5 questions for Kate Hudson

“Visiting the mountains of Alaska is a dream.”
Sep 20, 2023
3 minute read

The NTEN team continues to grow. We’re excited to introduce our new Project Coordinator, Kate Hudson! Kate brings a passion for collaboration and helping others feel included in projects. I asked her five questions to help you learn more about our newest team member.

What was your first job?

My first job was as a hostess and server at a restaurant. I was naturally pretty shy, and this role really pushed me out of my shell. I fell in love with it! It was like playing a game where I got to chat with folks, make sure they had a good time, and walk away with a nice stack of cash. My coworkers were the most interesting mix of characters, and I was quickly taken in like family. There’s something about working in a restaurant that encourages authenticity, and I came into my own as an individual and communicator. 

Kate smiles on balcony in Madrid with the Plaza de España behind her.

You recently lived in Spain. Any tips for others thinking of visiting?

Yes, If you have the time, I’d highly recommend checking out as many regions of the country as you can! Spain is incredibly diverse in its landscapes, cultures, languages, and festivals from community to community. Although I have a special place in my heart for Madrid, where I lived and fell in love with the vibrance, a lesser-known gem is the community of Asturias in the Northwest region. It's a lush, mountainous coastal community, perfect to rent a car and explore. 

Also, embrace their no pasa nada mentality, which translates loosely to no worries. Structure your days in a way that lets you take your time and relax.

What are some of your favorite local adventures?

My partner and I just moved to a part of Wisconsin called the Driftless Area, a large peninsula of land that went unflattened throughout the last glacial period, leading to bluffs along the Mississippi River. We love to go hiking, paddleboarding, and kayaking. We also love finding cool antique shops.

What was your favorite childhood meal?

The first thing that comes to mind is grilling out in the summer with burgers, corn on the cob, and fresh fruit. It brings back many fond memories of spending time outside with friends and family, and it is a staple during Wisconsin summers. 

What is one new place you’d love to travel to? 

I have been dreaming about a trip to Alaska or Banff, Canada. I love the mountains and imagine I would be in awe the entire time.

Ash Shepherd

Ash Shepherd


Chief Program Officer, NTEN

I got my first job in the nonprofit sector when I was 18. It was at a group home that served girls between 12 and 18. Very soon after starting, I began to grasp for the first time what a former high school teacher meant when he said, "If you want to help people, you need to be willing to work with people that need help." While it was extremely challenging at times, this work led to a deeper sense of empathy and imagining what an end result can look like for others if you genuinely put in the effort to support their success. I fell in love with doing work that truly mattered and have been in the nonprofit sector since.In the end, I spent a decade working in social services in various settings, from schools and wilderness therapy programs to community and residential programs. Eventually, my interest in technology and how it could amplify nonprofit missions brought me to make a career shift. I spent several years working at nonprofits that consulted with other nonprofits in digital engagement, CRMs, and overall project management. I eventually found my way back into programs development when I joined the staff at NTEN.Along the way, I earned a B.S. from the University of Montana in Resource Management and a Master's in Environment and Development from the University of KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa. It took a while to figure out the throughline of my education and professional experience, but I eventually realized I love the intersections where people and other things come together (the environment, other humans, with technology).My role at NTEN allows me to continue doing work that connects with people and organizations across the full spectrum of the nonprofit sector. My project-driven brain couldn't find a better way to continue learning from amazing people creating exciting new ways to improve our communities every day.Outside of work, I enjoy taking a break from technology and exploring the outdoors, searching for an open stretch of trail and precious moments of solitude.

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