Jessica Xiao

“It is not our differences that divide us. It is our inability to recognize, accept, and celebrate those differences.” – Audre Lorde

Jessica is a Washington, DC-based writer, digital organizer, and generalist originally from NJ, interested in social justice culture, social entrepreneurship, identity, and mass incarceration. Her work can be found at Everyday Feminism, The Establishment, Huffington Post,, and Medium.

Previously, she worked with justice-involved folks as the Prison Book Club Manager at Free Minds Book Club and Writing Workshop, a literacy and reentry support organization serving incarcerated youth tried as adults.

Jessica lived in Montreal from 2010 to 2015 while obtaining her Bachelor of Arts and Science (BASc) in Economics and Psychology from McGill University, a combination chosen in order to gain insight on human behavior within economic structures on which our realities are constructed.

During this period, she met Muhammad Yunus and other proponents of social business, and became fascinated with tri-sector leadership, hybrid social impact organizational structures, impact investment vehicles, and solutions beyond traditional donor-recipient relationship models.

Jessica returned to tradition when she moved to DC in 2015 to work in secular humanism at the American Humanist Association, where highlights include running the publishing branch Humanist Press, editing for, and chairing Feminist Humanist Alliance (until 2018).

Previously, Jessica has also been a grant writer and advisor board member for Artistri Sud, a Montreal-based nonprofit providing social entrepreneurship and leadership development training to Indigenous women artisans, a Community Facilitator for McGill University’s “Social Learning for Social Impact” MOOC, and the Marketing and Communications Lead for their environmental workshop “On the Earth, For the Earth” at the 2016 World Social Forum.

Jessica continues to speak and share my takes on social justice and personal character.