About me

I'm a senior-level UX/Product Designer. Over the last 15 years in the industry, I've explored, hypothesized, experienced, empathized, failed, learned, solved... and gone for it again until I found the right equation, trying refreshed ideas and learning wiser approaches. I've had the opportunity to work with large Fortune 500s, smaller corporations, start-ups, individuals, and agencies, who have all helped me refine my skills and understand UX from various perspectives.

My Traits:
• Myers Briggs says I'm an ENTJ (Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Margaret Thatcher, Jim Carrey). This means I'm typically an extrovert, guided by intuition, thought, and judgment. But that's not the whole story: I'm also a person who values feelings and understands how they weave their way into every experience. My goal is always to consider both data and feelings.
• My top three professional strengths according to the Clifton Profile: Restoration, Strategy, and Learning.
• I'm organized.
• I'm curious and motivated.
• I'm positive but realistic.
• I like to watch the needle move.

Things that are important to me, professionally:
• Being on a team of honest, courageous people with good communication skills. I'll work until I bleed for people I like.
• Working with a company that is doing good for the world.
• Collaborating with a visionary and practical leader who genuinely understands design systems and UX.
• Quality
• To understand both the big picture and the details.

Challenges I'm working to overcome:
• Over-filling my plate
• Being a perfectionist (a lot of people say this but its genuinely true)

"My nature is to scan a situation for problems and get to fixing them using analytics, empathy, beauty, and the principles of social psychology and human factors. Hand me a mess to fix and I'm a happy girl."

My mission

In the last few years I've realized how important it is with whom I work, and that my jobs has an affect on the world and is an extension of my ethics. So, I've recently focused on using my skillset towards causes that I believe make the world a better place, like promoting knowledge and positivity, animal welfare, health and wellness, veterans, and travel. My hope is that I'll create some joy, and that's really all I'm after. 

Take a look at my Resume.

My specialties

My background is in Fine Arts and Graphic Design; and though visual design was my first love, I've completed many successful projects in all of the following disciplines as well.

NATIVE & WEB

Native app including iOS and Android, print and web including responsive from desktop to tablet to phone to in-store.

INFO ARCH. & INTERACTION

Visually communicate abstract concepts through sketches, rapid prototypes, low-fi and high-fi wireframes and prototypes, conditioning, card-sorting, create behavior expectations through interaction specs and examples.
Axure, Invision, Balsamiq, and JustInMind.

UI & BRAND DESIGN

Creating and applying brand and UI through typography, imagery, color, iconography, and more. Branding specialties include finding internal vision/mission, persona workshops, and finding external brand - creating all visual design from brick-and-mortar to digital platforms to internal company direction.
Photoshop, Illustrator, Webflow, CMS

IDEATION

Collaboration, ideation through brainstorming sessions with internal stakeholders and teammates and anyone else who's interested.
Whiteboard, sketch, Proofme, online drawing tools

USER TESTING & INTERVIEWING

Uncover usability issues and validate design decisions based on actual user reactions through moderated and unmoderated usability tests and focus groups, creating test plans itemizing what we want to learn and how we're going to learn it, to making action plan from our results. UserTesting, Lookback, DScout, Guerilla

OPTIMIZATION TESTING

Analyzing qualitative data from sources like usability testing and interviews and quantitative data from Heatmapping tools such as Clicktale, Crazy Egg, Hotjar, Lucky Orange; Google Analytics; In-app analytics; A/B testing with Optimizely and home-grown testing platforms. Integrate testing strategy into process as well.

RESEARCH & DISCOVERY

Learn challenges, context, history, requirements, etc. Apply techniques in order to add context and insight into the design process. Competitive evaluations, heuristics, surveys, personas, psychographics, use cases, emotion mapping, and more.

MAPPING

Capture user behavior, pain points, motivations, and needs from contextual inquires. Group into logical pillars. Map out product features for each pillar to identify gaps, opportunities, and feature bloat.Journey mapping aligning user paths and emotions with the stakeholders needs, day-in-the-life exercises,

DOCUMENTATION & QA

Create process around builds, house ideas, and plan feature production and prioritization, and QA the results - through user stories, product log, JIRA tickets and management, Confluence,Trello, ProofMe, optimization plan docs, and more.

WEB CODING

This is a secondary skill:
Code in HTML and CSS languages using home-grown code or Bootstrap, with knowledge of Javascript, and many CMS platforms such as Webflow, Wix, Wordpress, Magento, and more.

COPYWRITING

This is a secondary skill:
Create engaging and relevant copy in support of UX/UI. InCopy, Proofme, Google Drive

PHOTOGRAPHY

This is a secondary skill:
Photograph for projects as support for UI and photography projects as standalones. Nikon.

My UX philosophy

A good experience is weaved into every touchpoint of a product. A UXer pays attention to quality and how it affects the product, and understands how the details affect the bigger picture. And, at the same time, understands which refinements can be sacrificed to keep the wind in the sails. I believe that a product is never "done" but sometimes has to be shipped in order to learn and improve (and make money). Sometimes we just have to get stuff out there, live without fear and ensure that our ideas don't turn into stale hypothesis. However, I don't believe in throwing a bunch of stuff out into the wild with no organization or strategy (yikes). Not every company understands this delicate balance but its my duty to try.

My process

A project should be flexible in terms of how long each phase takes and how much effort is put into it, but each phase is an important part of the successful whole.

1. It's a pleasure to meet you, market.

Research could take one hour or one year, but discovery and insights are the foundation for any project. I've only worked in technical UX/market research for about four years, but as a designer since the early 2000s, it comes naturally for me.

2. Follow the north star.

Analyze and come up with a plan. What's our perspective on this project? How does it align with what we've learned about our users and our business objectives? Will it kick butt? How will we know? I create product documentation that will allow all teams and members to be on the same page, and will keep me heading towards that project north star.

3. Eternal sunshine.

Another fun part. IDEAS. In addition to my own ideation, I lead brainstorm sessions cross-departmentally and/or with clients, and sometimes I take this out into the wild. Good ideas will come from anywhere.

4. Has anyone seen my hammer?

I've always said a UX project is like building a house. And in this phase, the blueprints are the foundation, and taking hammer to nail and watching it come to life is where I have tried-and-true fun. My career began with visual design 15 years ago, so when I get to sweat over my work as it comes to life and I create solutions that are easy and beautiful... that's the good stuff.

5.Ship it like it’s...costing money not to.

Our baby is growing up so fast... Shipping her can be scary but I've learned that if we've tested early and I trust in our strategy, its like riding a bike. Sure we'll scrape our knees, but letting go is the only way to fly. It's an important lesson I've learned as I've refined my work in the Agile environment over the last 6+ years.

6. Feed me.

Now for the juicy data and feedback. For me, reading heatmaps, analytics, test results, talking to users, etc is absolutely addictive. It means I'm getting better at my craft and I'm becoming wiser. And really, what's the point in all this if we never know how our work has affected the user, the business, the world?

The other stuff

What do I do when I'm not face-down in a device? I love to ski, draw, read, camp, travel, eat veggie hot dogs, carve pumpkins, and do anything that gets my heart racing a little like snowmobiling, archery, or sleeping out in the wilds of Africa. I run a UX Knowledge Club; I own and operate a non-profit for which I sketch people's pets and the proceeds go to charity; I work at an animal shelter and sometimes take volunteering vacations; and I do a little pro bono photography, design, and admin projects for causes I believe in.

If I've piqued your interest, or you have questions or even site feedback, please don't hesitate to reach out.
Unless you're a spam-bot, in which case, please do hesitate.

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