Meet The Team
Nicole began her career in the U.S. Navy in 1991 after attending Oakland Community College in her hometown of Clarkston, Michigan. She initially served in Sigonella, Sicily supporting numerous NATO operations and then served on the USS ARCTIC (AOE-8), one of the first series of combatant ships that deployed women, homeported out of Norfolk. Nicole was honorably discharged from the Navy in 1997 and made Norfolk her permanent home. She then worked as a contractor to the Department of Defense supporting the U.S. Navy working with Battle Force Tactical Training & Combat Systems Operational Sequencing Systems. Overtime, Nicole transitioned to the commercial sector focusing on consulting, architecting and building Information Technology systems for enterprise corporations, school systems, cites and various medium-sized businesses across the state. These experiences led Nicole to be named as a National Finalist in Women in Technology (WIT) Leadership Awards in 2017 and an honoree for the Hampton Roads Inside Business Magazine “Top Women in Business” in 2009.
Girish graduated from GRD College of Science in India in 2007, majoring in Biotechnology. He moved to America in 2013. He was greatly impressed by how great of an impact local non-profits make on the community. This, combined with his strong belief in technology’s ability to be a powerful tool in improving lives, providing opportunities for development, and narrowing economic gaps, inspired him to co-found Norfolk Forward in 2016 with former City Councilwoman, Nicole Carry. Girish is currently a doctoral student at Old Dominion University and was a former instructor at the Strome College of Business. At ODU, he serves as the President of the International Student Advisory Board (ISAB), through which he represents the voices of over 1,000 international students from over 100 countries. Girish leads 18 student leaders within the board. As the President, Girish works collaboratively with administrators, faculty, and international and domestic students in supporting the institution’s mission to enhance diversity, inclusion, global engagement, and the quality of student life on campus. Under Girish’s leadership, ISAB’s accomplishments include the beginning of a close collaboration with Office of Off-campus Life, a successful proposal recommending ODU Transportation and Parking Services to provide transportation to and from international grocery stores, and a newly established Advisory Council for International Student Success (ACISS). He also has a master’s degree in Business Administration. Girish is passionate about causes including human rights, environmental protection, and sustainable development.
Lucy Willson graduated from Virginia Tech in 2007, majoring in English and minoring in Political Science. She spent summer of her junior year in Washington, D.C. interning as a court advocate for a non-profit assisting domestically abused women and children. Subsequently, while in law school at Washington & Lee University Law School, Lucy worked in the Black Lung Clinic obtaining federal black lung benefits for coal miners and survivors. These pinnacle experiences demonstrated the impact that non-profits and volunteering have on individuals and helped frame Lucy perspectives in both her legal career and personal life. She currently serves on the WHRO Emerging Leaders Board and is excited to be a part of the inaugural board of NFK FWD. She continued her pursuit of the advancement of women through her leadership and project management skills hosting a Women’s Panel for the Emerging Leaders Board. Lucy is an attorney at Willcox Savage in the Asbestos Defense Litigation, Products Liability and Transportation section and an Adjunct Professor at William & Mary Law School. Her primary practice focuses on the development and coordination of the medical and scientific defense of mass liability trials nationally for a Fortune 50 company. She lives in Chesapeake with her husband, Jim and their Goldendoodle, Otis.