Our Board of Directors

/Our Board of Directors
Our Board of Directors 2018-12-10T16:55:11+00:00

Zoe Sharp, Board Chair

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 as Chair of the the My Sister’s Place Board of Directors, and was previously 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.

Shawn Wright, Board Vice Chair

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.

Martha Shannon, CPA, Board Treasurer

Manager, CohnReznick
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.

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.

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.

Katrina Clemons

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.

Noelle Dubiansky

Associate, Goodwin
Elected: Winter 2017

Noelle Dubiansky joined the Board of Directors in December 2017. Noelle is an associate in Goodwin’s Technology & Life Sciences Group. Ms. Dubiansky represents biotechnology, pharmaceutical, medical device, and other life science companies in a wide range of intellectual property and commercial transactions. She regularly advises private and public companies on complex commercial transactions, including strategic partnerships, licensing, technology acquisition, research and development collaborations, clinical testing, contract services, distribution and manufacturing agreements. Ms. Dubiansky also regularly counsels clients in connection with private financings, public offerings, spin-outs and M&A transactions with respect to intellectual property rights and operational risks.
Prior to joining Goodwin, Ms. Dubiansky was an associate in the Life Sciences practice group at Cooley LLP and previously, in the FDA group at Hyman, Phelps & McNamara. While attending law school, Ms. Dubiansky was named an Edward F. Hennessey Scholar.

Todd Dubose

Program Management Fellow, Department of Veterans Affairs
Elected 2018

Mr. Dubose has over 20 years of combined federal government and IT/Project Management Consulting experience.  He is a Program Management Fellow with the Dept. of Veterans Affairs.  He has held government and private sector consulting positions with the U.S. Marshals Service, U.S. Marine Corps, Deloitte Consulting, and the Department of Veterans Affairs.  He served his country honorably in the Marine Corps.  Mr. Dubose has performed extensive domestic and international travel in support of government and private sector consulting for large government and industry programs.

Mr. Dubose was one of four founding members appointed by Congress to stand up the congressionally mandated U.S. Marshals International Fugitive Task Force.  Mr. Dubose collectively provided program management oversight for Dominican Republic, Mexico City, and Kingston, Jamaica regions for the capture and return of international fugitives.  He  provided senior leadership recommendations on policy and legislation in support of International Fugitive Task Force initiatives.

Mr. Dubose obtained his Bachelors in Business Administration.  He holds Federal Contracting Officer Representative (FAC-COR) Level 2 Certification,  FAC-P/PM (Federal Acquisition Certification Program/Project Management), Defense Acquisition Workforce Improvement Act (DAWIA) Certification, and (ITIL) Information Technology Infrastructure Library v3 Certification, Flexera FNMP Implementation Specialist Certification and Flexera FNMP License Practitioner Certification.  He is married with three children and currently resides in Woodbridge, VA.

Eva Petko Esber

Senior Counsel, Williams & Connolly LLP
Elected: July 2018

Eva Petko Esber is now Senior Counsel at the Washington, D.C. law firm of Williams & Connolly LLP.  She retired from the Williams & Connolly partnership at the end of 2015 after thirty years as an active litigator focusing on employment disputes, fiduciary and trust and estates litigation, banking fraud, and medical malpractice defense.  While a partner, Ms. Esber also served as a member of the firm’s Executive Committee, and as Chair of the firm’s Diversity Committee, Associate Management Committee, Associate Evaluation Committee, and Anti-Harassment Committee. She was twice recognized by Washingtonian magazine as one of “Washington’s Top Lawyers.”  Born and raised in Philadelphia, Ms. Esber obtained her undergraduate degree in 1981 from Saint Joseph’s University.  She obtained her law degree in 1984 from Georgetown University Law Center.

Ms. Esber joined the Board of My Sister’s Place in July 2018, and is a member of the Personnel Committee

Brenda Gaines 

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.

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.

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.

Alex Levin

Pastry Director, SRG Restaurants
Elected Fall 2018

Alex Levin was hired by Michael Schlow to assume the position of Pastry Director in February 2017. In this role, Alex leads, manages and executes pastry programs, in conjunction with Schlow, at all SRG restaurants around the country including Alta Strada, Casolare, The Riggsby and TICO in Washington, DC; Alta Strada Wellesley and Foxwoods, TICO Boston in the New England area, Adachi Restaurant in Birmingham, Michigan and Cavatina in Los Angeles. Levin brings with him experience and expertise in diverse cuisines all applied to American, Greek, Italian, Latin American, Japanese and Spanish-inspired restaurants.

Alex was named best Pastry Chef by the Restaurant Association Metropolitan Washington in 2016 and an Eater “Young Gun” in 2015. He moved to Washington, DC in 2013 and created a reputation for fabulous desserts as Pastry Chef of Osteria Morini.

A graduate of Yale and the Culinary Institute of America, Hyde Park, Levin has trained under industry-leading pastry chefs, including Johnny Iuzzini, Francisco Migoya and Noah Carroll at restaurants Jean Georges, Cafe Boulud and the Apple Pie Bakery Café in New York City.

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.

Sophie Sahaf

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.

Bailey Williams

Associate Director, Savills Studley
Elected July 2018

Bailey Williams joined the Board in 2018 to help create and support safe environments for women who are seeking an escape from dangerous situations. “As the father of two girls, I want to be an example for them, and support healthy homes and relationships that are free of violence.”

Bailey is a native Washingtonian, and an Associate Director at Savills Studley, a commercial real estate advisory firm that exclusively represents tenants. He serves the real estate needs of law firms, non-profits, associations and technology companies nationwide. Bailey received his Bachelor of Arts in History from Amherst College, and holds a Master of Business Administration from the University of Southern California’s Marshall School of Business.

Mazen Yacoub

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.

Advisory Board Members

David Collins has an associates degree from American University in marketing. He spent the next 20 years working in finance for corporations such as Gannet, Cemex and Cystic Fibrosis Foundation . With his father, he started the John Collins Foundation ten years ago and has worked with such organizations as the Boys and Girls Club of Pinellas County Florida, United Way of Tampa, and various other non-profits. He became President of Foundation last year and has served on several nonprofit boards as well as committees. He has supported and been affiliated with MSP for almost five years providing financial and advisory support.

Aspasia Xypolia joined the MSP Advisory Board in 2018 to support the organization’s vision of identifying pathways to permanent, stable housing for the domestic violence survivors it serves. Aspasia’s professional experience has informed her belief that access to safe and affordable housing is the first step toward helping individuals and families achieve self-sufficiency.

Since 2016, Aspasia has worked as a Senior Project Manager for the Mid-Atlantic office of The Community Builders (TCB), a national, non-profit, mission-driven developer that aims to build and sustain strong communities where people of all incomes can achieve their full potential. Prior to joining TCB, Aspasia worked as the Director of Development in a community-based organization, formed by refugees, in Boston, MA.

Aspasia earned a Master in City Design and Development from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a Master in Landscape Architecture from Louisiana State University.