Board of Directors

The Neighborhood Developers’ Board of Directors is composed of residents of the communities we work in and individuals who bring expertise and professional knowledge related to our mission to build great neighborhoods.

Peter Hollands
Sr. Vice President at Boston Private Bank and Trust Co

Kristen Janjar
Director of Professional Development at Bridgewell

Bill Morrison, Treasurer
Director, Morrison Consulting

Faye Dookharan
Teacher at Malden Public Schools

Dakeya Christmas
Area Director of Sales at Colwen Hotels


Charlene Bauer, President
Senior Vice President, Marketing, Metro Credit Union

Techrosette Leng, Vice President
City Planner at The City of Revere

Michael Martin
Executive Vice President of Wingate Management Company
Property Management

William H “Tuck” Willis, Clerk
Chelsea Resident

Alice Murillo
Associate Provost at Bunker Hill Community College




Rafael Mares

Executive Director

Rafael is TND's Executive Director, a community development corporation serving Chelsea, Revere, and Everett since 1978. TND brings its core strengths—building homes, engaging neighbors, and fostering economic mobility—to community partnerships that create great neighborhoods where all people can thrive. Prior to joining TND, Rafael was a Vice President at the Conservation Law Foundation leading its Healthy Communities and Environmental Justice program area. He is a transportation expert and has advocated successfully for public transportation improvements. Previously Rafael served as a clinical instructor and lecturer on law at the Legal Services Center of Harvard Law School.  Before and during law school, Rafael worked on environmental justice issues in Washington, DC, Puerto Rico, and Boston.  Rafael holds a JD from Harvard Law School and a B.S. in Integrated Natural Resources from the University of Vermont.

The Neighborhood Developers Staff

Real Estate Development

Aaron WassermAN

Director of Real Estate Development
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I began working for The Neighborhood Developers’ Real Estate Department in June 2011, and have been impressed by the people and places of Chelsea and Revere ever since. Since joining TND, I have managed several of our new construction developments, providing new homes for families and seniors. The work is consistently satisfying and challenging, revealing that there is always a new goal to set, new puzzle to solve and new skill to learn. I hold a master’s degree in urban planning from the Harvard Graduate School of Design and a bachelor’s degree from Swarthmore College. In my spare time, I like to write music, play tennis, garden, and search the stacks at record and book stores. I live in Roxbury with my wife and son.

Cassie Mann

Project Manager
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I joined TND in September 2015 after completing my M.A. in Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning from Tufts University. While at Tufts I focused on housing and community development, and interned with Citizens Housing and Planning Association (CHAPA) and the Massachusetts Association of Community Development Corporations (MACDC). I grew up outside Philadelphia and attended Trinity College in Hartford, CT. After college I worked on a political campaign in Maine and spent four years working in politics and policy in Washington D.C. before moving to Massachusetts. I am excited to apply all that I learned through these experiences in my role in real estate development at TND, and am eager to learn from TND’s talented and dedicated team. I am particularly inspired by the way TND brings together affordable housing development, community engagement, and asset building to empower residents and build vibrant, sustainable neighborhoods.

Steve Laferriere

Senior Project Manager
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I joined TND in spring 2015, after spending five years as a Senior Project Manager at Metro West Collaborative Development. Prior to that, I spent five years developing affordable housing at WATCH CDC. A graduate of Brandeis University, I’m passionate about creating high-quality, healthy, safe and affordable homes as a way to strengthen communities and provide individuals and families the stability needed to take advantage of other opportunities. I’m excited to be part of an organization that takes a comprehensive approach to community building by combining high-quality real estate development with community engagement and asset development.


CONNECT and Financial Capabilities

Stefanie Shull

CONNECT Director
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Stefanie has over ten years of experience in program design, program implementation, policy analysis, research, and advocacy for public and nonprofit organizations, primarily in the areas of housing, transportation, sustainable economic development, and disaster recovery. She worked for a DC-area consulting firm for close to eight years before joining a Chicago think tank in 2010. Prior to assuming leadership of the CONNECT Program in Summer 2015, Stefanie served as its Program Evaluation Manager. She holds a Masters Degree in Public Affairs and Urban and Regional Planning from the Woodrow Wilson School and a B.S. in Economics., and recently became the mother of twin boys.

Anne Auerbach

Lead Financial Coach
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I consider myself a “citizen of the world” having lived in France, Germany, London, Kenya and the US, so I immediately felt at home working at CONNECT where there are so many staff and clients from different cultures and nationalities. I strive to live by my missionary grandparents’ motto: “to make a positive difference in the world and have fun doing it”. My formal education includes a B.A. from Barnard College (majoring in Education and German) as well as an M.S. in School Psychology from City College Graduate School of Education, and finally a Psy.D. (Doctorate in Psychology) from Rutgers University. I am passionate about social and political justice, working in whatever way I can to level the playing field for all, particularly those who face barriers due to lack of money or education, language barriers or immigration status. I believe that we are all travelers on life’s journey, and are called to help each other along the way. I am thrilled to be part of an organization that is doing all it can to bring economic stability to all who come through its doors.

Laura Lucas

Financial Coach
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Originally from the Azores, I came to Boston to study Computer Science and earned a Masters degree in Computer Science from Boston University and Bachelor’s from Northeastern University. After working as a Systems Analyst and Programmer at MIT, I transitioned to the Learning and Performance field. I worked at the YWCA Malden to develop the financial empowerment initiative and provide micro enterprise technical support, and joined CONNECT as a Financial Coach in 2012. I’m passionate about interdisciplinary work to prevent homelessness and advance the economic capacity of immigrant families who are caught in difficult economic conditions. I’m a strong believer in the power of emerging technologies and social innovation to produce solutions to systemic economic problems.

Lucía Henriquez

Financial Coach
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Chelsea has been my hometown since I arrived from Honduras in 1979. My passion for community involvement and civic participation began in 1988, when I helped form Centro Latino for the Hispanic community here in Chelsea, and where I served as a Board member for three years. I was also an active volunteer at The Chelsea Collaborative for three years, before being hired there as a Community Organizer. Simultaneously, I helped create ROCA’s Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program for at-risk adolescents. My 25 years of work experience have been focused primarily on community organizing efforts and civic community engagement. I was a Program Manager at HarborCOV Emergency Shelter for almost 10 years. In 2005, I was elected to the Chelsea School Committee and am leaving this year after my 10-year tenure. I joined TND/CONNECT in December 2014 after completing the six-month Leadership Fellows program with TND’s Community Engagement Team. One recent personal success this past June was my graduating from Cambridge College with a Bachelor’s in Human Services. I am very proud of my many accomplishments and contributions to my community and hometown, Chelsea, which in turn have helped me grow both personally and professionally.


Community Engagement



Director of Community Engagement and Collective Impact
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Prior to taking on the position of Director of Community Engagement and Collective Impact for The Neighborhood Developers, Vicente was the Director of Community Engagement for a human services agency in Central MA.  Throughout his career Vicente has focused on addressing social justice concerns at the community level through health equity, building community capacity, and leadership development through compassionate strategic actions.  In his current role, Vicente is responsible for stewarding community engagement activities, neighborhood planning, neighborhood revitalization projects, and cross-sector collaborations in Chelsea and Revere. His team of three and the breadth of activities under his purview include the management of extensive community action planning processes with municipalities, businesses, community agencies and residents; and the management of the Chelsea Thrives initiative, a Collective Impact model, now focused on alleviating crime and increasing community safety, a key quality of life driver in Chelsea. Vicente has a Masters in Community Economic Development from Southern New Hampshire University and is a certified Prevention Specialist.

José Agustin Iraheta Zaldaña

Chelsea Thrives Community Engagement Manager
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I have lived in Chelsea since 2004 and joined TND in 2014. After graduating from Chelsea High, I attended Hamilton College and earned a Bachelor’s degree in Hispanic Studies. During my time at Hamilton, I taught Basic English skills to refugees from Vietnam, Russia, Bosnia, Somalia, Burma, and Nepal. After graduating from college I learned about TND and it’s programs to support our community. As a CONNECT client, I got more involved in the community and became the coordinator at a local food pantry. I then signed up as a facilitator for neighborhood meetings and then went on to serve as an interpreter, before beginning my current role in community engagement. I have chosen to make Chelsea my home, and I am blessed to know my work is to ensure that my community thrives. I love my neighborhood, and I want to work with you and others to make it a great place to live in.

Sharon Fosbury

Senior Community Engagement Manager
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Community service and volunteering have always been very important to me, and I am constantly looking for ways to make a positive impact, both locally and abroad.  While volunteering in Ecuador, my passion for helping others was intensified as I worked with children in the street markets of Quito and tutored in an after-school program in one of the surrounding communities.  With Habitat for Humanity, I have led and participated in trips to Costa Rica and Nicaragua, and back home, I have been actively engaged in volunteering in various roles.  Whether it be as part of my professional work or on my own free time, contributing my time to improve the community has been a priority.  This desire is what led me to The Neighborhood Developers.  I started as a volunteer, helping with VITA and a symposium, and then I started my AmeriCorps VISTA service at TND.  After VISTA, I became part of the Community Engagement Team at TND, and it is here that I have been very fortunate to grow and work with amazing people. 

Vanny Huot

Revere Community Engagement Manager
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My family and I emigrated from Cambodia during the Khmer Rouge era in the early 80s. We eventually settled in the Shirley Avenue neighborhood of Revere, Massachusetts. I grew up in a bilingual household and a multicultural community but I didn’t understand the value of these assets at the time. After high school; I enrolled at the University of Richmond, Virginia, graduated with B.A. in Women’s Studies and then made my way back home. In June 2012, I met my predecessor, Rachel Meketon and that meeting was the clichéd life changer. I found her leadership and TND’s commitment to community engagement inspirational and motivational. As a result, I have been part of some wonderful processes and programs that helped develop my leadership, communication, and interpersonal skills as a lead volunteer in my very own neighborhood. Most importantly, I found value in the very assets that I shied away from in my youth and look forward to leveraging them to build up my beloved community. I’m excited to formally join the team in July 2014 and to facilitate the next steps of the Shirley Ave Action Plan.


Resident Services

Gabriel Fonseca

Associate Director of Resident Services

Gabriel Fonseca grew up in rural Northwest Ohio.  He earned a B.A. in Human Services at Siena Heights University in Adrian, Michigan were he was a member of the baseball team. He also earned a M.S. in Human Development and Family Systems at the University of Rhode Island.  Since moving to the Boston area in 2012, he worked for the MA Children's Trust, helped Massachusetts General Hospital establish a fatherhood program, and now is a proud member of the The Neighborhood Developers team.  He is working with the talented Community Engagement team to establish a robust Resident Services program.

Monica Headshot.jpg

Monica Elias-Orellana

Resident Service Manager

I began my career in community work when I was a young teen volunteering for multiple organizations in the city of Chelsea, where I have lived most of my life. I have always lived my life after Mahatma Gandhi, “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”  After graduating Chelsea High, I attended the University of Massachusetts Boston and earned a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Biology and a Program of Studies Degree in Asian American Studies. In college, while working in an independent studies project, which captured the experiences of Latino immigrants and Southeast Asian refugee experiences, I met Vanny Huot, a great mentor who encouraged me to purse community work. Volunteering for The Neighborhood Developers as well as serving as an AmeriCorps-VISTA , I soon found myself working for The Neighborhood Developers as the Resident Service Manager. In this role, I am able to work with TND residents by connecting them to the community as well as providing them with resources to improve the quality of their life.


Resource Development

Nancy Turner

Director of Resource Development

I began my career in community development in the international sector, first as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Papua New Guinea and then as a fundraiser at Oxfam America. Through this international community development experience, I learned the value of supporting indigenous efforts and grew to love working with people from all over the world. Fundraising in support of stronger families and equitable communities has remained a career constant. I’ve worked for community development corporations and the intermediaries that support them for 20+ years. I’ve written grants for TND since 2003 working remotely from my home in Vermont.

Rachel Van Voorhis

Resource Developer

After many years as the proposal writer for an architectural firm specializing in the expansion and adaptive reuse of historic municipal buildings, I was looking for a change. I learned about TND through a chance conversation with TND’s Director of Resource Development Nancy Turner (a high school classmate), and started at TND in June of 2013 as a volunteer grant writer. In October of 2013, TND hired me to work off site as a grant writer from my home in southeastern Massachusetts. I am inspired by TND’s comprehensive approach to neighborhood revitalization and have loved learning and writing about the organization’s affordable housing, community engagement and financial capability efforts. Working for TND is consistently challenging and satisfying and I am honored to play a part in its important work. I graduated from Yale with a B.A. in American Studies and Brown with a M.A. in American Civilization and live at the base of Cape Cod with my husband and four children.

Trey Greer

Communications Project Manager
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Trey Greer graduated from the University of North Texas with a degree in Political Science. After university, he joined AmeriCorps where he worked as Marketing and Outreach Coordinator for Southwest CARE Center, an HIV clinic in Santa Fe, NM. He then moved to Portland Oregon, taking a position as the Social Media Project Manager for People in Need Partnership. He worked as a freelance designer and writer taking contracts from organizations based out of Austin: Texas Department of Public Safety, The Texas Association of Local Health Officials, and The Austin Public Library among others.  In the summer of 2016, he moved to the Boston metro area.

Heather Vieira

Resource Development Manager

My career started out in the hospitality industry with a focus on sales, marketing, and event planning.   I have previously worked at a university arena located in Virginia, convention centers in South Dakota and Connecticut, and a destination management company in Boston.  I discovered my passion for fundraising during the time that I worked for the American Heart Association in Connecticut and knew that I wanted to return to a non-profit.  I am excited to join the team at TND and be part of their important mission. I hold a master’s degree from Old Dominion University and reside in Swampscott with my husband and daughter Emily.  In my free time I enjoy coaching girl’s fastpitch softball, cheering on my beloved Red Sox, gardening, reading, and enjoying nature.   


Learning, Data & Evaluation

Mary Coonan

Director of Learning and Evaluation
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Mary Coonan has over 30 years of experience in program development and leadership with an emphasis on evaluation both in Latin America and on the U.S east coast. She has been involved in the design and implementation of a revolving loan fund operating in 26 communities throughout Nicaragua; an international microfinance training program for practitioners from over 100 countries; a joint master’s degree program in community economic development between Southern New Hampshire University and the Open University of Tanzania; a workforce development program serving seven family homeless shelters in Boston; and an economic development center partnering with 22 community organizations in the Boston area.

Most recentlly, Mary worked as an evaluation consultant with the Center for Social Policy supporting organizations with evaluation – primarily multi-site, multiplayer, collective initiatives. Recent and past clients include New Lease for Homeless Families, SkillWorks, Year-Up, Commonwealth Workforce Coalition, MASSCAP, Essentials for Childhood, Thrive in Five, the Blue Cross Blue Shield of MA Foundation, The On-Solid Ground Coalition, United Way of Massachusetts, Boston Housing Authority, The Boston Foundation, Children’s Hospital, Family to Family, Brookviewhouse, Project Hope, HopeFound, Home Start, Regional HUD office, City of Springfield, City of Lawrence, Framingham Continuum of Care, TEEN Voices, Cambridge Cares About Aids, English for New Bostonians, and Notre Dame Education Center.

Mary has an MA from Southern New Hampshire University in Community Economic Development and a Certificate of Advanced Degree in Program Evaluation from Claremont University


Gaelynn RobertS

Data Analyst & Administrator

I’ve just finished my first month here at TND after returning to the non-profit sector from the business sector where for the past 11 years I worked as an Operations Manager and a CRM Administrator. For the past six years I have worked with Salesforce exclusively and I am extremely impressed with the way TND has adapted it to their mission. For me, the road to here was not a straight one. I graduated from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio and from there served three tours of Duty as a Coast Guard officer all over the U.S., South and Central America. I have spent years as a high school Spanish teacher, an operations manager and even spent several years as a communications officer for a police department. My introduction to the nonprofit sector came five years ago when I began volunteering as an ESOL teacher for a nonprofit organization in Beverly, MA. When not immersed in a database, I am an avid hunter and fisherman and a freelance photographer. I moved to Ipswich, MA in 2006 where I still live with my wife and Seámus the dog.