#OwlAboutMe is an editorial series, spearheaded by the Twilio Employer Brand & Recruitment Marketing team, where we highlight our Twilions and how they are “drawing the owl” in their day-to-day roles and pushing the boundaries at Twilio!
Today, say hey to Emily Miller (She/Her), Senior Impact Fund Manager with Twilio.Org. Emily is also a veteran of The U.S. Army and an active member of our Twarriors ERG, our employee resource group dedicated to supporting and empowering veterans, active service members, and allies at Twilio.
Learn more about her, her proudest career moment to date, and which Twilio Magic value she digs the most in our inaugural #OwlAboutMe employee spotlight!
Tell us about your role! What do you build? How did you land here?
Hey! I’m Emily and I’m based in Denver, Colorado. After some pandemic-induced soul searching, my wife and I made the decision to move out west to Denver, CO to be closer to the great outdoors. I stumbled upon Twilio.org using tech for good and was beyond thrilled to see a company like Twilio living their values so clearly. The role really spoke to me because it leveraged my background as a social entrepreneur, policy advisor, and grants officer. Now, I have my dream job leading Twilio.org's Impact Fund, making grants and impact investments to organizations that are accelerating impact through innovative communications technology.
Before joining Twilio.org, I led the Office of Innovation & Entrepreneurship at the U.S. Department of Commerce, managing a grant portfolio that funded technology accelerators, incubators, and early-stage seed funds. Prior to that, I served as a Captain in the U.S. Army, where I led an engineer platoon in Iraq and served on two deployments to Afghanistan as one of the first women with all-male Special Operations teams. Based on those experiences, I co-founded Rumi Spice, a social enterprise that imports saffron from Afghan farmers and women.
What’s your favorite thing about your team and your responsibilities?
I love the opportunity to support and empower our non-profit and social enterprise partners, who are the true heroes on the front lines taking on some of the hardest challenges around the world.
My proudest moment so far has been working alongside my Twilio.org colleagues to support NGOs on the frontlines of the war in Ukraine helping refugees. I've long believed in the power of technology for good, and Twilio lives up to this in every way. Watching our partners in action was nothing short of awe-inspiring. For example, the Norwegian Refugee Council is using chatbots to direct displaced people to the right resources. And Tarjimly is providing on-demand translation services for refugees in need. Check out an in-depth blog here for more info on the initiative!
Share your favorite benefit that Twilio offers:
My first favorite benefit is Twilio's volunteer hours! So far this year, I've gotten the opportunity to volunteer to help Afghan refugees apply for asylum and humanitarian parole and mentor veterans transitioning out of the military.
My second favorite benefit is Twilio’s donation matching for non-profits. *This May, to acknowledge Memorial Day (U.S.) and Mental Health Awareness Month (U.S.), our Twarriors, Wonder, & Asians@ ERGs joined forces to raise money for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP). It’s a time when we can each play a part to fight stigma, provide support, advocate for policies that support mental health, and make a lasting impact by honoring our heroes and remembering those we’ve lost. Collectively, we’ve raised over $9,000, and the cool thing is that Twilio will be matching these proceeds through our Benevity program.
*At Twilio, we know that these groups may be honored at different times around the world, and we will plan to recognize those moments as well.
Last question: Which Twilio Magic value means the most to you?
Positron all the way! I love the passion and creativity of my fellow Twilions, especially the emphasis on bringing this energy to empower others!
Thanks for sharing your story and for building with us, Emily!
Want to learn more about Emily? Follow her on Twitter @emily_emiller and on Instagram @queer_hiker. #FunFact: She’s an avid hiker and outdoors enthusiast, currently on a quest to summit all 58 of Colorado’s “Fourteeners."
Btw, we’re hiring! Check out our open opportunities to see if there is a role you’re interested in at twilio.com/careers.