My entire career has been focused around online communities because I know what it feels like to be disconnected.

As a lonely, depressed and awkward teen, I discovered online communities as one of the only places where I could be seen, appreciated, heard, and cared for by total strangers — who then became my friends. It was in these spaces I began to meet people who helped me find confidence and acceptance, both of which I did not have access to in my “offline” world.

I credit these early experiences for laying the foundation for my skills leading communities. Every day, I see online spaces tearing people apart. I know we can do better, and I know the difference between genuine, meaningful community and community with no soul and center.

Today, as the founder of Gather Community Consulting, I consult with brands to build robust new communities, audit existing communities to identify strengths and areas for improvement, and provide training for brands on how to lead their own communities. I am also a speaker and educator on the topic of online communities, community-based movements, and community leadership.

Prior to founding Gather, I was the Founding Partner and COO for CMX Media, a unique “community of community builders” that provided training, events, and programs for community builders around the world. I got my professional start in community management in roles with Socratic (AI-based education app), Scribd (online library), and Chegg (online book rentals).

In 2016, I was named by Salesforce as one of three experts to follow in community management, and my writing on communities has appeared in Venture Beat, Convince and Convert, The Next Web, First Round Review, and Creator by WeWork.

In addition to being passionate about helping organizations build communities, I’m a passionate advocate for community professionals and believe that everyone deserves to belong and feel empowered.

I’m a graduate of UCLA and have done volunteer work for Young Women Empowered and Indivisible Washington (formerly Pantsuit Washington).