About Us

Our Mission

Write the World is dedicated to improving the writing of high school students through a global online community and guided interactive process. Young writers are empowered to develop their voices, refine their editing skills, and publish on an international platform. Write the World helps students develop the writing strategies and communication tools essential for success in school, career, and life.

Watch our founder, David Weinstein, talk about the ways Write the World empowers young writers on this Harvard Advanced Leadership Initiative video.

Our Team

Founded in 2012 by David Weinstein, Write the World has expanded into a small team of writers, educators and entrepreneurs. We work closely with high school students and teachers and are always looking for new members for our student and teacher advisory boards (see details below). If you are interested in joining our dynamic startup in any capacity, please get in touch!!

David Weinstein

Chief Executive Officer


David Weinstein is the founder and CEO of Write the World, which he developed as a Senior Fellow at the Advanced Leadership Initiative at Harvard University. With a passion for education, he has served as a trustee of Boston College, Bryant University, Belmont Hill School, Fessenden School, Harvard Hillel, John F. Kennedy Library Foundation, and the US Supreme Court Historical Association. David was a senior executive and corporate lawyer at Fidelity Investments, managing the human resources, legal, real estate, compliance, security, audit, and accounting functions. David is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences. He is a graduate of Boston University and Boston College Law School.

Clare McFadden

Executive Director


Clare McFadden manages and oversees the Write the World website, community, and programs. Clare has worked in Arts Education with children, young people, and communities in both Australia and the United States. She is also an author and illustrator. Her first book, "The Flying Orchestra" was awarded the 2011 Children's Book Council of Australia Crichton Award, was selected as one of the "50 Books You Can't Put Down" as part of the Australian Government's Get Reading Campaign, was adapted for the stage as the headlining work at the 'Out of the Box' Festival and listed as one of the Australian Booksellers’ Association's 50 Favourite Children’s Books. Clare was a Teaching Fellow for the Writing Workshop course at Harvard University and is working on her second book. Clare holds a Master's Degree in Education (Arts in Education) from Harvard University. Clare would love to hear from you if you'd like to know more about Write the World, or have suggestions for what you'd like to see on our website clare@writetheworld.com

Steve Mesmer

Chief Operating Officer


With a deep passion for enhancing student achievement, Steve Mesmer is responsible for overseeing Write the World’s technical operations and support. Starting his education career as a middle and high school teacher, Steve left the classroom captivated by the potential of technology to accelerate student learning. Since then he has served in senior management positions at Computer Curriculum Corporation, Pearson Education, CTB/McGraw-Hill and Questar Assessments, developing highly-effective learning management systems, online state-aligned curriculum, teacher professional development and student assessments used by K-12 educational organizations in the United States and abroad. Steve earned a BA in Marine Biology and Environmental Studies from the University of California at Santa Barbara and his Secondary Teaching Credential from San Francisco State University.

Clare McMillan

Director of Sales


Clare McMillan oversees Write the World’s business development efforts. Clare started her career as a middle and high school teacher and has nearly 15 years of experience working as an educational sales and marketing professional for organizations such as Pearson and Follett, where she oversaw global sales education efforts and sold educational management, STEM, SEL, school improvement and professional development solutions. Clare is deeply interested in the writing process, specifically how writing and literature shape thinking and cultivate empathy. She is passionate about programming that empowers students to foster their unique interests and discover how they might contribute meaningfully to our world. In her spare time, you will find Clare spending time with her family and writing children’s stories about meatballs, Sasquatches and other fascinating characters you never knew existed.

If you are interested in learning more about Write the World’s programming and how you can empower your students to write well and publish on a global platform, please contact Clare at: mcmillan.clare@writetheworld.com

Michelle Billie Fitzpatrick

Chief Learning Strategist


Billie, a founding member of Write the World, is a writer, educator, and fifteen-year publishing professional. For Write the World, she helped to design the underlying curriculum of the website and continues to work closely with educators, leading professional development and training. She began her career as a writing teacher, helping to launch the Writers in the Schools program (Houston) and has also taught writing at Harvard Graduate School of Education and University of Houston, among other colleges. She also served as an educational consultant to CAST, Inc, where she has designed UDL curriculum and facilitated online professional development courses. As a ghostwriter and book collaborator, she has co-authored over forty books in both fiction and nonfiction. She earned an Ed.M. in Mind, Brain and Education from Harvard Graduate School of Education, a MA in Literature & Creative Writing from the University of Houston, and a BA in English and French from Rice University.

Listen as Billie describes the many benefits of writing in an online community in Episode Seven of Turnitin’s “The Written Word.”

Liza Cochran

Education and Outreach Director


Liza Cochran stewards the education vision at Write the World, working with community members to develop innovative writing curriculum and programming. A longtime educator and writer, Liza has designed and implemented writing curriculum in high schools, colleges, and community centers across the US, including the Colorado Rocky Mountain School, Emerson College, and Grub Street Writing Center. Liza holds a Bachelor’s degree from Brown University, where she studied writing, education, and environmental science, and a Masters in Fine Arts degree from Emerson College, where she studied creative writing. You can find her work in the Colorado Review, Gettysburg Review, and Fifth Wednesday Journal. Liza would love to hear from you if you’re curious about Write the World, or have suggestions for what you'd like to see on our platform: liza@writetheworld.com

Davina Dukuly

Digital Marketing Director


As Digital Marketing Director, Davina Dukuly is passionate about making meaningful connections with educators, teachers, and of course, young writers. Davina is committed to making Write the World’s digital space interactive and inviting – where users can connect with like-minded writers from all over the globe. Davina has worked at a New England public relations firm where she demonstrated the power of social media as a marketing tool. She is an active member of the greater Boston arts community, working on films such as “Its Not Funny Anymore” and as Press Liaison at the Independent Film Festival of Boston. A graduate of Bates College, where she studied humanities and social sciences, Davina is dedicated to making the arts accessible to young people in all corners of the world.

Anna Williams

Community Engagement Director


Anna Williams helps cultivate and support the Write the World community of young writers, alumni, and teachers. Before joining Write the World, Anna worked at the Boston Public Library as a key member of the marketing and communications team and served as the editorial assistant at the New England Quarterly. She earned a BA in Creative Writing and History from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a MA in Public History from Northeastern University. She is passionate about reading, writing, and the arts. Anna would love to hear from you! If you'd like to know more about Write the World or have suggestions for what you'd like to see on our website, email anna@writetheworld.com

Melissa De Silva

Education Ambassador - Singapore


Melissa promotes awareness about Write the World in Singapore, seeking to form partnerships and connections with like-minded people and organizations who are passionate about young writers and their work. Her book of essays, Others’ is Not a Race, a genre-blending collection that explores Eurasian culture and identity, won the 2018 Singapore Literature Prize in the English Creative Nonfiction category. In her 15 years in Singapore’s publishing industry, she has worked as a journalist and an editor. Her Bachelor's degree in English Literature is from the National University of Singapore. Melissa is currently working on a historical fiction novel. She would love to hear from you if you'd like to know more about Write the World, or if you would like to explore ways of working together. Melissa can be contacted at: melissa@writetheworld.com

Gloria Chong

Education Ambassador - Hong Kong


Gloria Chong has been with the Write the World family since 2015. She helps to raise awareness of Write the World among schools and learning institutions in Hong Kong. She also provides information on the College Essay Program to interested parents and students. She holds an Ed.M degree from Harvard Graduate School of Education (Human Development & Psychology), a Post-Graduate Diploma in Education (English Language & Literature) from Nanyang Technological University, and a B.SocSci. (Honours) from the National University of Singapore. Gloria has taught English in Singapore and Hong Kong at secondary and tertiary institutions and has worked as a freelance editor. Her goal in life is to help young people write purposefully, think clearly, and live passionately. You can reach her at gloria@writetheworld.com

Lori Pelliccia

Site Reviewer and Moderator


Lori enjoys sharing her lifelong love for reading and writing with students and young writers. As a middle school and high school English teacher, Lori incorporates creative writing into her classes and always enjoys reading books that her students recommend. After teaching for nine years in independent schools in Virginia and Massachusetts, Lori continues to teach online today. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Secondary Education for English from The Pennsylvania State University, and a Master of Fine Arts in Writing for Children and Young Adults from Vermont College of Fine Arts. At Write the World, Lori loves seeing students from all over the world share their writing and their ideas within a supportive environment.

Jocelyn Shapira

Communications Support Consultant


Jocelyn has spent almost two decades working with, and advocating for, adolescents in the field of education. She majored in Education and received her Bachelor's degree from the University of Oregon. She then worked with City Year Boston, where she engaged in community education support. From there Jocelyn received her Master's in Education from Harvard University and later her Master's in Social Welfare from the University of California at Berkeley. Since then she has continued to work with adolescents, first as a Clinical Social Worker and later as a High School Counselor. Being a member of the Write the World community has afforded Jocelyn the opportunity to support and encourage young writers through an international writing platform.

Brittany Collins

Groups Facilitator


Brittany Collins manages the online groups at Write the World. With a passion for English and education, she brings to Write the World her experience as a reader at the Harvard Review and New England Review; an ad hoc reviewer for English Teaching: Practice and Critique; and a national judge and Massachusetts state coordinator for the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) Program to Recognize Excellence in Art and Literary Magazines. The Editor-in-Chief of two online journals, Voices & Visions and The Lab School, Brittany's editorial work has been profiled by Ms. magazine and shared by Gloria Steinem, as well as the National Museum of Women in the Arts. Her own writing can be found in English Journal of NCTE; the Literacy & NCTE blog; Insight of Dana Farber Cancer Institute; and The Mighty, among others. She is passionate about the power and accessibility of digital education and, most of all, loves working with students of all ages as they learn and grow as writers.

Lisa Hiton

Editorial Associate


Lisa Hiton holds an MFA in Poetry from Boston University and a M.Ed. in Arts in Education from Harvard University. She is an Editorial Associate at Write the World, where she writes two monthly blogs and provides expert reviews for student work. Her blog, "Reading Like a Writer", offers readers a glance at craft books in various writing genres with reading and writing prompts to pair. "The Write Place" helps young and emerging writers engage in habits of mind and heart that lend themselves to a writer's life.

Michael Lydon

Writer, Musician and Write the World Columnist


Michael Lydon is a writer and musician who lives in New York City. Author of many books, among them Rock Folk, Boogie Lightning, Ray Charles: Man and Music, and Writing and Life. A founding editor of Rolling Stone, Lydon has written for many periodicals as well, the Atlantic Monthly, New York Times, and Village Voice.

He is also a songwriter and playwright and, with Ellen Mandel, has composed an opera, Passion in Pigskin. A Yale graduate, Lydon is a member of ASCAP, AFofM local 802, and on the faculty of St. John’s University.

Teacher Advisory Board

We work with a group of teachers from around the world to ensure that the website is responsive to the needs and ideas of educators. Teachers give regular feedback on the site, and are a most valued part of the Write the World community. Please get in touch with us if you are an educator interested in joining the Advisory Board: clare@writetheworld.com

Student Consultants

Young writers have played an essential role in shaping our ever-evolving website. Clare and Liza work with a group of students who offer regular feedback on prompts, design, and future Write the World offerings. If you're interested in joining our fabulous team of Student Consultants, we'd love to hear from you: liza@writetheworld.com or clare@writetheworld.com

Expert Reviewers

Our Expert Reviewers are a group of educators and writers who provide feedback on our young writers' monthly competition drafts. This personalized feedback gives our young writers the opportunity to revise and polish their draft before their final submission. Expert Reviewers also assist with the competition shortlisting process. If you are interested in finding out more about Expert Review at Write the World, please contact liza@writetheworld.com

Tarah Connolly

Tarah has always had a propensity for words and for working together, so it is a natural fit for her to support the Write the World community as an Expert Reviewer. After earning degrees from UC Berkeley in Linguistics and Psychology, Tarah began her career in museum education, and currently, she is the primary curriculum writer for a science museum in Santa Barbara, CA. Tarah participated in a creative writing program in high school which had a lasting impact on her. She hopes to pay it forward and support teenagers in their journey as writers and members of this global community.

Chris Feeney

Chris Feeney is an English Literature and Creative Writing major at Middlebury College. He first encountered Write the World as a high school student, where he shared his stories in public for the first time. He writes often about his experiences working abroad: as a conservation diver in Key Largo and as a glacier guide in Alaska. He believes that fiction can bring joy and clarity to our experiences in a comforting, yet exciting way. As time passes, Chris’s love for writing continues to grow, and as an expert reviewer he seeks to cultivate that same enthusiasm in others.

Heather Hoffman

Heather is an Expert Reviewer with Write the World, where she provides feedback to developing writers. As an educator, writer, curriculum designer, and data analyst, she has devoted her life's work to helping students access educational opportunities. She earned a Master's degree in Education from Harvard Graduate School of Education and a Bachelor's degree in Politics from Oberlin College. As a reviewer, she strives to help students find their voice, express their ideas, and grow their love of writing.

Kate Powell

Kate is a former educator, and is now a researcher and scientific writer. She previously worked as a teacher and then transitioned to health and technology research. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education from Wheelock College, and a Master’s degree in Human Development and Psychology from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. She joined Write the World as an expert reviewer to continue to foster her love of education and help young writers expand their craft.

Erin Preston

Erin is an educational researcher and former arts educator who draws upon eight years of teaching visual and digital art. She currently works with the Chicago Humanities Festival and Chicago Arts Partnerships in Education on program evaluation and research. She earned a Master of Education from the Arts in Education program at Harvard Graduate School of Education, where she also researched global competency with the Interdisciplinary and Global Studies team at Project Zero. Erin has worked with WtW as an Expert Reviewer since its early stages in 2013, and enjoys this work because she believes in elevating and supporting the voices of young people.

Regina Tavani

Regina Tavani is a writer, editor, and former educator who first fell in love with teaching writing while working as a peer tutor at Bates College. She spent six years developing textbooks for college writing courses at Macmillan Learning before entering the classroom herself to teach writing to undergraduates at Emerson College, where she completed her M.F.A. She currently works as a Proposal Specialist at Panorama Education. Regina’s experience in the college writing space helped her to recognize the critical role K-12 writing instruction plays in students’ lives, and she’s thrilled to have the opportunity to help high school students across the globe develop their voices as an Expert Reviewer with Write the World.

Peer Ambassadors

Peer Ambassadors offer regular reviews on the site, provide example responses to new prompts, and share feedback with the Write the World team. With their invaluable writing support, Peer Ambassadors help shape the culture of the Write the World community. Please let us know if you’re interested in becoming an Ambassador by emailing liza@writetheworld.com

Engi Abou-El-Kheir

My name is Engi Abou-El-Kheir and I am a seventeen-year-old (stressed) senior currently living in Nice, France. If I had written this in March, I would be living in Qatar, and June, in Egypt. I’m a constant traveler, an uncontrollable reader, and a writer of poems and narratives that attack me in bursts at unexpected times (such as 2 am while attempting sleep). I’ve been writing since I was six, and there is nothing more satisfying or important to me. When I don’t feel like I recognize myself, writing identifies me. Write the World is an important vessel in helping me grow and remain regular and inspired in my writing, and I’m excited to be a Peer Ambassador this year with this talented community online.

Akhila Bandlora

Heyo friendos! My name’s Akhila Bandlora, and I’m a sixteen-year-old living in sunny Phoenix, Arizona. For me, writing has always been a way to unearth, process, and work through trauma, and one of my biggest passions is working to make creation more accessible. Currently, I serve as co-president and co-founder of Creative Youth of Arizona LLC, an organization devoted to providing opportunities to creatively motivated teens in Arizona. In my free time, I enjoy listening to Freakonomics podcasts, gushing about Sam Smith, and stalking online shops for plaid pants. Overall, I’m thrilled to be a WTW Peer Ambassador and help contribute to a community doing such good work!

Lina Cho

My name’s Lina Cho and I’m a seventeen-year-old recent graduate from Sydney. I’ve been creating stories almost since I could talk; as a child, I even assigned names, backstories and motivations to inanimate objects around the house and acted out scenarios with them! As soon as my final exams are over, I’m looking forward to the luxury of being able to read from morning to night (as I spent the most of my junior years doing), and really diving into my own writing. There’s nothing I enjoy more than sitting at my desk with my laptop, the door firmly closed and the window wide open, with a mug of coffee and a cookie by my hand, and just writing. When I’m not doing that, you can probably find me playing a game of netball or tennis, baking something warm and delicious, or busy working on the youth current affairs and political news site that I founded, getwithitnow.com. I’m very excited to be working as a Peer Ambassador on Write the World and I hope I can allow both others and myself to grow in order to do some truly fabulous writing!

Angelina Nguyen

My name is Angelina Nguyen and I am an eighteen-year-old literary enthusiast, theatre gal and master of bad puns. I have a Vietnamese background and live in Sydney, Australia where it is bustling with life and adventure is at every corner. I have been a Peer Ambassador and Peer Mentor on Write the World for the last two years and have thoroughly enjoyed learning and being inspired from others on the platform. I look forward to continuing my engagement with young writers all around the world with the new ambassadors!

Sarah Yang

My name is Sarah Yang and I am a seventeen-year-old from New Jersey. I was born and raised in Japan, but I moved to the United States when I was ten years old. My transcultural background thus serves as my main inspiration for the pieces that I write; I am impassioned by writing about the appreciation that I hold towards the duality in myself and my surroundings. I especially adore the works of F. Scott Fitzgerald because of his capacity to craft intimate moments in the form of poetic prose. Writing reflects my desire to be open-ended with my growth, and I am extremely excited for the opportunity as Peer Ambassador for Write the World to extend myself to other writers to help them be open-ended with themselves and their works.


Write the World is so appreciative of everyone who contributes to our global community. We would like to give a special thanks to:

  • The team at Echobind

  • Our Educator Advisory Board

  • Our Student Consultants

  • and of course, all our wonderful young writers!