Director of Sales Jennifer (Garrison) Tripp has worked in education and EdTech for more than 15 years. With that much experience in the industry, she has discovered one very important truth: There’s always going to be a challenge to overcome in education. From curriculum, assessment, and equity to supplies and staffing, there’s always going to be a problem that requires a solution. When it comes to student safety, Jennifer firmly believes that Gaggle is solving a really important problem.
“I’ve always believed that technology can up-level education. It can change the way that teachers teach and it can change the way that students learn,” she shared. “But until I came to work at Gaggle, I didn’t know that students were using this technology to communicate their troubles.”
Start date: March 11, 2019
We asked Jennifer five questions to get to know a little more about her and her time with Gaggle. Here’s what she had to say:
What are three words to describe Gaggle?
- Compassionate: We care about students and their safety and mental health first. We strive to help educators, education leaders, and school districts support the well-being of students—and do so with insights that help them better understand where they may be struggling most. I think that we also show great compassion to each other in the work we do, both on our teams and across departments.
- Mission-driven: We always keep an eye on our mission, which is to keep schools and students safe. At the end of the day, regardless of everything else that’s going on right now, there is a student somewhere who is writing a suicide note that a school district might not know about without Gaggle. I remind myself daily that the kids need us—all of us—more than ever before. We’re just trying to do the right thing for kids every single day.
- Focused: We are a company that is focused 100% on student mental health and safety. We use technology to drive and inform that focus and open up the doors and shine a light on these students. And with Gaggle Therapy, we now also have a tool to help them once we do so. There’s been a paradigm shift from Gaggle being a technology company to a student mental health and safety company.
What drew you to Gaggle?
It has always been important to me to align with education companies that make an impact on students. Having been a teacher for many years, I strive to stay focused on making a difference for children, even if I am no longer in the classroom.
Jeff and I connected on LinkedIn and started talking about the industry and VC-backed companies. I found it refreshing that Jeff built Gaggle on his own and grew it to where it is today—all while maintaining a focus on keeping kids safe.
What have you gained from working at Gaggle?
I genuinely had no idea that so many children were in crisis. Working here has increased my awareness of the many things that children are struggling with every day. I think that’s made me a better mother, and it has helped me have some really important conversations with my own child. It has certainly diminished my naivety around how tough kids are. Yes, kids are resilient and bounce back, but there are a lot of kids who are not okay. We have a duty to do something about that.
I’ve also gained a sense of confidence in advocating for kids. When you’re fighting for something you believe in, it doesn’t feel like a fight—it feels like a cause. I can’t think of a more worthwhile cause.
Finally, I’ve gained a sense of community from the amazing team I get to work with. I wouldn’t be anything without them. No person is an island here—I’m only as strong as the people who sit around me and lift me up when I fall. And this team is really, really good at that.
What is your proudest moment at Gaggle?
My proudest moment was realizing I had increased the number of students protected in their digital environments by over 40,000 in my home state of Washington alone. That’s 40,000 students who are safer today because of Gaggle, and I am proud to have helped increase that number.
What is your favorite memory at Gaggle?
One of my favorite memories at Gaggle was being able to shadow the Safety team at our Bloomington office when I first joined the company. These are folks working around the clock, including holidays and weekends, and they are 100% committed to the safety of students. Being able to see the process by which this team works through thousands of content items with efficiencies, how they collaborate to determine the best response, and how organized and timely they really blew me away. I was able to witness a Safety team member calling a school about an urgent situation, and they handled it so professionally. I knew I had made a great choice.
“One of my favorite memories at Gaggle was being able to shadow the Safety team at our Bloomington office when I first joined the company. These are folks working around the clock, including holidays and weekends, and they are 100% committed to the safety of students.”
Since her start with Gaggle in March 2019, Jennifer has helped numerous districts in the Pacific Northwest enhance their student safety efforts with Gaggle’s services. “I don’t assess my success by the number of dollars I sell,” said Jennifer. “My success is measured by the number of students I’m able to protect.”