How I got here…
My career and educational journey has been filled with twists and career pivots. In 2013 I landed my first staffing agency gig thanks to a referral from a close family friend and mentor. After dropping out of a 4-year university that wasn’t a good fit as well as stints as an insurance agent, retail sales associate, and office assistant (told you there were a lot of pivots!) it was a welcome change and brought a lot of stability to my life. Despite having no experience and no college degree, I eagerly learned the ropes. I like to say that I “cut my teeth” in that first agency job.
Working in agency recruiting, I realized how many conversations were happening offline especially when third-parties were involved. Some candidates easily won bookings while others struggled with no feedback. The only differentiator seemed to be access, network, resources, and the ability to articulate marketable skills. This fueled my passion for knowledge sharing to help candidates demonstrate their skills.
Agency life was financially rewarding but hectic. After three years in, I was craving a change in industry. The work-life balance and perks of the tech industry seemed intriguing and I decided to start applying. After sending out applications via AngelList (now WellFound) I managed to get an interview with a seed-stage SF-based startup looking for a Recruiter in LA, BlueCrew. I landed my first official gig in tech with them in 2016.
I don’t know what’s more stereotypical of startup life than the early years of a company. The founders were all incredibly involved, and every employee was wearing many hats. It was exhilarating being part of a small, driven team. Even though the company ultimately downsized in 2017 and my role was eliminated, I was hooked on tech’s potential.
With each subsequent startup, I worked for I was moving up the ladder both in company size and funding, going from a 10-person Series A fintech company to a 200+ employee Series D HR startup and most recently late-stage with Reddit. At the HR startup, Lever, I restarted college, graduating from Pepperdine’s online business program in 2019…only 7 years past my original timeline not bad for a detour!
Reddit was the most established tech company I’d worked for. I was exposed to a lot of internal processes and operations that grew my skill set and I saw how quickly a company can scale – the Ads engineering department I supported grew from 65 to over 200 during my tenure. Transitioning into the tech industry was a game-changer for me in my personal, professional, and financial growth. After almost 3 years and a lot of thought on career transitions, including exploring internal transfer options, I decided to step away and start my own thing as a founder in 2023.
My startup, Gaze, provides a platform for LGBTQ+ creators to safely monetize their content while fostering connection and community. Having been openly out at work at inclusive companies since 2018, I’m thrilled to empower and celebrate queer voices with this venture.
With over 10 years of tech recruiting experience, I have an insider’s perspective on what it takes to land jobs and thrive in the industry. From resume reviews and interview prep to salary negotiations and career mapping, I empower professionals at all levels to have an edge in today’s competitive job market.