Welcome. This newsletter is for

folks who are curious at heart, tired of the drama in our spaces and maybe a little confused by our fast-changing society. Which is understandable – for one thing, it can be hard to know what's true and what's not today. To me that's a problem that needs to be addressed.

My career in social change communications was spent designing initiatives that address issues like mental health stigma, infant mortality and the legacy systems that stifle innovation. We designed strategies together with the communities we were supporting, so I worked in a hands-on way with communities of color, Tribal nations, LGBTQ advocates, youth, folks with behavioral health issues etc. I helped lead my former firm and I'm guessing have partnered with over a hundred nonprofits, government agencies and companies during my 20+-year career.

With Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute fellows and colleagues after a training on strategic storytelling

Here’s a blog post I wrote about behavior change while on staff at Vanguard.

From my career you can probably discern my own political views. I’m a progressive Democrat but lean more toward the center these days than I used to. I live in Washington, DC and thus am surrounding by like-minded folks, but grew up in a Buffalo suburb and draw on those roots in my work, every day. I really love when I get out of the bubble and talk with others, elsewhere.

In 2016 I started my own firm, 3 Stories Communications, and through some chance conversations stepped into two issue areas I think are really important: 1) helping organizations find strategic approaches for building more inclusive cultures and 2) dealing with the mis- and disinformation problem (or fake news, or information disorder, depending on who you talk to). The latter is causing a lot of confusion and vitriol, and few fully understand the manipulation and agendas behind it. Luckily I work with a team of researchers at NYU's Cybersecurity for Democracy project who do understand, and I've learned a ton from them.

Thankfully there are solutions in the works for tackling the disinformation epidemic but most are tech or policy-oriented rather than working with people at the community level. That's where Truth in Common comes in.

The Truth in Common approach

Truth in Common is a community for people who align around shared values of curiosity, courage, connection and respect. It's a 4-part workshop series on how to be a more savvy consumer of information and a digital community for continuing the conversation afterward, hosted on the Circle platform. (Stay tuned for a post on why I chose that over a Facebook group or Slack. Trust me, the platform is easy and engaging.)

This companion newsletter is where I share what I've learned and discerned over 20+ years in the information business. I'll tackle some of whoppers, tell some stories and add some tips as well. I try to offer a balanced lens that I hope is a refreshing shift from the current conversation.

ALL views are welcome here – my goal is not to change minds but offer perspective and research to open-minded folks, so they can make their own decisions. Like everyone I’m also fallible, and so welcome corrections and push-back – as long as their respectful.

Hope this post makes it clear where I’m coming from, to borrow from NYU's Jay Rosen. I look forward to sharing and being in community with all of you.