I am a community organizer and creative consultant with a focus on the maker movement, cooperative development, and creative economies. For over ten years I’ve been working with makers, entrepreneurs, brands, organizations, non-profits, cooperatives, and communities across North America to develop programs that engage community, celebrate diversity, and create economic opportunity. As founder of OMHG (Oh My! Handmade Goodness) I’ve been offering advocacy, peer support, and community programming for makers since 2010 and am known as a leader in the growing maker movement.
Named one of Canada’s top bloggers by Etsy I have spoken at events across North America on the maker movement and community engagement. I’ve worked with Etsy to develop Etsy Maker Cities and can currently be found baking biscuits and gathering community as the owner of The Biscuit Eater Cafe & Books while creating economic opportunities for local makers to pioneering new models of regional cooperation as leader of Maritime Makers.
Cooperation, Community, and Creativity are my key words – how could I be anything but Canadian? I live and work in a 200 year old pink house perched at the top of town in lovely Lunenburg, Nova Scotia. I count myself profoundly blessed to do meaningful work for makers around the world while living a simple handmade life with my young family in this vibrant historical community.
Why community organizing? I sat on my first Board of Directors in East Vancouver by nine and had worked with over fifty inner city and rural organizations before I turned 20. I started my first handmade business as a young mom in 2003 and have been an entrepreneur ever since. As the granddaughter of a civil rights activist and clothing designer from Brooklyn who marched at Selma, and the Black-Cherokee-Jewish daughter of a diversity advocate it isn’t surprising I chose a life working with diverse creative communities. Drawing on this rich, diverse history of social activism and collective action I now use my community organizing skills to develop programs for both rural and urban communities across North America. I’ve built relationships with thousands of makers, innovators, companies and communities, to create projects that lift us all up and help us make real meaningful connections on and offline.
I know my two hands can make a movement and a hundred hands can make anything happen. I have seen through over 10 years of community organizing that when we work together anything is possible, my purpose is to help make that possibility reality.
I’ve been part of some great collaborations & interviews for web + print. Here are a few:
Chronicle Herald | CTV Morning | CBC | Uppercase Magazine | Handmade Marketplace | When I Grow Up Coach | Playful Learning | Altitude Summit | 1st Canadian Weblog Awards | Farideh Cesar | Smart Creative Women
Consultation & Community Services
I am available as a consultant and community organizer to develop strategies, programs, and resources that increase community impact, strengthen local economies, and result in measurable social outcomes – whether it is moderating a roundtable of diverse partners, hosting an intimate retreat for makers, or organizing a market for thousands of attendees.
- Etsy Maker Cities consultant
- Co-organizer of Etsy Made in Canada Halifax
- Organizer of Maritime Makers collective
- Design & consultation for Bamboletta
- Design & consultation for Gentle Clothing
- Design & consultation for Tara Swiger
- Community engagement strategy for Playful Learning
Speaking, Workshops, & Presentations
A dynamic and comfortable public speaker I have spoken at events across North America and would love to bring my positive, warm, collaborative approach to your programming! I have spoken on: the maker movement, community making, cooperative business, social entrepreneurship, online citizenship and why we need to use our heads + hearts + hands if we want to be whole people or make healthy communities.
- Etsy Team Captain’s Summit
- Plenary presenter at Hollyhock Summer Gathering
- Host of Maker’s Retreat at Hollyhock
- Etsy Road Trip (video)
- Altitude Design Summit
- Spark Retreat New Mexico