Lisa Rosenberg, Executive Director
Prior to becoming an Executive Director, Lisa was a founding Board Member of The Kindness Connection. Lisa worked as a school social worker for several years and as an active volunteer in the community. She holds a BA from the University of Michigan and a MSW from Loyola University in Chicago.
Shannon Valko, Program Outreach Manager
In addition to her work with The Kindness Connection, Shannon is the owner and creator of a Play Cafe called Little Beans Cafe in Lincoln Park. Shannon leads all marketing, branding, programming and partnership outreach for Little Beans. Prior to opening Little Beans in 2010, Shannon worked as an Account Director in the experiential marketing and sales field with a focus on strategy, client service, program execution and sales. With a focus on leading strategy and account relationships, Shannon has worked with big brands including Wrigley, Gatorade, Orbitz and more. Shannon has a BA from Indiana University and an MBA from Loyola University Chicago.
Audrey Pam, Project Design and Operations Coordinator
Audrey has practiced art education and art therapy for over 20 years. She has worked in several settings with many different populations including children with special needs and adults with mental health illnesses. For the last several years, Audrey has taught art privately to school age children, promoting creativity, problem solving and healthy self-esteems using a variety of art materials and projects. She has a BS in Education from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a MA in Art Therapy from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
Board of Directors
Mary Roth, President, Co-Founder
Mary teaches math at Beacon Academy in Evanston and serves as a resource teacher in the math department of a therapeutic day school. She facilitates the secondary math/science practicum seminar serving undergraduate and graduate Northwestern University students. Mary earned a BA in economics and an MS in secondary math education from Northwestern University.
Cheryl Bickford, Director at Large
Cheryl has been active in the Northfield community for over 20 years in various roles for schools, private boards, athletic teams and has a passion for volunteering. Prior to becoming a full-time volunteer, Cheryl had a successful career in sales and marketing with United HealthCare of Illinois. Cheryl has a degree in Communications from the University of Illinois at Chicago.
Jane Donaldson, Secretary
Jane has been active in the community since moving here in 1994. Her past board positions include the Kohl Children’s Museum Women’s Board and the District 39 Educational Foundation. She is currently serving on the Wilmette Historical Museum Board and volunteers at the Chicago Botanic Garden as well as with Urban Edibles in Bucktown. She holds a BA in English literature from the Univ. Massachusetts and an MLS from Simmons College.