Natalie A. Collier is a transformative writer who’s been telling stories on the page and throughout her career with the work, she’s done for the past couple decades. She compels audiences to think deeply about girls and women in all communities, particularly those in the southeastern part of the U.S. and rural areas. Collier is the founder and president of The Lighthouse | Black Girl Projects where she leads others in helping materialize her dream of seeing Black girls and women live lives free from unnecessary outside pressures, barriers, and oppression. She and her staff work to disrupt and destroy anything threatening the possibility of passage to open spaces for Black girls to freely ponder and explore.
Before The Lighthouse, she worked as the director of youth initiatives for the Children’s Defense Fund –Southern Regional Office. She transitioned when she was offered a fellowship opportunity from the NoVo Foundation. It offered full funding to create an organization with approaches to leadership development unique to the field. This opportunity was the first of its kind. Through TL|BGP, Collier and her team implement programs and support structures that ingress and create deep, abiding change for the people whose hopes and heartaches reverberate with her deepest: Black girls.
Collier has combined experiences from her years in undergraduate and graduate school studying political science/philosophy and marriage and family therapy at Millsaps College and Reformed Theological Seminary, respectively; a myriad of fellowships at Northwestern and Poynter universities, among them; and work in the field fighting the injustices pervasively affecting girls and women’s chances at sociopolitical advancement. She is a force if she is leading her staff at The Lighthouse, facilitating conversations, giving a seminar, discussing systems work on panels, or searching for an amazing deal on an amazing bag or shoes.