Hi, I'm Emily, and I build brighter worlds.

I was born to create new worlds - I can see them, describe them, map them, architect them, populate them, and light them up with holy power.

This is my unique genius. The common thread between work and hobbies, home and adventure, family and friends; I open portals. I shine a lantern where everyone thought it was dark, and find the door. I raise the mountains. I shiver the roots of the world and turn it inside out into a new one, a better one. In my unfettered form this is who I am: I form Chaos into continents; misery into manifestos; lack into Life.

I was born into a small box but started my first business at 13.

In spite of being taught my future held nothing but dishes and diapers, I've built a remarkable career. Currently based in Kansas City, I travel the world supporting coffee producers in Ethiopia and Peru (through ZEM Coffee, of which I'm CEO) and bringing my World Building  power to organizations and individuals everywhere.

I'm a serial founder and CEO  who has pioneered new methods of leadership and business development, created the world’s first coffee marketing course, closed a $1.8M buyout against all odds, and built nine businesses and counting. I've scaled and failed multimillion-dollar businesses; written six fantasy novels and published none of them; and pioneered a new way of seeing the world.

A pro journalist and an incandescent public speaker, I will never, ever, give up on my lifetime quest to make complicated stuff accessible for the business owners who make the world a better place.

Now I'm A Professional World Builder

I'm a launcher. A "get-that-thing-off-the-ground" kind of person. A "build it while you fly it" kind of entrepreneur. Endlessly creative and full of good vibes. On stage and on zoom calls; from misty coffee farms to quiet board rooms; boots on the ground & laptop hours. 

My clients feel their shoulders drop a little when I walk in the door.
Together, we create astonishing things.

Standing in one place and visualizing a new one—then drawing a map to get there.

Standing in one place and visualizing a new one—then drawing a map to get there.

I'm a nerd, complete and total. I quote Frank Herbert on podcast interviews and put myself to sleep by visiting my personal magic treehouse in my imaginary forest. I write fantasy novels for fun and I come up with a couple new business ideas a week. I am addicted to the sheer creative high of building something out of nothing; of being the author of my own fate; of channeling the hope I still cherish that we can all be kinder to each other into organizational structure. I'm a Professional World Builder, and I'm proud of it.


Launching Worldbuilding Consulting™ for corporations +  Happy Accidents™ keynote + querying debut fantasy novel The Bottomless Forest


I get the chance to experience crisis and dissolution as Catalyst Trade fails due to larger economic issues; I create Fix, Close, Sell™ based on my time as CEO and launch ZEM Coffee


After investor holds campaign to kick me out of my own company for not being a puppet, I get the last word by buying him out in a $1.8M leveraged deal.


Catalyst Trade, an Ethiopian importing company, is founded—I'm CEO—and we break $1.2M in our first year. We lose $169k in invoice fraud and get trapped by Ethiopian protests.


I move to Ethiopia for the first time, learning exactly where my future lies. Coffee subscriptions Crema.co, of which I'm Co-Founder, is backed by 500 Startups


Michael and I launch Catalyst Coffee Consulting and provide marketing, operations, and supply chain support to dozens of coffee companies around the world


I finally grant myself permission, leave home, delve into the coffee world, and meet my future husband/business collaborator Michael—Happy Accidents™ begin!


I graduate home school early with scores better than 95% of USA graduates... and proceed to lose six years of my life while waiting for permission.


At 13, I launch my first business—teaching pianos students all over Missouri. Eventually I've got one of the largest private studios in the state.


How can I help you build a brighter world?

World Building is my purpose in this lifetime. Whether it's an innovation session for your team or 1:1 resiliency coaching for CEO-founders, let's go slay some dragons!

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