Growing up in Washington, D.C., I was taught that in order to create effective change, it must be through a narrow window of law, advocacy, and politics. As I started to develop a passion for social impact production in college, I often questioned that passion, because that wasn’t the accepted norm. All of my friends were going into politics or some realm of consulting after school. Finding my way to the social impact entertainment industry was sheer luck, but it has been an incredible first job. There are multitude of reasons why social impact production is such an amazing space to work in, mainly, the level of responsibility and direct connection to the impact being created are the most valuable from my perspective.
The internships I had throughout my collegiate career were great, but they lacked substantial responsibility. Working with PLUS ONE society and the REPRESENT JUSTICE campaign to host the Play for Justice program, has been an eye-opening experience. For a kid coming out of college, the amount of trust put into each individual member of the team is incomparable. “BIG TRUS” as Baltimore Ravens running back, Mark Ingram, puts it. Whether it’s facilitating conversations with incarcerated individuals, crafting brand strategy, or late-night phone calls from the campaign’s executive producer Kristen Ingram, I’ve been able to challenge myself and develop operational and logistical skills that I otherwise, never would’ve been given the opportunity to do.
Throughout Play for Justice, I have been given the opportunity to see how these experiences lift up incarcerated individuals. Being able to have one on one conversations with residents at the facilities we go to and hear how these events energize them, is an invaluable experience. When these experiences are given at such an early point in one’s career, it creates a passion for the work that would otherwise be missed.