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International Women’s Day: Recognizing Members of the #BestTeamEver

Today is International Women’s Day – a global day that celebrates the economic, cultural, social, and political achievements of women. International Women’s Day has been observed since the early 1900’s to commemorate women’s rights. We’ve chosen to celebrate this day by recognizing eight of the amazing women on our team.

Terimarie Degree, Operations Manager

I have six years’ experience working with Salesforce. Like many others in the ecosystem, I just happened to catch on a little faster than some of my colleagues and thus became an accidental administrator at a breast cancer nonprofit in the Midwest. I experienced challenges as a younger woman with a family amongst baby-boomer coworkers who did not keep pace with shifting practices about flexibility and work/life balance. After a few years using Salesforce, I set out to become an independent Salesforce Consultant.  Working for myself gave me the flexibility to continue with Salesforce, while also having more time for my family and career as a professional poet.

While on this path, I came across the opportunity to work for Cloud for Good as the Operations Associate. The virtual environment, flexible schedule and professional development opportunities have allowed me to contribute to the nonprofit community, while also being present with my two boys who are enrolled in virtual school. I’ve even had my poetry published in three books. I encourage women who feel the pinch of balancing it all to NOT accept that you have to continue on an unfulfilling path. It may require a leap of faith to put yourself out there, but take the risk and try something new, because it is possible.

Annie Shek, Director of Professional Services

Being a Trailblazer is about sharing knowledge. Two years ago, I started #Trailhead4All, a call to action to bring Trailhead to underrepresented communities that may not have exposure to technology opportunities. I’ve worked with volunteer Trailblazers and Salesforce to bring #Trailhead4All events to schools and different nonprofits. I recently partnered with the Bay Area Developer User Group, Salesforce, and Diversability to bring Trailhead education to people with disabilities. In my spare time, I also co-lead the Grand Rapids Developer User Group.

Cloud for Good has always been a company that I’ve admired for its ability to create positive social impact by helping nonprofits and higher education institutions become more effective and efficient with Salesforce. I joined the team for the opportunity to guide clients on decisions that drive successful implementations forward, cultivate an amazing team of consultants, and leverage my entrepreneurial spirit for the company.

Jen Keys, Senior Cloud Consultant

One might say that my path to joining Cloud for Good was not exactly straightforward. Albeit, choosing one’s career at such a young age is never ideal, but when you are on the path toward becoming a professional dancer, commitment at an intense level is required early on and often, without hesitation. Once it was time to take that leap as a professional however, I realized how unsettled and disconnected I felt from the world beyond the arts. I took it upon myself to explore opportunities abroad, volunteer wherever I could, and connect with professionals across the Jewish nonprofit sector. I began working at a nonprofit that supported young social entrepreneurs across the globe. Uncovering a hidden talent, I became one of the organization’s “accidental Salesforce Admins.” And, it was at that moment when I realized I could “do good” for others by providing a platform for them to be successful, so that they could in turn, spread their own version of “good” with the world. I was inspired because they inspired me – it was incredibly motivating!

Striving to build a career around these core values of social good and working closely with individuals to support and ultimately achieve their missions has been deeply rewarding. Unleashing an unexpected love for Salesforce along the way has simply been the icing on the cake! While my dreams may have shifted course over the years, I’m grateful that my circuitous path has led me to help others realize their own.

Lindsey Ciochina, Director of Finance and Administration

At Cloud for Good, I have the opportunity to invest, on a daily basis, in our organization’s biggest and most valuable asset – our people. I consider my work a privilege because if our team feels supported, then they are best able to give our clients – organizations we deeply care about – the best solutions possible. Working to obtain resources, administer benefits, contributing to our organizational culture, and helping other realize and take advantage of opportunities for growth and learning is extremely rewarding.

As a former nonprofit leader, working for a mission I’m passionate about means I’m finding fulfillment at work. I also needed to find a workplace that allowed me to balance all my life’s priorities in and out of work. I’m proud to work for a company that deeply values the women and men who make up the Cloud for Good team. The very structure of how we work together is centered around our people bringing their full selves to work. We are able and equipped to do so because we all work virtually – at home, in our own time-zones, over our computers and headsets. As a working mom/wife/sister/daughter/friend/mentor, it’s worthwhile to me to both have a big impact at work and be able to balance my wants and needs, as well as the needs of others in my circle.

Emily Anne Hinck, Director of Professional Services

Nonprofit organizations are the change-makers in our society. Early in my professional life, I recognized the critical role of NGOs. My career started in experiential education, and I quickly realized I could have a much greater impact by taking on operations and leadership roles. The easiest professional decision I ever made was to pursue a Master’s degree in nonprofit management. Through this program, a passion developed for operational efficiency, change management, and the nonprofit lifecycle. Over the next several years, I took on a variety of roles at international, national, and regional organizations in both staff and board positions with responsibilities ranging from marketing, communications, program development, fundraising, event management, board engagement, and donor relationships.

To expand my impact and capitalize further on my experiences and skills, I dove head-first into a consulting role at Cloud for Good. Now, as a Director, I am able to interact with a larger variety of organizations while helping consultants recommend the best processes and solutions to meet the organization’s needs. Seeing clients successfully launch, or re-launch, Salesforce and hearing the amazing success stories of how the Salesforce platform has increased their efficiency, collaboration, and organizational effectiveness continues to drive my passion.

Paige Van Riper, Director of Professional Services

I worked for most of my career in nonprofit management. At the last nonprofit I worked for, I was put in charge of implementing our technology plan which included creating a new website and selecting a Constituent Relationship Management (CRM) system for our entire organization. We ultimately selected Salesforce and after seeing the transformative effect it had on our organization, and our work, I was hooked. After attending my first Dreamforce, I came back to Los Angeles and founded the Los Angeles Salesforce Nonprofit User Group because I wanted to help other nonprofits tap into the power of the platform.

Over time, working in the Salesforce nonprofit ecosystem I became aware of Cloud for Good and the great work they were doing. I started freelance Salesforce consulting and at one point helped a client hire Cloud for Good for some work that was outside of my skill-set. Five years ago, I decided to come work for Cloud for Good, starting as a Cloud Consultant and eventually moving into the Director of Professional Services role. I love my work supervising a team of our passionate consultants. I am honored to have been selected as a Salesforce MVP last year and am driven to continue helping others get the most they can out of Salesforce.

Emily Morse, Senior Cloud Consultant

After completing my graduate education, I sought out opportunities to help nonprofits tell their stories through the strategic collection and analysis of program evaluation data. I had some experience using Salesforce as an end-user, but had not been engaged with Salesforce from an administrator perspective. Our organization chose to move forward with the platform, and I had the great fortune to work closely with my implementation partner to design our organization’s system – learning while doing – and I quickly realized the capacity of the platform to enhance other nonprofit’s program evaluation strategies. I earned my Administrator and Sales Cloud Consultant certifications, and I began consulting. The opportunity to be a Cloud Consultant at Cloud for Good – working exclusively with nonprofits, higher ed institutions, and public sector clients – emerged as a natural next step in my career. Since starting my job here, I have appreciated that my role enables and challenges me to consult with organizations of all types and sizes, ranging from small community-based programs to global advocacy groups.

Throughout each step of my journey – from graduate education, to direct nonprofit work, to studying for certifications, to consulting independently and later as a staff person at Cloud for Good – strong women in my field have been important role models as I grow and transition my career. When I was an intern at the Mentoring Partnership, my internship supervisor recommended that I request informational interviews with people from whom I may want a job someday, and she connected me with prospects from her network. Since then, I have used this strategy many times to learn from women with awesome jobs.

Brittany Rhynold, Cloud Consultant

The tech company I joined after completing university was in the process of being acquired by Salesforce, and as I started to learn the Salesforce platform as part of my new job, I was quickly swept into a new world where my assumptions about technical careers and my own skills were challenged day by day. I loved the creative adaptability of the platform and seeing how clients could use it in so many radically different ways across every industry, the vibrant user community that freely shared resources and time with each other in the name of mutual success, as well as the accessibility that “clicks not code” development possibilities opened up to a wide user base.

Through Salesforce’s 1-1-1 program and The Power of Us program, I had the opportunity to give back to my community through pro bono Salesforce implementations for a few local nonprofits, and this is when I fell in love with Cloud for Good and their mission. The blog and webinars quickly became the top resources both myself and my nonprofit clients turned to as we navigated their projects together. The more I worked with nonprofits, the more invested I became in understanding their unique challenges and needs. I saw the immense and often immediate impact that Salesforce had on their day-to-day lives, and I realized that this was the kind of meaningful work I had always hoped to do. I switched my career focus to consulting and happily landed a job as a Cloud Consultant earlier this year. Working with the Cloud for Good team is a completely unique experience- I’m constantly impressed by how accomplished my coworkers are, both personally and professionally, and yet they never hesitate to set aside the time for a quick virtual coffee or to freely collaborate and knowledge-share whenever anyone needs help. It’s hard not to come to work inspired when you’re surrounded by smart, passionate people who are living and working their values.

Today we celebrate the women at Cloud for Good who are having a greater impact on others, while achieving their own successes and balancing work, life and family, as well as ALL women across the globe. We appreciate each one of you! If there is a woman in your life who has had an impact, reach out and let them know – you might just make her day.

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