Sarah Elizabeth Schmidt


Sarah Elizabeth once had grand dreams of pounding the Capitol’s pavement as a policymaker. Her plan? Take what she learned about the world’s political landscape and shifting cultural tides straight to Washington D.C., then start making a real difference. So she studied. (A lifelong Jefferson enthusiast, she’s a Virginia native and member of the Jefferson Literary & Debating Society.) She traveled. (A self-proclaimed adventure junkie, she circumnavigated the globe in 108 days during a semester at sea.) And then she changed her dream. By exploring the world’s vast geopolitical climate, she inadvertently stumbled upon her true passion: to bring humanity back into the workplace.

What she picked up along the way—the insight she now shares every day as a facilitator for Frontier Academy—is that no matter the culture or the country, there are core commonalities we share as human beings. We fall in love; we raise families; we have friends; and we work. Her own career path includes a string of fortuitous, unrelated opportunities: intern for the Department of Defense, where she realized a career in foreign affairs wasn’t for her; then special events coordinator for both Monticello and the University of Virginia, followed by her time as marketing manager for a nationally recognized winery, where she saw first-hand how important facilitating connections between people from all walks of life can be.

Her boisterous, affable charm comes easily and is balanced by a rooted, down-to-earth practicality and humble nature—a perfect combination that allows her to infuse energy and non-stop motivation into both a room of workshop participants and in her life outside of work. If she isn’t mixing a playlist for one of the many exercise classes she teaches, then she’s hitting up a Virginia wine trail or exploring a new restaurant with her husband, two kids, and dog Brody.