Photo of Rachele Gardner

Rachele Gardner

Associate Director

Rachele Gardner (she/her) is the Associate Director of the Engagement Lab. Rachele oversees general operations at ELab, including working closely with community-based partners, Emerson faculty, students, staff, and other stakeholders, to ensure that those who are most directly impacted by the issues ELab is working to solve remain centralized in the work. Rachele is passionate about advancing peace and equity in Boston by supporting people to imagine and bring about the changes they desire for their own communities. Prior to joining the Engagement Lab in 2021, Rachele was an independent consultant in program design and development, civic engagement, participatory action research, and youth leadership development for various nonprofits. Rachele organized the city-wide Boston Civic Leaders Summit in 2019, and has led several youth participatory action research projects in Dorchester and Roxbury. Early in her career, Rachele founded a small community-based organization in Dorchester called Youth Hub, which empowered youth as researchers and leaders in their community from 2014 - 2017. Rachele has her Masters in Social Work with a focus in Macro practice from Boston College, where she occasionally teaches as an adjunct professor. Rachele lives in Dorchester with her husband and two small children.