Past Grant Recipients

Congratulate our Previous Opportunity Grant Recipients!

Find out about previous recipients of YNPN Atlanta's individual Opportunity Grants and consider applying for the next round! The next deadline is April 30, 2016.

Remember: only YNPN Atlanta Members can apply and receive funds - so join today for just $35!

2016 Grant Recipients

2016 3rd Round Grant Recipients 

The third round of Opportunity Grant funds in 2016 went to YNPN Atlanta Members: Chelsea Folds, Elaine Hudson, and Jacquelyn Ulrich



Chelsea FoldsExecutive Director for Good Shepherd Clinic

Chelsea Folds has a long history with Good Shepherd Clinic in Morrow, GA, an organization providing no-cost primary health care to low-income, uninsured residents of Clayton County. In 2000, when Chelsea was a mere middle school student, she attended the ground breaking for this local non-profit agency. Years later she secured a summer job at Good Shepherd and was hooked! In 2006 she officially joined the staff while finishing her undergraduate degree at Mercer University.

 In 2011 she decided to pursue her graduate degree in order to advance her career and be a further asset to the Clinic. She graduated in 2013 with a Masters of Science in Organizational Leadership, with a concentration in Nonprofit Management. In 2013 she was also chosen as a “30 Under 30” award recipient from YNPN Atlanta and the Georgia Center for Nonprofits.

In her ten years at the clinic, she has held many titles and performed numerous jobs. From finances, facilities & marketing, to event coordination, grant writing, & development, she has truly done it all. In 2015 she was asked to be the organization’s first-ever Executive Director and is excited to begin the newest chapter of her career.


Elaine_Hudson_headshot.jpgElaine HudsonAssociate Director of Nonprofit Services for Hands on Atlanta

Elaine Hudson joined Hands On Atlanta in January of 2015. She is responsible for implementing the affiliate's new comprehensive program, Hands On Partner Services. Her responsibilities include recruiting, screening and engaging nonprofit agencies, and developing and implementing services created to fulfill partners' volunteer needs. She also develops and maintains relationships with Atlanta community-based organizations for the purpose of mobilizing volunteers. Elaine also manages the Civic Leadership Program, a leadership development series for experienced volunteers.

Prior to joining Hands On Atlanta, Elaine served as Manager of Marketing and Programs at Leadership Atlanta where she was responsible for communications, branding, and media relations for the organization and its events. In addition, she also planned and executed programs for both Leadership Atlanta and LEAD Atlanta classes.

As an active member of the community, Elaine serves on the board of directors for VOX Teen Communications, a nonprofit dedicated to helping youth express themselves in healthy ways. She also serves as an officer on the board of Adair Park Today, her neighborhood association. She regularly volunteers at Aluma Farm located on the Westside trail of the Atlanta BeltLine.


Jacquelyn_Ulrich_headshot.jpgJacquelyn Ulrich, Program Manager for the International Rescue Committee Atlanta

Jacquelyn Ulrich is a Program Manager with the International Rescue Committee of Atlanta, and has over six years of experience of working with refugee resettlement organizations in Atlanta in various capacities including employment assistance, education, and program management. She is a licensed master social worker whose professional interests center on program development for educational and therapeutic interventions for newly arrived refugees. She holds a BA in Anthropology and Arabic from the University of Florida and a Masters in Social Work from Georgia State University. She enjoys hiking with her husband and three dogs, gardening, and exploring the best food Atlanta has to offer.



2016 2nd Round Grant Recipients 

The second round of Opportunity Grant funds in 2016 went to YNPN Atlanta Member: Sergio Rubio



Sergio A. RubioProgram Manager for Teatro Aurora, Aurora Theatre

Sergio is a full-time staff member of the Aurora Theatre, an activist, and advocate of the arts, education, and the Latino/Hispanic community. Combining his career goals with his passions, he holds leadership positions that concentrate his efforts in integrating the community and creating the next generation of theatergoers, leaders, and entrepreneurs. As Teatro Aurora Project Manager he oversees the planning, development, and execution of Teatro Aurora programming, showcasing Latin-American arts, cultures, and traditions. Using his own life experiences, he has become a powerful motivational speaker in the Gwinnett County school system and with organizations like H.o.P.e and Glance Gwinnett.



2016 1st Round Grant Recipients 

The first round of Opportunity Grant funds in 2016 went to YNPN Atlanta Members: Audrey Gámez and Stephanie Sorquira

Audrey_Gamez.jpgAudrey Gámez
Education Manager, C4 Atlanta

Audrey Gámez joined the C4 Atlanta staff as Education Manager in October 2015. She was formerly a facilitator for the Ignite class and had previously served as Education Coordinator for MASS Collective. Her interest in arts administration and social change was sparked while working as a volunteer, and later as Programming Intern, for WonderRoot. Audrey moved to Atlanta in 2010 to pursue her singing and teaching career, but ultimately stayed because of the rich, diverse and vibrant arts community. She has worked as an arts educator and opera performer for the last 11 years, and continues to maintain a private voice, violin and viola studio. She lives in the cutest house ever in Grant Park, and enjoys practicing yoga and destroying her kitchen cooking yummy vegan food.


Stephanie_Sorquira.jpgStephanie SorquiraAssociate Program Coordinator, Center for Civil and Human Rights

Stephanie Sorquira is a graduate of Rollins College where she majored in International Affairs, with ample coursework completed in Political Science. Her research focus was on armed-conflicts in Latin America and their subsequent human rights violations, historically and presently. Sorquira spent the spring semester of 2013 attending University of Oxford, Keble College, studying international law and political philosophy. At Rollins College she served as both the Social Activism Coordinator and the Secretary of the Latin American Student Association. Throughout college, Sorquira fulfilled her interest in activism and human rights by volunteering and serving as a committee member with the Youth & Young Adult Network of the National Farm Worker Ministry (YAYA), an organization that focuses on farmworker’s rights.


2015 Grant Recipients

2015 4th Round Grant Recipients 

The fourth round of Opportunity Grant funds in 2015 went to YNPN Atlanta Members: Michelle Arrington, Ethan Messere, and Jordyne Krumroy!

Michelle_Arrington.jpgMichelle Arrington
Staff Attorney, State Court of Fulton County

Michelle Arrington is a Staff Attorney in the State Court of Fulton County. A native of Atlanta, she earned her Juris Doctor at DePaul University and her Bachelor of Arts from Howard University.

While an Attorney by profession, Michelle is actively involved in the non-profit community where she currently serves as a board member for Sporty Girls, Inc., whose mission is dedicated to introducing minority girls to non-traditional sports and providing leadership skills. Additionally, she is a member for the YWCA’s Legislative & Advocacy committee where she helps to develop policy on issues of domestic violence and human trafficking. She is also involved in the legal community, serving as the Chair for the Committee to Promote Inclusion in the Profession for the State Bar, where she is responsible for implementing programming for minorities in the legal profession. She is also a member of the Georgia Association of Black Women Attorneys.


Ethan_Messere.jpgEthan MessereAssistant Director of Presenting and Touring, South Arts

Ethan Messere is the Assistant Director of Presenting and Touring at South Arts, a non-profit organization dedicated to building a better South through the arts. In this role, he is responsible for registration and showcasing programs for the Performing Arts Exchange, a performing arts conference and trade show that attracts over 600 participants annually. He also works on South Arts’ grants, providing assistance for participants in the Dance Touring Initiative, and Regional Touring programs.

Ethan holds a Masters of Music in Orchestral Performance from Georgia State University and a Bachelors in Music from Syracuse University. Prior to his work in arts administration, he worked as a freelance trumpet player in Atlanta and in his home region of Upstate New York. Outside of working hours, Ethan can often be found climbing rocks or listening to The Clash a little too loudly.


Jordyne_Kumroy.jpgJordyne KrumroyCommunity Engagement & Marketing Manager, Nicholas House, Inc.

Jordyne Krumroy is the Community Engagement & Marketing Manager for Nicholas House, a nonprofit that helps homeless families achieve self-sufficiency. In her role, she is responsible for planning and executing communications and PR initiatives to increase agency visibility and community resource allocation. Jordyne combines service learning and marketing campaigns to decrease stigma around vulner

able populations and to promote community empowerment. She received her Master of Social Work from Georgia State University and her Bachelor of Spanish and Sociology from Appalachian State University.

In her free time, she advocates for detained immigrants and their families through El Refugio, a hospitality house located outside the gates of Stewart Detention Center. She is also an avid cyclist and can be found biking in pursuit of good food and social justice lectures.


2015 3rd Round Grant Recipients 

The third round of Opportunity Grant funds in 2015 went to six amazing YNPN Atlanta Members: Kaden Borseth, Amy Hogan, Christina Graff, Nicole Michalec, and Jasmine Okafor!

Kaden_Borseth_square.jpgKaden BorsethEducation Programs Manager – Earth Science Programs, Fernbank Museum of Natural History

Kaden Borseth is the Education Programs Manager – Earth Science Programs for Fernbank Museum of Natural History. In his role, he creates and teaches science programming for schools and museum guests, works on exhibit content, and is in the process of creating a new outdoor museum space. Kaden also manages a teen volunteer program of more than 90 teenagers who commit to at least one year of volunteer time. He is passionate about teaching science in fun, innovative, and interactive ways.

Before moving to Atlanta, he attended University of Northern Iowa, earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in Earth Science. After graduating, he served as an informal science educator, teaching the public on a variety of science-related topics for the National Park Service and the Science Center of Iowa.

Christina-Graff.jpgChristina GraffDirector of Programs, kidz2leaders, inc.

Christina Graff is the Director of Programs for kidz2leaders, inc., a nonprofit serving children in Georgia who have an incarcerated parent. In her role, she manages an annual summer camp, mentoring program, food pantry, teen retreat programming, and various other youth field trips and events. She has devoted her career to serving at-risk children and families, both locally and internationally. Christina formerly worked for nonprofit camp organizations serving children with serious medical conditions in California and Ireland, as well as in volunteer management for a nonprofit serving victims of domestic violence in Athens, Ga. She earned both a bachelor’s degree in public relations and a master’s degree in public administration from the University of Georgia. In October of 2014, she was named a “30 Under 30” award recipient from YNPN Atlanta and the Georgia Center for Nonprofits.

amy-hogan_medium.jpgAmy Hogan, Board and Resource Development Coordinator, Communities in Schools of Georgia

Amy Hogan is the Board and Resource Development Coordinator at Communities In Schools of Georgia, the leader of a statewide network of 32 affiliates dedicated to keeping students in school and increasing graduation rates. In this role, she works closely with the President and the Board of Directors on board governance and development, as well as advancing the organization’s resource development program. Prior to joining Communities In Schools of Georgia, she held various resource development roles in nonprofits in her hometown of New Orleans and later Seattle. Before entering the nonprofit world, Amy served as a legislative staffer for the New Orleans City Council in post-Katrina rebuilding efforts. She is a graduate of the University of New Orleans. Amy and her husband moved to Atlanta in 2013 and recently welcomed a daughter.

Nicole_Michalec_square.jpgNicole Michalec
Campaign Coordinator/Long-Term Giving, Woodruff Arts Center

Nicole is the Campaign and Long-Term Giving Coordinator at the Woodruff Arts Center. She is currently working on the $100 million Transformation Campaign, which will physically transform the campus and provide greater access to the arts. Previously she was a Programs Educator at the Fernbank Museum of Natural History, where she managed their children’s exhibit, as well as coordinating a variety of drop-in programs, educational carts, and special exhibit interactive spaces. Nicole has a Bachelor’s degree in studio art with a focus on sculpture as well as degree in art education. She is certified to teach art to K-12th grade students in the state of Georgia.


Jasmine_Okafor.jpgJasmine OkaforDevelopment Specialist, Association for Clinical Pastoral Education

Jasmine Terry Okafor is a non-profit professional committed to connecting her theological insights with her passion for the independent sector. She is an Atlanta native, and is currently the development specialist for the Association for Clinical Pastoral Education (ACPE), a national multi-faith, multi-cultural organization that provides ministry training experiences to spiritual caregivers of all faiths. Jasmine holds a Master of Divinity degree from Candler School of Theology. While at Candler, she coordinated student-led fundraising strategies to endow a scholarship fund for Black students, and taught theology courses to incarcerated women. Prior to Candler, Jasmine completed a two year fellowship with the Jessie Ball duPont Fund in Jacksonville, Florida. Jasmine is a 2009 graduate of Agnes Scott College, and holds non-profit executive leadership certificates from the United Way of Atlanta and Georgetown University. Jasmine lives in Decatur with her husband Nnamdi and cat Tubby.

Karen-Webster.jpgKaren Webster, Executive Director, The Healthy Seminarians-Healthy Church Initiative (HSHC)

The Rev. Karen Webster is the co-founder and executive director of the recently founded Healthy Seminarians-Healthy Church Initiative (HSHC), the goal of which is to help seminary communities, clergy, and church members think about health (in all aspects of the word) both theologically and practically.

Karen is an ordained Presbyterian PC(USA) pastor and is certified as an Exercise Physiologist (American College of Sports Medicine), a Nutrition Specialist (American Academy of Sports Dietitians and Nutritionists), and a South Carolina Master Gardener. She is currently working on a Doctor of Ministry degree in Christian Spirituality at Columbia Theological Seminary, Decatur, GA.

Her hobbies include plant-based cooking, homebrewing, organic gardening, and spending time outdoors (hiking, biking, running, etc.). Karen and her husband, Travis, reside in Decatur, GA, with their three cats (Marie, Daisy, and Bingen).


2015 2nd Round Grant Recipients 

The second round of Opportunity Grant funds in 2015 went to YNPN Atlanta Members Becky Katz and Mary-Kate Starkel!

Becky Katz headshotBecky Katz, Visioning Project Manager, Park Pride

Becky Katz is the Visioning and Grants Project manager at the non-profit organization Park Pride, where she collaborates with communities to re-envision their green-spaces. In her role, she leads public meetings, creates conceptual master plans for parks and authors project books that are tools for fundraising. Also, she is the grant coordinator for Park Pride. She awards and manages over $600,000 a year for capital improvements in parks to deserving communities throughout the City of Atlanta and DeKalb County. She is passionate about creating inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable parks and public spaces in Atlanta.
Before moving to Atlanta, she attended Cornell University for environmental engineering. After graduating she went on to complete her Masters in environmental engineering at Kind Abdullah University of Science and Technology. Her academic research focused on human oriented sustainable design for Native American communities.

Mary-Kate Starkel, Institutional Giving Manager, KIPP Metro Atlanta Schools
Mary-Kate Starkel serves as the Institutional Giving Manager for KIPP Metro Atlanta Schools, a network of eight tuition-free charter schools serving Atlanta’s most underserved communities. A native Atlantan, Mary-Kate has previously served as the Director for Youth Leadership and Engagement for GUIDE, Inc. and on the board of trustees for the YMCA at WSU, positions which ignited her passion for positive youth development and creative, supportive learning environments in school and beyond school hours. Mary-Kate has managed annual giving programs resulting in $1.2M/year and a foundation portfolio of $3M/year, and looks forward to continuing her career in resource development for innovative educational programs. She holds a Bachelors of Social Work (BSW) and Masters of Public Administration (MPA) in Nonprofit Management from Georgia State University.

2015 1st Round Grant Recipients 

The first round of Opportunity Grant funds in 2015 went to YNPN Atlanta Members Laura Heiman and Adena Hill!


Laura Heiman

Laura Heiman, Grants & Sponsorship Coordinator for the Fernbank Museum of Natural History

Laura Heiman is currently the Grants & Sponsorship Coordinator at Fernbank Museum of Natural History. She has been involved with the museum field for the past 8 years. When not working on a grant proposal, she actively enjoys reading science fiction and swimming.



Adena HillAdena Hill, Advocacy Manager at the Atlanta Community Food Bank
Adena Hill is the Advocacy Manager for the Atlanta Community Food Bank, an organization committed to fighting hunger by engaging, educating and empowering the community. Adena has served in the role since 2013, and facilitates the organization’s advocacy activities. Prior to joining the Food Bank, Adena served as a Social Worker and legal intern in multiple settings including a law firm, shelter, foster family agency and behavioral center. Adena’s goals are to build relationships in the community, organize for social and economic justice, and help develop sound policies for the state of Georgia. Adena received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from Spelman College, a Master of Social Work degree from the University of Southern California, and a law degree from Loyola Law School in Los Angeles, CA. YNPN has assisted Adena on her path to Georgia State Bar licensure and enhanced Adena's ability to advocate for anti-poverty policies and improve equity in the state.[custom_headline type="center" level="h3" looks_like="h4" accent="true"] 2014 Grant Recipients [/custom_headline]
The inaugural round of YNPN Atlanta's Opportunity Grant program was, without doubt, a huge success. Four YNPN Atlanta Members were awarded funding for projects to further their professional careers.
Find out all about them below.


2014 Grant Recipients

President Carter and Sarah Bartlett headshotSarah Bartlett, Senior Associate Director of Development for The Carter Center

Sarah secures multi-million-dollar funding for health and human rights programs from government, foundation, corporate, and individual donors. Her portfolio focuses on neglected tropical diseases, including Guinea worm disease, river blindness, and trachoma, and on women’s and girls’ human rights. She has traveled internationally with President and Mrs. Carter, served as an election monitor in Liberia, and travels frequently to Africa. Sarah reinvigorated a then-dormant YNPN Atlanta in 2008 and co-chaired the board of directors from 2008 to 2010. She was Atlanta’s delegate to the 2008 YNPN Annual Leaders conference in Chicago. She holds a BA from the University of Florida and is currently pursuing her Master’s in Public Administration from the University of Southern California.


Mandy Eidson - headshotMandy Eidson, Fund Development Coordinator, Atlanta Neighborhood Development Partnership

Mandy  is a native Atlantan who returned home after graduating from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in May. Growing up, Mandy was avid about community service and volunteer work. During high school she earned her Girl Scout Gold Award by leading a 200-person Empty Bowls event to promote hunger awareness and raise food donations for the Atlanta Community Food Bank. In college, Mandy continued to serve her community by tutoring local students, volunteering with campus groups, and participating in UNC’s Public Service Scholars program. Mandy is thrilled to be back in Atlanta and working as a Fund Development Coordinator for the Atlanta Neighborhood Development Partnership, where she was hired in August 2014. As a former English major, she especially enjoys putting her writing skills to use for grant applications and donor communications. Mandy looks forward to a career in the nonprofit sector and is thankful for the opportunity to hone her professional skills with YNPN Atlanta’s support.

Emmalee HackshawEmmalee Hackshaw, Development Director at International Community School in Decatur, GA

Emmalee is responsible for all of the organization’s fundraising and financial development operations. Prior to her work with ICS, Emmalee worked as a development consultant where her clients included Georgia Public Broadcasting, Atlanta Public Schools, and Moving in the Spirit. Prior to her consultant work, Emmalee was with The Atlanta Opera where she served in various capacities, and ultimately served as a key member of the senior management team as Director of Community Engagement. During that time she developed the nationally recognized 24-Hour Opera Project® , the High School Opera Institute, and a number of other successful educational programs. She also led the company in their first opera commission and world premier.
A former teacher, Emmalee is an active musician in the Atlanta area. Since 2002, she has served on the Board of Directors of the Liberia Orphan Education Project (LOEP), a nonprofit organization she also co-founded. LOEP provides educational support and professional development for teachers, and sends school supplies, textbooks, and supplementary reading materials to partner schools in Liberia, West Africa. Emmalee is also an active member of the Jefferson Park Neighbors Association, and serves on the Board of Directors as Vice President.  Emmalee holds degrees from East Carolina University and Shenandoah University. In her spare time, she enjoys tutoring international students at the Fugees Academy in Clarkston, running, tennis, and knitting.

Dan WatsonDan Watson, Communications & Development Coordinator at Frazer Center

The Frazer Center is an inclusive community where people of all levels of ability and disability gather, learn and flourish together. Dan manages the organization's overall communications strategies. Previously, he helped strengthen Georgia’s nonprofit community at the Georgia Center for Nonprofits where he served as Marketing and Communication Coordinator through the AmeriCorp VISTA program. Prior to working in the nonprofit sector, Dan worked in publishing for The History Press in Charleston, South Carolina. A native of Iowa, he has a Bachelor’s degree in Journalism from the University of Iowa.