Tell us a bit about yourself! How did you get started with your current career path/business journey?
As a Black queer woman, I've navigated personal experiences with harrasment and discrimination in the workplace, but also in the hiring process. I experienced a period of unemployed for months and attended an overwhelming number of interviews ending with being told I was underqualified, overqualified, or qualified, but “not the right fit.” I reclaimed my power and found a way to build a lane fighting against oppression and towards equity.
I wanted Black queer, trans, nonbinary womxn and allies to have a safe space to apply to jobs from employers committed to inclusivity and equity in their hiring process and work environments. At the end of February, I launched our website blackremoteshe.com to share access to these roles.
How are you overcoming challenges during the pandemic as a business owner?
I work with two different nonprofits outside of Black Remote She and I love what I do, but COVID-19 caused emergency responses and major shifts in our work. I needed to keep up with the demand, but also make space for myself. I started to minimize phone calls to open my day to complete more projects and would often ask for email correspondence if things were too busy - it's kept me sane and folks have been super flexible because we're all feeling strained or trying to maintain work life balance in different ways.
What behavior or personality trait do you most attribute your success to, and why?
My desire to make a difference. I wanted to be a lawyer for most of my life until I discovered my passion for communications, technology, and data evaluation driven by social impact.
What’s a mistake you made early on in your career, and what did you learn from it?
What’s one professional skill you’re currently working on?Coding! Until we raise enough funds to build a job board, I’ve learned to work with code in our weekly newsletter and website.
In what ways are you taking care of your personal well being and what are your #selfcare tips?
I remain hydrated throughout the day and value quiet time, meditation, stretching, and time away from screens. I encourage everyone to build some type of meditation into their daily routine and to take time to eat something and hydrate yourself. We’re all busy, but the essentials can’t be ignored!
How are you inviting others to take a seat at the table #virtually?
Unemployment rates have disproportionately affected the Black community. Black queer, trans, and nonbinary folks in particular have been given limited access to job opportunities. Remote work, specifically, can offer flexibility for abled and disabled bodies. However, when I discovered remote work a few years ago, I realized few Black and Brown people knew about it and even fewer knew which employers would be a safe option. At Black Remote She, we're cultivating a virtual community to connect Black LGBTQ+ candidates with employers committed to values rooted in inclusivity and equity.
What impact has Luminary made in your career? eg: Business Generated, Revenue, New Clients, Career Connections, Advancement Opportunities
The Luminary community is so supportive. I'm a new UBS & Luminary fellow, but I've been welcomed with open arms and immediately made connections with other amazing women interested in supporting our work at Black Remote She.