When Ruby Johnson was first hired at FRIDA | The Young Feminist Fund in July 2013, she was the only full-time staff member. With the support of incubating partners AWID and FCAM, and FRIDA Advisors, she quickly recruited Devi Leiper O’Malley in November 2013 to join her in FRIDA’s first co-leadership structure. Since then, Devi and Ruby have been working in a virtual office, with Devi living in Cambodia; South Korea; and now Rabat, Morocco; and Ruby based in Oaxaca, Mexico; her home city of Sydney, Australia; and many places in between. In less than three years, they have built a team of seven young women throughout the world, working with fifty advisors and over ten part-time consultants, established FRIDA’s first board, granted to over eighty young feminist led groups around the world, and grown the organization’s budget from 250,000 to over 1,000,000 USD.
In this dialogue, they share their tips and reflections on how they make the virtual co-leadership structure work.