Our mission

WAKE's mission is to accelerate and amplify the work of women's rights and social justice leaders and their organizations. We do this by connecting them with teams of volunteer advisors from top companies who provide hands-on project work, feedback, and training on technology tools and platforms.

Our goals 

  • Engage experts across sectors to advance women's rights and social justice globally;

  • Connect leaders and activists with tools, trainings, resources and advisors to help them expand and scale their work;

  • Increase the capacity of women's rights and social justice organizations to affect change;

  • Bring together allies and partnerships to accelerate an agenda for women's rights and social justice.

Our team

Trish Tierney, Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer

Trish co-founded WAKE because she passionately believes that every single person can contribute to positive change. Through WAKE and its Tech2Empower initiative, she loves creating opportunities for talented, dedicated people from around the world to come together to collaborate and design solutions for a better future. It’s a joy to build WAKE with Heather, co-founder and long-time friend. Trish’s expertise includes organizational and program strategy, fundraising, and building partnerships with nonprofits and tech companies. She has been fortunate to work with partners in Africa, Asia, Latin America, Middle East and the U.S.   

Prior to WAKE, Trish was Executive Director of the Institute of International Education (IIE) in San Francisco. She led the growth of the office through partnerships with the U.S. Department of State, foundations, and corporations. She is especially proud to have founded IIE’s Center for Women’s Leadership Initiatives, and edited a book, “Women in the Global Economy: Leading Social Change.” Trish spearheaded IIE’s participation in the Clinton Global Initiative, where she was an Advisor on the Technology Track. Prior to IIE, Trish was at Cisco Systems and helped bring the Cisco Networking Academy Program to the world’s fifty least developed countries, with special emphasis on the inclusion of women. Trish spent spent several years at the World Bank, focused on education reform and girls’ education in Africa. Trish began her career as a WorldTeach volunteer in Namibia.

Trish is on the Board of Trustees of the San Francisco Day School, and holds a B.A. from Notre Dame and an M.A. from Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies. Trish loves living in beautiful San Francisco, with her husband and three kids.

Heather Ramsey, Co-founder and Chief Operations Officer

Heather co-leads WAKE's strategy, vision and program design with longtime friend and co-founder, Trish. Heather's expertise includes designing, leading and facilitating technology and capacity building programs for nonprofits/NGOs in the US and internationally. She leads operations, technology, training, program development and communications for WAKE.

Prior to WAKE, Heather was Senior Director of Strategic Partnerships at the Institute of International Education (IIE). Heather helped found its Center for Women’s Leadership Initiatives, and designed and led its flagship programs including Women in Technology for the Middle East and North Africa (WIT MENA), E-Mediat: Tools, Technology and Training, Women’s Enterprise for Sustainability in Tunisia and TechWomen. Heather led the initial bid for the Department of State’s TechWomen in 2010, and directed the program for its first four years expanding it to 21 countries and developing partnerships with more than 50 leading Silicon Valley companies.

Heather holds an MA in International Policy with a focus on Gender in International Development from the Monterey Institute of International Studies and a BA in French and Journalism. Heather lives in San Francisco with her husband and daughters, who inspire her work every day.

Christina Lacey, Program Coordinator

Christina is a dedicated advocate for women's rights who comes to WAKE by way of Arizona. Over the past several years, she has worked in education, refugee resettlement, and non-profit development. Christina is excited to use her experience in event planning to bring women together to share ideas and support at WAKE's Tech2Empower events.

Prior to joining WAKE, Christina worked with the Campaign for Female Education, furthering their mission to increase access to education for girls in Sub-Saharan Africa. Drawing upon her academic background in development economics, Christina has designed programs and curricula to empower young women and displaced youth both in the U.S. and internationally. She is especially passionate about using educational reform as a tool to inform and amplify social change.

Christina holds a BA in Philosophy, Politics, Economics, and Law from the University of Arizona. She recently relocated to the Bay Area and is on a mission to find the best tacos San Francisco has to offer.

Emily Berlin, Development & Communications Officer

Emily is a proud feminist and activist. She's passionate about women's rights and social justice and is excited to be part of a team focused on making an impact in these areas worldwide. 

Before joining WAKE Emily spent the past several years involved in political activism as an Organizer and Fundraiser for various Democratic candidates like Hillary Clinton, Speaker Nancy Pelosi's Red to Blue midterm campaign, and for groups like the DCCC, DSCC, NARAL and Emerge America, among others. She comes to San Francisco after a decade in New York City where she worked for the women-led interiors brand Rachel Ashwell Shabby Chic Couture and prior to that as a Book Publicist for HarperCollins Publishers. 

Emily holds a BA in English Literature and Communications from the University of Michigan. She has learned to love San Francisco almost as much as New York (particularly in the winter) and lives with her husband and Cavalier King Charles Spaniel puppy, Phoenix. 

Tinia M., Communications Intern 

Tinia is passionate about the advancement of women and racial equality issues. In her past internships, she’s worked in education, publishing, and especially in media and communications. She is excited to bring her skills to WAKE, as the mission, “to amplify the work of women's rights and social justice leaders and their organizations” resonates with her life’s passions.

Prior to joining WAKE, she has experience working both for non-profit and for-profit organizations. Tinia has served as Marketing and Communications intern at the American Institute of Architects- San Francisco Chapter assisting with specific marketing campaigns and executing social media strategy to increase visibility of chapter programs to members and the greater general public. Though by far, she treasures her experience as an Education Program intern at 826 Valencia’s tenderloin location.

Tinia was born and raised in the heart of Chicago, before venturing to the west coast to complete a Bachelors of Arts in English and Graphic Design from the University of San Francisco, from whom she will graduate this spring. She loves writing and reading, her favorite genres being fantasy and contemporary romance, and she dreams of one day meeting her favorite book characters. She aspires to one day help nurture and discipline the next generation of influential writers and change-makers, who will indeed, change our world.

Giana Andonini, Marketing Consultant

Giana is a hands-on professional with 9 years of experience working with Communications and Project Management in social impact driven initiatives. At WAKE, Giana contributes to the development of essential marketing materials and strategies that will help WAKE achieve organizational sustainability, outreach and impact. She is especially interested in experiential education, gender equality and social innovation. 

While Brazil is her home, she has lived in the U.S., Spain and Bolivia for a while, and now is based in Portugal. On a professional level, she has worked on social impact projects from different countries and from different sectors (from CSR to social enterprises), developing an entrepreneurial mindset and empathic attitude to face the complex challenges that the work in this field presents.

Giana holds a BA in Communications from Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Paraná (Brazil), a Post Certificate Course degree in Social Innovation Management from Amani Institute, a Social Innovation Diploma from UN Mandate University for Peace (UPEACE) and is currently developing her final project for the Master in Strategy and Technology for Development at Universidad Politécnica de Madrid. 

Marina Tassi, WAKE Intern

Marina immigrated from Brazil 13 years ago. She is a dedicated person and is working towards her Industrial/Organizational Psychology degree at California State University East Bay. 

She has been involved in volunteer management at her community church and now is part of the WAKE team as an intern. She is passionate about human rights and women’s rights and is excited to be part of Tech2Empower USA. She lives in the Bay Area with her fiancé and her rescued Boxer.

Advisory Board

  •    Maryam Ahmad Technical Project Manager, Google 
  •    Shradha Balakrishnan Senior Product Manager, GoDaddy  
  •    Eileen BrewerDirector, Enterprise Security Products, Symantec
  •    Elizabeth Brooks Operations Director, Vote Solar
  •    Beth Kanter Master Trainer, Author, Influencer
  •    Rami Al-KarmiGeek, Investor, CEO
  •    Hannah Lewbel Partner Architect & Engineering Manager, Microsoft 
  •    Larissa Shapiro Head of Global Diversity & Inclusion, Mozilla 

Help us amplify the voices and impact of women entrepreneurs and girls through Tech2Empower.

If you are interested in getting involved with WAKE, please reach us at connect@wakeinternational.org
For more information about the upcoming programs, visit the pages below: