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WAKE's mission is to amplify the work of gender and social justice activists and their organizations. We do this by connecting them to new networks, tools, training and resources.

Our Goals

  • Engage across sectors to contribute their skills and expertise to help advance women's rights and gender justice globally;

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

  • Increase the capacity of progressive justice leaders and their organizations to affect change;

  • Form new networks and partnerships to amplify an agenda for women's and girls' rights and intersectional gender justice;

  • Establish sustainable learning hubs where teams share skills and tools with new audiences to create a sustainable multiplier effect, educating, linking and inspiring more gender justice activism.

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Trish Tierney
Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer

Over the past 20 years, Trish has created partnerships with tech companies, non-profits, foundations and governments to advance women’s leadership and build global networks. Prior to co-founding WAKE, Trish was Executive Director of the Institute of International Education (IIE) in San Francisco. At IIE, Trish led the growth of the office through partnerships with the U.S. Department of State, major foundations, and corporate partners. She is especially proud to have founded IIE’s Center for Women’s Leadership Initiatives.

Trish spearheaded IIE’s participation in the Clinton Global Initiative and led a consortium of partners including Google, Qualcomm, Goldman Sachs, McKinsey, Juniper Networks and Citrix to establish WeTech, endorsed by Former Secretary Hillary Rodham Clinton. 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 several Trish spent several years at the World Bank, working on education reform and girls’ education in Africa. Trish served as a WorldTeach volunteer in Namibia.

Trish edited a book, Women in the Global Economy: Leading Social Change and is an advisor to the Clinton Global Initiative. She also serves as an Ambassador for Same Sky, is a part of Global Greengrants Fund Global Giving Network, and serves on the Global Advisory Council of TechnoServe. She 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 collaborative workshop design and facilitation, virtual training and technology needs assessment. She also leads operations and communications for WAKE. Heather is passionate and knowledgeable about online safety and privacy, especially for women, girls and social justice activists and their organizations. 

Heather has dedicated her career to creating and scaling programs to advance women's rights, power and influence globally. Over the last 20 years, Heather has conceptualized and led large multi-country initiatives working in partnership with more than 300 social justice and women's rights organizations in 30+ countries. Nearly all of her work has been at the intersection of women’s rights, economic empowerment, social justice and technology.

Prior to co-founding WAKE, Heather was Senior Director of Strategic Partnerships at the Institute of International Education. Heather helped found its Center for Women’s Leadership Initiatives, and she 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, Tunisia and ECA’s initiative, TechWomen. Heather led the competitive bid for the Department of State’s TechWomen in 2010, and designed 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.



Amanda Schwartz
Program Officer

Amanda wears many hats as a Program Officer at WAKE. You might find her developing tech + communications projects with reproductive justice activists in Louisiana, interviewing immigration activists on how our programs have helped scale their work, or turning our impact data into compelling stories for our newsletters and social media accounts. Amanda has an unwavering commitment to women’s rights globally, and she is humbled to join WAKE in continuing to work towards this end.

Prior to joining WAKE, she co-founded an organization called The Ring Project, which provides financial support (through the donation of diamond rings) to women in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo pursuing law and medical school. She has brought in over $100,000 in scholarships and established partnerships with schools and organizations in two provinces in the DRC. She has been fortunate to live, study, and conduct research in ten countries. Her prior research focused on how international humanitarian aid organizations have coordinated support for Internally Displaced Persons within a camp in eastern Congo, and her findings focused on the design of new technology platforms to enable better coordination between community based organizations and the international community, with an emphasis on women and girls.

Amanda holds a BA in Politics from the University of California, Santa Cruz and an MSc in International Development from the London School of Economics. She lives happily on a houseboat in Sausalito and loves converting people to rock climbers.


Giana Andonini
Project Manager

Giana is a hands-on professional with 8+ years experience working with Communications and Project Management in Social Sector organizations from Brazil, U.S. and Spain. 

 Giana is serving at WAKE as Atlas Corps Fellow to contribute to the development of essential marketing materials and marketing campaigns that will help WAKE achieve organizational sustainability, partnership development, outreach and impact. 

 Giana holds a Bachelor degree in Social Communications from Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Paraná (Brazil) and a Post Certificate Course degree in Social Innovation Management, from Amani Institute. Giana is currently studying a Master in Strategy and Technology for Development at Universidad Politécnica de Madrid and working as project manager at Fundación Tomillo (Madrid). While Brazil is her home, she has been living for the past year in Spain and has lived for some time in Bolivia while volunteering at Proyecto Martadero. 

 On a professional level, she has worked on social impact projects in different sectors: at a multinational company, a governmental organization, a non-profit foundation and a social enterprise. Giana has experience working as ‘intrapreneur’ twice: when implemented the Social Franchise ‘Projeto Pescar’ at the multinational company Dixie Toga S.A. and when implemented the initiative ‘Estudar Fora’ at Fundação Estudar, one of the main non-profit foundations that support Brazilian youth in their education. Her interests are related to Education, Gender equality, Social Innovation and Sustainability and her way of working is based on a mixture of empathy, action, and strategic thinking. impact.



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 
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