Forte Labs

Transforming How the World Uses Knowledge

Our Vision – The future we want to bring into existence

To help people leverage the power of technology to realize the full potential of their knowledge, allowing them to eliminate information overload and lead happier, healthier, more fulfilling lives.

Read more about our 10-year vision for Building a Second Brain.

Our Mission – What we are trying to accomplish in the world

To empower anyone to build a Second Brain. 

We do that by creating content on the art and science of knowledge work to help people thrive in our digital, hyper-connected world. 

And by delivering transformative educational experiences through our online course Building a Second Brain, teaching people how to create their own system of personal knowledge management, known as a “Second Brain.”

What Makes Us Different

We view productivity as an opportunity for profound personal growth

We teach timeless concepts and principles, while also demonstrating specific tools that anyone can use

We are inclusive and see the value in diverse approaches to productivity and knowledge management

We focus on practical effectiveness and concrete results that make a meaningful impact on people’s careers and businesses

We connect with people on a human level and provide personalized service via a community of practice 

Forte Labs in the press

Our Work Has Been Featured In

Who is behind Forte Labs?

Meet the Team

Tiago Forte

Tiago Forte

Founder of Forte Labs and Creator of Building a Second Brain

Tiago Forte is one of the world’s foremost experts on productivity. He has taught more than 20,000 people worldwide through his programs and writes and speaks on how technology can help knowledge workers revolutionize their personal effectiveness.

Tiago’s online course, Building a Second Brain, has produced  more than 5,000 graduates from over 70 countries. The course draws on his experience in academic disciplines such as information science, practical fields such as user experience design, and his work with top organizations and leaders in Silicon Valley. Tiago believes knowledge management is one of the most impactful skills in the world today, and his work is dedicated to making it accessible to individuals for the first time. 

In a previous life, he worked in microfinance in Latin America, served in the Peace Corps in Ukraine, and consulted for large companies on product development in San Francisco. He lives in Long Beach, California, with his wife Lauren, son Caio, and dog Ximena.

Lauren Valdez

Lauren Valdez

Co-Founder of Forte Labs

Lauren leads Forte Labs’ training, coaching, and consulting services, using her extensive facilitation and events experience to create immersive learning experiences designed to inspire sustainable behavior change. 

Lauren has a nonprofit background in urban planning and public health. She believes that the world of entrepreneurship and business has a lot to learn from social justice, and vice versa, and is dedicated to bridging them.

She translates Forte Labs productivity methods for nonprofits, government agencies, social justice leaders, and young people.

Monica Rysavy

Monica Rysavy, Ph.D., Ed.D.

Director of Operations

Monica is the Director of Operations for Forte Academy. Monica’s expertise and research efforts are centered around the topics of teaching and learning with technology, with an emphasis on technology-supported knowledge management structures that lead to personal and professional achievement.

With 20 years of experience in academia (including a wide range of titles such as first grade teacher, stationery designer, assistant professor, photographer, and director of institutional research & training), Monica is passionate about personal and team productivity and systemization.

Monica lives with her husband Peter in Wilmington, Delaware.


Operations Coordinator

Victoria strives to understand the intersections of peoples’ experiences and implement creative plans to support their full potential.

She received a BA from CSU Long Beach and a MS from Azusa Pacific University.

Throughout her education, she collaborated with children, their families, and interdisciplinary teams to implement interventions to alleviate stress and promote development.

In her free time, Victoria loves anything involving food, art, her two dogs, and the outdoors. She looks forward to diving into gardening, building a website for her art, and slowly restoring her 1924 craftsman home.

Marc Koenig


GM, YouTube

Marc is a writer, marketer, and startup executive in charge of Forte Labs’ YouTube business.

Before joining Forte Labs, Marc created several online courses, built and sold an esports startup, and started a YouTube channel. His first childhood career role model was Shigeru Miyamoto, and he hopes to play proficient jazz piano one day.

Marc lives in Madison, Wisconsin, but often considers building a sprinter van with his wife, adopting a Corgi, and absconding on a quest to take digital notes in increasingly obscure areas of the countryside.

Julia Saxena

Julia Saxena

Director of Marketing

​​Julia’s mission is to reach more people worldwide with our message of personal productivity and knowledge management.

In her role, Julia draws from her extensive experience as a freelance copywriter and as a project manager in several multinational organizations. She has a Lean Six Sigma Black Belt, a BBA, and an MBA degree.

Julia regularly publishes what she’s learning about launching, running, and scaling online courses on her website Course Creator Lab and in her weekly newsletter.

Originally from Germany, Julia loves to travel. She has visited over 45 countries and lived and worked in 8. Currently, she spends most of her time in Toronto, Canada.

Guia Carmona


Course Manager

Guía supports our students and team during and in-between Building a Second Brain Cohorts so that they have the best learning experience possible.

She is a professional translator, interpreter and writer. She has led Notion’s localization into Spanish and is passionate about translating and bringing Personal Knowledge Management into other cultures and languages like Spanish and German. She shares her learnings and projects on her website and blog.

Guía is originally from Spain and lives in Münster, Germany. You will often find her in a pottery studio, playing cello and singing with her band, trying new plant-based recipes or taking pictures.


We’ve Worked With the World’s Leading Organizations in a Variety of Industries