Consejo Asesor de Jóvenes Profesionales

Children First’s Young Professionals Advisory Council is a diverse group of enlightened and engaged young leaders from across the Philadelphia region who have come together to support our mission and work. The purpose of this Advisory Council is to build the strength of the pipeline of leadership, networkers, advocates and donors for Children First’s work well into the next 40 years!

With guidance from veteran Children First Board Members, Javier Suarez and Lindsay Albright, Council members will:

  • LEARN. Engage with the Children First Board and staff in education sessions and through reading Children First’s materials and e-blasts to become more informed about issues impacting children in our region and strengthen your advocacy skills to actively participate in Children First’s advocacy efforts at the local, regional and state level.
  • ADVOCATE. Participate, when possible, with Children First’s leadership at specific events to advocate for policy change for children and youth.
  • ENGAGE. Leverage your social media networks (Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, etc.) by commenting, sharing, re-tweeting Children First activities to help us reach more
  • RAISE MONEY. Serve in a fundraising capacity for Children First by tapping into personal and professional networks for sponsorships and tickets sales for Children First events, grant opportunities and individual fundraising efforts.
  • EXPAND. As an Advisory Council create and implement at least 2 friendraising and low dollar events each year to support and broaden awareness of Children First and its work across the region with 20-40 year olds.

Para obtener más información sobre el Consejo Asesor de Jóvenes Profesionales, comuníquese con Steven Fynes at stevenf at childrenfirstpa dot org o llame al 215-563-5848 x11.

2024 Council Members

Saumya Ayyagari

Saumya is the Director of Special Outreach Services, a preventative oral health care program for individuals with intellectual disabilities and behavioral health challenges in PA. Her background is in public health nursing and maternal and child health nursing. She started volunteering with Children First (then PCCY) as a health policy intern in 2017. Since then she continued to volunteer for the organization in various capacities. Today she is part of the Lead Free Promise Project that is working to prevent lead poisoning in PA from the policy level.

Jacqueline Baker

Jacqueline is a Pediatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner working at a Federal Qualified Health Center in SW Philadelphia.  Prior to working in health care, she worked as a social justice organizer for environmental, human rights, and health policy causes.  Jacqueline has been a volunteer with Children First since 2017.

Elizabeth Bates

Elizabeth is a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner in NE Philadelphia and pursuing a degree in public health. She is committed to being a big voice for little kids and partnering with community organizations to improve the health, development and well-being of children across Philadelphia. She is excited to be a part of Children First!


Tom Brown

Tom is a litigation associate at the law firm of Hangley Aronchick Segal Pudlin & Schiller. A graduate of Princeton’s School of Public and International Affairs and Montgomery County public schools, he has been a Children First volunteer since 2018.


Katie Chisholm

Katie Chisholm is an HR Manager with the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG), where she partners with stakeholders to build culture and engagement enterprise wide. Katie’s professional career has focused on mission driven work.  She is committed to finding opportunities to give back, get involved and make a difference within the Philadelphia community.  Joining the Children First Young Professionals Advisory Council is an incredible way to have an impact!

Zoraida Cordero

Zoraida is the Chief of Staff for Companion for Animals Reform and Equity (CARE) Program Director for Safe-Hub Philly, where she ensures that the organization and team are all working together to improve the lives of BIPOC Folk in Rural and Urban communities using a holistic and REDI lense through strategic planning, leadership, and management.  Zoraida is a dedicated Latina Servant Leader with experience in community organizing, child welfare, youth program development, organizational leadership, advocacy, and human service management. Additionally, she is an Army Veteran who has discovered a strategy for applying learned military skills, Macro Social Work best practices, and lived experience to support individuals, communities, and organizations with strategizing and organizational development through her business Impactful Solutions.

Tamir D. Harper

Tamir is the Director of Community Engagement for City Councilmember Rue Landau, in his role he focuses on strategic stakeholder engagement and assists with intergovernmental affairs. Prior to working for City Council, Tamir was a School District of Philadelphia teacher and climate manager.

Cory Johnson

Cory Johnson is a Philadelphia resident and current Program Coordinator for Drexel University’s Action for Early Learning, an early childhood education improvement initiative in West Philadelphia. Strongly committed to equitable quality education, she completed a PA Office of Child Development and Early Learning Policy Fellowship in 2018 and is a former Children First intern, supporting the Pre-K for PA Campaign.

Chau Wing Lam

Chau Wing ha trabajado en y alrededor de los servicios humanos y la educación K-12 durante más de 10 años. Habiendo emigrado a los Estados Unidos cuando era joven, y ahora es madre de un niño pequeño, Chau Wing cree profundamente en nuestra capacidad colectiva para mejorar las comunidades asegurando la salud, educación y seguridad de los jóvenes y sus familias.


Jessica Lax





JLy (John Mauricio Lyons)

JLy (they/them) explores the intersection of philanthropy and whole-person health, currently managing a portfolio of grants to community health centers and clinics across Southeastern Pennsylvania. Their prior work in both nonprofit and for-profit financial services, along with their ongoing engagement in Philadelphia’s arts community, furthers their understanding of equitable communities.

Kyle McMillen

Kyle is a Senior Project Manager at ParkerPhilips, a women-owned consulting firm tailoring their expertise to meet each client’s unique needs.  Prior to joining ParkerPhilips, Kyle was the for Children First leading the Child Care Voter campaign to build a community of Early Childhood Education professionals and the families they serve to vote for quality child care for all of Pennsylvania families and kids.

Trey Miller





Rosa Parks-Verde

Rosa currently works at Temple University as the Assistant Director of Equal Opportunity Compliance. Prior to this, Rosa was a child welfare attorney at the City of Philadelphia Law Department and she also worked at the School District of Philadelphia in the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities. She is excited to serve and advocate for young people in and around Philadelphia.

Ashley Rosario

Ashley brings a wealth of experience across the human relations spectrum. With a versatile background that encompasses roles as an advocate, non-profit founder, educator, and philanthropist, Ashley has demonstrated an unwavering commitment to making a positive impact on individuals and communities. Ashley’s expertise extends to providing direct services, professional development, managing, and shaping organizational culture. Her ability to translate knowledge in areas such as restorative practices, trauma-informed care, and youth development into practical, strategic applications has proven invaluable in schools, organizations, and relationship development.

 Joy Soto

Joy Soto, oriunda de Filadelfia, trabaja actualmente como Becaria de Voces Comunitarias y Participación para WHYY, cultivando asociaciones y ejecutando varios eventos de diálogo cívico. También se desempeña como miembro de la junta asesora de Greenlight Fund Filadelfia, tesorera de LULAC Filadelfia y miembro de la junta de la Asociación Nacional de Periodistas Hispanos de Filadelfia.