“Creative living is a path for the brave.” – Elizabeth Gilbert, Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear  

I was first drawn to Environmental Initiative’s work in 2006.  As a recent liberal arts college graduate, working at the confluence of business, government, and nonprofit interests just made sense.  The problems we face – from climate change to clean water – span all aspects of the economy and society.  I believed it then and know it in my bones now.

Over the span of my initial tenure at Environmental Initiative, I had the opportunity to manage Project Green Fleet and the Parks and Trails Legacy Funding project, direct fundraising efforts, and serve as Communications Director.  When I left in 2017, Environmental Initiative was just starting to explore how we might meaningfully address environmental justice and social equity through collaboration.  These critically important conversations continued after my departure and have coalesced through the organization’s recently completed strategic plan.  

Over the past four years, I’ve worked as a freelance communications and fundraising strategist helping nonprofits to tell their stories. I moved halfway around the world where I worked for Pacific Hydro, a renewable energy developer, owner and operator in Melbourne, Australia. As a member of the communications and engagement team, I interfaced with wind and solar farm host communities, managed the community grant program and supported both internal and external communications efforts. And, I became a parent for the first time as the pandemic took off across the globe. 

Running my own business, new motherhood, moving overseas (and back again) have needed equal parts bravery and creativity. As it turns out, collaboration also requires these things.  My role at Environmental Initiative this time around will also call for a blend creativity and courage. I’m leading communications functions along with Deborah Carter McCoy, with a special focus on social media and other digital strategies. But, I’ll also be wearing a project manager hat as we prepare for the next phase of Clean Air Minnesota’s work.  

The systems we’ve built are not fair for everyone, in many cases by design. The evolution of Environmental Initiative’s work to include communities, particularly those most impacted by environmental injustice, is closely aligned with my own personal journey and commitment to antiracism and equity. To untangle the complex and systemic problems we face and build a world that is truly just for all living beings, the best of all ideas and perspectives are needed.

I’m excited to be back, to keep listening, learning, and to move forward together.