Stefanie A. Smith is a Program Manager at Kotter with an abundance of experience partnering with clients, agencies, corporate partners, and brands to develop D&I initiatives and programs to maximize diverse representation in the creative industry. Currently, Stefanie marries all previous experiences into the current work of overseeing a leadership and development program for one of Kotter’s largest client senior executives.
With a few degrees in her sails, including her Bachelor’s degree in advertising from Salem State University, and two Master’s degrees, one from the University of Massachusetts – Boston’s Women in Politics and Public Policy program and the other from Baruch College School of Public and International Affairs, as a National Urban Fellow. After, she obtained a practitioner certification through the National Diversity Council and served as board chair to Tri-State Diversity Council in 2015. Although originally born in Atlanta, Georgia, Stefanie tends to collect experiences along her path and sees the northeast as her forever home. Mostly you will find her joking along with friends, family, and spending time with her beloved warrior cat Spartacus.
Stefanie is based out of the Cambridge, MA office.
Why did you decide to work at Kotter?
After completing the needed research of who Kotter was, I was intrigued by the programs and historical work of Kotter, the change that has transpired for their clients. Personally seeing the similarities between culture change and human development I personally wanted to bring my background and work experience to the already established IP that can benefit from my former work. I wanted to join a firm that makes a difference not only in business but also in personal transformation as well.
What challenges do you most enjoy helping your clients solve?
I enjoy helping people understand and challenge their walls as sometimes the biggest challenge many have are the internal walls erected by society and themselves.
What are your superpowers?
My contagious laugh and Emotional Intelligence- I can sense feelings in the air and mostly empathically lead with my heart first in all matters, most of the time my intuition rightly leads and is clouded when I listen to others instead of my own gut.
What’s got you thinking right now?
Right now I currently have a lot of brainpower between the way we as humans make decisions and as a society, how we take on the concepts of difference and tolerance within familiar systems. In my opinion, we have an opportunity to change ourselves and today I find myself thirsting for information on how to best lead in today’s environment with modifying personal psychology and motivators for transformational change at scale but yet sustainable.
Share something about you that would most surprise people.
I live my life in music, like a walking musical, so much that when in conversation one single word will instantly thwart me into an instant song loop for my head to play again and again until I either sing it or play the song aloud.