Thinking Globally & Working Locally: Global Roles in the US

You’ve heard the phrase “think globally, act locally.” But what does that actually mean? Our panelists will discuss their global career paths, and how you can build a career that makes an impact.

Allie Mahler

Lead Community Animator
Centre for Social Innovation
Allie is a social entrepreneur, educator, and community builder focused on creating sustainable impact on both a local and global scale. She is the co-founder of Be Social Change, a community platform focused on connecting and educating the next generation of change makers. Allie is also the Lead Community Animator and Chief Dot Connector at the Centre for Social Innovation ( where she’s building community from the ground up and incubating people and teams who are changing the world. She’s previously helped grow Sandbox Network‘s community in New York and worked on the Strategy team at Purpose. Allie lives for serendipitous connections.

Christen Brandt
She’s the First
Christen Brandt is the Co-founder and Director of International Operations at She’s the First (, an NGO that sponsors girls’ education in low-income countries. There, she handles all international responsibilities within the organization, from vetting partners and setting up sponsorships to overseeing communications and donor relations. She works closely with ten partner programs to ensure students receive a quality education, and has a broad knowledge of effective programming for girls and youth. She is a great advocate of mentorship programs and creating a holistic educational experience involving more than academics. She also co-directed and produced a short film, Magho (Daughter), which focuses on relationship challenges girls face within the family as they gain an education.

Christen started her career in magazine journalism, and worked at both Parents magazine and Glamour, where she managed the Top Ten College Women scholarship contest. She’s a graduate of the S.I. Newhouse School for Public Communications at Syracuse University, where she was a student during the conception of She’s the First and later graduated summa cum laude. She is keenly interested in and often speaks on the ways networks and support systems can affect education, as well as issues affecting girls globally.

Leila Darabi
Director of Global Communications
Planned Parenthood Federation of America
Leila Darabi leads Planned Parenthood Federation of America’s strategic communications efforts around issues of global sexual and reproductive health and rights. She works closely with colleagues in Washington, DC, to develop messages and materials advocating for better U.S. foreign policy; and with Planned Parenthood Global’s Africa and Latin America regional staff and in-country partners to support their advocacy and service delivery goals. Previously, Leila spent eight years at the Guttmacher Institute, where she managed communications for all international projects, a portfolio spanning more than a dozen countries in Africa, Asia, and Latin America. She holds a certificate in international relations from Sciences Po. Paris, a BA from Sarah Lawrence College, and an MS from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. She speaks French and is currently studying Farsi (through NYU SCPS). Leila is the co-founder of the Repro Health Happy Hour, a monthly networking event in New York City with spin-offs in more than a dozen cities around the world. In her spare time, she writes a blog about the art and politics of garbage,

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