For Alisha Ramos, the 30-year-old founder of the wildly popular newsletter and now community platform Girls Night In, the answer is clear: you build a beautiful app, and for the time being, you take the whole thing online. Then, you watch the community flourish during a time when people need connection more than ever before (it helps if, like Ramos, you’re a Harvard grad with a background in tech and design).
We recently spoke to Ramos about building The Lounge, the (for now) online-only extension of Girls Night In, how she defines self-care, and why she doesn’t have Zoom fatigue just yet.
When we first launched the Girls’ Night In newsletter, there was a really big interest in book clubs. Our readers said, ‘Hey, we would love to read a book each month and discuss it with other people in the GNI community.’ And I said, ‘Okay, great. Let’s set up a club.’ We had a few amazing volunteers who worked with me over the course of a year and a half or so, setting up these book club hubs in 10 different cities around the U.S. For about two years, we were meeting once a month in Toronto, Boston, Philly, D.C., New York, L.A., San Francisco, Austin…and I’m sure I’m forgetting a few other cities in there. It was such a beautiful thing because, for me, it came from a very personal place of reaching the end of my 20s and wanting to connect on a more meaningful, deeper level with other like-minded individuals.