Mazen Yacoub, Board Chair
Healthcare Strategy & Managment Consultant
Elected: Spring 2009
My most rewarding professional experiences have always involved helping others do their jobs better. As a management consultant, who came from a family of medical doctors, I naturally became interested in applying that motivation to health and social services professionals like those at My Sister’s Place. Earlier in my career I saw volunteering on a Board as a means of building my general management and leadership skills by taking on executive level responsibilities that I didn’t have access to as a junior consultant in my day to day work. I quickly got in touch with the idea that when one gets involved with a mission driven organization they take on an unwritten obligation to leave that organization better off than it was when they arrived. Ten years later I like that I have learned a great deal through my collaboration with other Board Members, MSP Leadership and Staff. I continue to learn as we grow and the personal satisfaction from helping advance our mission keeps me coming back for more.
Outside of MSP I work as an independent healthcare management consultant. My clients include top tier consulting firms, Federal and State healthcare agencies and private sector healthcare provider organizations. My areas of expertise include policy, business strategy, healthcare payment reform and program implementation. I also teach graduate level public health policy and management at The George Washington University Milken School of Public health. I hold a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from Babson College and a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Boston College.
In our spare time, my wife Sarah and I, volunteer for the Washington Humane Rescue Alliance. Our dog, Steve, graciously shares his home with the dogs we have fostered over the past several years.
Mercedes Lemp, Executive Director (Ex Officio)
Executive Director, My Sister’s Place
Elected: Spring 2018
Mercedes Lemp recently served as the Associate Director of Philanthropy at Montgomery Hospice. Prior to her role at Montgomery Hospice she twice served as the Executive Director of Washington English Center, from July, 2011 to March 2015 and September 2002 through the end of 2005. In between serving as Executive Director at Washington English Center she was appointed as the Director of the Washington DC Mayor’s Office on Latino Affairs by Mayor Adrian Fenty and served as a Cabinet member from January 2007 through December 2010. In addition to her government and non-profit experience, Mercedes was the Marketing Director at the Council of Better Business Bureau’s BBBOnLine website program, and worked as the Channels Program Manager for Latin America Sales at Netscape Communications Corporation in Mountain View, CA and in Florida. She holds an MBA in International Marketing from George Washington University and a BA in Business and Management Administration from the University of Maryland, College Park. She is a member of the 2014 class of Leadership Greater Washington, the National Society of Hispanic MBA’s, and served on the DC Public Schools Joint Advisory Council from 2007-2010, and on the Mayor’s Adult Literacy Council from 2007-2009.
Martha Shannon, CPA, Board Treasurer
Elected Fall 2015
Martha Shannon came to the MSP Board through a mutual contact. “After serving on the board for one year, I have learned so much about MSP and the great programs they offer to victims of domestic violence which include, women, men and children. I am inspired by the tremendous leadership on our board as well as the very diligent staff at MSP. I look forward to continuing my service with MSP.”
Martha Shannon is a Manager at CohnReznick LLP, a national accounting firm. She is a licensed CPA in the state of Maryland and a member of the AICPA and MACPA. She has extensive experience serving on other non-profit boards as well as auditing similar non-profit organizations. She chose to serve on My Sister’s Place Board because she believes that all women deserve to live safely in their home.
Sarah Miller, CPA
Financial Due Diligence Senior Associate, PwC Deals
Elected December 2017
Sarah joined the Board of Directors in December 2017. Sarah is a member of the PwC Deals practice, specializing in financial due diligence. Prior to joining the Deals practice, Sarah was a member of PwC’s Assurance practice where her primary focus was serving nonprofit and consumer products clients.
Sarah is also a member of the Junior League of Washington (JLW), where she serves as the lead of the Get On Board program, a course designed for JLW members to learn the fundamentals of nonprofit governance and earn BoardSource’s Certificate of Nonprofit Board Education. The Get On Board program further empowers JLW members to serve on nonprofit boards throughout the Greater Washington community.
Sarah earned her Bachelor degree in Accounting (B.S.) from Louisiana State University and her Master’s of Accounting from North Carolina State University.
Beverly Allen, Esq.
Chief Integrity Officer, MedStar Washington Hospital Center
Elected: Spring 2013
Beverly R. Allen is an attorney with more than 20 years of legal, business and consulting experience across multiple industries. Beverly joined the My Sister’s Place Board of Directors in 2013, and was initially drawn by the core mission of the organization as well as the opportunity to support and make a difference in the local community. “I believe that being a part of this Board enables me to give of myself in a meaningful way while working toward the shared goal of breaking the cycle of domestic violence.”
Currently, Beverly is the Associate General Counsel and Chief Privacy Officer at Inovalon, a leading healthcare technology company. Beverly has also worked with corporate, government and not-for-profit entities on a variety of strategic, operational and transformative initiatives across multiple sectors, including health care, academia and financial services.
Chief Executive Officer, BG Consulting Services, LLC
Elected: July 2015
Ms. Brenda Gaines serves as the Chief Executive Officer for BG Consulting Services, LLC. BG Consulting Services (BGC), LLC, is a Veteran-owned, woman-owned consulting firm specializing in designing; implementing customized solutions to meet the needs of government, nonprofit and corporate clients. Our highly qualified staff brings extensive experience in Healthcare Operations, Management Consulting, Workforce Development Training, Program Management, Data Analytics, Organizational Development, and Information Technology (IT).
Brenda Gaines has been a member of the Board of Directors for My Sister’s Place since 2015. Brenda has been a supporter of domestic violence prevention and was attracted to My Sister’s Place because of the work it does in bringing situational awareness and support to preventing or eliminating domestic violence.
Ms. Gaines has an MBA from the University of Phoenix, Phoenix AZ.
Manager-Global Public Sector, Grant Thorton LLP
Elected: Winter 2010
Katrina joined the Board in 2015 and currently serves on both the Finance and Governance Committee. The opportunity to serve on the Board of Directors at My Sister’s Place allows me to be an advocate of those who are in need of the services provided. “I am committed to utilizing my skills, sharing resources and my time, to support the mission, operations, and residents of the program.”
Katrina Clemons is a Manager in Grant Thornton’s Public Sector division. She has over 25 years of combined experience in the public and private sector, and the federal government. She is a Project Management Professional (PMP) skilled in financial management, internal controls, business process improvement, audit remediation, and grants management.
Elected: Winter 2017
Michelle A. Kisloff, Esq.
Partner, Hogan Lovells
Elected: Fall 2007
Michelle has served on our Board for nearly a decade, and has been working on domestic violence issues and advocacy for more than 20 years. “In law school, I helped women go to court to obtain Civil Protective Orders in court. I quickly saw that the court orders are an important step, but women need more than legal help alone to get on their feet and away from their batterers. I was thrilled to connect with My Sister’s Place, which provides DV survivors and their children with a safe place to live and connects them with the counseling and social services they need. MSP makes a big impact on our community, and I am proud to be a part of it.” In her day job, Michelle is a partner with the Hogan Lovells law firm, as a member of the Litigation and the Privacy & Cybersecurity practices.
Senior Manager, Political Programs & Research, Altria Group, Inc.
Elected Summer 2015
Kristen joined the Board in 2015 after serving as an active volunteer through the Junior League of Washington. In addition to having a passion for MSP’s mission to eradicate domestic violence, Kristen was impressed with the organization’s holistic approach to empower survivors to take control of their lives:
“MSP isn’t just a shelter, it’s a community offering a full continuum of care. From counseling a victim during her first brave call to the hotline to helping her secure employment and permanent independent housing, MSP understands what it takes to break the cycle of domestic violence.”
Kristen’s professional background is in research and strategy. Since graduating with a political science degree from Kenyon College, Kristen has worked to generate insights and strategies for Fortune 500 companies, public policy organizations and political campaign teams. Outside of work, Kristen enjoys researching American history with her local DAR chapter and binge-watching anything on PBS Masterpiece.
Jackie Paranzino-Malkes, Board Secretary
Senior Implementation Project Manager, SAS
Elected: Summer 2014
Jackie Malkes joined the Board in 2014 after volunteering with the children at My Sister’s Place through the Junior League of Washington. “I immediately fell in love with the children and the amazing opportunity of spending an hour or two with a child doing homework, reading, playing and interacting with them in as a positive role model. After months of coming to the shelter, I saw how that love, learning and joy helped to carry them forward and grow. Volunteering on the Board is how I choose to leave my footprint in the world.”
Jackie currently serves on the Board of Directors at My Sister’s Place as the Board Secretary. Jackie graduated from American University with her Masters in International Economics and currently serves as a Senior Manager at SAS Institute.
Lisa E. Rosenthal
Chief Executive Officer, The Mayvin Consulting Group, Inc.
Elected Winter 2015
Lisa joined the Board in 2015 as a result of her passion in working to advance women and women in business. “My Sister’s Places serves an essential place in the community providing a safe place for women. All people deserve a safe place.”
Ms. Lisa Rosenthal is the Chief Executive Officer and co-founder of Mayvin, Inc. Lisa is a seasoned project manager with significant government and commercial experience managing a broad spectrum of tasks, functions, processes, and systems from concept to implementation. She is recognized for strong leadership skills, facilitating organizational change, and strategic planning for government organizations. She received her Master’s of Business Administration in International Finance and Management of Global Information Technology from The American University in Washington, DC.
Vice President, Program & Evaluation at LIFT
Elected Spring 2018
Sophie has over a decade of program management and evaluation in the domestic and international anti-poverty space. She is passionate about finding ways to improve program quality by drawing on best practices and continuously assessing where program design and implementation can improve. At LIFT – an antipoverty nonprofit that supports low income parents in urban areas – she helped create the organization’s first learning and evaluation unit before assuming a broader program oversight role that combines program strategy and evaluation. She currently manages the national program team which is responsible for ensuring high quality program design and implementation in LIFT’s Chicago, Los Angeles, New York and Washington, D.C. offices.
Prior to LIFT, Sophie spent seven years at the Millennium Challenge Corporation where she supported design and evaluation of large-scale investments in wide ranging areas including the power sector, vocational education, and government anti-corruption efforts. At MCC, Sophie worked with bilateral partners in Indonesia, Mongolia and Sierra Leone to ensure that investments fostered economic growth and embedded rigorous impact evaluations and performance management systems. Prior to MCC, she worked on refugee issues in Nepal and advocated whistleblower rights in international organizations. Sophie earned a Bachelors degree from Tufts University and a Masters from the Fletcher School.
Deputy General Counsel, Optoro, Inc.
Elected Winter 2016
Zoe Sharp joined the Board in 2016 and is thrilled to contribute to the effort to provide services to domestic violence victims and survivors. “I have previously tried to contribute on a case-by-case basis by providing legal services to victims of domestic violence, but I am so inspired by My Sister’s Place and its structural and cultural efforts to really end the cycle of abuse through a variety of approaches. I wanted to help out on the Board and provide support to these efforts in a more sustained way.”
Zoe Sharp serves on the My Sister’s Place Board of Directors, and is a member of the Governance Committee. Zoe works at Optoro, Inc. as Deputy General Counsel and teaches as an Adjunct Instructor for American University’s Kogod School of Business. She graduated from Yale University and Stanford Law School, and has a M.S. in Accounting from American University and is both a lawyer and a CPA.
Senior Community Health Nurse, Children’s Hospital
Elected Summer 2015
Camille M. Wheeler became interested in My Sister’s Place after serving in the Junior League of Washington. As a registered nurse with experience working with patients who have been victims of unsafe living conditions and abuse, Camille had a strong desire to get involved in My Sister’s Place to ensure the success of an organization that is charged with giving people a new chance.
Camille M. Wheeler is a Health Coordinator at Sidwell Friends School in Bethesda. A native Washingtonian, she attended DC public schools, graduated from Howard University with a B.S. Nursing and a M.A in Health Promotion Counseling from Trinity Washington University. Camille started working as a community health nurse in 1991, primarily working in public and private schools from Pre-K to 12th grade.
Partner, Blank Rome LLP
Elected Spring 2018
Shawn M. Wright concentrates her practice in the area of white collar criminal litigation, with a specific focus on the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (“FCPA”) and international anti-corruption laws; criminal antitrust; public corruption; and government contracts matters. She represents corporations, boards of directors, and corporate executives in a wide range of internal and government investigations, audits and risk assessments, parallel proceedings, and before enforcement agencies and bodies such as the U.S. Department of Justice (“DOJ”), Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”), and other authorities.
Shawn’s practice includes internal compliance program development for the FCPA, including establishing workplace compliance policies and procedures, due diligence in mergers and acquisitions, third-party relationships, and other transactions. She also conducts internal investigations and provides counsel on violations of the Department of Treasury Office of Foreign Assets Control (“OFAC”).
Additionally, she represents companies and nonprofit organizations and their boards of directors regarding corporate governance, compliance, and internal controls issues.
Shawn is a member of the Women President’s Organization – Greenbelt Chapter, which supports and promotes women-owned companies. She is also a tutor and mentor to diverse women law students. She is an enthusiastic football and basketball fan, both professional and collegiate.