Natalia is an organizational psychologist and technologist focused on merging innovation, entrepreneurship, and impact. Her passion hinges on creating communities that are true/inclusive ecosystems – a goal that is informed by her life as a twice-immigrant, interest in cross-disciplinary intersections, fascination with complex systems, and desire to bridge opportunity gaps.
Most recently she has done so by leading the expansion of the Cambridge Innovation Center to Miami. CIC is the US’s oldest/largest gathering hub of startup activity, labeled a leader in creating innovation districts (Brookings Institution) due to our economic impact, urban development, and community engagement initiatives. Prior to that, she served as the Chief Innovation & Technology Officer for a nonprofit focused on Cuba, which allowed her to directly impact the least connected country in the hemisphere. She has stayed involved with this issue, recently co-authoring the 10x10K Cuba innovation challenge, the first ever startup competition for entrepreneurs on the island. She moved to Miami from NYC to work as one of six product strategists for Ultimate Software, a $5B human resources software company, focusing on how to bridge psychology, access to data, and software development to affect employee engagement and build intelligent teams.
She is also the founder of Awesome Foundation Miami, the local chapter of a global network of grassroots microgrant giving hubs that have awarded more than $1.8 million globally to small, local ideas. Recently, I have expanded to start other hubs in Florida and Latin America and help empower small but potent ideas across those communities.
Natalia also serves as the Vice President of LatAm expansion of the Latino Startup Alliance and a member of the World Economic Forum’s Global Shapers community. She has been involved in bringing initiatives such as Sandbox and Angel Summit Americas to Miami, had judged various startup and innovation pitches, including the Voto Latino Innovators Challenge, a $500,000 tech competition for millennials between the ages of 18 and 34 in partnership with the MacArthur Foundation and Google. For this and other work, Natalia has also been appointed by Florida Governor Rick Scott to serve on the Governor’s Commission on Community Service, a body that oversees the administration of $24 million in federal, state, and local funding to deliver high-impact educational and volunteer programs in Florida.
Natalia is a regular contributor to outlets such as The Huffington Post, the World Economic Forum, Mic, and La Nacion. She holds a B.A. in Psychology and Government from Harvard University and an M.A. in Organizational Psychology from Columbia University.