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PEPS Board of Directors

PEPS Board members lend their passion, skills, expertise and connections to help guide PEPS to scale our impact.

We are currently recruiting individuals with expertise or experience in the following areas:

  • Social justice
  • Equity, diversity, & inclusion
  • Advocacy
  • Strategic planning
  • Nonprofit governance
  • Fund development
  • Finance/Accounting
  • Law
  • Organizational development
  • Change/growth management
  • Program development and expansion
  • IT
  • Human resources

If interested in becoming a board member:

  1. Review the job description
  2. Apply online
  3. OR download and print a Board Member Application

2019 PEPS Board of Directors

Mary Ellen Cunningham, Board President

Mary Ellen is a co-founder of Clover Search Works, an executive search firm that provides leadership transition and search services for small and mid-sized nonprofit organizations in the Seattle area. Her primary focus is to unleash the potential of individuals and organizations to create sustainable social change. Through her work in nonprofit management, community development, fundraising, and education, she has developed a keen understanding of how teams work, what it entails to achieve truly mission-driven work, and the importance of partnership as the foundation for almost anything worth doing.

She has had the privilege of working with numerous nonprofits, both domestically and internationally, as a founder, executive director, program developer, board member, volunteer, donor and consultant. As a result, she has seen how nonprofits function, grow, stall, strategize, and achieve impact from a multitude of lenses; that breadth and depth of perspective has honed her skills and sensibilities to support organizations to be strategic, inclusive, fueled by mission and highly effective.

Mary Ellen holds a Masters of Public Health from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill and a B.S. in Experiential Education from the University of New Hampshire. She lives in West Seattle with her husband and son where she is often found in their vegetable garden.

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Tracy Cutchlow

Tracy Cutchlow is the author of the international bestseller Zero to Five: 70 Essential Parenting Tips Based on Science.

She believes no new parent should feel alone, which is why she is on the board of Program for Early Parent Support (PEPS). She also serves on the advisory board of the Children's Screen Time Action Network.

Tracy reaches thousands of parents and professionals through her speaking and through her writing at zerotofive.net. She is a creator of spaces to speak and be heard. She lives in Seattle, where you'll find her hiking or biking around with her husband and their spirited daughter.

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Shanna Donhauser, Board Secretary

Shanna Donhauser is a licensed clinical social worker and psychotherapist specializing in infant mental health, early childhood development, and attachment. A graduate of both the University of Washington and New York University, Shanna has worked in various programs supporting parent/child attachment in Seattle, NYC, and the Bay Area. Currently, Shanna works with families with young children experiencing stress, conflict, and trauma in her practice, Happy Nest Therapy.

Shanna's interest in board service at PEPS strengthened after volunteering as a speaker for PEPS groups. She speaks to groups about topics ranging from infant brain development, romance after baby, and infant care/calming fussy babies. Throughout her professional career, Shanna's passion for supporting new parents through education, identifying resources, and building community has grown.

In her service on the board, Shanna aims to provide guidance and find diverse opportunities for program development. By leveraging the incredible impact of community, we can serve all new families in developing strong, secure bonds and attachment, provide clear access for valuable resources, and educate the larger community of Seattle on the importance and significance in supporting all new parents and babies.

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Chrissy Egan, Board Treasurer

Chrissy Egan is a mother of three children – Anora (5 yrs), Dexter (2.5 yrs), and Ethan (3 months). She was introduced to PEPs in 2014 while participating in a newborn group with her oldest daughter. In 2015, one year later, she led a newborn group in West Seattle. Most recently, she is doing a second time around group with her third child and totally loving the 1x1 time with the new babe.

Chrissy currently works in corporate financial analysis at IBM supporting divestitures. She holds a Master’s degree in Business Administration with a specialization in leadership from Seattle University. For 5 years she has been a coach and facilitator for emotional intelligence MBA courses at Seattle University both locally and abroad. She has a passion and interest in people – especially the little ones!

Originally from Minnesota, she takes time to appreciate the gorgeous landscapes of Washington by running, hiking, playing at the park, or simply sitting outside. Chrissy spends her extra time (extra time?) cooking, reading, and planning getaways for her family.

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Jamie Elzea

Jamie is parent educator & infant class instructor at Bothell Family Cooperative Preschool, a Listening Mothers group facilitator,  and a therapist at her private counseling practice Nurtureways. Previously, Jamie was Executive Director of ConnecT1D, serving children, families, and adults with Type 1 Diabetes. Currently Jamie is Executive Director of the Washington Association of Infant Mental Health. She has a Masters in Public Health and Masters in Social Work from University of Michigan, has post-graduate training from University of Washington in Infant Mental Health and is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker.

Jamie attended newborn PEPS and a Second Time Around group with her youngest children and has facilitated a Second Time Around Group. She believes passionately in the power of connecting parents within their local community for boosting parent support and strengthening families.

Jamie enjoys gardening, playing board games, and exploring the Puget Sound with her husband, 3 boys and 2 pups.

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Suzanna Fix

Suzanna (Suz) Fix is currently an at-home parent of Vivienne (3 years) and Emmett (1 year) and also works part-time as a school counselor in the Shoreline School District. She graduated with a BA in Social Work and an MSW from the University of Washington, specializing in Mental Health. As part of her social work education, she trained in facilitating Intergroup Dialogues on race, privilege, and oppression and co-facilitated the first ever dialogue for multi-racial students at UW. Prior to having children, Suz worked as a school social worker in the Tahoma School District and as a child protection social worker in London, UK.

Suz participated in a Newborn PEPS group with Vivienne and a Second Time Around group with Emmett. She also has facilitated three Newborn groups. Having experienced the positive impact of PEPS throughout her own parenting journey, she is particularly passionate about the new focus of PEPS on increasing access for all families in the greater area and on racial equity.

In her free time, Suz enjoys reading, traveling, and going on walks around the neighborhood with her family. Suz joined the PEPS Board in 2019.

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Lesley Graham

Lesley Graham is an at-home mom for her 5-year-old son, Emerson, and excels at creatively responding to “why” questions, finding hidden Lego pieces, and organizing some form of child decathalon every day.

Lesley worked in the technology industry before discovering her true passion in the nonprofit sector. Most recently she worked with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation building public-private global health partnerships. Lesley holds a Masters of Business Administration from Babson College. She returned to the Boston area to run its (in)famous marathon, only to learn weeks later that she was expecting a baby.

Lesley participated in a newborn PEPS group with Emerson and continues to gain useful knowledge and catharsis from her PEPS community almost every day. She loves sharing the tribulations and joys of parenting with her PEPS community, and has participated in ever evolving shared activities from tummy time and stroller walks to group birthdays, camping and river rafting adventures.

Lesley stays active at the gym and on Washington’s many hiking, biking and skiing trails. Although a Wisconsin native, she hates being cold and hopes to grow old in Seattle where temperatures remain reasonable and it’s green year-round.

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Rue Khosa ARNP, IBCLC

Rue Khosa, is a board certified family nurse practitioner, board certified lactation consultant, childbirth educator, and the owner/founder of The Perfect Push, a lactation and parenting wellness clinic in downtown Redmond.

Rue was born and raised Zimbabwe, where family plays a critical role in supporting expectant and new parents. This type of communal caring, called “kugarira”, helps families prepare for a new baby both emotionally and physically and guides them through the often challenging newborn period. Rue created The Perfect Push to bring that experience to Seattle.

Rue began her women’s health career as a labor and delivery nurse over 10 years ago, at Washington Hospital Centre in DC. She received her graduate degree from Georgetown University, and her undergraduate degree from the University of Maryland, Baltimore. Rue is a Teaching Associate in the Department of Family Medicine at the University of Washington’s School of Medicine and an Adjunct Clinical Faculty at Northwest University Buntain School of Nursing.

In July 2019, Rue was commissioned by the Mayor to the City of Redmond’s Human Services Commission. In addition, she has taken a more active role supporting the Program for Early Parent Support (PEPS), joining the board of directors.

In 2015, Rue established the Northwest FamilyFest - a fun, family-focused charity event that celebrates local businesses and community. The festival is in its fourth year, and will be hosted at the Downtown Redmond Park on Aug. 3, 2019.

When she is not working to redefine the childbirth and parenting experience, Rue is a wife and mother of two boys (6 and 2.5).

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Rebecca Koladycz

Rebecca Koladycz knows firsthand how important early parenting support is: her Seattle-based sister raved about her experience in PEPS and advised her to connect with an early parenting support group when she was pregnant with her now 9-year-old daughter Sasha. That proved to be sage advice that Rebecca passes on to all her expecting friends, as she treasures and is still close to the families from her now scattered New York City parenting group. Having recently relocated to Seattle from Brooklyn, Rebecca is thrilled to have the opportunity to support PEPS as a board member and is committed to ensuring that all new parents have the support they need to thrive.

In her professional life, Rebecca is a senior program management consultant with over 20 years of experience helping mission-driven organizations build capacity, increase sustainability, and improve the quality of health and educational services. She has a long history with International Planned Parenthood Federation, currently working with them to develop an end-to-end performance management system to ensure access to a full range of reproductive health services in 16 countries in Africa and Asia.

Originally from Texas, Rebecca has a Master’s in Social Anthropology from University of Rochester. From the start of her career working in teen pregnancy prevention and sexuality education to evaluating grant-funded programs in public schools to years in international development, Rebecca is keenly aware that the structural barriers communities face in accessing education and healthcare are the same whether in a ‘developing’ country or right here in her new home of Washington state. As such, Rebecca is driven by a strong desire and need to grapple with, reflect on, and be humble in the face of complex equity, social justice, and power dynamics wherever they are at play.

When she’s not on a plane for work or enjoying cherished downtime with her family in the Central District, Rebecca looks for any opportunity to bask in the beauty of Pacific Northwest nature and indulge in her new-found passion for hiking.

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Caroline Koplowitz

Caroline Koplowitz currently works as a Senior Manager in Operations Finance at Amazon. She is a CPA and prior to Amazon worked in public accounting for seven years, having received her Bachelor’s of Business Administration from Emory University. Caroline is a proud Seattle native and a retired collegiate swimmer, though these days you will find her out on the roads at local running races. She enjoys serving with organizations that build and foster community and has served on the board of Girls on the Run Puget Sound and as a volunteer at the Seattle Art Museum.

Caroline found PEPS in 2017 when she participated in a newborn group with her daughter and is anxiously awaiting her 'second-time-around' group this Summer/Fall. Having personally experienced the power PEPS can have in alleviating feelings of isolation, mom-guilt and self-doubt, Caroline is passionate about providing access to PEPS and creating connection for all new parents in the Seattle area's diverse communities. Caroline joined the PEPS board in 2019.

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Sarah Cody Roth

Sarah Cody Roth was first introduced to PEPS in 2014 when she did a newborn group with her daughter, Eleanor. Exactly a year later, she co-lead a newborn group with a fellow mom from her PEPS group, and joined the PEPS Luncheon as a Table Captain. A couple years later, her daughter Elizabeth joined the family just as Sarah joined the PEPS Board in 2016. Sarah has a Masters of Public Administration from the Evans School at UW, and has worked in advocacy, nonprofit management, fundraising, and organizational development for the past 13 years within several D.C. and Seattle nonprofits. She is currently the Deputy Director at WestSide Baby, another organization working to ensure healthy, thriving children, families and communities. In her "spare time" Sarah is a voracious reader, and a total fitness and recreation junkie.

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Vidya Vasu-Devan

Vidya Vasu-Devan is Deputy Director of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation's $2bn Strategic Investment Fund. She cares deeply about reducing poverty and inequity, and improving the health outcomes of women and children in the developing world. She works across sectors to shape and manage equity, debt, guaranty and fund investments to support great companies and entrepreneurs in advancing the foundation's global health, global development and U.S. education strategies. Vidya leads the core investments team and primarily oversees investments in the vaccines and biologics space. Prior to joining the foundation, Vidya was an investment professional at Goldman Sachs in New York. Vidya received an MBA and a certificate in Public Management and Social Innovation from the Stanford Graduate School of Business; she also holds a BA in Astrophysics with concentrations in Mathematics and Economics from Columbia University.

Vidya participated in a newborn PEPS group in 2017 with her husband and newborn son, and still meets with all eight families several times a month. She continues to find the support of that community to be invaluable as she and her husband travel on the unpredictable journey of parenthood. She is passionate about ensuring that all parents and babies can create and access these supportive communities to achieve improved physical, emotional and mental health and happiness for their families. Vidya joined the board in 2018, with particular energy for the organization's new commitment to racial equity and serving all families in our surrounding area.

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Beth Trakimas

Beth Trakimas is a people-centric leader most recently focused on Human Resources Mergers & Acquisitions (HRM&A) in technology. For over a decade, she was responsible for the end-to-end aspects of M&A transactions as it relates to the people impacted by the change. Currently, she is on a ‘self-imposed sabbatical’ to reboot, refresh and focus on other interests. This includes spending much of her time with her 4 year old son and soon-to-arrive daughter (expected in July 2019). She has a Master’s in Business Administration from the Thunderbird School of Global Management and a BA in International Affairs from George Washington University.

Beth became aware of PEPS through friends that lived in Seattle who had become new parents. When she moved here from Portland, she signed up to facilitate a PEPS group as part of her interest and pursuit to become certified as a postpartum doula. Through the training and facilitation process with PEPS, Beth was impressed with the quality of support from the organization and pursued joining the Board to further contribute her skills and passion to this important work. Something that dovetails nicely with her early career interest and work in family planning and reproductive rights.

Hailing from Arizona, Beth deeply appreciates the natural beauty of the Pacific Northwest (it’s much greener here!) and can be found most often outside hiking, camping, and taking in the elements with her family and friends. When not adventuring locally, she is known to be looking forward to traveling somewhere new and is always up for pro-tip recommendations on people, places and food often overlooked.

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Leslie Wander

Leslie Wander is currently an at-home mom for her two young sons. She holds a degree in Materials Science & Engineering from North Carolina State University. She has lived and worked in many different countries, most recently in Costa Rica where she partnered with Habitat for Humanity and a local non-profit to start a housing initiative for families in Guanacaste. While in Costa Rica she also taught elementary school and fell in love with early education and child development.

Leslie became involved with PEPS in 2016 while participating in two newborn groups. She loves traveling, baking, hiking, playing board games, and spending time with family and friends.

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