Kelly began her career at Open Hearth in 1999 and was appointed Executive Director in 2015 after holding several positions within the organization, starting with direct service work. Under Kelly’s leadership, Open Hearth’s range of programming and operating budget has grown from $770,000 to $3 million. Kelly also has overseen the renovation of Open Hearth’s new headquarters in Phoenixville, PA along with the $1 million capital campaign funding the major systems upgrades needed for the building.
Outside of her executive role at Open Hearth, Kelly is serving on the Phoenixville Hospital’s Community Benefit Committee and the Phoenixville Affordable Housing Council. Kelly served as the Vice President of The Community Coalition for five years and remains an active board member. Kelly served as Chair of the Governance Board of Chester County’s Partnership to End Homelessness from 2018-2022 and remains an active board member.
Katelyn is an American University alumna who holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology and a minor in justice. She began her career in social services as a Resource Coordinator at a nonprofit behavioral health agency in a role that required her to manage a large caseload of clients with severe and persistent mental illness who needed housing and other various resources, such as cash assistance and disability benefits, substance abuse treatment, and vocational support. In this role, Katelyn developed a passion for and success with coordinating and securing permanent housing solutions for individuals and families experiencing homelessness, which ultimately led to her recruitment by Open Hearth.
Katelyn joined Open Hearth’s team in 2013 as a Program Coordinator and was later promoted to Lead Program Coordinator. In 2015, Katelyn accepted a position at a large insurance company, where she served as the single point of contact for a highly sensitive and business-critical book of business and spearheaded a project to create and implement a training and performance tool. Nevertheless, Katelyn’s passion always lay in social services and she returned to Open Hearth in August 2017 as the Director of Programs.
Christina earned her Bachelor of Science degree in accounting from Wilmington University and later earned her Master of Science in accounting from Strayer University. Christina began her career in bookkeeping and finished her public accounting career as an audit manager, obtaining a Delaware Certified Public Accountant license in 2015. Christina joined Open Hearth in April of 2022, bringing a range of accounting experiences, including both nonprofit and for-profit companies.
Armed with a certificate in bookkeeping and vast customer service and administrative experience, Debbie joined Open Hearth in March 2006 as a Program Coordinator. Just like her days in the United States armed forces, Debbie rose in rank and now serves as our Office Manager, and is primarily responsible for coordinating, initiating, and performing all of Open Hearth’s clerical and secretarial duties, in addition to program and operational support.
In 2016, Layne relocated to Chester County from Seattle, Washington. There Layne had worked at a rescue mission as the Assistance Director of Women and Children’s Programs and at R.E.S.T. – Real Escape from the Sex Trade, as the Emergency Receiving Center Supervisor, serving survivors of sex trafficking.
After moving to Pennsylvania, Layne began working in the city of Chester, managing volunteer involvement for a nonprofit that provides emergency shelter, community outreach, and recovery housing services. Later, she served as the Family Services Administrator and Recovery House Manager for a nonprofit organization in West Chester. Layne brings a wealth of other experience such as: establishing high school teen parenting and mentoring programs, providing youth tutoring, and directing after-school enrichment programs. She also serves on the board of The Vine Ministry.
Layne joined Open Hearth in April 2022 as the Housing Programs Manager and brings a trauma-informed, client-based approach to serving our community.
Ashley joined our staff in 2012 at the conclusion of her yearlong internship at Open Hearth while finishing her Bachelor of Social Work degree at Alvernia University. Ashley served as a Financial Navigator for Open Hearth and The United Way of Chester County Financial Stability Center in Exton, PA starting in 2013. In this role, Ashley assisted customers with personal and financial goal setting, which included financial insight and resource coordination with the overall goal of supporting her customers in achieving their goal(s) of increasing income, decreasing debt, and increasing assets. In May of 2022 Ashley was named Financial Programs Manager at Open Hearth.
Nettie brings to Open Hearth her diverse background in nonprofit program management. Before joining Open Hearth’s staff in March of 2015, Nettie served as a manager for Maternal & Child Health Consortium’s (MCHC) Healthy Start program. Prior to joining MCHC, Nettie worked in several capacities within the workforce development division of JEVS Human Services. She also has experience working with youth mentoring, scholarships, and afterschool programs in New York City. Nettie holds a Bachelor of Arts in English and communications from Rutgers College and a master’s degree in education from Rutgers University.
Taryn is an alumna of West Chester University where she earned both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in social work. She obtained her first post-graduation employment opportunity at a community outpatient mental health agency that serves children and teens. In this role, Taryn provided individuals and families with outpatient therapy to help identify client strengths and teach the utilization of coping skills to help manage and stabilize moods. From there, Taryn accepted a Resource Coordinator position at another community outpatient mental health agency and transitioned to the role of homeless acute case manager.
During that time, Taryn provided services to individuals with mental health diagnoses who were experiencing homelessness. She helped clients identify and address barriers that would help them meet their goal of housing stability, while also ensuring that their mental health needs were being addressed. After several years, Taryn moved to another agency where she served as a Truancy Mobile Therapist and Behavioral Specialist Consultant, providing wraparound services for children and teens. In this role, Taryn provided individual and family psychotherapy to clients, and developed treatment plan goals that would address truancy concerns and behavioral management interventions across various settings. Taryn joined Open Hearth as the Family Savings Partner Program Coordinator in 2019.
Amber began her career in social services as a housing case manager in 2006 following her graduation from Arcadia University, where she earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology and sociology. In this role, she provided housing-focused case management to individuals and families experiencing homelessness in Chester County. This experience taught her that homelessness can impact anyone and gave her a strong understanding of the array of social service systems and housing opportunities for people struggling to maintain housing stability. It also brought her in contact with Open Hearth; she soon left her case management job for a Program Coordinator position at Open Hearth in 2008.
In 2013, Amber accepted the position of Mental Health Housing Coordinator with Chester County’s Department of Community Development. Amber returned to Open Hearth in December 2016 as the Permanent Housing Program Coordinator and oversaw the Continuum of Care Permanent Supportive Housing Program. Amber transitioned to the new role of Targeted Homelessness Resource Coordinator in 2020. This position is designed to help Chester County’s Homeless Crisis Response System reach “functional zero” by targeting specific populations of homelessness and prioritizing them for housing and service resources across systems. In this position, she is responsible for developing and managing the by-name list for Chester County and facilitating case conferencing for providers working with those experiencing homelessness.
Lauren is a 2006 graduate of Immaculata University with a bachelor’s degree in business and accounting and a minor in finance. After 15 years working in a corporate environment, she left her career at an investment management company to begin a new path in social work. Lauren currently attends Carlow University, working towards a dual MSW and MBA degree.
Lauren joined the Open Hearth team in November of 2022 and looks forward to using her financial experience to bring a depth of knowledge as she takes on her role as a Financial Navigator.
Laura graduated from Sage Graduate Schools with a master’s degree in community psychology. This led to her desire to work in a field dedicated to facilitating change in community settings by addressing mental health and community welfare issues through prevention and intervention strategies. With her background in mental health and developmental disabilities, Laura has worked at various outpatient and inpatient mental health facilities to connect individuals to resources and support within their communities.
She utilized her skills and passion for this work in her role at Open Hearth as a Client Services Coordinator for the Continuum of Care Permanent Supportive Housing Program from 2019-2021 and as of February of 2023 retuned to the same role.
A Philadelphia native and graduate of the Community College of Philadelphia and Rosemont College (BA in psychology), Sarah has built a career in working with people in challenging situations. She takes an empathetic approach and strives to empower people to realize that they are the experts of themselves.
Sarah models her work on the tenets of social justice and equity. She is proud to be a part of Open Hearth and witness social justice in action.
Marcia graduated from Chestnut Hill College with a Bachelor of Science in psychology and completed her Master of Arts in ministry studies from Grace College and Seminary. Marcia has worked in the social service field for over ten years. Her professional work experience includes child welfare, mental health, disability, and aging services. These experiences have allowed her to provide effective and quality service by advocating for those in more adverse situations. Looking to raise awareness of and reduce the stigma surrounding mental health, Marcia became a Certified Mental Health Coach, where she helps those struggling to develop a healthy balance in life, guides decision-making, offers support in navigating mental health difficulties, and assists in establishing a recovery plan.
Marcia joined Open Hearth in June 2023 as a Client Services Coordinator for the Continuum of Care Permanent Supportive Housing Program. She looks forward to utilizing her skills and passion to serve others.
Social Media Coordinator
Lynzie has always held a deep appreciation for connecting with communities, whether they are large or small. During her college journey, she decided to merge her love for community engagement with her interests in photography and design. This led her to pursue a degree in Social Media Theory and Strategy, with a minor in Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, alongside Studio Art, where she specialized in photography.
While attending Kutztown University, Lynzie had the opportunity to intern with the Phoenixville Chamber of Commerce, an experience that further solidified her passion for community engagement and opened doors to joining Open Hearth’s staff in May of 2023. She loves working with non-profit organizations, as helping others has always brought her joy. Combining her digital expertise with this purpose-driven work is a source of genuine happiness for her. Lynzie is also currently employed at Trees Upstate, a non-profit organization in South Carolina.
In her spare time, you’ll often find Lynzie with a camera in hand, capturing the beauty of nature through photographs of flowers, trees, or moments with loved ones. Her life centers around her digital expertise, a love for the arts, a desire to make a positive impact through non-profit work, and a deep appreciation for the natural world.
Brad graduated from Temple University with a bachelor’s degree in finance. His career started at a major marketing firm that focused on digital solutions for small and medium sized businesses. His focus was on customer service relations to resolve customer concerns and budgeting issues. His goal, coupled with diplomacy and sensitivity towards customer needs, was to maintain positive client and business relations in delicate situations. Brad joined the Open Hearth team in November of 2022 with a passion to apply his knowledge of finance and business to his work as a Financial Navigator with a focus on contributing to the success of those he serves.
Heidi is an alum of Geneva College with a bachelor’s degree in psychology and a minor in philosophy. She has been in social work since 2018 and prior to joining our staff in 2022 worked closely with Open Hearth in her role as a Case Manager at a partner organization. As a Financial Navigator at the United Way of Chester County Financial Stability Center, Heidi brings extensive knowledge of community resources along with passion for self-advocacy, empathy, and organization.
Anneikkia is a University of Phoenix alumna who holds a Bachelor of Science in business management. She began her career in customer service, where her focus was on problem resolution and quality service. She has volunteered in several community programs such as the Special Olympics; Salvation Army food bank, weekly meals, and Christmas program; singing at nursing homes; and various church activities. As the Permanent Housing Program Coordinator, Anneikkia brings her extensive knowledge in administration, customer service, finance, interpersonal communication, and problem resolution.
Emily is a Muhlenberg College alumna who graduated in 2023 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in International Studies. She has previously worked as a Fundraising and Development Intern at DMAX Foundation in Bryn Mawr, where she was able to explore the “behind-the-scenes” of a mental health nonprofit. After studying in Rabat, Morocco and working as a Democracy Team intern at FMAS, a Moroccan social justice organization, Emily is excited to help work towards Open Hearth’s mission to connect people in her own community with housing and the skills to work towards financial independence.
- Edwin Santiago, President
- David Shellenberger, Vice President/Treasurer
- Lisa Korab, Secretary
- Crystal Johns
- David Megay, Esq.
- Melissa E. Scott, Esq.
- Ryan Dadoly
- Lonna King