Co-Founder & President / July 2014 - Present
I’m co-founder and president of tech nonprofit AsylumConnect. I’ve led AsylumConnect for 5 years in establishing the first and only digital platform for LGBTQ asylum. AsylumConnect’s free resource website and app connects users with verified LGBTQ- and immigrant-friendly services in the United States, Canada and Mexico. LGBTQ asylum seekers use the app as a free digital one-stop-shop referral site to meet their needs in all aspects of their lives, including where it is safe to go for help with: housing, legal, food, medical, mental health, community, education and employment. Lawyers and other direct service providers also use AsylumConnect to gather verified referrals for LGBTQ clients. Since 2016, the app has connected over 11,000 unique users with verified LGBTQ- and immigrant-friendly services in the U.S. When AsylumConnect reaches scale, there should never be a time when someone does not know where it is safe to go for help due to their LGBTQ identity or immigration status.
For my work on AsylumConnect, I was selected as the winner of MCC15’s Millennium Peace Prize at the UN and the Business Today Impact Challenge (2015), named to the Clinton Foundation’s Clinton Global Initiative University (CGI U) Alumni Honor Roll of social innovators and a Mogul Influencer (2017), and a Washington Post’s WP BrandStudio Influencer (2018). In 2019, I became a Roddenberry Foundation’s Roddenberry Fellow and joined Urban Justice Center’s Social Justice Accelerator.
Major Awards Won for AsylumConnect
2019 Roddenberry Foundation’s Roddenberry Fellowship
Fall 2018 Unfunded List (top proposals from organizations with less than a $5M annual operating budget which deserve more funding)
Winner of 2018 Awesome Without Borders grant supported by the Awesome Foundation & the Harnisch Foundation
Named to Clinton Foundation's inaugural 2017 Clinton Global Initiative University (CGI U) Alumni Honor Roll of social innovators
Finalist for 2017 Harvard Social Enterprise Conference (SECON) Pitch Competition
Commitment to Action featured at the 2016 Clinton Global Initiative University (CGI U) meeting at University of California, Berkeley
Winning Team of the 2015 Business Today Impact Challenge at the BT International Conference
Winner of the 2015 Millennium Peace Prize at the 7th Annual Millennium Campus Conference (MCC15) at the United Nations
Fellow for the 2015 Penn Social Impact House (22 Penn and Columbia student and alumni leaders in social impact)
Winner of the 2015 Global Hesselbein Student Leadership Award (1 of 50 global student recipients)
Co-Founder & Board Member / July 2016 - Present
In July 2016, I co-founded a second tech nonprofit, UPchieve. UPchieve is an ed-tech nonprofit providing free, online, on-demand STEM tutoring and college counseling to low-income high school students in the U.S. I currently serve on the UPchieve board of directors.