Niki Hammond got her start in technology as a web programmer for CMP Media when the idea of internet-based magazines was novel. From there she joined a start-up and worked on eCommerce platforms for major retail chains, then spent a couple of years developing personalization systems for Union Bank of Switzerland. In 2004 she moved into technical project management for nonprofits and never looked back. During her time at Matthew Schwartz Design Studio, Niki led the redesign and development of web applications and CRM integrations for Washington Institute for Near East Policy, the Institute for Industrial Productivity, Catalyst, the Aspen Institute, Yale University’s Environmental Performance Index, and Columbia University’s Global web portal. Niki also spent five years as Business Project Manager in the IT department of Girl Scouts of the USA, where she was instrumental in the design and implementation of new business processes and an enterprise-wide CRM platform to serve over 100 Girl Scouts organizations and their 4 million members. Niki is happy to serve her Jackson River clients with over 20 years of technical, project management, and nonprofit experience.
What are your favorite things to do in your job? What work excites you the most?
I love puzzles, and I’m happiest when I’m problem-solving. Earlier in my career that usually meant debugging code, but these days it means learning about a client’s business goals and challenges, devising a strategic plan to address them, and designing solutions that involve process innovation and appropriate technology. Helping nonprofits to become more efficient and effective in fulfilling their mission is deeply satisfying work.
What is your favorite cause or nonprofit?
Environmental protection, social justice, and poverty eradication are often talked about as distinct, unrelated issues, but I believe they’re inextricably tied. As a systems thinker I’m passionate about new solutions and technologies that use natural resources more efficiently, build community, and facilitate self-sufficiency. The Permaculture Institute, Food is Free Project, Urban Farming Guys and similar organizations are doing great work in these areas, and the National Resources Defense Council is on the front lines of US policy.
What can you be found doing on the weekends?
Hanging out with my daughters, camping out at festivals, volunteering for community work, designing board games, skating, spinning poi, vegetating.
What are your pet peeves?
Arrogance. Poor communication. Procrastination, especially when I’m guilty of it myself!
Have any advice you'd like to share?
We’re living in an age and culture of distractions. Knowing where and how to focus your attention is perhaps the most important skill one can practice.