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Our Story

Ideal State was founded on the belief that people working to make the world a better place shouldn’t be held back by their technology. Every hour of lost productivity or dollar wasted on poorly performing IT systems represents a drain on scarce resources for doing good.

Co-founders Sara Teitelman and Jeremy Nurse set out to address this challenge by helping NGOs, grantmakers, and others make sense of the increasingly complex enterprise technology landscape. In 2014, they launched Ideal State as a full-service consulting firm dedicated to helping organizations engaged in social good succeed in their digital transformation journey.

About Our Name

We start every project by listening. The diverse stories and perspectives that our clients share help us form a clear understanding of the current state of their technology and the challenges they are trying to solve. We then use design thinking to co-create a vision of the future where technology is fully supporting and enhancing the work of the organization or initiative.

We call this future-state vision the "ideal state." So it seemed fitting to adopt it as our company name. It’s what we help our clients achieve!

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Our Team

Sara Teitelman, MPH

Sara co-founded Ideal State after 13 years in international health and development. During her time

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Sara Teitelman, MPH

Sara co-founded Ideal State after 13 years in international health and development. During her time at organizations including the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation, Sara realized that dispersed networks of staff around the world were struggling to keep up with the latest research and practice discoveries in and outside the organization. The cost of this lost knowledge was enormous in terms of missed opportunities for achieving impact and diminishing staff morale.

Determined to leverage the best thinking and latest technology to tackle this challenge, she discovered the practice of knowledge management (KM) and became a certified KM practitioner. She went on to lead highly successful, technology-driven KM initiatives focused on helping organizations amplify the impact of their work with partners and beneficiaries. At her last position as KM Director for international NGO, Pact, she led an ambitious and highly successful three-year digital transformation effort that resulted in across-the-board efficiency gains and significant reductions in IT system cost and complexity.

As lead strategist for Ideal State client engagements, Sara blends the practices of knowledge management, change management, and design thinking to bring a fresh, non-IT perspective to even the most technology-laden projects. Her deep experience in the nonprofit sector helps her understand the unique challenges and opportunities faced by Ideal State's nonprofit clients.

Outside of work, Sara enjoys spending time in the great outdoors of her adopted hometown of Santa Fe, NM together with her husband, daughter, and two very lucky dogs.

Jeremy Nurse

Jeremy started his career in 1995 at Forrester Research, where he honed his skills in understanding

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Jeremy Nurse

Jeremy started his career in 1995 at Forrester Research, where he honed his skills in understanding how technology can help organizations achieve their business goals. Since then he has led dozens of large-scale enterprise technology projects for diverse organizations, including the Veterans Administration (VA), Blue Cross Blue Shield, Children’s Medical Center and Nationwide Insurance.

Jeremy’s experience with technology platform strategy goes back to the late 1990s. Among those early experiences was a project for Ford Motor Company developing the strategy for a corporate intranet and extranet that would connect Ford’s manufacturing, dealers and customers—a groundbreaking idea at that time.

During the years that followed, Jeremy led multiple large-scale ERP, CRM and web technology implementations—providing strategic advice on platform selection and integration, and leading software development teams. These projects included leading web CMS implementations for the Nationwide Insurance and Children’s Medical Center websites and supporting strategy design and execution for the VA’s $4.3 billion annual technology budget.

At Ideal State, Jeremy advises clients on platform strategy and system integration for today’s mixed hosted and cloud environments. He is keenly attuned to the latest developments and important distinctions between leading software platforms and brings a wealth of practical experience to guide organizations in making the best technology decisions. Jeremy is also highly skilled at leading software development teams to skillfully and cost-effectively implement and customize technology solutions for Ideal State clients.

When he’s not working, Jeremy can be found on a mountain bike, a pair of skis, or practicing his newest hobby, archery.

Carrie Boron
Carrie is a skilled human-centered design specialist and project manager. She's passionate about
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Carrie Boron

Carrie is a skilled human-centered design specialist and project manager. She's passionate about helping organizations transform and improve their digital workplaces to create even greater positive change in the world.
 
Prior to joining Ideal State as a Consultant, Carrie served as the Director for Knowledge Management for Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service (LIRS). She led the development and oversight of processes and systems to foster learning and sharing among LIRS staff and the organization's national network of refugee resettlement partners. Carrie also managed communications, organizational planning and knowledge management for Everyday Democracy, a national civic organization supporting communities to engage people in dialogue on problem solving on critical public issues.
 
Carrie lives outside of Baltimore, MD with her husband and three socially-awkward cats. When not working on digital workplaces, Carrie enjoys feasting on Maryland crabs, gardening, running, and biking on the C&O Canal Towpath. 
Lindsay Dahl
Lindsay is a strategist, project manager, and communicator dedicated to driving lasting social
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Lindsay Dahl

Lindsay is a strategist, project manager, and communicator dedicated to driving lasting social change. Formally trained in human-centered design, she strives to be a champion for the user experience at every touchpoint that purpose-driven organizations use to achieve their mission. 
 
Prior to joining Ideal State, Lindsay managed large-scale digital initiatives at the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation including building a new intranet for the organization and launching the inaugural BreatheCon, a virtual conference for adults with CF. She began her career at Edelman developing and executing brand reputation and CSR initiatives for clients such as Business Roundtable, HP, PepsiCo, and Waste Management. Recognizing her passion for social impact, Lindsay then joined the team at Blue State to lead digital advocacy, brand, employee engagement, and fundraising campaigns for clients including the Entertainment Industry Foundation, the Fred Hollows Foundation, Stand for Children, and UCSF Benioff Children's Hospitals.
 
Lindsay has a master's degree in social enterprise from American University and a bachelor's degree in communication from Boston University. She lives in Washington, D.C., and spends her free time learning everything she can about sustainability, design, and the future of work, as well as cooking, practicing yoga, and singing in an all-female a capella group. 
Tara Hansen
Tara began her career in professional learning and development. While completing a B.S. in
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Tara Hansen

Tara began her career in professional learning and development. While completing a B.S. in Instructional Technology & Training at the University of New Mexico, she joined the Ideal State team and quickly developed a love for serving clients who are dedicated to social good. As an associate consultant at Ideal State, Tara specializes in adoption and engagement strategy and change management support. She enjoys a challenge and solving professional puzzles that can truly make a difference in the daily lives of end users. 
 
Tara is based in Albuquerque, NM, and enjoys spending time with her husband and two children. Her many hobbies include playing the guitar, drawing, screen printing, archery, crocheting, cooking, gardening, and scuba diving. She is a learning and development professional in a constant state of learning and development.