I have 8+ years of diverse organizing experience cultivating community around social issues.
I enjoy bringing people together to discuss important ideas that I'm passionate about.
Do It Better, a social design collective, hosted OSCEdays Chicago 2017, inviting diverse architecture and design practitioners for a dinner and conversation about social design in Chicago. Prompts included What is social design? Why Chicago? How do we document design? and How does design evolve? Hosted at Archeworks, sponsored by Milliken, the Ruder Group, Chicago Lightworks, Carnegie, and Humanscale.
As part of OpenIDEO's Food Waste Challenge, we hosted public events to answer: "How might we dramatically reduce waste by transforming our relationship with food?" Event organizers approached the prompt by engaging in culture mapping, group dialogue, and food waste diaries to determine participants' existing relationship with food and knowledge of food systems. Results were shared with the OpenIDEO community online.
As part of the international OSCEdays (Open Source Circular Economy Days), Reuse Alliance IL and Plant Chicago asked Chicago's anchor institutions: "What does the circular economy mean to you?" Responses from the Cook County Department of Environmental Control, Method, and Loyola University, among others were shared. Chicago was the first city in the U.S. to enroll in this inaugural event. Sponsored by WBEZ Chicago, Whole Foods, and New Belgium Brewery.
As BOOST Committee Chair for 2+ years, I oversaw project growth and annual event planning, including: messaging strategy, copywriting, and art direction for project rebranding; marketing content and asset creation; securing in-kind services to produce media short; and managing volunteer board members. Under my guidance, BOOST awarded $14,000to 4 Chicago-based social ventures and increased the project's profile for future funding seasons.
Groups & projects
Reuse Alliance IL (RA-IL) was a state-wide, Chicago-based chapter of the national nonprofit Reuse Alliance that ran from 2014-16.
RA-IL was born from a need to support Illinois' diverse and under-supported reuse community. Through public presentations and guest speakers spotlighting national and international reuse projects, RA-IL executed an agenda of local advocacy and created community among disparate practitioners.
The Young and the Reuseless was a monthly meetup series exploring reuse and Chicago's waste stream that from 2014-15.
Every month, Y&R explored a unique reuse project in Chicago; tours included urban wood recovery, flower reuse, mattress renovation, bicycle repair, and others. Y&R aimed to spotlight the diversity of the region's reuse projects through public tours, making reuse visible and accessible to all Chicagoans.
The Waste/Not project is a visual archive of Municipal Solid Waste, that ran from 2015-16.
A trash photo series, Waste/Not turns a critical eye towards urban detritus and explores the site of exchange where discards enter the public domain. This project aims to capture the visual identity of municipal refuse and introduce a broader dialogue on waste.
At Archeworks Agendas 01, Karen MacKay and I were invited to present MAKE+DO, a project inspiring disruptive action to raise awareness about building materials reuse, food waste, and fast fashion. MAKE+DO evolved from our Archeworks Certificate Program project ReuseCHI.
On behalf of Reuse Alliance IL, I was asked to present on materials reuse to environmental science students at Loyola University. The presentation focused on reuse efforts at the policy, industry, and local levels citing examples of each.
As a graduate student of Goddard College's Social Innovation and Sustainability program, I presented on the origins of social innovation, business models from the circular economy, and intersections between the two fields.
As Chapter Founder & Coordinator of Reuse Alliance IL, I was invited to speak at the Illinois Recycling Association and Solid Waste Agency of North America's joint industry conference. Presenting to an audience of waste practitioners, I focused on the narrative elements of waste and stories of material inspiration.