Kristie McLean is a Seattle-based multimedia storyteller, professional coach and humanitarian activist with a passion for empowering others through conversations and images. She has traveled to more than 50 countries on six continents including a solo circumnavigation in 1999 and a working year abroad in 2007. Her projects in remote, developing and strife-torn regions connect her with many fine individuals and organizations and allow her access to stories of the world that need telling.
Kristie’s photography has been showcased at two global summits in Europe and Asia as well as locations in North America. Both the solo exhibit “Women of the World” and the “Sacred Connections” exhibit helped raise awareness of peaceful tourism initiatives, sustainable community development and measures to alleviate poverty.
Through photography and videography Kristie has documented Unexploded Ordnances on the Ho Chi Minh trail in Laos to heighten global awareness of UXOs, child brides in Afghanistan, access to clean water in Kenya and garment workers in Haiti. She has also traveled by sailboat to photograph the ceremonial Native American tribal canoe journeys in British Columbia and Puget Sound to help promote cultural pride and drug/alcohol-free First Nation communities.
Since 2010, Kristie has traveled six times to Ethiopia to raise support and awareness of the childbirth injury Obstetric Fistula. She has raised over $30,000 and created a hydro-powered grinding mill and other income generation projects such as a sewing cooperative and flocks of animals. Through additional coaching, education and advocacy Kristie hopes to continue to transform the lives of fistula patients into new beginnings of self-sufficiency. She has been featured in The Huffington Post and National Public Radio's "All Things Considered" for her Ethiopia efforts.
In 2012 Kristie was awarded the first-ever Social Entrepreneur Scholarship from Relief Riders International. In 2013 she traveled 200 kilometers on horseback through the Thar Desert in Rajasthan and assisted with humanitarian outreach efforts including Give-a-Goat programs, hygiene and vitamin programs at seven schools and an eye and dental camp for nearly 700 rural villagers.
Domestically, Kristie serves as vice president of the board of directors for visual storytelling organization Blue Earth Alliance. She also facilitates weekly Non-Violent Communication workshops with the Freedom Project in a men's prison near Seattle.
Writing and photographs have appeared in Hamlin Fistula and SalaamGarage: Stories of Ethiopia from Twelve Citizen Journalists, Women of the World: Afghanistan and Guinea-Bissau both published by Blurb.com, the Portuguese-English poetry collection Ilha with Gabriela Silva, Chicken Soup for the Traveler’s Soul; The Celestine Prophecy: The Making of the Movie; JustSayGo.com, the National Audubon Society’s “Birding Trails of Washington State,” “Leader,” “Blue,” “Jeopardy,” “The Bellingham Review,” and “Pontoon” magazines, as curriculum for the United Methodist Publishing House. Her blog can be found HERE.
Kristie is a certified professional coach through the Hudson Institute of Santa Barbara and the International Coach Federation. She uses a wide array of modalities in her coaching work including narrative storytelling, Emotional Intelligence, Circle Way process and Non-Violent Communication. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and a minor in Psychology from Western Washington University.
Kristie is passionate about expanding knowledge and connections beyond domestic boundaries to promote worldwide social responsibility. She is sincerely dedicated to serving, learning, affecting change, and protecting human dignity, rights, and opportunity for all people.