Managing Consultant
+1-651-447-5542
Kylie’s background in carpentry lends itself to the creative problem-solving she does every day at work. She enjoys making the process accessible to those who may face barriers or feel reluctant to participate so all can engage in evaluation. When she is not building a better world at work, she likes to build physical things at home and in the garden.

Expertise

Evaluation
Kylie creates meaningful data collection tools and helps clients make sense of evaluation findings to improve their work. She is especially skilled in quantitative analysis, having led the design, administration, and analysis of large-scale surveys. Kylie enjoys launching and designing projects, when she gets to dig into clients’ work and facilitates them through discussion to articulate their core evaluation questions. She works well within constraints, developing creative ways to meet clients’ needs within their available resources and timelines. Kylie is particularly well-versed in public health evaluation, such as measuring Policy, Systems, and Environment changes and other efforts to influence healthy behaviors. Her additional strengths include an ability to design evaluation and data collection tools for a wide variety of participants, including non-English speakers and low literacy audiences; engaging program staff and stakeholders throughout the evaluation process to improve buy-in and the quality of findings; and the ability to adapt to rapidly changing circumstances and project demands.
 
Consulting
As a consultant, Kylie spends time nurturing relationships with fellow team members, clients, and stakeholders. She enjoys helping clients identify early successes to look for in long-term, in-depth systems change work. In these conversations, she balances her evaluation expertise with the topic area and community insight offered by clients and their stakeholders. Kylie is also good at being adaptable when long-term projects inevitably call for changes in course. She is comfortable with ambiguity and figuring things out in partnership—and sees the inception phase as an exciting period of talking through all the possibilities a project presents to come to a clear plan.
 
Community-Based Surveys
Kylie has rich expertise in designing surveys that are accessible to people typically underserved by the system, such as people with low English literacy levels or who live with a disability. In engaging these populations, Kylie makes data collection engaging, accessible, and meaningful. For example, she oversaw training, outreach, sampling, and data analysis for the 2,000-person statewide Olmstead Quality of Life Survey, which intends to measure change over time in quality of life of Minnesotans with disabilities in certain settings. This involved training a team of surveyors in person-centered practices; monitoring data collection and troubleshooting as needed; and ensuring clear, inclusive communication with potential participants. For another project seeking to identify how healthy school environments support learning, Kylie oversaw a team that surveyed roughly 2,400 students at multiple schools across Minnesota.
 
Disability Community and Services
Kylie has played a leadership role in The Improve Group’s design and administration of the Olmstead Quality of Life Survey. This work requires close relationships with state agencies, advocates, and members of the disability community; it has also given Kylie expertise in making processes and products accessible to people with disabilities.
 
Practice Areas
Disabilities: Supporting and empowering people with disabilities by understanding their needs and ensuring equal access to supportive, integrated services, and meaningful employment.

Professional Experience

The Improve Group | St. Paul, MN | Managing Consultant | 2016-present | Lead evaluation projects and phases to make the most of information, navigate complexity, and ensure clients’ investments of time and money lead to meaningful, sustained impact.

The Improve Group | St. Paul, MN | Associate Consultant | 2014-2016 | Worked collaboratively with project team to execute activities.

K.A. Nicholas Consulting | Minneapolis, MN | Owner & Principle | 2013-14 | Provided evaluation services and capacity building to support nonprofit and professional organizations.

Positive Link, Indiana University Health Bloomington | Bloomington, IN | Program Evaluation Coordinator | 2011-13 | Developed evaluation tools and measurement standards for client services and prevention programs to assess program effectiveness and comply with funding requirements.

McKinney Building & Remodeling | Indianapolis, IN | Project Manager | 2010-11 | Coordinated grant compliance, community development partnerships, and billing for more than 20 concurrent projects.

VEE Production Services | Minneapolis, MN | Lead Craftsperson | Supervised project teams of up to 20 people in the development of museum exhibits with budgets up to $800,000.

Education

Indiana University | Master of Public Affairs in Policy Analysis (recipient, Nonprofit Service Corps Fellowship)

Earlham College | Bachelor of Arts in Theater Arts

Want to learn more about Kylie? Check out their full resume here!