Mackenzie’s interest in public health took off in graduate school, while completing a self-designed emphasis on the intersections between sustainable development, human well-being, and human rights. She became fixated on the notion of a holistic approach to community development – one that attempts to create livelihoods, social capital, and resilient communities through the use of local resources, indigenous knowledge, location-appropriate solutions, and biomimicry. Through this lens, she views the improvement of health at all levels as an inherent element of achieving lasting, equitable change. She is also keen on seeing the humanitarian aid field explore greater application of ‘indigenously appropriate, indigenously sustainable’ technologies within crisis response and post-emergency/conflict rebuilding.
Most recently, she was a Programme Coordinator in the Human and Institutional Development unit of the Aga Khan Foundation, Afghanistan. Prior to this, she developed intercultural programming for the Center for Judaic Studies in Denver, and was an Associate Editor for Egypt Today and Business Today Egypt in Cairo. As a Peace Fellow for the Advocacy Project in 2008, she assisted the Chintan Environmental Research and Action Group in documenting the injustices suffered by informal waste recyclers in New Delhi, India.
Mackenzie holds a Bachelor of Arts in Cultural Anthropology from Western Washington University, and a joint-Master of Arts in International Development and Intercultural Communication from the University of Denver. She is also trained as a Wilderness First Responder, and frequently places herself in precarious outdoor situations for cheap thrills. Currently, Mackenzie writes from Seattle where she is working on a degree in Nursing. She is a Contributing Editor at Sokoko Life, and occasionally blogs about all things beautiful and banal in her life in the Emerald City.