Describe your new role at Beam.
As Vice President of Engineering, my primary responsibility is leading the engineering team to ensure the successful delivery of our end-to-end emergency aid, cash assistance and public benefits platform. I develop and implement engineering strategies to help us build and launch products quickly, efficiently and safely. One of our core values is to "move fast to fix things". Our engineering team enables Beam’s speed to market for new products and tools. I also continue to build our supportive and highly empathetic engineering culture by promoting collaboration with product, design and our external partners and beneficiaries.
How will your background and past experience inform your new role at Beam?
I had the opportunity to work for the U.S. Digital Service (USDS) at the Obama White House. At USDS, I worked to help transform how the Federal Government builds digital services and streamline government processes, most notably in the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service agency (USCIS). I led various technical projects and teams building USCIS's Electronic Immigration System (ELIS) to digitize our country's immigration processing system.
The experience at USDS allowed me to become very familiar with how granting benefits and case management software operates at the scale of a large federal agency. I gained a perspective on the gaps that exist in government service delivery, how difficult navigating benefits eligibility can be and how technology might help better deliver benefits and aid to people in need quickly and equitably. These experiences will help me lead Beam to build the software engineering teams and products needed to create the best system to simplify program administration for case managers, funders and applicants.
How do you see your role at Beam progressing in the future?
Apart from growing our engineering team, there are a lot of opportunities to strategically push technology further, from leveraging automation to speed up workflows and fund disbursements to exploring potential use cases for artificial intelligence and machine learning in this space.
What attracted you to Beam?
Beam’s mission resonates with me. From an early age, I've witnessed first-hand how incomprehensible and demoralizing navigating healthcare, food assistance, immigration benefits and other aid systems can be, as well as how dehumanizing the paper form-laden process is for people and communities in need. Beam is increasing the equitable and fast delivery of critical public benefits and building a more equitable social safety net through a modern, efficient, end-to-end technology platform.
What's your favorite thing to do outside of work?
My most favorite thing to do outside of work is travel. I enjoy visiting new places and especially the opportunity to try new foods that are only available in that region.
What's your favorite tech, or the last app you downloaded?
More of an ecosystem than just one piece of tech, but this would probably be all of the various music and movie streaming services and apps available now. I still remember my parents taking us to the store to buy or rent VHS/DVDs or music tapes/CDs and the fact that we can now stream an unlimited catalog of movies, tv shows, and music in an instant is really amazing.