Prior to joining All Voting is Local, Willett was a faculty member at the University of Nevada, Reno, where she engaged in research-to-action projects on environmental justice and civic engagement. A highlight of this work was partnering with youth from Title 1 high schools to document environmental injustices in their neighborhoods, identify solutions and partners, and advocate for these solutions at the local and state government. Her previous work includes documenting climate migration in Kenya, evaluating nonprofit programs in Connecticut, and running housing programs in New York City.

She earned a Ph.D. in social work from the University of Connecticut, an MSW from SUNY Buffalo, and a BA in international relations from The Ohio State University.