer-facing and internal teams to identify, prioritize, and test enhancements that matter, and generally wrangling data into usable insights.
I worked with ConsenSys as a Design Thinking Facilitator, which means combining product strategy, agile, and user-centered design to help teams create valuable blockchain systems and products.
I worked with the Participatory Budgeting Project as the Director of Data and Technology, testing and creating human-centered technology for civic use. I’m particularly proud of the open data project mypb.community.
I believe that defined horizontal structures work incredibly well, and was worker-owner at Openflows Community Technology Coop (2013-2016); recently became a Certified Scrum Master and train formally and informally to level up my people management and facilitation skills.
I believe in both formal and self-directed education, so after receiving a Masters Degree and Certificate in Interactive Technology and Pedagogy from the wonderful CUNY Graduate Center (2011-2013), I spent a year as the Resident Scholar at the Interference Archive.
As a community organizer who also implements technology to help activists succeed, and a multimedia artist who also builds digital archives, my work intersects functionality with agility, practicality, and the democratic politics of open-source cultures. I have collaborated on digital collection sites for John Jay library, The Interference Archive, and more. I earned a Master’s Degree in American Studies from the CUNY Graduate Center.
I’m curious and adventurous in life and design.
In 1987 my grandmother taught me how to sew, and my mother taught me pattern-making and fabric-based crafts; I went on to costume design school and professional production in new and vintage fabrics as well as leather.
In 1994 I began working in print by making zines and went on to edit a university newspaper and Art Direct a magazine along with making posters and flyers for events, book interiors, press kits, CD covers…
In 2000 I began staging photo shoots and digitally editing the images for creative collages; now I’ve styled product and portrait shoots for fine art, editorial print, and web uses.
In 2004 I formed a performance troupe and we realized that the a web presence was the best way to promote ourselves, so I taught myself HTML to make our site; now I’ve built or maintained over a dozen beautiful sites.
In 2005 I decided to begin recording audio, and in 2008 video – and now I teach a DIY audio course and have had my short videos play all over the US, Canada and the EU.
I’m passionate about supporting social justice, free speech, individuals’ self- representations, and the hard work put in by small business owners and working artists to realize their dreams.
My education has been broad, both formal and self-driven, and is lifelong. I care about the work I do and the projects I take on, because they must reflect my vision of a DIY/C [that last “c” is for collectively!] world.
I spent many years building the back end of websites; creating content and visual design for web and print; and consulting on digital strategy and marketing. I used to offer creative production services:
Cross-genre creative production is close to the fabric of my life, and I’m thrilled to work with others to share my skills. I used to offer communication design in web, print, styling and multimedia platforms, but now I focus on working teams to facilitate self-organizing and human-centered decisions. I take on consulting partnerships in these areas.
I’m pleased to offer special rates to working artists and female or minority-owned small businesses – please contact me for specifics. Welcome to my blog and portfolio, I look forward to hearing from you if there’s a project you have in mind or a tool or other progressive technologist you think I should know about.