“I’m a good example of what’s possible when you do it afraid.”


Kristen Coley, neè McCallum

Kristen is a motivational speaker, writer, and social impact founder & consultant who works with mission-aligned artists, organizations & institutions to design and develop sustainable & scalable workshops, programs, and systems that enhance lasting collaborations and empowering engagement. Kristen is highly regarded for her ability to curate intentionally equitable spaces that highlight the significance of lived experiences through impactful dialogue with her authentic values-led approach. Some of Kristen’s current & past clients include the Obama Foundation, Ace Hotel New York, Peoplmovr and Shine Bootcamp.

While working as a full-cycle partner for her clients, Kristen also runs SafeWordSociety -- a collective visioning initiative she founded in 2017 to amplify the historically-minimized narratives of Black and brown LGBTQIA+ communities. Over the past two years, Kristen has produced original product & content sans funding, like The SafeWordSociety Podcast  -- being donated to the Auburn Avenue Research Library on African American Culture and History at Atlanta-Fulton Public Library in 2019 and The Visibility Packs, an original card deck designed as a collective learning & engagement tool to initiate and enhance productive discourse across difference. Kristen has become an invaluable collaborator and leader in many social impact communities, building a loyal following for SafeWordsociety and an impressive list of partners such as Brooklyn Nets, National Museum of African American History and Culture, Weeksville Heritage Center, and more.

Kristen shares personal anecdotes and other pieces as a published writer with bylines at Shondaland, The Riveter, AfroPunk, GO Magazine and more. She has been interviewed and featured in Forbes, Got A Girl Crush Magazine, Archival Outlook by Society of American Archivists, INTO Magazine and more.

Kristen holds a BA in English from The University at Albany - SUNY and received the Harvey Milk Alumnus Award in 2018 for substantial contributions in the social impact field.

Kristen currently lives in Upstate, NY with her wife, Phylicia, and is currently working on her first novel. 

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Photo by  Amanda Stosz