Karen Walrond is a lawyer, leadership coach, and activist. A Certified Dare To Lead™ Facilitator in Brené Brown’s research on courage, vulnerability and empathy, Walrond has helped thousands of people around the world find purpose and meaning in their work. As a photographer, she traveled throughout Africa with the ONE Campaign and serves on the board for the Houston Coalition Against Hate. Walrond and her work have been featured on PBS, Huffington Post, CNN.com, and The Oprah Winfrey Show. 

Her award-winning blog, Chookooloonks, is a lifestyle, inspiration, and photography destination. A sought-after speaker, Karen is the host of the highly rated podcast “The Make Light Show”, the author of The Beauty of Different and the upcoming The Lightmaker’s Manifesto, and a contributor to Disquiet Time and Expressive Photography. 

Karen, her husband, and their daughter live in Houston, Texas.


Many of us have strong convictions. We want to advocate for causes we care about–but which ones? We want to work for change–but will the emotional toll lead to burnout?

Leadership coach, lawyer, photographer, and activist Karen Walrond knows that when you care deeply about the world, light can seem hard to find. But when your activism grows out of your joy–and vice versa–you begin to see light everywhere.

In The Lightmaker’s Manifesto, Walrond helps us name the skills, values, and actions that bring us joy; identify the causes that spark our empathy and concern; and then put it all together to change the world. Creative and practical exercises, including journaling, daily intention-setting, and mindful self-compassion, are complemented by lively conversations with activists and thought leaders such as Valarie Kaur, Brené Brown, Tarana Burke, and Zuri Adele. With stories from around the world and wisdom from those leading movements for change, Walrond beckons readers toward lives of integrity, advocacy, conviction, and joy.

By unearthing our passions and gifts, we learn how to joyfully advocate for justice, peace, and liberation. We learn how to become makers of light.


  • Happiness Happens Month – August 
    • Finding joy during hardships and still giving back to your community 
  • Self Improvement Month – September 
    • Why advocacy and activism can lead to burnout and how to prevent this from happening 
    • How to identify the causes that spark empathy, concern, and joy 
  • National Book Month – October 
  • Stress Awareness Day – November 6 
    • How to help others while being more mindful of your own skills, experience, and resilience 
  • Thanksgiving- November
    • Being a light starts with gratitude and appreciating all that you have
  • Holidays – December 
    • Holiday gift for book lovers and people who want to give back 
    • How to give back during the holidays without overextending yourself 
  • New Year – December/January 
    • Ways to be a better advocate in 2022
    • How to make philanthropy and advocacy a bigger part of your life in the new year