Hello. I’m Leigh. You’ve probably read my resume by now, but do you know who I am? This site is here to answer that question.
I’m a dreamer, a good thought thinker, a doer, and a fail and try again-er. I’m an artist for fun and a writer professionally. I may be the worst vegan on the planet, but I do legitimately like kale so that has to count for something. I’m funny and kind and I strive to make every situation better and easier for those around me. I am fighting the good fight and I have no intentions to stop.
I’m by no means perfect. I’m often scared that I am just one person and I can’t possibly do enough, that I didn’t give it 110% in that last presentation, or that I am not the right person for the job. But I think these fears drive me to be better. We all have them, these fears and doubts and concerns. I think they are important. I’m not some super human, I’m actually just very human. But I’m learning and growing and becoming a better activist, ally, and person every day. I will not always succeed, but where I fail, I will fail in the right direction.
This site exists because I am my resume and my work but I am so much more. If you have a minute, stay a while and get to know me.
The first protest I remember going to I was eight. But I started going to city council meetings and making big plans for how I was going to make the world a better place way before then. It’s in my blood. From being one of a few to speak up at a Pima County Board of Supervisors meeting to being one of hundreds of thousands at the 2017 Women’s March in Washington, D.C., I’m a sign holding, shouting until I’m hoarse, marching, protesting, letter writing, and petition signing activist.
I am a teacher. As much as I loved all the time I’ve spent sitting in a classroom, I love standing at the front of one so much more. Teaching is hard and sometimes totally draining but also the most rewarding thing I have ever done. Every second I spend in front of a classroom solidifies for me that I am destined for that profession in one way or another. The opportunity to pass what I have learned on and, even more than that, to spark in my students the same passion I have for learning and working to make the world a better place than we found it, is my life’s goal.
Meditation and mindfulness have become buzzwords and punchlines. But they are also effective tools to prevent compassion fatigue and allow me to be a more present person at work, around my friends and family, and with myself. Meditation is so much more than sitting quietly with your eyes closed. It isn’t valuable because it can teach you to focus. It may. But it is just as likely to show you how the mind is wild and desperate for distraction. Instead, it is valuable because with practice it teaches you to set an intention, and when you lose it or fail, to recognize that and gracefully return to the intention. It is impossible to go through life without getting sidetracked, lost, or turned in the wrong direction. Meditation can teach gentle course-correction that encourages growth, curiosity, and joy rather than disciplining and badgering human nature into exhausted submission.
I can’t help myself… if someone needs help, I will help. I was the friend you went to with your problems. Now I’m the coworker that has the answers and is always ready to jump at the opportunity to add to a project, bring new ideas, or pitch in when the team needs it.
I am an avid hiker. I’ve always liked nature and being outdoors but in 2016 I took that from a casual hobby to an obsession. Two hundred and fifty miles later I’m not sure what I accomplished. But that isn’t what hiking is about. It is about way finding and coexisting with nature. It’s about depending on yourself and pushing the limits. It’s about always taking that next step.
You don’t know me if you don’t know my dog. If I could bring Oswin everywhere with me, I would. She is not just a good dog, she is an emotional support animal. When I’m worked up, she calms me down. When I’m down, she brings the energy. And when my mental illness is getting the best of me, she will literally nose me on until I can be human again.
Oswin is an amazing dog. But I love all dogs, really. I also have two cats and a snake. I love them, too.
Growing up on the University of Arizona campus and then going there for my undergraduate degree means I’m a Wildcat for life. I will always cheer my team on, especially my basketball Cardiac Cats. And I will always, always give ASU a hard time.
You say nerd, I say passionate. I love to learn and dig into new information whenever it is presented. I watch documentaries for fun. I live for the latest program on PBS. So call me a nerd. I’d call it a natural learner. I’d call it adventurer. I’d call it curiosity that can’t be stopped.