Darnell Burtin, Founder, The Burtin Group LLC Darnell brings over 25 years of experience in the nonprofit, philanthropic and corporate sectors and during that time has held titles such as Chief Growth Officer, SVP of Partnerships, Vice President of Development and Marketing. In 2015, Darnell founded The Burtin Group, LLC to support organizations with capital campaign strategy & execution, strategic planning and growing major gifts teams. Since then he has expanded to include executive leadership development, organizational capacity building, and diversity equity & inclusion. Darnell also works 1:1 as a coach with individuals who are mid-career through executive level across all sectors, domestically and internationally.
Meghan Cavanaugh, Program Director, Girls on the Run Buffalo
Meghan has been with Girls on the Run of Buffalo since 2010 and is responsible for council finances, volunteer organization and other operational projects. After graduating from Xavier University with a B.A. in Social Work, Meghan began her career as an AmeriCorps volunteer with the Montana Conservation Corps where she worked with disadvantaged youth. In addition to Meghan’s role as program director she is a consultant at the University at Buffalo, Pediatric, Behavioral Medicine Department on a family-based weight control treatment study. Meghan is the proud mother of three children, Maeve (13), Billy (11) and Ian (9) along with her husband Will, they are keeping up with their crew enjoying life!
Katarina Corda, MEd, MiT, Senior Director, Girls on the Run HQ Katie (she/her) is responsible for creating relevant, creative and impactful programming solutions that meet the mission and strategic objectives of Girls on the Run. She oversees the curriculum development process and is instrumental in developing program volunteer and council training. Before joining Girls on the Run International in 2019, Katie gained extensive experience in constructivist-based curriculum design and differentiation, integration of social emotional skill development, and culturally responsive curriculum development. This knowledge base and skillset was fostered through her work with children and educators in diverse communities and various educational settings in the K-12 school system, as well as her graduate studies. Katie holds a Master’s in Education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education, with a focus in Mind, Brain, and Education – studying the cross-section of applied cognitive science, neuroscience, and psychology in the context of education. In addition, Katie holds a Master’s in Teaching, where her studies focused on community and culturally responsive curriculum development and social justice teaching and learning practices.
Breauna Dorelus, Founder and Chief Cause Consultant, Connecting the Cause
Breauna Dorelus created Connecting the Cause, a social impact consultancy, to tackle and dismantle the current narrative and traditional norms around service. Connecting the Cause focuses on uprooting non-profit volunteer practices that are harmful to Black and brown communities and champions voices of color to be recognized and valued in the civic and volunteer sector. After over a decade of working in the non-profit sector specifically with volunteer programs, she became convinced that in order to produce real transformational change, we must be willing to check our mindsets, intentions, language, attitudes, and perceptions of service.
Breauna believes in community inclusion in all aspects of the volunteer process and is dedicated to ensuring that service is centered around co-dreaming. She recognizes that justice includes reimagining volunteerism and creating a new future of community-centered co-dreamers. Breauna is a former AmeriCorps member, currently runs an online community of those working to become co-dreamers and is currently a mama in the 2 under 2 club.
Sarah Heins, Director of Training and Implementation, Exit Row Solutions
Sarah Heins joined Pinwheel in 2017 after spending 3 ½ years as a Program and 5K Coordinator for Girls on the Run Tri County in South Carolina. Having also been a GOTR parent and coach, she enjoys helping GOTR councils maximize the benefits of Pinwheel and the ERS websites. Sarah holds a bachelor’s degree in computer information systems. Before coming to Exit Row Solutions, she was a change management consultant for Andersen Consulting, a training specialist for Starting Point Technologies Inc., the owner of a Jazzercise franchise, and an occasional training facilitator for Girls on the Run International.
Dr. Erica Hernandez-Scott, Interim Executive Director, Washington State’s Professional Educator Standards Board
Dr. Erica Hernandez-Scott has spent her entire career committed to social justice and equity in education. She received her B.A. in Elementary Education from Rockhurst University and her M.A. in Curriculum and Instruction with an emphasis in Urban and Multicultural Education from the University of Missouri – Kansas City (UMKC). She completed an Interdisciplinary Doctor of Philosophy at UMKC studying Curriculum and Instruction and Educational Leadership, Policy, and Foundations. Her research focused on the educational and career attainment of Latina teachers in urban elementary schools. Prior to her role as Interim Executive Director at Washington State's Professional Educator Standards Board, Erica served as the leadership and learning director for diversity, equity, and inclusion and was instrumental in revising Washington’s educator standards and leading the advancing equity grant initiative. Erica is also a former urban, elementary school teacher, instructional coach, and faculty member for multiple teacher preparation programs across the nation. She is also passionate about the recruitment, preparation, retention, and development of educators of color.
Joy Heuer, Executive Director, Girls on the Run Sierras
Joy loves lifting people up and has served as Executive Director of Girls on the Run Sierras for the past five years. When she first heard the Girls on the Run mission, she knew this was where she wanted to be. Prior to Girls on the Run, Joy was the COO of the Reno Sparks Chamber of Commerce. Joy is a graduate and former co-chair of Leadership Reno Sparks, a 2021 Northern Nevada Top 20 Women finalist and graduate of the Reno FBI Citizens Academy. When not working to further the GOTR mission, she’s at Greater Nevada Field cheering for the Reno Aces and spending time with her guy, Eric. She is Mom to Winnie the Pug and cat Zeus!
Michelle Jackson-Holland, MPA, PHR, SVP Human Resources and Belonging, Girls on the Run HQ Michelle joined Girls on the Run organization in 2010 and served five years as the Operations Director, overseeing the organization’s legal, risk, compliance and human resource functions. Since 2017, she has led the organization’s human resource functions and currently provides strategic direction for Girls on the Run International’s human resource, talent acquisition and engagement, and IDEA (inclusion, diversity, equity, and access), to sustain the organization’s commitment to IDEA and people-centric initiatives. Michelle has a master’s in public administration, concentrating in nonprofit management and is a certified Professional in Human Resources (PHR®).
Scott Lilly, Manager, Apple Scott Lilly is an experienced human resource professional and has worked in both the for-profit and non-profit arenas. He currently is a manager in the Software Engineering organization at Apple, where he leads a team that provides strategic and tactical operations support. Before moving into this role, Scott was an Inclusion & Diversity Business Partner supporting R&D functions across the organization. Prior to joining Apple, he spent eight years at Thurgood Marshall College Fund advancing to serve as its chief programs officer. Scott also worked at Inter/ActiveCorp/IAC, a Fortune 500 New Media Technology Company in a number of human resource roles where he was passionate about creating environments where everyone could thrive. Scott joined the Girls on the Run HQ board in 2022.
Olivia Mathews, Executive Director, Girls on the Run Greater Boston
Olivia has been Executive Director of Girls on the Run Greater Boston since September 2017. She is passionate about achieving sustainable organizational growth and expanding Boston area programming to serve thousands of additional girls. Olivia earned a Master’s in Administration, Planning, and Social Policy from the Harvard Graduate School of Education and has worked in the nonprofit sector for 20 years, most recently as CEO of the national children’s literacy organization, Read to a Child. She has three children, one of whom is a proud GOTR alum and current enthusiastic 9th grade XC runner.
Julia Menefield Lankford, Director of Operations, Laureus USA Julia has over 19 years of non-profit management experience. Her work is centered on the core belief that the best way to improve quality of life for those who need it most is to empower them, passing on a sense of shared responsibility and individual self-efficacy. Currently, Julia is the Director of Operations for Laureus USA where she is responsible for managing the day-to-day operations necessary to ensure that the organization achieves its objectives. Prior to joining the Laureus team in 2017, Julia worked with organizations such as Families First and East Athens Development Corporation, providing direct services in impoverished/under-resourced areas by speaking with community residents, determining their needs, and designing economic opportunities to empower these individuals to improve their own lives. Julia received her B.S. in Political Science and Master of Public Administration from Georgia Southern University, as well as her accounting certification from Athens Technical College. Julia lives in the metro Atlanta area with her husband and two daughters.
Theresa Miller, Chief Engagement Officer, Girls on the Run HQ Theresa Miller (she/her) joined Girls on the Run International in 2014 and leads the organization’s brand strategy, crisis communication, merchandise strategy, fundraising and marketing operations. With over 20 years of nonprofit experience, Theresa is passionate about leveraging her skills in fundraising, communications, and strategic planning to engage diverse audiences with the Girls on the Run mission. She enjoys leading teams to achieve annual revenue and brand goals while fostering an environment of accountability, collaboration, and professional growth. Her true joy comes from cheering for her two kids on and off the field.
Michael Nishi, Chief Operating Officer, Chicago Event Management Mike oversees the production of all events for Chicago Event Management with a particular focus on event operations, emergency response and sustainability logistics. Since 1990, he has partnered with Carey Pinkowski as General Manager and Executive Race Director of the Bank of America Chicago Marathon. With his extensive operational knowledge, Mike was integral in guiding a local road race of 6,000 runners to a world-class event that saw over 45,700 marathon finishers in 2019. In addition to his work on the Chicago Marathon, Mike is a driving force in increasing the exchange of ideas and best practices among events of all size and scope and founded the Race Management Program to offer event organizers an intimate forum to share ideas with one another. He currently serves as Co-Chair on the National Center for Spectator Sports Safety & Security’s (NCS4) Marathon & Endurance Events Advisory Committee. Mike also sits on the board of Girls on the Run Chicago and is a committee member at City Garden Pre-School in Chicago’s Pilsen neighborhood. He and his wife Dona, and their two daughters, live in Chicago where they are active community members in their Little Italy neighborhood.
Jackie O’Hara, Director, Council Development, Eastern Region, Girls on the Run HQ As part of the regional director team, Jackie supports the council network with a specialized focus on strategic planning, board development, and Mission Advancement Marker targets. Prior to this role, Jackie was the Executive Director of Girls on the Run Rhode Island and she still serves as a GOTR Coach for the council. She has been in the non-profit sector for 18 years working with youth development and young women’s leadership programs, including Girls Inc. and the YWCA, as well as serving as a Peace Corps volunteer for international youth service.
McKenna Olson, Director, Council Development, Central Region, Girls on the Run HQ As part of the regional director team, McKenna supports the council network with a specialized focus on fund development strategies, along with nonprofit management and community engagement tactics. She rejoined Girls on the Run in 2021 after serving as Program Manager at Girls on the Run of Greater Charlotte for four years, McKenna has extensive non-profit experience having worked for Big Brothers Big Sisters, the American Red Cross, and most recently as the Director of Development, Donor Relations for Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Milwaukee. McKenna is coaching Heart & Sole this spring 2022 season and looks forward to crossing the finish line next to her 6th-8th grade team, co-coaches, and parents/guardians.
Deborah Pleva, Owner, Pleva Consulting, Girls on the Run HQ Board of Directors
Deborah (she/her) brings extensive expertise in corporate and nonprofit communications, public relations, issue management, crisis communications, and media training to Girls on the Run. Through her consulting firm, she represents local, regional and national clients including LifeStraw, Dansko, prAna, Nancy’s Yogurt, 1% for the Planet, Outbound Collective, The Society Hotel, and more. She is a national board member for GOTR HQ and has served as a coach for six seasons for Girls on the Run Oregon. Coaching Girls on the Run has brought her so much joy and she loves introducing 3rd- to 8th-grade girls to the power of movement and the resulting feeling of empowerment.
Michael Reale, President/Chief Executive Officer, Exit Row Solutions
Michael founded Exit Row Solutions, Inc. in 2001 to help non-profit organizations use technology to meet their organizational missions. Michael and his wife, Janine, also founded an organization called Run for Food in 2006, a 5K fundraising event that benefits their local food bank and homeless shelter. The event has grown to 5,000 participants and has raised over $1M. It was this fundraising event that sparked the creation of RacePlanner, which was reimagined and enhanced to become Pinwheel.
Dr. Allison Riley, PhD, MSW, SVP Programming and Evaluation, Girls on the Run HQ Allie (she/her) joined the team at Girls on the Run HQ in 2013. After beginning her career as a mental health counselor working with girls in a residential treatment facility, Allie was drawn to strategies and programs that prioritize positive youth development. She believes in the pivotal role that sports and physical activity can play in youth development when contexts are intentionally designed. Allie earned her PhD in social work with a specialization in positive youth development in social settings from Ohio State University (OSU) and also holds a master’s degree in social work with a concentration in clinical practices with children and youth from OSU, a master’s degree in kinesiology from Purdue University and a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Virginia. With over fifteen years of experience designing, implementing and evaluating physical activity-based positive youth development programs, Allie now oversees the development and delivery of all programming and training at Girls on the Run to ensure maximum impact.
Dr. Sara Rimm-Kaufman, Ph.D., Professor of Education, University of Virginia As Director of the UVA Social Development Lab (www.socialdevelopmentlab.org), Sara has been conducting research on social and emotional learning for over 20 years. Her research examines the evidence base for programs such as the Responsive Classroom Approach, Connect Science, Leading Together, EL Education and others. She publishes her work extensively and has received numerous grants and awards. At the University, she leads graduate training programs in Educational Science, mentors graduate students, and teaches undergraduate students, including those planning on becoming teachers. Sara is a proud mother of two (Sam, age 24 & Davida, age 21) and loved listening to the wisdom of girls during her time as a GOTR volunteer!
Ben Schornack, Chicago Program Officer, Laureus Sport for Good Foundation Ben believes that the power of sport and play can change the world for kids and young adults. Throughout his career, Ben has worked to build a youth sports system that prioritizes youth development, equity, and access above all else. He began his work as a basketball coach and adaptive physical education teacher in New York for Kids in the Game. He then moved to Up2Us Sports where he served as the NYC Director and managed their national AmeriCorps VISTA program. Over the past four years, Ben has worked for Laureus USA as a Program Officer in New York and then Chicago. In these roles, Ben has built and supported cross-stakeholder coalitions of organizations working together to create a world where every kid can access the life-changing benefits of sport and play. These coalitions have worked together on collective projects such as training series’, funder town halls, government lobbying, and awareness-building campaigns. Ben graduated from Central College in Iowa and currently lives in Chicago.
Dr. Elena Simpkins, PhD, Research and Evaluation Specialist, Girls on the Run HQ Elena (she/her) joined Girls on the Run HQ in the fall of 2021 after volunteering with Girls on the Run Southeast Michigan as a Wondergirl, coach, and co-chair of the young professionals’ advisory committee. Prior to joining HQ, she served as a member of the IDEA Commission as well. In her role she assists the program and evaluation team with all things data and research. Elena graduated with her PhD in sport management from the University of Michigan- Ann Arbor, a master’s degree in sport administration from Wayne State University, and a bachelor’s degree in sociology from the University of Michigan- Ann Arbor.
Juliellen Simpson-Vos, M.ED, Council Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Access Strategic Advisor, Girls on the Run HQ Juliellen started her Girls on the Run career as executive director for Girls on the Run Triangle in 2010. Seven years later she transitioned to HQ to join the council development team. She currently works to advance organizational IDEA initiatives and assists councils in their efforts to embed IDEA imperatives into council operations and strategic plans. Her entire career has been dedicated to creating collaborative, warm and inclusive environments that allow for opportunity and equitable change.
Mary Stelletello, MA, MBA, PCC, Founder, Vista Global Coaching & Consulting With over 30 years of experience in the nonprofit and philanthropic sectors, Mary (she/her) specializes in the areas of leadership development, governance, strategy development, strategic partnerships, and organizational capacity building. She has worked with over 200 organizations and individuals in 30 countries and first worked with GOTR in 2014 when she helped GOTR South Central Wisconsin develop its strategic plan and then co-presented their case study at the 2014 GOTR Summit in San Antonio. Mary co-authored the case study, Success Factors for a Nonprofit Merger and the eBook, Proactively Plan for the Inevitable: A Guide to Leadership Transition and Succession. She also is a contributor to The Leadership Challenge Activities Book. She holds a MA in Latin American Studies and MBA from the University of New Mexico and received a BA from the University of California, Berkeley. In her spare time, Mary enjoys traveling, playing tennis and biking with her husband Andy and hiking with her Standard Poodle, Dulce.
Anne Sutkowi-Hemstreet, MPH, Founder and Director, Rainbow Collective for Change Anne (she/they) has 20+ years of experience developing, implementing, and evaluating prevention programs. They have been a Girls on the Run coach for multiple councils and worked in the role of Coordinator for Girls on the Run Napa & Solano. As the Director of Rainbow Collective for Change, Anne collaborates with community leaders, schools and organizations in building support, safety, and connection for LGBTQ and gender diverse children and families. She and her wife have two young children and live in Durham, North Carolina.
Mary Uran, Executive Director, Girls on the Run Minnesota Mary co-founded and has served as the executive director of Girls on the Run Minnesota since 2013. She holds a M.A. degree in Public Health Nutrition from the University of Minnesota School of Public Health and is an alumna of the College of Saint Benedict where in 2016 she was honored with the Decade Award. Prior to Girls on the Run, Mary worked for the Network for Public Health Law in Saint Paul, and the National Association of Attorneys General in Washington D.C. She was a founding board member of Minnesota Public Radio’s Generation Listen and is a current board member of the National CMV Foundation as well as board chair of the Brave Like Gabe Foundation. She lives in Saint Paul with her husband and three children.
Liz Wian,Vice President Partnerships and Development, Girls on the Run HQ As Vice President Partnerships and Development, Liz leads a team of high performing and driven fundraisers who develop and support the fund development strategy needs for the organization. With over 15 years of experience, Liz has spent her career in a variety of corporate sales and non-profit management positions, making this her dream role. She specializes in relationship building and connecting with people through their shared enthusiasm for women and girls’ empowerment. As a mother to a future GOTR girl, Liz is passionate about the organization’s mission and the partners that enable that vision to come to life.
Dana Williams, Director of Marketing and Brand Strategy, Girls on the Run HQ In her role as the organization’s Director of Marketing and Brand Strategy, Dana guides the organization’s communication and marketing initiatives. Dana spent 10 years working in the advertising and digital marketing space for award-winning agencies before aligning her marketing experience with her passion for positive youth development at Girls on the Run. Dana is committed to driving results through innovative and measurable strategies that fuel the organization’s mission and core values.
Megan Wolfe, Executive Director, Girls on the Run Snohomish County Megan founded and currently serves as the Executive Director of Girls on the Run of Snohomish County, the third most populous county in WA state. While creating the organization’s original strategic plan in 2015, she emphasized the need to develop a quality, sustainable organization with diversity and access built into the groundwork of all aspects of the organization. Since then, she has created a pathway for individual advancement at the staff and board level, further developed organizational systems and policies, and expanded the outreach and anti-racism work of the organization. Megan is dedicated to creating safe spaces for both youth and adults in the community to learn and grow and she is known and respected in Snohomish County for her work as an ally, activist and leader.
Megan has a B.A. in urban geography and a Master of Public Administration degree, both from the University of Washington. She enjoys spending time outdoors playing and adventuring with her husband, Jim, and their two boys.
Nicole Wright, Director, Council Development, Southern Region, Girls on the Run HQ As part of the regional director team, Nicole supports the council network with a specialized focus on program management and strategic partnerships. Prior to joining the regional director team, Nicole served as the Collective Impact Strategy Director for a social-services nonprofit, United Community, leading partnership-based initiatives to deliver equitable and accessible resources for youth and families in marginalized communities. Nicole also previously served as the Director of Programs with Girls on the Run Northern Virginia for over 4 years and is currently a GOTR coach. She has over 10 years of nonprofit management experience and holds a master’s degree from Johns Hopkins University in public management, as well as a bachelor’s degree in biology from the University of Virginia.