On a mission to close the gender gap



Over four decades of combined experience in leadership development, entrepreneurship, coaching, consulting, educational innovation and strategic planning.

Our team

lindsey lathrop (she/her)




About Frank

Jessica Nordhaus directs Change The Story and runs trainings and workshops on gender equity around the state of Vermont. She also owns Gear Shift Consulting, LLC, a Burlington-based consulting firm with a focus on education, policy and systems change. Her entrepreneurial, design-informed approach to her work has deep roots: after graduating from Yale College she founded Horny Toad Activewear (now Toad & Co). Jessica’s passion for empowering young women goes way back to the end of the last century when she worked as a counselor for Camp $tart-Up, a residential entrepreneurship camp for young women in Albuquerque, NM. Jessica is a Fletcher Free Library Commissioner, co-founder of the Greater Burlington Women’s Forum and serves on the Advisory Board of Emerge Vermont. She is also a managing partner at a mid-size, rapidly growing family firm in the South End of Burlington that specializes in big dinners, bad jokes and lots of laundry.

About Jessica

Jessica is passionate about putting gender equity front and center in every workplace conversation. Her day job is Director of Strategy + Partnerships for Change The Story VT, an initiative to advance women’s economic status in the state of Vermont. Her other day job, as co-facilitator of the Business Peer Exchange and principal at Gear Shift Consulting, LLC, is to help employers apply a gender lens to …well…everything. Immediately after graduating with a degree in American Studies from Yale, Jessica set out on an entrepreneurial path, founding Horny Toad Activewear (now Toad & Co.). She then swerved into education, community organizing, school reform, political consulting, public policy, non-profit development and equity work. When she isn’t traveling the state speaking and presenting, she is a managing partner at a mid-size, rapidly growing family firm in Burlington, Vermont that specializes in noisy dinners, bad jokes and lots of laundry.

“I want to share as someone who has taken part in this [Exchange] in the past, how much in a year it has really moved the conversation forward in terms of diversity and inclusion in our organization at VGS and to me it’s been invaluable.”

Tiana Smith, PMP

Director of Climate and Innovation, Vermont Gas Systems