Updated: Dec 22, 2020
I have always taken pride in a firm comprised of diverse and specialized talent—statisticians, researchers, analysts, project managers, and anthropologists. So, it was with great excitement that we added Elyse Washington, MSW, a.k.a. Brené Brown Superfan, to our team back in the spring of 2019. In our search for the right leader for an important public health project involving multiple stakeholders, her unique combination of compassion and intellect was evident from the very first encounter.
Elyse’s understanding of large, decentralized healthcare delivery systems as well as the acute, individual effects of the social and structural determinants of health imparted to her in her social work training have been critical to the success of our clients from day one. What has been more surprising though has been her swift learning curve and skill acquisition around project management and client service. The transition from a nonprofit to a professional services firm is not necessarily an easy one, but for Elyse, it has been seamless as she provides support to clients and our team with her hallmark compassion and diligent attention to detail at all times.
As of late, Elyse has been working her research muscles, the same ones modeled by Brené (if you don’t know who she is and have not looked her up yet, you need to do so now) as she takes the lead on more qualitative research projects. Her empathic instincts coupled with intensive moderator training at the Burke Institute have allowed Elyse to become a trusted consultant and authentic storyteller, leaning into something Brené says (seriously, Google Brené B-R-O-W-N), “Trust is earned in the smallest of moments. It is earned not through heroic deeds, or even highly visible actions, but through paying attention, listening, and gestures of genuine care and connection.”
It’s become hard to remember a time without Elyse, an integral part of our team who makes us better, one project at a time.