Leading With Heart

Last month I participated in a workshop called Own Your Voice, led by one of my heroes, Grace Kraaijvanger, founder of The Hivery. Grace’s goal was to help “entrepreneurs, writers, creatives and seekers describe their work, wisdom, and talent with confidence.” In the workshop, Grace shared nine pillars for owning your voice. Here is a […]


My first paid job after I graduated from college was almost working at Barnes and Noble. I had been “interning” (a fancy word for volunteering) for several months for both the Superintendent of Alameda Unified School District and for Senator Feinstein, and I needed a paycheck. The holiday season was approaching and Barnes and Noble […]

Black Excellence Is…

Recently, I interviewed a group of twelfth grade students for an article on Black Excellence in Gateway’s quarterly newsletter, The Gate. I was completely blown away by the wisdom and maturity of the students. Somehow, they already understand such an important truth: our greatest power and impact comes from being our true selves. Everyday Leadership […]


February 17th is Random Acts of Kindness Day, and I think it’s fair to say we are all a little starved for it. In this time of increased tension and social mistrust, kindness is more important than ever, and it is an essential part of everyday leadership. Treating people with kindness is a way of […]

Know Your Boundaries

A few weeks ago, I shared 5 Ways to Be a Badass.  #3 on the list is “Know Your Boundaries.”  I remember the first time I stepped into a classroom as a new teacher. I had no idea if I would be effective with boundaries. I am not the loudest or firmest person, and I […]

Adventures in Badassery

A couple of weeks ago, I boldly declared that my overarching goal for this year is to roll into 50 like a badass. I spent Winter Break preparing. Like a good Virgo, I approached the project methodically. Armed with brightly colored sticky notes and my favorite pens, I set about creating a plan. I didn’t […]

5 Ways To Be A Badass

My overarching goal for 2021: Roll into 50 like a badass. I turn 50 on September 2nd.  The start of a new year is often a time of introspection. I appreciate this intentional pause between what has been and what will be. I relish the opportunity to delineate a fresh start and to create intentions […]

How To Say Goodbye to 2020

It’s easy to rattle off the ways 2020 has been challenging and even downright awful. No need to recite them here.  A year ago, I remember my joyful anticipation of 2020: a new decade, a round number, the end of an extremely hard year. In September of 2018, Nancy’s team of doctors discovered a recurrence […]

COVID-Style: 19 Ways To Pass The Time

Each Monday I meet with my advisory group – a dozen students in ninth through twelfth grades. Advisory is intended to be students’ safe place at school. It’s a mix of academic guidance, group bonding, and personal support and cheerleading.  This week was our last official meeting before the end of the semester and Winter […]

The Color Purple

Yesterday, my friend Beth, the fantastic leader of Leadership High School, reminded me of the official standards that define the work of good principals in California. Like all documents of this type, the standards have a long and officious name and an even worse acronym: the California Professional Standards for Education Leaders (CPSEL). Realizing I […]


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