New Mexico Techworks had the opportunity to interview Zippy Guerin. Zippy works with Creative Santa Fe and is the founder of Santa Fe Found, an online platform that highlights local artists and entrepreneurs. In this interview she explains how technology has impacted her career and life.
Name: Zippy Guerin
Business/Organization: Santa Fe Found
1. Where are you from and how did you end up in Santa Fe?
I grew up in Cambridge, MA, and when I was 16 I came to New Mexico to attend the United World College in Montezuma (right outside Las Vegas, NM). I lived there for two years and then went to college in California and lived in LA for a few years. In 2017 I moved back to New Mexico because I was self-employed and working from home at the time (thus I could live/work anywhere) and I thought Santa Fe would be a great place to be. I love living in Santa Fe and am very happy I made my way back to New Mexico.
2. How did your personal and professional background influence where you are today?
I worked for myself after I graduated college and started a company with my then-partner. We worked from home and traveled quite a bit, and through this work, I got to see a lot of different communities across the country. A few years ago I passed through Santa Fe for the first time since I had left in 2010, and unlike most places I visited, I felt like I could actually live here. So, I decided to make the move to Santa Fe and am very happy I did. Because I didn't know anyone when I moved here, I felt as though I really needed to reach out and build community. So last May I started Santa Fe Found, a website that highlights local creators, artists & entrepreneurs. Through running this platform, I have met so many incredible people and am constantly in awe of peoples' creations. I also now work at a nonprofit called Creative Santa Fe, and I've really enjoyed working with different organizations and artists to get people in our community civically engaged.
3. Do you use social media?
Yes, I use social media a lot! I love sharing bits and pieces of my life with my friends online, and I also love using social media as a discovery tool. For example, whenever I'm traveling to a new city, I use Instagram to look up what's happening and where to go. I use it to find design inspiration, look up new recipes, meet people, discover new artists, and more. I'm a very visual person so Instagram is my favorite platform. Whenever I'm feeling creatively stuck, I go to Instagram or Tumblr (yes, Tumblr!) for inspiration.
For business, I think social media can be a great tool for growth. Personally, I find it's much easier for me to tell a brand's story through photographs and captions than just through words or paid advertisements. I really enjoy capturing and sharing images that truly express a brand's identity and that help get the message out about who they are. Social media is also a great place for brands to test ideas, connect with new audiences, and get informed about what people are creating and buying.
4. What advice would you give to younger people that are interested in entrepreneurship and technology?
Go for it! Realize that the technological landscape is shifting daily, so if you are feeling like you're already behind on something, just remember that every day you have the opportunity to be an early adopter or pioneer of a new medium. Also, realize that there are intersections between entrepreneurship and technology and just about everything else. You can create your own version of entrepreneurship that fits into your own lifestyle and your interests. What the typical stereotype of an entrepreneur or engineer looks like is not truly representative of all the different types of people who are running their own businesses and using technology to make a living. I challenge you to make it your own!
5. How has inventing technology or using technology helped you move forward?
Most recently I've used technology, specifically social media, to share local creators' stories and connect with the Santa Fe community via my website Santa Fe Found. I started this project 8 months ago and there are already thousands of people who are interacting with the content I publish each week. It's very exciting to be able to support local artists and entrepreneurs and share their stories online, but it's also incredible to learn about how Santa Fe Found has led to people bringing these relationships offline and collaborating on projects in real life.
6. What do you like to do in your free time?
I'm an active person and love to be out and about - whether it's working out, hiking, or just walking around town. I also like to cook - I've been vegan/vegetarian for most of my life and love making healthy food. I'd also say I'm an amateur designer - whether it be designing a warm and beautiful home, creating websites and print materials, or redesigning processes to streamline them - I'm always conceptualizing how to make things simpler and prettier.
7. What role do you think IT will play in Santa Fe?
My hope is that IT will support the wants and needs of the Santa Fe community going forward. I lived in Silicon Valley for 4 years while I was studying at Stanford, and I was amazed by how many superfluous products and startups were being designed and funded. I mean, some truly ridiculous ideas were being given millions of dollars, meanwhile, there was a massive housing and homelessness crisis occurring in the Bay Area, among many other problems. I think that the appeal of working for a cool consumer product startup is real, so it is important that we communicate to young people that there are equally, if not more, rewarding careers in technology that will help solve some of the biggest issues facing our community: public infrastructure, education, poverty, housing, sustainability, healthcare, etc.
8. What is your favorite thing about working with technology?
My favorite thing about working with technology is that it has really democratized many processes that in the past have excluded certain types of people. I so appreciate how technology allows people who might otherwise be isolated (physically, financially, etc.) to connect with almost anyone in the world. Online, your work speaks for itself and if you have good ideas, you can communicate them to populations that might otherwise be out of reach to you.
Sending warm and cozy 2019 greetings...and a quick survey!
It is come to our attention that many of the employees, entrepreneurs, and family members of our local Tech and Media companies are interested in alternate transportation options, as well as safe biking and walking opportunities in our community. Alas, we are rolling into the New Year in collaboration with the Santa Fe Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) and asking for your input and insights.
The MPO is in the process of updating its Bicycle Master Plan and needs input from a wide range of community members to gain a better and broader understanding of transit habits and bicycling in the Santa Fe area. Your responses will help shape the future of transportation in our region and guide recommendations in the 2019 Bicycle Master Plan. To share your insights, please complete the brief survey here:
2019 Bicycle Master Plan Survey https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/72CKGFQ
The Bicycle Master Plan is a tool that will be utilized by its member entities (City of Santa Fe, Santa Fe County, and Tesuque Pueblo) along with many other non-governmental stakeholders in making decisions that shape the rules, regulations and the built environment that directly affect transportation and bicycling in the Santa Fe area. It should only take a couple minutes but we thank you for your time and insights.
Since the MPO is seeking a broad range of community input, we also hope you would consider circulating this survey among any other organization and business, as well as staff, co-workers, family, or friends.
Thanks again for your input!
Meanwhile, hope the holidays proved nourishing and sending best wishes for a wonderful 2019.
We have a heap of exciting things brewing and look forward to sharing an amazing year! Stay tuned...
Emily Cole joins us from Durango, Colorado where she earned a bachelor's degree in International Business. She has been in Santa Fe for less than two weeks and has already had the opportunity to attend multiple community discussions, interact with local nonprofits and businesses, and help manage our websites. Emily's interests are working with nonprofits and local groups that engage the community in finding creative and sustainable solutions to existing issues. She also loves to travel, rock climb, and drink good coffee. To reach her in her new role in Economic Development and Outreach email her at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (405) 481-1518.
Dozens of professionals volunteered in local classrooms las week, including the new Director of LANL Thom Mason! Check out the article from the Valley Daily Post!
Photos posted in the Valley Daily Post by John McHale/ladailypost.com
To learn more about regional Hour of Code activities, visit www.nmtechworks.com/hour-of-code-2018
Congratulations to the Congressional APP Challenge winners from District 3 !
New Mexico TechWorks is extra excited about the Santa Fe Indian School's Congressional APP Challenge First Place win, since NMTechWorks worked with SFPS last year to pilot the first coding elective while promoting development of a full-time program and connecting students with real-life learning opportunities to meet Tech and Media professionals! Woohoo for New Mexico's Growing Innovation Economy Powered by Tech...AND for the local educators who work to bring that vision to fruition including Mark Ericson and Kate Sallah, plus Steve Coriz, Carlos Santistevan, and Kathleen Phelan! Learn more. Get Involved. #nmtechworks
First Place winners are the creators of the APP "Naruto Self Defense" - teammates Terrell Toldeo and Elias Trancosa from Santa Fe Indian School. They were selected as the first place winners of this year's Congressional App Challenge for this APP created to help students express themselves by making them feel more comfortable with self-expression.
Los Alamos High School students Javier and William McTeigue and Los Alamos Middle School student Kelly Isabella McTeigue were 2018's second place winners! Their app “Road Trip History” gives travelers information about the towns and cities they’re driving through.
Also congratulating German Rojo on the creation of the "Student Improvement Survey” app, which was selected as the 3rd place winner in our Congressional App Challenge.
What is All the Excitement About? Check Out the Community Driven Video That We Released This Week in Celebration of National Computer Science Education Week!
What is all the excitement about? New Mexico is celebrating its growing "Innovation Economy Powered by Tech" with this inspiring video made for the community by the community (including student film crews) in honor of Computer Science Education Week and Hour of Code learning events taking place throughout the state (and nation) ! You can help us spread the word by viewing, liking, sharing, and showing this video. Learn More. Get Involved. www.nmtechworks.com
New Mexico is celebrating national Computer Science Education Week with learning events and Hour of Code activities in more than 314 school and community sites throughout the region!
We are grateful to Congresswoman and Governor-elect Michelle Lujan Grisham for her inspiring words and stay tuned for more inspiration thanks to the upcoming release of our New Mexico promotional video which will premier at the Digital Learning Expo on December 3rd in Santa Fe and which was created with input from students and community members of all ages.
You can learn more and get involved in New Mexico's growing "Innovation economy powered by Tech" online at www.nmtechworks.com.
Code your own dance, featuring Katy Perry, Justin Bieber, Ariana Grande and more!
This year Hour of Code and Amazon Future Engineer* collaborated on a very special tutorial, Hour of Code: Dance Party!
You can code and dance to 30 hits from top artists.
An hour is only the beginning!
Fantastic curriculum is available at no cost for kindergarten through high school through code.org and 90% of teachers rate code.org workshops “the best professional development ever.”
Expand CS in your school.
Inspiration for classrooms
2018 posters are available with a 50% off discount and Prime shipping. Inspire budding computer scientists in your school and community year-round with inspiring figures like Stephen Curry, Malala Yousafzai, and Shakira. Hang them in your classroom to create an inclusive environment, or in school hallways to encourage more students to try CS.
Plus, connect with a network of volunteers that can be invited to a classroom to help students see firsthand where computer science can take them in the future.
Learn more about events and activities in New Mexico in support of Hour of Code at www.nmtechworks.com/hour-of-code-2018
AFRL Tech Engagement Office in Albuquerque in partnership with Hour of Code, AT&T and 2ndGear are hosting an Hour of Code event on Tuesday, Dec 4th 4-7pm at the Lobo Rainforest Building 101 Broadway Blvd. NE, Albuquerque, NM 87102
All are welcome to come and enjoy a variety of activities available to help demystify computer coding and show that anyone can learn the basics and have fun doing it.
Computer science helps nurture problem-solving skills, logic and creativity. By starting early, students will have a foundation for success in any 21st-century career path.
Activities Available For All Ages & Skill Sets.
Organized Activities on the Hour (4:00 pm, 5:00 pm, & 6:00 pm)
Including: Coding with Blockly MIT App Inventor, Raspberry Pi Physical Computing Robotics- Dash Robots, Ozobots & Parallax BOE-Bots
Learn more about regional Hour of Code learning activities and events, as well as the the locally-made promotional video being released this week in support of our growing Tech economy at www.nmtechworks.com/hour-of-code-2018
Don't miss the upcoming Digital Learning Expo in Santa Fe on December 3rd from 5:30 to 7:30 at Santa Fe High School in the Toby Roybal Gymnasium at 2100 Yucca Street. This free event is open to the public and was established for students to showcase innovative uses of Technology and showcase acquired skills and talents as part of national Computer Science Education Week.