Hey! I’m a 25-year-old communications leader, artist and changemaker. Russian-Italian by origin, I’m based in Vienna. A very curiously sensitive human, lost in between cultures, disciplines and different roles (and I celebrate that). And a creative one – building connection and designs alike. Sharing my loss and grief story to break through taboos and benefit others. Grief changed everything and made me the person I’m today. I believe in kindness, openness, grit, courage, creativity, vulnerability and radical honesty. In whatever I do.
What I actually do during the day - in the depths of the world of creative communicators
I’m leading communications for Ashoka Austria towards the vision of an “Everyone a Changemaker” world, and the comms team of the European Youth Energy Network to place youth at the heart of the European energy transition. This means writing strategies and thinking up valuable content, writing social media captions and newsletters, designing, taking care of partnerships and coordinating with designers/international team/local colleagues, setting up a comms “creative studio” and keeping spaces organised. Breaking down complexity.
I always follow my curiosity, and my overarching interest in psychology. My core value is justice, social INjustice makes me angry and suffering of civilians hits me deep. This led me to become a mentor for disadvantaged youth, volunteer on the emotional frontline for Ukraine, do tutoring in a refugee home and more. All of this might seem like a drop in the ocean, but if we all do what we feel is right, then we create change. For one kid, or for a whole system.
Portfolio [the obligatory link to some tangible stuff I produced and that somehow still matters a lot]
power in visuals.
soul in words.
More background about me
(this and more) I dream of a world founded on infinite thinking (term stolen from the bestselling author Simon Sinek) in which we teach creativity, empathy and listening at school to the detriment of pursuing finite wins. Along with critical thinking and understanding our own brain aka human psychology. A world in which we find new ways of working differently, sharing more, solving solutions and communicating about them in the most effective ways possible. A world in which we are all changemakers, tackling the challenges and ills of society that we most connect with. I think it will be a wiser world, not automatically more peaceful, but more solution-oriented, inclusive, understanding, less lonely, resilient and built to last.
Wait a second! We need a definition here. When I say that I’m a changemaker (and I bet you are too) I mean that I’m a creative problem-solver, envisaging a new reality and feeling empowered to lead a change for the common good. I take action and (co-)lead solutions, build teams and collaborate with others to bring the new reality into being, stand up and make my voice heard and try to live collaborative leadership. In Ashoka we speak of four key changemaker abilities to navigate and drive change: conscious empathy, collaborative teamwork, new leadership and practicing changemaking. And I want to borrow a definition from “How to Change the World: Social Entrepreneurs and the Power of New Ideas”, the “bible” in the field of social entrepreneurship:
“A changemaker is “an obsessive person with skill, motivation, energy and bullheadedness to do whatever is necessary to move oneself forward…a person with vision, drive, integrity of purpose, great persuasive powers, and remarkable stamina.”
For years, I’ve been a climate activist in various context and organisations, constantly learning, sharing knowledge and trying to find impactful, systemic approaches to change. I believe in solution-building, dreaming big, and the unique contribution of youth and necessity of youth engagement in policymaking.
Since January 2022, I’m the Communications Leader in Austria for Ashoka, the largest global network of social entrepreneurs. A dream come true. In my free time, I’m the Communications Coordinator of the European Youth Energy Network (EYEN), the federation uniting energy-focused youth organisations in Europe and reshaping formal youth engagement towards a just, empowered and collaborative energy transition. As a board member of the Academy of Non-Profit Associations (AEV, in German) in Austria I am building up a network for cross-topic and cross-sectoral collaboration between associations and the empowerment of their volunteers/members. The end result: making associations more effective and thus boosting changemaking in society.
I’ve always been passionate about learning and sharing, which led me to teach myself most of the things I know. I did this by taking up responsibility & jumping over my shadow, along with lots of research & talking to experts. Also, I’m grateful for all my volunteering experiences. I fought hard to transform myself from an anxious girl into a passionate changemaker. That I am proud of. Over the years, I have “collected” work and internship experiences in energy efficiency, sustainable and digital industry (with the European Institute of Innovation and Technology), environmental counselling, energy consulting but also choreography & art. Volunteering led me to be active in various organisations as an event- and project manager, journalist, photographer & videographer, mentor, youth worker and project assistant – co-founding and leading the the Austrian Youth Climate Conference (Local Conference of Youth Austria ahead of the UN Climate Change Conference (COP), with the NGO CliMates Austria) among other things.
You’re looking for a neat CV? I wonder how you landed here (but why leave so soon? take a look around) and I tell you that your quest will be successful if you visit my social-media-persona over on LinkedIn.
What should I say? I’ve never been an art prodigy, painting works of art ready for the museum straight out of kindergarden. But at least I didn’t ever stop doodling all over the place (and making my teachers go crazy, along with drawing caricatures). In my late teenage years, I chose the world in which I’d want to spend most of my time in the future: visual arts, to the detriment of the musical world. In those days, singing, playing the piano and dancing were still the main ways to express myself.
Fast forward, I studied (no not art, but environmental management), went abroad, became a climate activist, started teaching myself graphic design and had little to no time for art. Also there was a problem. I felt that with the techniques at my disposal (from aquarel to pastels, ballpoint pen and acrylic) I wasn’t getting far; this was not my world after all. But then at the end of 2018, I started experimenting with digital art. It’s been an exploration, or archeology if you like, of colours, forms, patterns and human psychology. Today, I combine art into my designs while working on independant art pieces. The goal of my art is to surprise and touch, to inspire awe, to excite – through the beauty of unseen worlds. And as a branding enthusiast and strategist, I love integrating art in designs to support unique, professional-looking brands. PS: I’m still learning and am grateful for any cool resources. And I’ve never stopped dancing, best moments ever. Freedom, expression, community.
I’m a European, Russian-Italian, based in Vienna, born in Rome. I would love to say that I’m a global citizen, but let’s stop saying that before we’ve really travelled the globe. I definitely care a lot about the world and try to do my part in making it better. Let’s call that what it is: love. I believe in kindness, openness, grit, courage, creativity, vulnerability and radical honesty. In whatever I do.
Does anything of what you’ve just read or seen around here surprise you? Touch you? Make you think? Sound peculiarly familiar? Let’s talk, see how we can learn from each other and build big things together. You can reach out to me via firstname.lastname@example.org or LinkedIn. I’ll be happy to speak with you in Russian, Italian, French, English or German. And bits of Spanish.