Yoast Care fund: An interview with Michelle Frechette
This week’s nominee for our Care fund is Michelle Frechette, who was nominated by Amanda Gorman. And we’ll let Amanda explain why: “Michelle does everything for WordPress. She offers support for new users, runs the Rochester meetup, is involved in WordCamps around the country, runs a podcast, and offers loving and kind support to the entire community (plus her local community). I can’t think of a more deserving candidate.” Thanks for those warm words, Amanda. Now, let’s hear from the nominee herself!
Hi Michelle, can you tell us what you do?
I’m the Head of Customer Success at GiveWP, where I get to work with fundraisers all over the world who are working to make their part of the world a better place. I like to think of myself as part of the teams that have the good of people and the planet at heart.
I’m also the podcast barista (host) at WPCoffeeTalk. It’s a podcast where I interview WordPress users from all over about their WordPress journeys – how they got into WordPress, what they do with it now, their biggest mistakes, and their proudest moments. I love meeting the community this way and being the conduit through which the whole community can get to know these individuals.
Why do you think that you got nominated?
I hope it’s because my love for WordPress and the community is evident to others. I owe a huge debt of gratitude to the WordPress community. My career, my volunteerism, and a huge part of my friendship base are rooted in WordPress. Every day I’m grateful that I get to work with and be friends with WordPressers all over the world. When I was a child there wasn’t even an internet yet, so I could never have dreamed that I would have such a career. As someone with a background in music and religion, a career in technology seemed foreign to me – yet here I am!
What does WordPress look like in your perfect world?
In my perfect world, WordPress remains the amazing open source project that it is, allowing everyone access to online publishing. I love that the community is growing every day, but I wish more people were aware of how rich the WordPress environment is – with online and in-person meetups, WordCamps, and other events. The project is strong because of it’s code, but because of its people even more.
Who is your WordPress hero?
It may sound cheesy, but honestly, everyone in the community that continues to advocate for one another. Those of us who help others with their sites, help them tell their stories and bolster one another whenever needed and possible.
Among those that inspire me this way are Dan Maby of Big Orange Heart, Francesca Marano of SiteGround, and Emily Hunkler of GoWP. Those three get involved, see what’s needed, advocate for others, and roll up their sleeves to get the job done.
What contribution or moment are you most proud of?
That’s a little like asking a parent to choose their favorite child! I’ll narrow it down though. Starting WordCamp Rochester and helping grow my local community has made my heart full. Being asked three times in 2019 to be the keynote speaker at three different WordCamps was an absolute honor, and serving on the WordCamp US team has been a dream come true (and a ton of hard work)!
Where can people find you? Online, WordCamps, other meetups?
You can find me on:
Thank you so much for this great honor. I am beyond overjoyed to receive this award, and promise to continue giving back to the WordPress community!
Do you know someone who deserves a nomination for our Yoast Care fund? Please let us know! Not only does this person get an interview like the one above, but we also gift them $500,- to thank them for their contributions and to support their work. Go to our Care fund page to fill in the form and nominate someone for all the love and time they pour into the WordPress community!