Meet Digital Sisterhood Leader Carolina Pichardo


Photo Credit: Carolina Pichardo

Photo Credit: Young Urban Moms

Meet Digital Sisterhood Leader Carolina Pichardo, co-founder of YoungUrbanMoms.com, digital  marketer by day, writer and community activist by night, and mom to Lulu  always. Carolina recently attended the Top Bloguera Retreat sponsored by Latinos in Social Media (LATISM) in Washington, D.C. During the LATISM Retreat, she and her fellow Latina bloggers visited the White House  and met with Cecilia Munoz, Assistant to President Obama and Director of Domestic Policy. Click here to read her blog post about the Retreat and White House visit.

Fun Facts: Carolina and Digital Sisterhood Network founder Ananda Leeke first connected during the BlogHer Closing Keynote session in 2010. They sat at the same table, exchanged business cards, and talked about what they learned from BlogHer conference sessions. Since then, Ananda has followed Carolina’s online adventures on Twitter and become a huge fan of Young Urban Moms.

1) How can people find you online?

2) Why did you start using social media?

I started using social media in the late 90s with MySpace and a few other sites for friends.

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

Social media has allowed YoungUrbanMoms.com to expand nationally and partner with young moms and organizations we wouldn’t have otherwise have known. Through it, we’ve been able to create and continue building upon the network and platform we’ve always dreamed of establishing.

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?

YoungUrbanMoms.com has been able to expand, and with it my ability to personally work with local young moms. In New York City, I’ve been able to create career and networking workshops for young moms and families, and run a column with the widely recognized publications, Manhattan Times and Bronx Free Press.

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 would add – although similar to some of the rest, but a bit more powerful in connotations – agent of change. We’ve become the face of a lot of the causes we represent. For example, although I’m not young and very far from the place I was when YoungUrbanMoms.com was launched, I will forever be that agent of change for young mothers and how this group is represented.

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

I always aim to influence and assist those starting out, especially the young moms that contribute to the site, but always feel like I’m learning myself. I’m more of a player and curator still at this point.

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

There’s always more to learn. Always remain open to those new possibilities and opportunities. Also, go into social media with a set of values and stand firm by them.

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

Yes, as of now I’ve been focusing on the site – YoungUrbanMoms.com, but feel like I need also begin branding myself alongside the brand. This way, I’ll be able to grow and expand as a person and leader, and the brand won’t be affected by these decisions.

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

Angelica Perez of New Latina is an excellent example to follow. She’s a strong, firm, and intelligent voice and representation of Latina women in the digital space.

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

  • Connect with organizations and brands that have an established history in your cause.
  • Strategize how you post. For example, connecting Facebook to Twitter and vice versa. However, don’t always stick to certain social media rules. How honest and fun you’re having with your brand shows, and people will trust that.
  • May sound crazy, but don’t just use social media. Find ways to connect with others through conferences, Skype, and something that shows more than your avatar.

Meet Digital Sisterhood Leader Carol Cain


Photo Credit: Carol Cain @NYCityMama

 

Meet Digital Sisterhood Leader Carol Cain, founder and publisher of NYCityMama.com, photographer, freelance writer, travel blogger, and contributing writer for Lifetime Digital Media, Lifetime Momsat, and A&E Television Networks.

 

FUN FACTS: Digital Sisterhood Network founder Ananda Leeke met Carol during the BlogHer Conference in 2009.  A month after the conference, Ananda and interviewed Carol about her blog and travel adventures on Digital Sisterhood Radio in 2009.  In 2010, Ananda sat next to Carol during the Blogalicious Weekend Conference and learned a lot about photography (Carol served as the official photographer for the conference).  She also encouraged Carol to use Cinchcast to do a Spanish audio blog with her smartphone.  Ananda learned so much from Carol during her presentation on how she uses Twitter to build and engage her online community during the Blogalicious Weekend Conference in 2011.  Carol’s commitment to living healthy is an inspiration to Ananda!

1) How can people find you online?

2) Why did you start using social media?

December 2008

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

It has allowed me to fulfill my dream of travel with my family, and to connect with people and make new friends I would’ve never met otherwise.

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 helped me in setting myself up as a leader in my niche and community. I have had the opportunity to lead panels discussion, been given awards for my work, and am often reached out to by my community and readers for advice and information.

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 agree with all of the above mentioned, especially storyteller and motivator. It’s what I most associated myself as being.

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

I hope my role is to inspire, inform, and guide.

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

I have learned to listen, that no matter what anyone says it’s not about me, and that we don’t exist in a void. Our success comes with the support of our community.

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

I do. I plan on continuing to grow my presence in the travel space and plan to be the face of travel for families.

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

Maria Bailey — for her strong will and dedication in advocating for professional digital women and moms

Jennifer James — for her commitment to doing good and charity

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

  • To grow their brand
  • To promote other women
  • T0 connect with their community

Meet Digital Sisterhood Leader Ana Lydia Ochoa-Monaco


Photo Credit: Ana Lydia Ochoa-Monaco

 

Meet Digital Sisterhood Leader Ana Lydia Ochoa-Monaco, founder of Latina Lifestyle Bloggers and CEO of padma media and marketing. Congratulations to Ana and her Latina Lifestyle Bloggers team on hosting the Latina Lifestyle Bloggers National Conference and Blogger Junket in April. Click here to watch a video of Ana discussing the April conference events.

 

Photo Credit: Latina Lifestyle Bloggers Logo

 

1) How can people find you online?

2) Why did you start using social media?

I started using social media, or “online relations” in the mid 1990’s, with the early on-set of bulletin boards and later chat rooms.

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

I built a separate business based on social media: The Latino & Latina Lifestyle Bloggers Collective in 2011.  On a personal level, I have met and connected with several people who I am fortunate to call my friends.

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

The “golden rules” apply online, as they do offline.  At the end of the day, business is not done with typewritten words at the other side of the computer screen. It’s done with real people.

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

Absolutely! Plans are underway to grow the Latina & Latino Lifestyle Bloggers Collective.

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

I don’t have a favorite, but I do admire women and men who are ethical, honest, and handle their online persona with the utmost respect for themselves and others.

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

  • Use it as a way to embrace others, not to spearhead hate or personal attacks.
  • Treat everyone you meet online as an influencer, regardless of their klout score or other influence measurement tool.
  • Be real.

 

Digital Sisterhood Leadership Project Profile – Veronica Arreola


Photo Credit: Veronica Arreola

Meet Digital Sisterhood Leader Veronica Arreola, founder of VivaLaFeminista.com.

1) How can people find you online?

2) Why did you start using social media?

I was using AOL Instant Messenger & Yahoo Messenger back in the late 1990s. I started on Facebook in 2005.

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

It has allowed me to amplify my voice in relation to the issues I work on, especially my professional work. I think that comes from being able to connect to others who are concerned about the lack of girls and women in science and engineering careers.

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 allowed me to connect to far more people than I could have in person. My passion for getting girls engaged in science and engineering is one of the things people remember about me. This is where conversations start, then I can connect to gender expectations, leadership, self esteem and on and on. Sometimes in a quick Twitter chat!

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 you got them!

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

Advocate, curator, educator, mentor, promoter, social do gooder, and thought leader

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

To honor my role as a leader and not abuse it. One quickly learns how swift your word can spread, so it better be golden!

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

Right now I’m focusing on completing my PhD. studies. I’m in maintenance mode for my digital leadership.

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

Mamita Mala. She is so honest with her views on everything including her own life. She doesn’t reveal everything, but when she discusses her life, it’s raw. She takes the same rawness to her discussion of politics and public policy.

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

  • Be yourself. Don’t try to fit a mold. Just because you have a brand doesn’t mean you have to act like a brand.
  • With power and influence comes responsibility. Be true to your readers. In other words, don’t sell them out.
  • Have fun! While it can be a job, you still need to have fun.

Digital Sisterhood Leadership Project Profile – Jeannette Kaplun


Photo Credit: Jeannette Kaplun

Meet Digital Sisterhood Leader Jeannette Kaplun.

1) How can people find you online?

2) Why did you start using social media?

I started blogging in 2000. I was a frequent user of bulletin boards and later began engaging on Facebook, but I did not start using Twitter until early 2009. The reason I started using social media was to fill a need. When Todobebé was born in 1999, content for the Spanish-speaking community was scarce and there was a huge need for people to feel they could connect with others. Our first bulletin board was born in 2000. I became addicted to trying to help others when trying to conceive, being pregnant or raising young children. As social media platforms evolved, my usage has also changed. I engage in different ways according to each platform´s characteristics.  But in the end, I use social media for the same need I have always had: to reach out to others, share and help whenever possible.

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

Social Media has completely changed the way I live my everyday life. Personally, I have met so many inspiring people and have learned so much from them. In particular, I have found a true sisterhood that has supported me and encouraged me to grow. Many of my closest friendships began online. Professionally, I have truly spread my wings and have been able to speak at conferences, be interviewed, and make business contacts through 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?

By engaging online and building relationships through social media, you set the building blocks for growth. You also identify who is doing something well, who is influencing others and can directly reach out to them to collaborate. It´s very interesting to see how you can also serve as a connector between people and brands. For me, social media enabled me to bring together an amazing group of Latina, Spanish-speaking bloggers to blog on Blogs de Mamás, which is very near and dear to my heart.

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?

Many women have become extremely effective at setting the agenda for the issues that need to be discussed via social media. Social media gives you a platform to use your voice. Many also have used that platform to support others, to open doors to others and I believe that is extremely powerful and refreshing. Furthermore, I believe women can play the role of nurturer of relationships and are great connectors.

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

I don´t necessarily see myself as a leader. I´ve just been doing many things for a longer time than most. I do try to welcome newbies to the online world because it can be daunting. I also try to connect people from different backgrounds because we can learn so much from those who have diverse experiences and voices. In addition, I also speak quite often at conferences.

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

I have learned that there is no real privacy when you want to make a difference and engage actively in social media. If there is anything you need to keep private, then keep it offline. I have also learned that sometimes it is very easy to get caught up in cliques, but in my case, I graduated from high school a long time ago and I have no intention of falling into that trap. And third, I´ve learned that despite the strength of any bond you build online, it´s crucial to meet face to face whenever possible. That´s why I go to so many conferences.

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

Yes, I would like to inspire more women in the Latina community to blog and share their voices. Even though many are active in social media, sometimes they feel intimidated by the blogging world. I hope they can take their voices from a microblogging world into a full-blown blog.

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

Ana Roca-Castro, she inspires me on so many levels and is always seeking to help others. Catherine Connors, a brilliant writer, blogger and woman who always keeps it real. Ana Flores, an amazing connector that stays true to what she believes in and is not afraid of making things happen. Elianne Ramos, she is the best example of community building through social media. Aside from welcoming me with open arms, she constantly supports others. Jennifer James is not only a pioneer but she is also a constant source of inspiration. She is an advocate for others but also has tremendous integrity. And you, Ananda Leeke, are always trying to bring together so many inspiring women and have an uplifting message.

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

Social media can be your own marketing platform, to share what you are doing, highlight projects you care about, and showcase what you are working on. Just remember to mix it up and not use it solely to promote yourself. It is very boring and tiring to read all the time about only one topic, especially if that topic is you. Social media also enables you to reach a broad audience in different ways across multiple platforms. take advantage of it!

Digital Sisterhood Leadership Project Profile – Rachel Matos


 

Photo Credit: Rachel Matos

Meet Digital Sisterhood Leader Rachel Matos.

1) How can people find you online?

2) Why did you start using social media?

I started using social media two or three years ago to promote my work as an actress and arts educator.  I’m no longer acting because I now have a job in social media, which I love.

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

It has given me work. I developed many friendships. I’m part of extraordinary communities with like-minded people. I realized that my all my work experiences can be used for a bigger purpose and cause.

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?

Since working with Latina Bloggers Connect (which started as a Twitter conversation with Ana Flores that lead to a job), I have been able to take on leadership roles as an Account Executive. This position has helped me make smart business decisions about my own blog and brand.  It has also opened other doors to write about arts and culture, which makes me a leader in using social media to promote the arts — especially as a Latina woman.

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?

They help other women out. I love that! For example, a few weeks ago several mothers initiated an online diaper drive.

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

I help provide technology help to Latina women who are growing their businesses as a part of my work with Latina Bloggers Connect (LBC). I also inform LBC followers about the different bloggers in our roster. We encourage growth and community.  For The Art Muse blog and web site, I want to inspire women to grab a camera, take pictures, go to art shows, make a collage, and enjoy the simpler things in life. Art can be fun, beautiful, and found in many things around us.

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

Watch what you say. There is nothing more annoying than passive aggressive tweets and being negative online. It looks bad. Save your gripes for offline.

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

I do! Right now, I’m on the journey and it’s growing organically. I have not set a goal because every week, the blog seems to pass a hurdle in the race without me thinking too much about it. I just work at it every day. Where it takes me, we shall see. I’m content knowing that I’ve inspired several bloggers to buy a camera and start shooting. The quality of their pictures and posts has given them more work. That feels good!

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

Carol Cain and Ana Flores.  But I also love Garance Dore, Shini Park, and many others.

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

  • Engage and bring your brand to life with conversation.
  • Link to your work.
  • Link to the work of other people who fall in line with your brand.