We are so fortunate to have these dynamic women join our board of directors. Their expertise and energy will be great additions to our leadership team, and they are wonderful role models for our girls,” says Deb Ansourlian, executive director of Girls Inc. of Boston and Lynn.
Nahant resident Melanie Drayton is Vice President of Regulatory Affairs at Vaxart, Inc. An accomplished executive with a background in biopharma, medical devices, CRO, and government, she has a proven track record of executing goals and objectives during organizational change, enterprise growth, and transformation.
Drayton says discovering Girls, Inc. was kismet.
“I was looking for opportunities to volunteer and get involved in a board and governance during Covid when I learned about Girls Inc. through the Nahant Women’s Club,” says Drayton. Growing up in Brooklyn, she did not have access to an organization that empowered girls to be strong, smart, and bold. “I love the model,” she says, and welcomes the opportunity “to help girls navigate through complex cultural infrastructures.”
Lynn resident and business owner Sarah Marshall is the CEO of Lucille Wine Shop & Tasting Room in Lynn. She learned about Girls Inc. by hosting a fundraising event and attending the Girls Inc. Annual Celebration Luncheon. “Girls Inc. is the exact type of organization I want to invest my time in. It is diverse and speaks to me geographically, as I live and work in Lynn,” says Marshall.
Marshall is excited to serve as an ambassador for the local arm of the nationally recognized non-profit dedicated to empowering girls to be strong, smart, and bold. She is a mentor and is in business with her mother, Brenda, whom she considers “the ultimate mentor.”
Salem resident Marcel Quiroga is the CEO of TQM Wealth Partners, headquartered in Marblehead. She is a certified Retirement Management Advisor (RMA) with over 25 years of experience in the financial services industry. Quiroga is also the founder of The Legacy Dialogues, an organization that provides programs and tools to help individuals and businesses unlock their potential to turn goodwill into practice.
Quiroga became oriented to Girls Inc. several years ago when she toured the building at 50 High Street before its renovation. “I was enamored with the powerful and meaningful organization, especially after attending the annual luncheon celebration,” says Quiroga. She led a program with The Legacy Dialogues and Girls Inc.’s Woke Women group, which focuses on the intersection of feminism and race. “It’s important for girls to be heard. It is so wonderful that the girls have a space to be themselves, be secure, and thrive,” says Quiroga.
Marblehead resident and health coach and corporate well-being advisor Kiki Walker first learned about Girls Inc. through a holiday book drive she contributed to with her twin daughters. She became involved with Girls Inc. using her background as a fitness trainer and coach to help girls reach their potential.
“I see how using support, care, and love can lift roadblocks,” says Walker. “I recognize the power of having someone believe in you.”
Meet Our Teen Board Members
“We are thrilled to have Christania and Kalisha on the Board of Directors. Their voices add insight and ideas to the leadership team,” says Executive Director Deb Ansourlian.
Christania Adeoye is a senior at Lynn Classical High School. She joined Girls Inc. in the seventh grade and got involved with the Eureka! Program. She also participates in Beach Sisters, Teen Leadership Academy, and Woke Women.
She is excited to be working with the Board of Directors and looks forward to being a voice for peer leaders’ concerns. She has applied to several colleges and hopes to major in environmental science and business administration.
Kalisha Williams is a senior at Peabody Veterans Memorial High School, where she is a member of the National Honor Society. Like Christania, Eureka! was a springboard into other activities, including College Mentoring and Career Path.
She hopes to attend college and focus her studies on operations management and psychology.