What’s your background?
Before joining USDS, I worked with state, provincial, and federal governments in the U.S. and Canada on sustainable shipping regulations and ocean observing systems. I’ve also worked on a campaign to end illegal fishing globally, and conducted environmental chemistry research aimed at measuring human impacts on coastal ecosystems.
What inspired you to join USDS?
I was inspired to join USDS because technology can do more than entertain and amaze us. Combined with good government, it can be a force for good in people’s lives.
What has been your biggest challenge?
I’m constantly reminded that “better,” isn’t always better for everyone. We’re dealing with huge systems of systems, with lots of actors, misaligned incentives and complicated feedback loops that operate on longer timescales than political cycles. So, sometimes what might seem like an obvious and needed change is met with fierce resistance. It’s our job to take a step back, deeply empathize, and do our best to create a path when the blockers seem irrational to us from our original viewpoint.
How does your work make an impact?
USDS shows what’s possible in a tangible way. Strategy papers have their place, but working software tells a story about providing better service to people that’s hard to ignore.
What do you want to do after USDS?
Continue to work with dedicated, brilliant people trying to make a dent in the universe.
What will you miss most about USDS when you leave?
The people, by far. USDSers are some of the smartest, kindest, most generous, hard-working, fun-loving people I have ever met. Bar none.
“There is definitely a need for more women of color to speak tech and government at the same time. I believe in changing the status quo, and more importantly, empowering good people with the right tools, especially in government.”
“Despite the challenges that arise on any given day, I wouldn’t trade this job for anything, especially in this moment.”
“It’s not about how can we maximize digital ad space or make conversion rates better, but how we can use technology to really make a difference in someone’s life.”
“It is a rare, one of a kind opportunity. It is the ability to work at the highest level of government in the United States to impact people at a scale that is unrivaled.”
“I’ve been involved with so many things I am proud of, but probably the most meaningful contribution is making the civil service stronger.”
“But when you serve at USDS, you wake up every day, serve your country, and have the opportunity to change the lives of millions of Americans.”
“I have many avenues to create impact at USDS, which is what keeps it interesting and fulfilling.”
“I love that we prioritize delivering the most meaningful impact to communities that need it the most.”