Digital Sisterhood Leadership Project Profile – Alexis Pauline Gumbs


Photo Credit: Sed Miles – photo provided by Alexis Pauline Gumbs

Meet Digital Sisterhood Leader Alexis Pauline Gumbs, a queer Black feminist troublemaker from Durham, North Carolina. Alexis Pauline established the Eternal Summer of the Black Feminist Mind educational program and co-created the Mobile Homecoming experiential archive, amplifying generations of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer Black brilliance.

The Digital Sisterhood Network wishes Alexis Pauline a very happy belated birthday (June 12)! Enjoy your big 3-0!

1) How can people find you online?

2) Why did you start using social media?

I started using social media back in the days of Black Planet, but someone else created my account and my name. I think I got to college at just the moment when people decided it was easier to chat on instant messenger than to walk down the hall.  I really amped up my digital media use when I started working with UBUNTU, a women of color survivor led coalition to end gendered violence, and realized that the skills we were building and especially the publications and curricula we were creating could be useful to folks everywhere.

3) What has social media allowed you to do in your life (personal, professional, business, nonprofit, community)?

New media has infused my life with inspiring relationships across space and the ability to have a global impact. BrokenBeautiful Press and Eternal Summer of the Black Feminist Mind have reached folks from Chennai, India to Nairobi, Kenya. That means it keeps me accountable and inspired in a way that supplements the inspiration I get from my amazing local community. It has also allowed me to leverage financial support from a larger based of like-minded people than I would have access to locally. Social media has also allowed me to be as queer and multiple as I am with input and output from millions of other geniuses.

4) In her 2011 Digital Women: from geeks to mainstream presentation that was given at the WIFT International Women Conference for Digital Women, Dr. Taly Weiss, a social psychologist and CEO/Founder of Trendspotting, concluded that “women are dominant digital users – they breathe and live digital.”  Dr. Weiss’ conclusion echoes BlogHer’s 2011 Social Media Matters Study findings.  They include 87 million women (18 to 76 years old) are now online, 69 million women use social media weekly, 80 million women use social media monthly, and 55 million women read blogs monthly. These facts illustrate the power and presence women have in the digital space. Now that’s Digital Sisterhood!

How has social media helped you carve out leadership roles as you interact online and offline?

Social media has definitely made some of the most exciting collaborations in my life possible. Co-creating the SPEAK CD with other radical women of color bloggers is one such experience. I don’t think I would have come to the idea to create a spoken word CD on my own, ever, but as a collective we were able to create something miraculous and bigger than the interrelated work we were each doing. I also think that social media allowed me to find validation at times when many people directly around me may not have been thinking about the same issues.  And don’t get me started on how many Google documents I’ve used in my collaborative editing, writing, dreaming, and organizing processes with other folks.

5) Social media has helped women become Digital Sisterhood Leaders, ambassadors of social expression who share what they are passionate about online.  In her upcoming book, Digital Sisterhood: Fierce Living Online for 25 Years (Fall 2012), Ananda Leeke, founder of the Digital Sisterhood Network, writes, “Without even knowing it, women have become Digital Sisterhood Leaders as they use their social media platforms to advocate causes; to build communities; to create apps, art, books, businesses, products, publications, services, tools, and webisodes; to curate content; to educate and inform; to give voice to their thoughts as subject matter experts, thought leaders, and brand ambassadors; to share information and experiences; to explore and experiment with new technologies as early adopters and trendsetters; to engage in social good; to influence others with their lifestyles and personal interests; to inspire and motivate; to mentor; to network; to tell their personal stories; and to promote and celebrate the expertise, gifts, and talents of others.  Based on my online and offline interactions, I have identified 12 key leadership roles they play: advocate, community builder, creator, curator, educator, influencer, mentor, motivator, promoter, social do gooder, storyteller, and thought leader.”

What other types of leadership roles do women play in social media?

Sounds like you’ve got ’em.  12 is a good number to stick with!

6) What types of leadership roles do you play in social media?

I think (like the zodiac) all 12 of the roles you mentioned describe some of the work that I do. I think different social media outlets that I have serve these different purposes. I channel my energy in each of these ways on different days. I see it as my specific responsibility to demonstrate a joyful, love-filled dynamic Black feminist ethic of transformation in action via social media. That’s what I’m advocating. That’s the community I’m building. Those are the spaces I’m curating and influencing. And the stories I’m telling etc. etc. etc.

7) What lessons have you learned as a leader in the digital space?

I’ve learned that relationships are the most important resource for making miracles happen.

8) Do you have plans to expand your leadership roles in the digital space? If so, what are they?

I definitely want to play more of a creator role, which I think requires learning a lot more about the technical and coding side than I know now. I love all of the languages that I know now and I think learning and analyzing computer languages will be a new source of poetic nerdly joy!

9) Who are your favorite social media women leaders and why?

A lot of them are on this list. There are actually too many to name…  Renina Jarmon, Moya Bailey, Sydette Harry, Mamita Mala, Firefly, Reina Gossett Sudy at My Ecdysis, Mai’a Williams at Guerilla Mama Medicine, Summer M. at Black Youth Project, the folks at Feminist Wire, Crunk Feminist Collective, Hermana Resist and Flip Flopping Joy.  I am probably missing some people, but I have so many favorites because these are the people I love to work with all the time, who make me a better person by sharing ideas, laughter, love, support, friendship and the work using our brilliance as women of color to transform this world into a loving accountable joyful place to live!

10) Share three ways women can use social media to define and express their personal leadership brand.

  • Tell people how much you love them in public, often.
  • Lift up the ancestors who have made it possible for you to exist and ensure their existence in the hearts of everyone who you touch.
  • Build deep and powerful friendships with people who share your vision.

Digital Sisterhood Leadership Project Profile – Charreah K. Jackson


Photo Credit: Charreah K. Jackson

Meet Digital Sisterhood Leader Charreah K. Jackson.

1) How can people find you online?

2) Why did you start using social media?

Using social media was a natural progression for me as someone who always enjoyed computers and communicating. I joined Facebook when you still had to use your college email address to sign up. I continued to be active on various networks because I have always been a people person and loved reconnecting with old contacts and meeting new friends around the world. As a journalist, I also loved the ability to cut out the middle man in a lot of instances and get right to my source.

3) What has social media allowed you to do in your life (personal, professional, business, nonprofit, community)?

Social media has allowed me to stay in touch with the people I care about. My great-aunt in California whom I don’t get to see that often comments on something I post or write every week. It’s a a quick and easy way for me to stay in touch. Professionally, being an early user of social media has opened many doors. Out of college, my social media skills helped me land a gig as an editorial assistant for Essence.com. Less than a year in, I was promoted to Associate Editor where I launched the brand’s first Facebook page and managed their Ning.com community group. Social media helped me get my stories including sending Obama Body Man Reggie Love a Facebook message about a feature. My next job was the social media editor at a fashion and beauty public relations firm where I got to manage and create the Facebook and Twitter presence of brands like TRESemmé. Social media has been essential in my growth as a woman and as a professional as I connect with women that inspire me and also share my experiences. I have gotten speaking engagements and other projects because of tweets and blog posts. Now as an editor back at ESSENCE, I am able to bring my social media skills to help us continue to connect with readers.

4) In her 2011 Digital Women: from geeks to mainstream presentation that was given at the WIFT International Women Conference for Digital Women, Dr. Taly Weiss, a social psychologist and CEO/Founder of Trendspotting, concluded that “women are dominant digital users – they breathe and live digital.”  Dr. Weiss’ conclusion echoes BlogHer’s 2011 Social Media Matters Study findings.  They include 87 million women (18 to 76 years old) are now online, 69 million women use social media weekly, 80 million women use social media monthly, and 55 million women read blogs monthly. These facts illustrate the power and presence women have in the digital space. Now that’s Digital Sisterhood!

How has social media helped you carve out leadership roles as you interact online and offline?

It has allowed me to further establish my expertise and hone my skills as an editor, educator and speaker. Each month I host a Twitter Party with ESSENCE magazine readers where we discuss dating relationships topics.  As a featured Relationships Expert on YourTango.com, I hosted a Facebook Takeover answering questions from their 50,000 Facebook fans on relationships. After tweeting and managing social media profiles on behalf of million dollar companies, I know that digital tools are only as good as our offline communication skills. I have been fortunate to merge my passions for both.

5) Social media has helped women become Digital Sisterhood Leaders, ambassadors of social expression who share what they are passionate about online.  In her upcoming book, Digital Sisterhood: Fierce Living Online for 25 Years (Fall 2012), Ananda Leeke, founder of the Digital Sisterhood Network, writes, “Without even knowing it, women have become Digital Sisterhood Leaders as they use their social media platforms to advocate causes; to build communities; to create apps, art, books, businesses, products, publications, services, tools, and webisodes; to curate content; to educate and inform; to give voice to their thoughts as subject matter experts, thought leaders, and brand ambassadors; to share information and experiences; to explore and experiment with new technologies as early adopters and trendsetters; to engage in social good; to influence others with their lifestyles and personal interests; to inspire and motivate; to mentor; to network; to tell their personal stories; and to promote and celebrate the expertise, gifts, and talents of others.  Based on my online and offline interactions, I have identified 12 key leadership roles they play: advocate, community builder, creator, curator, educator, influencer, mentor, motivator, promoter, social do gooder, storyteller, and thought leader.”

What other types of leadership roles do women play in social media?

Connectors, challengers, rods of enlightment, and illustrators (through images)

6) What types of leadership roles do you play in social media?

My social media roles include connector, illustrator, advocate, community builder, creator, curator, educator, influencer, mentor, motivator, promoter, and storyteller.

7) What lessons have you learned as a leader in the digital space?

I have learned timing matters and that good social media skills start offline as a solid communicator.

8) Do you have plans to expand your leadership roles in the digital space? If so, what are they?

Yes, to continue to work with media companies to fully utilize the potential of social media.

9) Who are your favorite social media women leaders and why?

Ananda Leeke, Sherri Smith, Tina Shoulders, Demetria Lucas, Bridgette Bartlett, and Christina Brown

10) Share three ways women can use social media to define and express their personal leadership brand.

  • Share your story.
  • Establish your expertise.
  • Engage with like-minded individuals.

Digital Sisterhood Leadership Project Profile – Bonibelle “Boni” Candelario


Photo Credit: Boni Candelario

Photo Credit: Boni Candelario

Meet Digital Sisterhood Leader Bonibelle “Boni” Candelario.

Congratulations to Boni on graduating from Quinnipiac University with a Master’s Degree in Organizational Leadership!

1) How can people find you online?

2) Why did you start using social media?

I started using social media in 2007, but launched my blog in 2009.  I found it was a great way to meet new people in the focus areas that are meaningful to me.

3) What has social media allowed you to do in your life (personal, professional, business, nonprofit, community)?

Social media has allowed me to expand beyond my cubicle and job title and pursue the work that I’m passionate about and to meet “my people” who inspire me.  I’ve learned great skills that are now a hot commodity as many people turn to the web to interact.  I’ve created a following of loyal people and we help each other achieve our dreams.

4) In her 2011 Digital Women: from geeks to mainstream presentation that was given at the WIFT International Women Conference for Digital Women, Dr. Taly Weiss, a social psychologist and CEO/Founder of Trendspotting, concluded that “women are dominant digital users – they breathe and live digital.”  Dr. Weiss’ conclusion echoes BlogHer’s 2011 Social Media Matters Study findings.  They include 87 million women (18 to 76 years old) are now online, 69 million women use social media weekly, 80 million women use social media monthly, and 55 million women read blogs monthly. These facts illustrate the power and presence women have in the digital space. Now that’s Digital Sisterhood!

How has social media helped you carve out leadership roles as you interact online and offline?

I now trust my social media tribe for product endorsements more than TV or commercials.  Hearing a testimonial from a trusted blogger has more significance than watching a commercial that is seen by the masses.  The blogger gives me a customized commercial.  Bloggers represent my style, specific interests, and passions.  A national commercial can’t do that.  So I turn to the web to learn about products and to make a buying decision.  Social media has helped me establish myself as a subject matter expert.  I can dive into my field and get really specific about my topic of career development.  This is very valuable for those who are seeking information on my topic.

5) Social media has helped women become Digital Sisterhood Leaders, ambassadors of social expression who share what they are passionate about online.  In her upcoming book, Digital Sisterhood: Fierce Living Online for 25 Years (Fall 2012), Ananda Leeke, founder of the Digital Sisterhood Network, writes, “Without even knowing it, women have become Digital Sisterhood Leaders as they use their social media platforms to advocate causes; to build communities; to create apps, art, books, businesses, products, publications, services, tools, and webisodes; to curate content; to educate and inform; to give voice to their thoughts as subject matter experts, thought leaders, and brand ambassadors; to share information and experiences; to explore and experiment with new technologies as early adopters and trendsetters; to engage in social good; to influence others with their lifestyles and personal interests; to inspire and motivate; to mentor; to network; to tell their personal stories; and to promote and celebrate the expertise, gifts, and talents of others.  Based on my online and offline interactions, I have identified 12 key leadership roles they play: advocate, community builder, creator, curator, educator, influencer, mentor, motivator, promoter, social do gooder, storyteller, and thought leader.”

What other types of leadership roles do women play in social media?

You have hit on the main ones! I can only think of one other one, which goes along the lines of influencer and that’s trendsetter.  We are setting the trend for communication.  First it was the static blog with the written word, now it’s online radio, vlogging, and group membership sites with a lot of interaction.  We are setting the trends for media right now.

6) What types of leadership roles do you play in social media?

I would say I am a curator and motivator, but more importantly a promoter.  I promote those products and people who I love so their services and touch other lives.  I take this very seriously and the love comes back to me twofold.

7) What lessons have you learned as a leader in the digital space?

I’ve learned to be thoughtful of what I say in the digital space.  Everything I do and say is reflective of my brand and my integrity.  If I had no purpose and just talked about any brand, retweeted anything, had a blog with no focus and tried to do everything, it would show loud and clear that I don’t know myself and that I’m running around confused.  No one wants to follow a confused person without a purpose.

8) Do you have plans to expand your leadership roles in the digital space? If so, what are they?

I would love to work with the next generation of women and to help them define their online brand early so they don’t create bad web karma such as pictures of them doing kegstands which later are seen by a prospective employer or worse.  They are capable of blowing our minds in what the web can do.  I would love to guide them to be respectful of the digital space, but also to know their power and make it work for them.

9) Who are your favorite social media women leaders and why?

I love love love Marie Forleo, Laura Roeder, Pam Perry, Ananda Leeke, Stacey Ferguson, Gabrielle Bernstein, Taryn Pisaneschi, and so many others.  They are my idols in how to be yourself and engage others.  They have great information products and fun videos. I can stay on their sites for hours.  Their content is deep and engaging.

10) Share three ways women can use social media to define and express their personal leadership brand.

  • Follow people whose personality match your friends and loved ones.  If you can see yourself being friends in real life (IRL), then they will touch your heart virtually.
  • Get focused about who you are and what you are about.  Stay true to yourself and don’t just jump on the bandwagon of a trend.  Authenticity is key to keeping your followers and building your brand.
  • Be generous to others. Promote other people who you love.  Don’t keep them a secret.  The Universe will return the favor!

Digital Sisterhood Leadership Project Profile – Heather Mann


Photo Credit: Heather Mann

Meet Digital Sisterhood Leader Heather Mann.

1) How can people find you online?

2) Why did you start using social media?

I started using social media as soon as I learned about the internet in 1995 – back then there were chatrooms and bulletin boards, and instant relay chatting (IRC).

3) What has social media allowed you to do in your life (personal, professional, business, nonprofit, community)?

I have used social media to make friends. Social media allows me to share my life daily with good friends who I would otherwise not have the opportunity to meet. I also get to toot my horn every day on my blog, sharing craft projects I make. Additionally, because of the success of my blog, I have had the opportunity to help in my local school, which is a whole different level of satisfaction – being able to share my love of crafting with kids.

4) In her 2011 Digital Women: from geeks to mainstream presentation that was given at the WIFT International Women Conference for Digital Women, Dr. Taly Weiss, a social psychologist and CEO/Founder of Trendspotting, concluded that “women are dominant digital users – they breathe and live digital.”  Dr. Weiss’ conclusion echoes BlogHer’s 2011 Social Media Matters Study findings.  They include 87 million women (18 to 76 years old) are now online, 69 million women use social media weekly, 80 million women use social media monthly, and 55 million women read blogs monthly. These facts illustrate the power and presence women have in the digital space. Now that’s Digital Sisterhood!

How has social media helped you carve out leadership roles as you interact online and offline?

I’ve been able to mentor at least 100 budding bloggers via a weekly Twitter chat I host (#crafterminds on Mondays at 4:00 p.m. ET), as well as a blog I’ve established for the express purpose of mentoring bloggers in my niche (http://crafterminds.com). I also mentor bloggers on a daily basis via a private Facebook group. I’ve been invited to participate in panels (BlogHer 2011), and guest-post on blogs. I also connect brands with bloggers with my social media agency Blueprint Social (http://theblueprintsocial.com).

5) Social media has helped women become Digital Sisterhood Leaders, ambassadors of social expression who share what they are passionate about online.  In her upcoming book, Digital Sisterhood: Fierce Living Online for 25 Years (Fall 2012), Ananda Leeke, founder of the Digital Sisterhood Network, writes, “Without even knowing it, women have become Digital Sisterhood Leaders as they use their social media platforms to advocate causes; to build communities; to create apps, art, books, businesses, products, publications, services, tools, and webisodes; to curate content; to educate and inform; to give voice to their thoughts as subject matter experts, thought leaders, and brand ambassadors; to share information and experiences; to explore and experiment with new technologies as early adopters and trendsetters; to engage in social good; to influence others with their lifestyles and personal interests; to inspire and motivate; to mentor; to network; to tell their personal stories; and to promote and celebrate the expertise, gifts, and talents of others.  Based on my online and offline interactions, I have identified 12 key leadership roles they play: advocate, community builder, creator, curator, educator, influencer, mentor, motivator, promoter, social do gooder, storyteller, and thought leader.”

What other types of leadership roles do women play in social media?

The list above covers the various roles.

6) What types of leadership roles do you play in social media?

I consider myself to be a tastemaker, trend-spotter, mentor, encourager, and example to bloggers who are still developing their voice and style.

7) What lessons have you learned as a leader in the digital space?

Take your position as a leader seriously, don’t throw flippant advice out there.

8) Do you have plans to expand your leadership roles in the digital space? If so, what are they?

No

9) Who are your favorite social media women leaders and why?

I admire Sister Diane (http://craftypod.com) for always thinking deeply about social media space, sharing her thoughtful commentary on trends and happenings in social media, and helping bloggers think about the issues they face with emerging trends in social media.

10) Share three ways women can use social media to define and express their personal leadership brand.

With social media, you carve out your own space. You define everything about your own blog, your style, and your brand. Regardless of if you have 15 followers or 5 million, you build your blog from the ground up in the way you want to, and touch your followers in a powerful way.

Digital Sisterhood Leadership Project Profile – Aiesha Turman


Photo Credit: Aiesha Turman

Meet Digital Sisterhood Leader Aiesha Turman.

1) How can people find you online?

2) Why did you start using social media?

I began using social media, particularly Facebook, in 2005 as a grad student. I was solely curious about it and wanted to see what was so “great” about it.

3) What has social media allowed you to do in your life (personal, professional, business, nonprofit, community)?

Social media has allowed me to create an amazing following for my documentary film and subsequently the nonprofit organization it spawned which works with young women and girls in New York.  It’s allowed me a platform to use my voice, as well as share information I think is important. I’ve met some amazing women who I’ve become friends with, gotten work, been published–a lot of great things have come from social media.

4) In her 2011 Digital Women: from geeks to mainstream presentation that was given at the WIFT International Women Conference for Digital Women, Dr. Taly Weiss, a social psychologist and CEO/Founder of Trendspotting, concluded that “women are dominant digital users – they breathe and live digital.”  Dr. Weiss’ conclusion echoes BlogHer’s 2011 Social Media Matters Study findings.  They include 87 million women (18 to 76 years old) are now online, 69 million women use social media weekly, 80 million women use social media monthly, and 55 million women read blogs monthly. These facts illustrate the power and presence women have in the digital space. Now that’s Digital Sisterhood!

How has social media helped you carve out leadership roles as you interact online and offline?

For the most part, people have found out about me and my work via social media. Tweets about The Black Girl Project have been retweeted quite a bit and because of that, I’ve been able to have film screenings, speaking engagements, and donations to the nonprofit organization and more.

5) Social media has helped women become Digital Sisterhood Leaders, ambassadors of social expression who share what they are passionate about online.  In her upcoming book, Digital Sisterhood: Fierce Living Online for 25 Years (Fall 2012), Ananda Leeke, founder of the Digital Sisterhood Network, writes, “Without even knowing it, women have become Digital Sisterhood Leaders as they use their social media platforms to advocate causes; to build communities; to create apps, art, books, businesses, products, publications, services, tools, and webisodes; to curate content; to educate and inform; to give voice to their thoughts as subject matter experts, thought leaders, and brand ambassadors; to share information and experiences; to explore and experiment with new technologies as early adopters and trendsetters; to engage in social good; to influence others with their lifestyles and personal interests; to inspire and motivate; to mentor; to network; to tell their personal stories; and to promote and celebrate the expertise, gifts, and talents of others.  Based on my online and offline interactions, I have identified 12 key leadership roles they play: advocate, community builder, creator, curator, educator, influencer, mentor, motivator, promoter, social do gooder, storyteller, and thought leader.”

What other types of leadership roles do women play in social media?

Embracers, nurturers, and change makers — all of the same roles that women play in the real “real world”

6) What types of leadership roles do you play in social media?

Educator, advocate, creator, storyteller, curator, social do gooder, community builder, and mentor

7) What lessons have you learned as a leader in the digital space?

Always check information before you re-post something as to its accuracy. You give as much as you get.

8) Do you have plans to expand your leadership roles in the digital space? If so, what are they?

I’m not sure how to answer this, because I see all of the roles you outlined and all of the ones I see myself fulfilling as intersectional–intertwining and building from one another. As with any roles, I am sure my role in the digital space will change and grow.

9) Who are your favorite social media women leaders and why?

Zerlina Maxwell–she not only produces information, but is very smart and opinionated. Lisa Nicole Bell–her online and offline work really illustrate, for me, how to use social media to enhance what is being done on the ground. Toni Blackman–though she’s extremely accomplished creatively and she shares her work, it’s her personal story sharing and engagement that makes her an amazing leader.

10) Share three ways women can use social media to define and express their personal leadership brand.

  • Seek out and engage with other women in order to build collaborative spaces.
  • Be bold and share what they do unabashedly. I know we have been socialized against that sort of thing, but I know I personally enjoy reading and learning about the work of other women.
  • Be yourself. A lot of folks hide behind a facade and create alternate persona. Be your true self and let your light shine.

Digital Sisterhood Leadership Project Profile – Akilah Richards


Photo Credit: Akilah Richards

Meet Digital Sisterhood Leader Akilah Richards.

1) How can people find you online?

2) Why did you start using social media?

I started using social media in 2007 when I began blogging to connect with other 20 something working mothers.

3) What has social media allowed you to do in your life (personal, professional, business, nonprofit, community)?

Social media helped me find my wings as an entrepreneur.  I learned how to connect with women on a global scale, and I started to value my voice more as a result of the connections with other inspiring men and women.

4) In her 2011 Digital Women: from geeks to mainstream presentation that was given at the WIFT International Women Conference for Digital Women, Dr. Taly Weiss, a social psychologist and CEO/Founder of Trendspotting, concluded that “women are dominant digital users – they breathe and live digital.”  Dr. Weiss’ conclusion echoes BlogHer’s 2011 Social Media Matters Study findings.  They include 87 million women (18 to 76 years old) are now online, 69 million women use social media weekly, 80 million women use social media monthly, and 55 million women read blogs monthly. These facts illustrate the power and presence women have in the digital space. Now that’s Digital Sisterhood!

How has social media helped you carve out leadership roles as you interact online and offline?

When I started blogging, I had no idea it would lead to my current business as a Lifestyle Entrepreneur.  As I perused blogs and timelines, I began to see patterns in the needs of women with interests similar to mine.  I allowed my curiosity to guide me, and eventually, I created an online space for women like me who believe in designing our own lives, and creating community for other women looking to do the same.  My first major opportunity to share my lifestyle perspectives came when I was featured in Essence Magazine’s “How She Does It” segment.  After that article ran, I started to take my voice more seriously in the online space, and created a new site and products to support women on their own Life Design journeys.

5) Social media has helped women become Digital Sisterhood Leaders, ambassadors of social expression who share what they are passionate about online.  In her upcoming book, Digital Sisterhood: Fierce Living Online for 25 Years (Fall 2012), Ananda Leeke, founder of the Digital Sisterhood Network, writes, “Without even knowing it, women have become Digital Sisterhood Leaders as they use their social media platforms to advocate causes; to build communities; to create apps, art, books, businesses, products, publications, services, tools, and webisodes; to curate content; to educate and inform; to give voice to their thoughts as subject matter experts, thought leaders, and brand ambassadors; to share information and experiences; to explore and experiment with new technologies as early adopters and trendsetters; to engage in social good; to influence others with their lifestyles and personal interests; to inspire and motivate; to mentor; to network; to tell their personal stories; and to promote and celebrate the expertise, gifts, and talents of others.  Based on my online and offline interactions, I have identified 12 key leadership roles they play: advocate, community builder, creator, curator, educator, influencer, mentor, motivator, promoter, social do gooder, storyteller, and thought leader.”

What other types of leadership roles do women play in social media?

I think Ananda has covered the ones I’m aware of.

6) What types of leadership roles do you play in social media?

My goal is to facilitate self-exploration and self-expression through my interactions online.  We as women can lead online by facilitating conversations that allow other voices to be heard, shared, and hopefully valued.

7) What lessons have you learned as a leader in the digital space?

I continue to be amazed by the caliber of women who occupy this online space.  I frequent blogs of women who clearly give so much of themselves to their readers, and it’s inspiring and empowering to be able to connect with them.  I’ve also learned not to underestimate my own voice, value, and skills as my “common knowledge” could be brand new information to someone else.

8) Do you have plans to expand your leadership roles in the digital space? If so, what are they?

Yes. I’ll eventually host digital conferences for women, mothers, and entrepreneurs.

9) Who are your favorite social media women leaders and why?

Arielle Loren because she’s big on self-expression and exploration.  Ananda Leeke *smiles* because she makes it a point to facilitate conversation around our roles as digital entrepreneurs.  Rosetta Thurman because she gives incredible value!  Katrina M. Harrell because she’s so inspiring, and her webinars could easily cost $1,000 an hour because that’s how much value she offers.  There are so many others in this space, and it’s a pleasure to be part of their journeys

10) Share three ways women can use social media to define and express their personal leadership brand.

Women can use social media to define and express their personal leadership brands by:

  • Hosting webinars to share their insights and offer their relevant services.
  • Facilitating conversation through their blogs or micro-blogs.
  • Observing how their audience responds to certain topics, and applying that knowledge in the form of free and paid offerings for their growing tribe.

 

Digital Sisterhood Month’s Guest Blogger Series – Heather Coleman


 

Heather Coleman

Meet Heather Coleman

1) Write a six-word memoir to describe yourself.

She flies with her own wings.

2) Tell us about your blog.

I started blogging using WordPress in 2009 after getting more involved with social media platforms. The name of my blog is Twisted Turtle, paying tribute to my twisted sense of humor and love for turtles. I blog about social media, family, entertainment, the DC area, and just about anything else that pops into my head.

My favorite post for 2011 is the recap I did for the Ignite event held on October 20th. I was lucky enough to be selected to speak at Ignite DC back in February and have been hooked on them ever since. I used Storify to collect tweets and photos from attendees and shared it on my blog. It can be read here:-  http://twistedturtle.wordpress.com/2011/10/21/ignite-dc-ignitedc-no-8-recap.

3) What is your definition of digital sisterhood?

Digital Sisterhood is the idea of a tightly knit community brought together by a shared love and passion for expressing ourselves through the digital medium. We help share the message of Digital Sisterhood whenever and wherever we can.

4) What is your favorite 2011 digital sisterhood moment or experience?

I thoroughly enjoyed participating in Digital Sisterhood Radio’s Feminism Online Project and being interviewed as a part of the DC Social Media Women episode in May with Tamara Rasberry. It was a great opportunity to hear our different experiences and points of view on the topics of feminism and how it relates to social media.

5) The 2011 theme of Digital Sisterhood Month is ‘Celebrate the 4 Fs of Women’s Health: Feelings, Food, Fitness & Fierce Living.” How have you lived fiercely in 2011?

I lived fiercely in 2011 by sharing some extremely personal feelings and experiences on the public stage in hopes of helping others feel less alone in their own experiences. I faced and conquered a lot of demons in doing so.

6) How do you stay positive and maintain peace of mind?

I learned the hard way how important it is to step back, take a break from daily stressors and ask for help when I need it. Now I am a firm believer in surrounding myself with positive people and prioritizing what is most important in my life so I know where to focus my time and energy. I break projects and tasks down into smaller chunks and do one thing at a time as much as possible. My kids help keep me positive too by giving me a fresh perspective on the world around me.

7) What are your favorite healthy foods?

My recent faves are spinach and blueberries.

8) How do you stay fit?

I wish I could say I have stayed fit, but I have been weak in this area since having kids. Before kids I was training for a half marathon. I’m starting back with walking and hope to work back up to running again. I would love to try yoga for the first time.

9) How are you planning to live fiercely in 2012?

My focus in 2012 is getting physically healthy again. I’m also challenging myself to learn a couple of brand new skills, including website design (Drupal).

10) Where can we find you online?

Web Site/Blog: http://twistedturtle.wordpress.com

Twitter: http://twitter.com/heathercoleman

Facebook: www.facebook.com/heathermariecoleman

LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/heathermcoleman

Digital Sisterhood Month’s Guest Blogger Series – Corynne Corbett


Corynne Corbett

 

Meet Corynne Corbett, Founder and Chief Creative Officer of That Black Girl Site

1) Write a six-word memoir to describe yourself.

Passionate promoter of beauty inside out.

2) Tell us about your blog.

I started in March 2008 with a single blog called That Black Girl Blogging. Later it became a blog collective called That Black Girl Site (TBGS) where I gave voice to those who wanted to write about things that interest Black Girls. I love writing about how Black Women are perceived in popular culture from Hollywood to politics and music.

My favorite post this year was: What If They Remade Julia? http://thatblackgirlsite.com/blog/2011/11/01/what-if-they-remade-julia/ about the impact that Diahann Carroll’s role had on us and imagined what it would be like to give it a reboot in modern times.

3) What is your definition of digital sisterhood?

Women positively using technology to connect, educate, elevate and express themselves.

4) What is your favorite 2011 digital sisterhood moment or experience?

Returning to Blogalicious after missing it last year. It is so wonderful to be among so many positive women (and men) all using their ideas, writings, videos and podcasts to create and advance the conversation about things that matter.

5) The 2011 theme of Digital Sisterhood Month is ‘Celebrate the 4 Fs of Women’s Health: Feelings, Food, Fitness & Fierce Living.” How have you lived fiercely in 2011?

Although I took a blogcation for a good part of the year, I decided that TBGS and what I did there was part of my mission and I couldn’t give it up. I decided to make the investment in bringing it back and making a commitment to it and my other independent work I do no matter how busy I get with other things.

6) How do you stay positive and maintain peace of mind?

I surround myself with positive people and steer clear of pot stirrers and those who think negativity is a lifestyle choice. I also make time for prayer and reflection to make sure I am on the path God wants for me. Finally, I try to find time to refuel because when I don’t my body rebels and forces me to take some time off.

7) What are your favorite healthy foods?

I recently discovered the Organic Avenue stores here in NYC organicavenue.com, and have been drinking their Green Love and Turmeric Tonic drinks often. But the other thing I discovered I loved were Nori Chips (made from seaweed), a nice healthy snack.

8) How do you stay fit?

I wish I could say that I had a regular schedule when it comes to exercise but this is one of the things I am working on for 2012. But when I do workout my favorite pastimes are Zumba (it’s so much fun), Pilates and walking.

9) How are you planning to live fiercely in 2012?

I am looking for even more opportunities to express myself and my opinions in 2012. I want to be a positive force in women’s lives—encouraging them to discover their inner and out beauty and strength.

10) Where can we find you online?

Web Site: thatblackgirlsite.com

Twitter: @thatblackgirlsi

Tumblr: http://thatblackgirlsitediary.tumblr.com

LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/pub/corynne-l-corbett/1/145/a09

Digital Sisterhood Month’s Guest Blogger Series – Bianca Alexander


Bianca Alexander

Meet Bianca Alexander

1) Write a six-word memoir to describe yourself.

Emmy-winning Eco-TV Host and Raw/Vegan Yogi.

2) Tell us about your blog.

Conscious Living TV was launched back in 2006 in order to bring positive news about sustainable living, holistic health, spirituality and sustainability to the mainstream. We cover the people, places and pioneers at the forefront of the green movement, from sustainable fashion and design to organic vegetarian cuisine, yoga and meditation to triple bottom line entrepreneurship, green luxury travel and eco-tourism around the globe.

My favorite video post from 2011 is my 30 Day Raw Detox.  http://www.consciouslivingtv.com/Videos/The+30+Day+Raw+Food+Detox

3) What is your definition of digital sisterhood?

A circle of women who are connected beyond cyberspace–but aren’t afraid to use technology to communicate and support one another!

4) What is your favorite digital 2011 sisterhood moment or experience?

The call we had last year on social media—such a blessing to connect with such a talented group of women doing amazing things

5) The 2011 theme of Digital Sisterhood Month is ‘Celebrate the 4 Fs of Women’s Health: Feelings, Food, Fitness & Fierce Living.” How have you lived fiercely in 2011?

I prioritized my health and spiritual practice above all things this year–I participated in my first 30 day Raw/Vegan detox and went vegan right afterwards. Then, after teaching yoga informally for nearly three years, this spring I trained for and received my yoga teacher certification. After working hard on being the best person I could be from the inside out, I was rewarded: I was nominated for my second Emmy this year for Soul of Green, one of our original tv programs about people of color in the eco-movement, including issues of environmental justice. In addition, our show Conscious Living TV reached its widest audience ever: taxi cabs in New York, Chicago, San Francisco, Boston, Kansas City and Las Vegas–with over three million viewers per month!

6) How do you stay positive and maintain peace of mind?

Meditation, yoga, more meditation, a raw/vegan diet, and surrounding myself with lots of positive people who inspire me.

7) What are your favorite healthy foods?

Raw and vegan anything! Lots of salads, green meal shakes/smoothies, rice milk, almond butter (crunchy), and all sprouted foods. www.karynraw.com

8) How do you stay fit?

I stay fit with yoga. I try to practice at least three times a week. Here is a story we recently produced on the benefits of yoga. http://www.consciouslivingtv.com/Videos/The+Yoga+View

9) How are you planning to live fiercely in 2012?

More meditation, more yoga, and launching three new TV shows.

10) Where can we find you online?

Web Site/Blog: www.ConsciousLivingTV.com, www.SoulofGreen.com, www.BiancaAlexander.tv

Twitter: @SoulofGreen, @ConsciousTV, @VertCouture

Facebook: Conscious Living TV (fan page) and Soul of Green, Bianca Alexander

LinkedIn: Bianca Alexander

Feminism Online Project Launches Today with KOFAVIV & Causempolitan Sloane Berrent!


Happy March! Happy National Women’s History Month!

Today marks the beginning of the Digital Sisterhood Network’s Feminism Online Project, a three month initiative that celebrates the rainbow chorus of feminist voices in the digital world.  From now until the end of May, the Feminism Online Project will use the Digital Sisterhood Network blog, Talkshoe.com radio show, Twitter page, and weekly Tweetchats to profile a diverse group of feminist voices and discuss a range of feminist issues.

Haitian adolescent girls who are supported by KOFAVIV in Port-au-Prince, Haiti

Sign outside of KOFAVIV's offices in Port-au-Prince, Haiti

Today we dedicated our first day of the Feminism Online Project to KOFAVIV, a Haitian women’s organization that supports women and girls who have experienced violence.  The organization is located in Port-au-Prince, Haiti.  Digital Sisterhood Network founder Ananda Leeke visited KOFAVIV on February 26 while she was traveling with the Heart of Haiti campaign as a blogger ambassador.

Check out our first video featuring Sloane Berrent, Founder of The Causemopolitan and Help A Woman Out web project.  See below. She rocked feminism!  Please support her projects. They are amazing!

What is your definition of feminism? Share your thoughts in the comment section! We wanna know!