Meet Our Leaders

See what excites us about coming to work every day.

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Kristin Harrington

Executive Director

I have the genuine privilege of working alongside some of my favorite people in life. In a job, you quickly realize that everything else is icing on the proverbial cake when you’re surrounded by the best-of-the-best. Passion, motivation, talent, work ethic – this team has it all and I am indebted to every one of them. That each team member has chosen to devote their energies and talents to changing young peoples’ lives – it doesn’t get much better.

“The team, the team, the team.” – Bo Shembechler

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Mollie Waller

Deputy Director

As a passionate communicator, it’s a privilege to tell our youths’ stories. I admire their hard work, dedication and commitment to achieve their goals. Their efforts are matched by the talented staff who are equally dedicated to helping them realize their full potential. Being surrounded by people who have found their true purpose and are helping others to find theirs is motivating and the ultimate reward from sharing these stories is when it motivates more youth to join our program.

To realize one’s destiny is a person’s only obligation. Paulo Coelho, The Alchemist

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Sonya Blanzy

DIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS, Jobs for michigan’s graduates

I could not be more excited to be a part of such a dynamic team of passionate, dedicated individuals working on solving barriers to success for youth in Michigan. The majority of our lives are spent working, and doing something that brings satisfaction and a sense of fulfillment is extremely important to me, and I have found that with Youth Solutions. Educating and preparing our future workforce will bring positive change to the communities we serve!

“We cannot always build the future for our youth, but we can build our youth for the future.” – Franklin D. Roosevelt

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Tom Egan

DIRECTOR OF STRATEGIC PARTNERSHIPS

What excites me about coming to work every day is the prospect of leaving the world a better place than I found it. At Youth Solutions, I take great pride in being part of a team providing Michigan’s most vulnerable youth greater access to a richer and fuller experience of life. My process is around connecting people and partners with the things that matter most so that we may achieve the kind of change we want to see in the world. This seems like the perfect time to have a big impact.

“Be the change you wish to see in the world! ” – Paraphrase of Mahatma Gandhi Statement

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Elizabeth Bernhard

Partnership ENGAGEMENT MANAGER

I bring to this position a passion for transformational education and a commitment to making education accessible for all. Investment in Michigan’s economically disadvantaged youth is not just good for the individual and the communities in which they live, but it is a key impetus for realizing positive economic change. By building innovative and purposeful pathways between young people and employers, we can begin to address many of the challenges Michigan, and indeed the nation, faces today.

“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” – Nelson Mandela

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Hope Roberts

ADVANCEMENT AND MARKETING MANAGER

I’m excited to work for an organization leading the charge to make a positive change in the lives of at-risk youth. It’s a privilege to be a part of this team of forward-thinking professionals all working together on a shared mission. I’m motivated, both professionally and personally, to bring my experience and enthusiasm to the Youth Solutions team.

“I dwell in possibility.” – Emily Dickinson

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Daniel Mathenia

Manager of Program Success, west

Youth Solutions’ mission statement is a goal that everyone in the community should strive to help accomplish.  It is an honor and privilege to be a part of a team that truly believes in our cause.  My position allows me to lead and support our Specialists, who directly impact and transform our youths’ lives!  Everyone deserves a bright future and a strong community; our team is passionate about making that a reality.

“Be miserable. Or motivate yourself. Whatever has to be done, it’s always your choice.” – Wayne Dyer

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Leah Gordon

Manager of Program Success, East

Working for Youth Solutions has allowed me to work in my passion therefore I no longer go to work. I am very passionate about my position because I am a change agent on both the micro and macro levels within education, employment training, and the cultivation of society.  My passion is being fulfilled every day by using my experience in education and workforce development as a catalyst in the fight of ending generational underemployment and undereducation.

“The foundation of every state is the education of its youth.” – Diogenes

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Kim Bordeau

Manager of Program Success, NORTH

Nothing is more important than our youth and the teachers who guide them towards a more hopeful future. It is an honor to walk alongside our Specialists and youth as we do the important work of building stronger, more resilient communities. I am grateful to be with an organization that enables me to truly make a difference. Not only do I get to fulfill my purpose through my work, but more importantly, I get to support Specialists as they help a generation of youth find theirs.

“I alone can’t change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples.” – Mother Theresa

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Kelsey Leemaster

PROJECT MANAGER

It’s not very often that you can say your work directly correlates with your passions. Our mission and vision make me excited to go to work every day knowing that we are investing our time and resources in supporting and empowering Michigan’s youth and future workforce. I am proud to work with such a dedicated and inspiring team that is working to push these big dreams into reality.

“There is immense power when a group of people with similar interests gets together to work toward the same goals.” – Idowu Koyenikan

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Josh Cosner

Vice President of Finance, Kinexus

Solving the challenges of our communities means investing in the future and thinking long-term. As Michigan strives to fill the workforce gaps left by our retiring workforce, it becomes all-the-more-clear that investing in young people is the solution for long-term prosperity. I’m proud to work with an organization that’s in it for the long haul and committed to our future.

“Leaders think and talk about the solutions. Followers think and talk about the problems.” – Brian Tracy

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