All About


I hail from the midwest (and have the cheese drawer and inherited strong work ethic to prove it).

I was a sensitive little gal and had intuitive pings early on in life. I didn’t have a great handle on dealing with unpleasant feels, so I decided that no matter what, I need to always feel at peace with myself.


My young brain extended "be at peace with myself" to "avoid any conflict at all costs, no matter what."

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Already feelin' myself in 1994 and knowing there are some big plans for me.

Turns out that extreme conflict avoidance manifests as a heck of a lot of people-pleasing and dimming my sparkle.

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And then, one day… I met a new part of myself. Wolf Mama Allison, Trudy Duncan, my self-advocate, my backbone. 


I decided that I wasn’t doing the world any favors (and was actually kind of slapping it in the face?) by sitting  around and letting people walk all over me.


I decided that I mattered... a lot.


My self-love was a rebellion.

It was time to be so vibrant that other people couldn’t help but take note and join in. 


I realized that wasting away in a corporate 9-5 was not for me. I dreamed of the personal freedom of starting a business, of not having to ask for vacation days, of working on what I wanted to, of following my life, and making way more than $45K a year. 


In the summer of 2016 I lost my father and found coaching in a matter of weeks (read on to learn more about this connection). One month after he died, I found myself sitting in a Chicago ballroom at my first weekend of in-person coach training with IPEC.

2016 through mid-2018 were filled with dropping to part-time at my sales and marketing job, getting in a serious bike accident and getting married 12 days later, and uprooting from living in a Madison, WI co-op with 9 other people to a San Francisco high-rise smack dab in the Manhattan of SF.

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September 26, 2017 with road rash, a broken tooth, and mild concussion. And, testament to my optimism, 12 days later on October 8 at my wedding in perfect health.

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Briefly living in a "fishbowl apartment" a few blocks from the baseball stadium in SF.

San Francisco brought a challenging season of my life. For the first time, I was a full-time entrepreneur. I was in control of my days. I could do what I wanted to do. However, I was uprooted from my community and far from home. 

I really get into in on IG, but long story short... the isolation led to uncharacteristic darkness on a scale I'd never seen before. So, I got help.

I checked into in-patient. I talked to doctors. I found a therapist.

I started a massive journey of healing.


Getting to know myself through journaling, meditation, and mindset healing made all the difference.

I eventually found my people in SF, and I got my footing back a bit. I helped launch a Women's Wellness Center community and learned more than I ever could have imagined. 

Then came COVID. Not wanting to get trapped in a way-too-expensive-way-too-crowded city, Mitchell and I packed up our apartment and dog in a matter of 3 days and hit the road for Denver, Colorado.

Denver brings us to the birth of PoppyLead as you know it!


Learned some valuable lessons about sharing bites of Arby's roast beef sandwich with a dog while also sharing a teeny amount of U-haul airspace.

The move to Denver coincided with a re-emergence of my entrepreneurial confidence. Only this time, I did it differently. I networked and met people. I practiced introducing myself as a business owner. I started to believe I was an entrepreneur.

I also hired coaches who have taught me literally so much about accountability, and mindset, and strategy. I was ready to impact the world in a big way. I just wanted a name that captured the playful joy and vibrancy I wanted in my business. 

On Father's Day 2020, two days before the 4th anniversary of my dad's passing, I was sitting on the sofa and it hit me clear as day: PoppyLead

When I was a child I thought it was hilarious to call my dad, Poppyseed, as a little play on Papa or Pops.

This definitely became one of our things. We had a lot of little things: birthdays 2 days apart, "super hits" (really good songs), solo/ensemble competitions (he was my accompanist), and all my elementary school field trips.

It felt odd to me that my dad and coaching passed each other in being a part of my life. It's strange to not share my adult life with him, especially something that's come to mean so much.

So, when the joyful, vibrant, leadership-nodding PoppyLead came into my brain, it felt like his nod of appreciation toward what I've chosen to do with my life.


Hanging out with Poppyseed at my favorite Michigan playground on a summer trip in 1995.

And that brings us to now! Mitchell and I live outside of Denver with our big-eared rescue dogs, Kovri and Dandelion. I am living my life's purpose and spring out of bed each morning to support entrepreneurs.

Here are some fun facts to close out:

1. I know a lot about the competitive CrossFit scene

2. Enneagram 7, Generator, Virgo (Cap 🌙, Aqr 💫), ELI - 6/5/3

3. Competitive cooking tv shows are my jam

Learn more about Allison and PoppyLead
in these features: