Commitment to Community

Each year, I donate at least 100 hours of my time to a nonprofit doing important work in my community. Whenever possible, I look for opportunities to donate time doing what I do best — helping folks collect, use, and understand data.

Although they may be interested in data, many nonprofits lack a clear sense of how they could be using their data to advance their mission, or may not have the funding for a dedicated data team to get projects started. By volunteering my time each year, I offer a free opportunity for nonprofits to see what working with data could mean for their organization. Because I commit to a substantial amount of time over a year-long timeframe, it’s possible for me to really get to know the needs of the organization and to come up with viable solutions that will last past my personal involvement. It’s also an important way for me to connect with my community and learn more about the amazing work happening all around me.

I spent 2017 working with the excellent people at Supportive Housing of Waterloo (SHoW), redesigning their donor database from the ground up to make it easier to use, more efficent, and substantially cheaper. SHoW provides permanent housing for the hardest to house people — people who have been persistently homeless, sometimes for the majority of their lives — and SHoW helps keep them in housing by providing a building with holistic support, working together with residents and their support networks to do whatever needs to be done. They are in the business of restoring safety and dignity to people who have come through horrific experiences, a job that they manage with a seemingly endless supply of warmth and creativity. I’m honored to have been able to help.