My career path has taken me from a humble beginning as a self-taught web developer to Creative Director to years later serving as Director of Life Labs for United Cerebral Palsy focusing on corporate innovation partnerships and startup hackathons for people with disabilities. I’ve also run a 9-month social impact accelerator for nonprofit CEO’s, traveled to Africa and Latin America in support of entrepreneurs, and been a founder of several ventures. There’s much more to the story, but you can catch it all on my LinkedIn profile. I currently run program operations for the Techstars & Western Union Accelerator.
Not counting small gigs during early teenage years (paper route anyone?), I’ve been involved in entrepreneurial ventures largely since 2001 when I created my first consultancy practice that operated for nearly 18 years. Below are some ventures I founded and one I was deeply involved in the founding.
- Founder of Notion Impact (for profit) – Notion Impact strives to break down barriers to those facing systemic and societal obstacles by offering diversified resources, curated introductions, and deep reaching conversations that advance them towards their goals.
- Founder and CEO of EightTen (for profit) – Online education startup focused on increasing the inclusion of young adults with disabilities in the labor force.
- Founder of African Tech Network (for profit) – Considered the “LinkedIn of Africa” at the time. ATN served as a bridge between African technologists and international employers (i.e. NGO’s).
- Founder of webstartAfrica (nonprofit) – Make turn-key tech tools more accessible to African entrepreneurs and nonprofit orgs promoting computer science and entrepreneurship.
- Director and Board Member of South Sudan Institute of Democracy & Peace (nonprofit) – Worked closely with CEO/President and as a Board Member and Director to establish SSIDP as an NGO operating in the newly created country of South Sudan.
Mentoring & other Volunteer Experience
Mentoring and other volunteer experiences, whether formal or informal, are crucial to growing as a leader. Important note to readers: I volunteered before I was invited to my first board position with any responsibility. I wouldn’t be where I am today without giving first to those who needed help. And I haven’t given up on that philosophy, regardless of where I am in my career. To those who have opened their doors and hearts to me, thank you for the continued opportunities that allow me to grow to become a better leader and human being.
- StartOut Mentor (ongoing 2021)
- Social Entrepreneurship Learning Lab (SELL) Program, SELL Your Impact Pitch Competition – UT Austin Judge
- Georgetown Entrepreneurship Challenge Judge
- Regis University Innovation Challenge MBA Mentor
- Yunus & Youth Demo Day Social Investor
- Blackstone LaunchPad & Techstars Pitch Competition @ Startup Grind Judge
- Beyond Silicon Valley: Growing Entrepreneurship in Transitioning Economies (Virtual Course in New Macedonia hosted by CWRU Veale Institute for Entrepreneurship: Case Western Reserve University) Guest Panelist
- University at Buffalo FinTech Design Challenge Judge
- Life Changing School at Cornell University Guest Speaker
- Watson Institute Mentor
- Advisor to Google for Techstars Startup Weekend Boulder: Accessibility in Tech
- 7-time Judge for Global Mobile Awards hosted by GSMA (2014-2021)
- CO Impact Days Social Impact Ventures Judge
- Prime Health Startup Mentor
- Governor-appointed Colorado State Rehabilitation Council Member
- Certified SCORE Business Mentor
- ICT Accessibility Testing Symposium Committee Member
- Is This Venue Accessible? Startup Advisor
- AbilityOne Design Challenge Judge
- USBLN Student Innovation Lab Organizer
- UCP Enabled by Design-athon Organizer
- Marymount University Accessible Makerspace Concept Advisor
- Cerebral Palsy Alliance Enabled by Design-athon Mentor (Australia)
- World CP Day Innovation Challenge Judge
- George Washington University Graduate Student Mentor
- The Kuyu Project Chairman of the Board
- African Centre for Mobile Financial Inclusion Advisor
- New Sudan Generation Board Member
I hold a MA in International Education & Human Development from George Washington University where I focused on developmental economics, civic engagement in developing countries using mobile technology, and gender disparity in education.