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Spotlight! Katrina Naeve (Leadership Institute Edition)

Name: Katrina Naeve

Preferred Pronouns: she/her/her

Job title: Impact Associate

Organization: ResultsLab

Time in current role: 1 monthish

College/School: Colorado College & American University

Area of study/expertise: History (Minors: Spanish + Race/Ethnic Studies) and International Development

What do you like most about working in the nonprofit sector? The people. Everyone I have worked with are not only caring and kind, but resourceful, determined, and dedicated to the work we do in the sector. Everyone is always willing to lend a hand or collaborate on something, even when it's not their strong suit. Nonprofits are full of people who are trying their best, every single day, to make the world a better place. Favorite vacation you've ever been on? I was fortunate enough to be able to visit Madagascar when I was in Peace Corps and it was an amazing experience. The biological diversity is unparalleled because of its isolation, with baobab trees, chameleons, lemurs, and other endemic species. Not to mention the fantastic hiking through tropical forests filled with humidity, leeches, and waterfalls. I just wish David Attenborough could have narrated the trip.

Personal mantra? Perfection is the enemy of progress: I feel like I can get so caught up in creating the right conditions or planning every detail, that I am paralyzed with inaction. You have to start at some point. Learn from your mistakes, adjust and keep going. Rarely will something be perfect the first time, so eventually just stop planning and do your best. What are your hopes for our industry? Being a bit of a data wonk and perhaps biased, I hope the industry starts not only seeing the value in data and evaluation, but really believing in it. I hope that the sector sees data like any other function, be it development, operations, communications, etc. I hope that nonprofits and their funders can allocate resources, like staff or technology, to the management and use of data. Currently, I think that data is an untapped resource and there is a lot of potential in evaluation to improve the impact of nonprofit work.

Any guilty pleasures? Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream (especially Gooey Butter Cake) and any Netflix true crime series or documentary.

What was the last experience you had that made you a stronger person? I am a 2x young adult cancer survivor. I was working in a for-profit mission-oriented organization when I was undergoing treatment and I think that experience really affirmed my choice to work in the nonprofit sector. It’s extremely cliché but I want to be able to use my working time wisely and contribute to something positive. Because of this, I envision myself always working for mission-driven organizations where I can use my talents to help great organizations do their best work.

What's your go-to karaoke song?

Undone by Weezer

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