Fernanda Villava
Content Strategist

I’m a bilingual communicator, turned business owner, who pivoted to Content Strategy. My goal is to bring structure to the digital products I collaborate with by creating accessible and delightful paths.
In 2013, I co-founded Matrushka, where we developed websites and software solutions for non-profit organizations. As co-director and project manager, I was involved in all phases of the projects, playing multiple roles, from the first conversations with clients to user training and launching. 
I am proud to have coordinated dozens of projects that were delivered on time and with high-quality standards to clients with whom I keep a good relationship.
In recent years, I have focused on UX design and content strategy. I am now honing my skills at EPAM Systems.

   - Project management
   - Content strategy
   - Information architecture
   - Wireframing & prototyping
   - Accessibility standards & testing
   - Presentation
   - Workshop facilitation & training
   - Communication with software developers
   - Mediation & communication with stakeholders
   - QA
   - Bilingual: native Spanish speaker, and English C2 level
Work Experience

EPAM Systems
2024 - Present
Senior Content Strategist


I co-founded Matrushka In 2013, where we helped communicators in nonprofits for 10 years. Last year my partner and I decided to close shop to allow ourselves to specialize and work in new niches. 

During my time running Matrushka, I:
   - Led 30+ successful projects
   - Worked with clients and partners in 10+ countries.
   - Conducted 30+ discovery, strategy and content architecture sessions
   - Planned and conducted 40+ training workshops
   - Designed, with my partner, a methodology for a strategy and content architecture workshop for nonprofit websites
   - Helped create a design system for nonprofit organization websites (Blueprint).
Selected Projects

UN Resources Tool
Clients: SRI + Fòs Feminista
United Nations Agreed Language Database
2012 - 2023

The database facilitates access for Sexual Health and Rights advocates and delegates to UN intergovernmental resolutions, expert guidance, and technical information.

My roles:
   - Project management
   - Content management & translation coordination
   - Collaborated in discovery, UX design
   - Presentations with stakeholders
   - QA

The project has a long history in which I have been involved since 2012. During this period, I have had the opportunity to coordinate the design and production of several web-based and mobile applications.
In 2016, I coordinated meetings at the client's offices in New York City to help design the authorization flows that would be used to allow access to sensitive information, and make decisions about the development of the mobile apps. 
In 2019, the two leading organizations expressed interest in developing a new version that would add more powerful search features for researchers. I conducted strategy workshops to identify shared objectives of the project among the participating organizations.
The participating organizations are distributed between Switzerland, Canada and the United States, so clear communication and efficiency in finding the shared goals was instrumental.

The Participation Playbook
Online training platform for participatory democracy

The Playbook is an online platform that guides practitioners in local governments around the world to design and implement participatory democracy projects successfully.

My roles:
   - Project management
   - UX design
   - Information architecture
   - Content management & translation coordination
   - Software QA
   - Training of content creators
   - Teach basic coding skills to content creators
   - Support content creators in articulating complex contents and rules; including developing a content style guide.

The Playbook has evolved a lot since the client's original request. At first, we were asked for an informational site with a simple questionnaire to allow practitioners to discover which method was best for them. The scope grew and eventually became a robust platform for generating multiple wizards that guide practitioners step-by-step. 
My detail-oriented personality was key to navigating the project: as the requirements, team size and amount of content grew, I helped keep things on track while maintaining the whole team focused on the goals.
I led the user experience design, both for end users and content editors.
I also helped the client make content strategy decisions so that the material produced by different consultants would be consistent, and to avoid patterns that would be too complex to maintain.
The platform was tested on the Climate Democracy Action accelerator by 40 participants from 22 countries and in 4 different languages, from October 2022 to May 2023. After the program, we made improvements for the tool whose official launch was last September

Online bookstore for the Carlos Fuentes Bookstore (LCF)
E-commerce website

My roles:
   - Project management
   - UX design
   - Helping client make software development-related decisions
   - Software QA

In 2018, the University asked us to create the digital face for the Carlos Fuentes Bookstore. E-commerce was not a specialty in Matrushka, so I offered to coordinate the design and development of the project.
As the project coordinator, I managed both the design team at Matrushka and the relationship with the development team in Colombia. I was involved in the whole life-cycle of the product: from gathering requirements and planning user flows, to doing quality control and making sure the end users had a good experience.
As a problem solver, I helped them make decisions that addressed the needs of different areas without adding complexity to keep the project viable. A particular challenge was harmonizing the sometimes conflicting needs and priorities of different areas within the University.​​​​​​​
The site launched to the public in 2019. When COVID hit, it was a lifeline for the bookstore. Thanks to the site, they were able to continue selling books and maintain their contact with the patrons.
Beijing International Book Fair (BIFB)

As Latin America Representative, my role was to promote the Beijing International Book Fair at Latin American book fairs, and to connect with Latin American publishers to advocate for the BIBF. 
I planned and conducted a relationship-building pilot event at the Book Fair, which allowed the Latin American publishers visiting the book fair for the first time to introduce their offer to the Asian market. 

Guadalajara International Book Fair (FIL)

The Guadalajara International Book Fair (FIL) is the largest book fair in the Spanish language and the second most important worldwide. Over 800,000 people from approximately 49 countries attend every year.
In my role as Coordinator of Programs for Professionals, I organized the International Publishers and Professionals Forum. My tasks included: researching trending topics for the audience, creating a cohesive program, inviting experts as speakers and managing their agendas.
When I started working at the Book Fair, illustrators were not an audience. With my coworkers, we decided to create a program that would allow them to professionalize their guild. We organized the first FILUSTRA (Illustrators' forum) and a series of accompanying activities like an Ibero-American award, portfolio revisions and meetings with editors.  
The Rights Center, which I directed, is a unique space in Iberoamerica, for negotiating and trading author rights. My last year at the book fair it was attended by 122 companies, from 21 countries. 
My job as director was to promote the space, invite new-comers aiming towards diversity and an increasing number of countries, so that the deals would be more valuable. We also organized rounds and meetings for those companies so they would find the right match of Latin American peers.
UNIVA, Mexico — B.A. Communication Sciences and Media, 2004-2007
Northwestern University, United States — Content Strategy for Professionals Specialization, 2020
Google — UX Design Professional Certificate (2022 - 2024)
One of the projects for the certificate is Clio, an app for galleries and museums with trivia. You can read the case study and explore the current prototype in Figma.​​​​​​​
Being User-Centered: Journeys, Stories, Maps, and More! (2023) by Scott Kubie / kubie.co 


Confab: The content strategy conference (2021)

Conferencia UX en Español (2022) 

24 hours of UX (2023)

Issue trackers
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