TheBridge profile: Kelly O'Malley
Name: Kelly O'Malley
Current city: Washington, DC
Current job: Mid-Atlantic Regional Director at the Vinetta Project
Past job: City Fellow at the Vinetta Project; COO of Shop or Not
Q. Favorite spot for a coffee meeting? Joe and the Juice
Q. Describe how a skill you learned in a previous job helped you in your current job. A skill I learned previously that helps me in my current position is how to work in a collaborative environment. I have always worked on teams with many moving parts and it's not always easy. With the work I'm doing now - focusing on female founders - it's much more impactful to have many people in the ecosystem to connect them to, especially those with expertise that I don't necessarily have.
Q. Job advice in three words? Listen a lot
Q. How are you (or your company, org, nonprofit) currently bridging the gap between politics and tech / innovation and regulation? At Vinetta, a lot of our founders think they have to go after VC funding and only work in the private sector. We want our founders to be aware all of the opportunities that are available to them and then decide what's right for their companies. This past year, we've hosted a series of workshops with the team at Booz Allen Hamilton to help educate our founders on utilizing the government through grants or as an early customer.
Q. What can innovators teach regulators? Innovators can teach regulators how to bring a startup mindset to antiquated systems and industries. It's something we've seen Booz really commit to, especially with executives like Dee Dee Helfenstein, who is committed to bringing innovation to the government and trying to get more startups involved in that space.
Q. What can regulators teach innovators? DC regulators can teach Silicon Valley innovators how to influence policy that won't just help their companies, but can genuinely help people. So much in tech is yet to be truly regulated and figuring it out is not going to be easy or done in a silo, but working together the two can have massive positive impact.
Q. Most underrated virtue in an employee? Ambition.
Q. If you had to live in another city, which would it be? Barcelona.
Q. Morning routine? Wake up, attend an early workout class (Barry's Bootcamp and Soldicore are my favorites right now), grab a cup of coffee and head to the office.
Q. How often do you work from home? Once every couple of weeks. I work remotely and mostly out of WeWork Wonder Bread, but if I have a day with few meetings, I try to work from home. A lot of people say they can't focus at home, but I tend to be very productive because I can concentrate on one thing at a time.
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