Children’s Health Fund is proud of our committed and diverse staff driven by our common goal to create lasting wellbeing for children and families.
Emi AcquafreddaDirector of Strategy and Operations, Co-Director Healthy and Ready to Learn (HRL)
Building really trusting and consistent relationships with our schools and being accountable to them and their communities drive my work. My role has really pushed me to not only bring our schools' voices to the table, but to consider them as partners as we construct, adapt, and implement activities. I have a master’s degree in public health with a certificate in health promotion and practice, and a bachelor’s degree in international affairs and public health. I have some fun stories about my passport stamps!
I have worked with other non-profits and that motivated me to continue in this work in any way I could. My role at CHF is very crucial to the health of the organization. The finance department is responsible for ensuring the bills are paid and the smooth flow of financial information needed to meet our mission. I studied accounting, finance, and administration. Soccer is my hobby and I am an expert at catching crabs with my bare hands!
Marisa BiehlSenior Vice President, Development and Communications
The fact that many children don't currently have access to the health care they deserve is what motivates me, and now that I have children of my own I am more dedicated than ever. In my position at CHF I raise funds and awareness for our programs, which I find very rewarding. I studied psychology in school. I have a rabbit sanctuary in my living room!
Megan BourgAnnual Giving Manager
I believe that every individual has a right to high-quality, personalized physical, emotional, and mental care. In my role, I connect with individuals who share CHF’s vision and assist them in financially supporting our programmatic work addressing health disparities that impact children and families across the country. I studied business management as well as nonprofit leadership in college, and now I am working to expand my language skills, specifically Spanish and ASL.
Kevin ChungSystems and Network Administrator
CHF does not run away from the hard issues, it tackles them head-on and looks for ways to help the kids that need it. I’m constantly inspired and motivated by the people behind our success. In my current role in our Information Systems and Technology department, I contribute to the success of the organization, supporting its entire staff. I studied computer programming in school and I love basketball!
María de los Ángeles CorralAssociate Vice President of Marketing and Communications
I am motivated by tackling difficult social issues to build the common good and improve people’s lives. I love creating awareness about the on-the-ground efforts that inspire people to support and move the needle in a positive direction. In school, I studied international relations and Spanish literature. As a young adult, I wanted to be a salsa band backup dancer. Today, I cultivate both of my daughter’s inner joy to dance their hearts out, with me.
Heather CunninghamDevelopment and Communications Coordinator
I believe that every child should have opportunities for healthcare and education. I was privileged to have access to both and that has motivated me to give back‒which I do by supporting our development and communications teams. I have a bachelor of fine art degree in theatre performance. In addition to being a performer, I am the producing artistic director of an award-winning off-off-Broadway theater company, www.retroproductions.org.
John DecarvalhoDirector of Advocacy and Public Policy
As a Latinx immigrant and the son of a single mother, it was important to me to work at an organization that fights to ensure the health and wellbeing of families of all backgrounds. Directing CHF's policy and advocacy work has given me the opportunity to help shape our government's policy especially ensuring families like mine are being considered at every level of government. In school, I studied history and political science. I was born and raised in Brazil and am fluent in both Portuguese and English.
May ErouartTraining and Partnerships Manager, Healthy and Ready to Learn (HRL)
It is my desire to make schools supportive, healthy, and healing environments for both families and staff regardless of zip code. Managing HRL's training allows me to work with educators, community-based organizations, and city departments. It gives me both the ability to disseminate best practices broadly, and also learn what works and what still needs to change. My undergraduate work was in community and environmental sociology, and my master’s degree is in public health. I love to bake!
Lucas GerberResearch and Evaluation Director
What motivates me is promoting healthy, strong, and equitable communities across the United States. In my role, I work with our national network partners to leverage evaluation and learning in order to drive their work with their communities. I studied sociology and creative writing in school. In my free time, I write poetry and play guitar.
Lisbeth GuzmánProgram Coordinator Healthy and Ready to Learn
Recognizing the inequity of access to resources of systematically marginalized communities is my biggest motivation. At CHF I am able to build strong relationships in order to incorporate and lift the voices of our communities in our work. In school, I studied psychology and business and I am currently pursuing my master’s in clinical mental health counseling. Not many of my colleagues know that I'm a liturgical dancer!
Shay GinesAdministrative Director
It's important to me that my work be meaningful and that it contributes to making our world a little better. I can not think of a more meaningful mission than supporting children and families. I think I have one of the most rewarding positions at CHF, I get to help our staff! I studied theatre and marketing. I also have a crafty side‒I can make flower bouquets from paper!
Brandi HortonChief of Staff
I feel a real connection to the mission of CHF. The people we serve resemble me as a child, my family, and friends. I have the opportunity to bring forth change through my work here and I am committed to doing so. As Chief of staff, I will be instrumental in planning and directing operational initiatives that support Children’s Health Fund’s mission. In school, I studied psychology, but few of my coworkers know that I’m also an actor!
Nicole JordaniaAssociate Vice President Institutional Partnerships and Grants Management
I am a passionate advocate for children and young people living in under-resourced communities. In my capacity at CHF, I raise funds to support the work of our National Network and Healthy and Ready to Learn programs. I studied the history and culture of non-Slavic peoples of the former Soviet Union and I'm a Tai Chi and Chi Qong enthusiast.
Nadia KhasawnehAssociate Director of Communications and Marketing
So many children and families are denied their basic human rights to health, wellbeing, and the opportunity to thrive and to dream, because of conditions stemming from poverty, racism, or other forms of marginalization. I strive to channel the power of storytelling and messaging to advocate for systemic change by centering the voices, experiences, and needs of the communities we serve. I have a bachelor’s degree in international affairs, with a focus on the Middle East. I love art, dance, and poetry.
Elizabeth MahonExecutive Assistant to the Chief Executive Officer
It is imperative that we help care for the next generation. That's why I believe that every child should have opportunities for adequate healthcare and education regardless of their financial situation. In my role, I get to help our CEO achieve the goals of the organization. I studied acting and theater and have been studying ballroom dancing since 2005!
Maisel MazierCorporate Relations Director
Every child deserves to grow up loved and healthy. Working towards decreasing impediments that get in the way of a child's development helps not just the child, but helps our nation and the whole world. In my position I get to work with corporate citizens who firmly believe in the mission of CHF. My work allows for companies to do their part. I studied international relations. My family and the New York Mets are my passions. Let's Go Mets!
Lauren MastroberadinoPolicy Manager
I am proud to be part of CHF, advocating for critical policy changes to ensure the health and well-being of our communities. I contribute to the preparation and implementation of our policy and advocacy agendas at the city, state, and federal levels. I have a master's degree in public administration, focused on policy analysis and nonprofit management. I love baking, and I'm a history nerd.
Zakaria NagiFinance Associate
My motivation comes from knowing that someone’s day is better and that I had a hand in it. My role allows me to help keep CHF financially healthy and I handle the daily tasks that come with that charge. I studied accounting and finance in school. I am obsessed with the stock market and would like to be a successful investor one day.
Madison NewtonProgram Officer
Working with children directly and in a policy capacity, I've witnessed firsthand the inequities in children's health services, and I'm motivated by CHF's innovative approach to fill those gaps. My role allows me to form strong and productive relationships with our partners to ensure we address the specific needs of their communities. My undergrad was in political science and international relations, and I have an advanced degree in public policy. I'm originally from California, though I studied in Canada where I focused on Indigenous communities.
Bryan OlmsteadSenior Research Programmer
I believe in using your skills to make a difference. Learning, connecting the dots between data, information technology, and the children we support is my way of doing this. I manage CHF’s technologies and data. Every decision we make is informed by data and information. I have degrees in biology, computer science, and German as well as a master's in medical informatics. My friends and I collect, play, and restore video game consoles and arcades from the ‘70s and ‘80s. Do you remember Intellivision?
Mehul PatelDesktop Support Specialist
I am motivated by solving complex technical challenges. I love accomplishing big things as a part of a team. In school, I studied computer information systems and I continue to keep up with my professional development through professional journals, seminars, and classes. For fun, I love to spend quality time with my family and friends. Whether we are making a meal together, watching a movie, enjoying a day of shopping, or trying new restaurants (especially family-owned), I am happy.
Jennifer PruittAssistant Vice President of Information Systems and Technology
Being a participant in positive change is very important to me. Children's Health Fund has given me a chance to contribute my skills to a mission I believe in. In my position, I am able to guide CHF's technology decisions to better support our organization and our teams in the field. In school, I studied cultural and medical anthropology. This interest has led me to collect old, out-dated science textbooks, mostly from the '40s and '50s.
Kelly RigneyVice President National Programs
Early on I admired the quality of care provided by CHF’s clinical partners, the value they placed on incorporating patients’ voices, and how they advocated for changes in the policies and structures that impacted communities. Now I work closely with those partners, creating programs that contribute to the health and well-being of patients and the community as a whole. I have a bachelor’s in microbiology and a master’s degree in public health. Tell me your middle name once and I will remember it forever!
Daniel ScharnitzOffice Assistant
CHF supports direct pediatric services and reaches beyond the doctor’s office to positively impact child health in other ways that promote wellbeing. It provides a voice for people who may not feel as if they have one. This inspires me. As administrative support, I help those who do the hard work to make this happen. I remove the smaller obstacles that may distract from the bigger goals and organizational objectives. I studied journalism in college and am currently pursuing a graphic art/design degree.
Chloe SmithSenior Program Officer
As a kid I felt angry about the “unfairness” I saw around me. Today, I am motivated to work against the deep inequities in our society. Discovering public health, and subsequently CHF, provided me the chance to do that. I recognize the power of healthcare providers and educators, when working in partnership with those they serve, to transform systems, communities, and lives. My undergrad work is in peace and conflict studies, and art, while my graduate work is in public health. I have a fluffy dog named Appleton.
Bethany TullochInstitutional Giving, Senior Manager
I am very happy to be part of an organization whose goal is to have a lasting impact on underserved communities. I work to raise funds so that CHF can do its essential work: supporting our clinical partners and our Healthy and Ready to Learn school communities. I studied economics and marketing in school. A little known fact is that I am a crossword puzzle expert!
Angie VegaSite Manager
What motivates me to support the mission of the Children's Health Fund is to be involved in a purpose, pursuit, or cause that has a lasting impact. In my role, I have the privilege to bring this work directly to the ground, uplifting families, and community voices. I studied communications in school. In my free time, I head a committee where we cook food to help raise funds for our church.
Anthony VilaSenior Database and Research Manager
The ability to contribute to the empowering of communities is a huge motivation. I believe it’s important to share the generosity of those who have been fortunate to the less fortunate. In school, I studied government and economics. I like driving across the country.
Dennis WaltoChief Executive Officer
I am very motivated to ensure children and families have access to the care they need to survive and thrive. In my position, I am able to connect the dots and align resources to ensure maximum impact. I studied history and political science in college. I am proud to say I successfully climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro in 1994!
Deidre WestDirector of Special Events and Celebrity Relations
Knowing that children in need are receiving the health services that they need really motivates me. My role allows me to collaborate with other departments to provide engagement and experiences to attract supporters and donors that fuel the on-the-ground work of our providers and partners. I did my undergraduate work in advertising and my graduate studies were in the music business and entertainment professions. I have been practicing Krav Maga for more than a year!
National Network Fellows
I am driven to serve at CHF because when children are faced with systemic barriers and social determinants of health research can help. By disseminating cross-cultural innovations we can progress toward providing equitable, evidence-based services to all. In undergrad I was a double major in psychology and intercultural communications. I am currently in an educational psychology graduate program specializing in research methods, measurement, and evaluation. I still make many types of friendship bracelets and lead silly campfire songs because of how often I still go to summer camp!
Growing up as the daughter of immigrants, I became more aware of how social factors contributed to negative health outcomes in the future, and knew that addressing these issues during youth will help future generations live healthier, more fulfilled lives. I am privileged to be part of the team that supports clinicians who serve communities across the country, working to make a positive impact in the areas of nutrition, mental health and physical health. In college, I majored in neuroscience and minored in religion, and in my own time I make earrings out of pressed flowers!