Meet MOASH's staff:
Taryn Gal - Executive director
Taryn Gal, MPH, CPH, CHES (Ann Arbor) is the Executive Director at the Michigan Organization on Adolescent Sexual Health (MOASH), where she has held various roles since 2011. During her time at MOASH, she has worked alongside youth to break down the siloed approach to adolescent sexual health issues, in order to effectively address all that intersects with sexual and reproductive health among young people in Michigan. Taryn has worked in the field of sexual health for over 17 years and, prior to her work at MOASH, worked as a sexuality educator, HIV test counselor, and research assistant in HIV-prevention curriculum development. Currently, she is a board member for GLSEN Southeast Michigan Chapter and is the co-chair of the Ann Arbor Public Schools Sexual Health Education Advisory Committee.
brittany batell - program director
Brittany Batell, MPH, MSW (she/her) is the Program Director at MOASH. She graduated with her dual master’s from the University of Michigan’s School of Social Work (Interpersonal Practice and Mental Health concentration) and School of Public Health (Health Behavior and Health Education program), with additional specializations in gender and sexuality health and health communications. She has worked and volunteered for over 10 years in the field as a sex educator, reproductive justice advocate, and manager/health consultant at the S3 Safe Sex Store in Ann Arbor. Some particular areas of interest include comprehensive sex education; healthy relationships and communication; and the use of creative expression and improv techniques in health education and care settings. She also serves on the Coordinating Council of the Sex Education Collaborative and serves as co-chair of Ann Arbor's Sexual Health Education Advisory Committee.
CAROLYN HERRMANN - FINANCE DIRECTOR
Carolyn Herrmann (Ann Arbor) is the Finance Director for MOASH. She graduated from Eastern Michigan University with a BBA in Accounting. Carolyn and her husband are raising two teen sons, one of whom is part of the LGBTQ+ community. Carolyn has a long history of volunteering within Ann Arbor Public Schools, including as School Garden Coordinator at several schools. As a native Michigander, she is very excited to be helping support the great work being done by MOASH.
shakti rambarran - advocacy director
Shakti Rambarran, MPH, MS (she/her) is an advocate and educator for LGBTQ+ inclusive, racially diverse, culturally competent, and evidence-based sexual and reproductive health. She holds a Master's in Public Health (MPH) and certificate in Sexuality, Sexual & Reproductive Health from Columbia's Mailman School of Public Health, and a Masters of Science (MS) in Social Psychology, with a focus on intergroup stigma and discrimination, from Ohio University. Briefly, some of her experience includes teaching comprehensive sex-ed to middle school students, writing for the award-winning health promotion website, Go Ask Alice!, researching prejudice and discrimination towards bisexual and transgender* individuals within interpersonal relationships, and program evaluation for PPFA's Chat/Text pilot program at Ohio University. Her passion and deep understanding for promoting sexual and reproductive health has led her to extensively engage in activism and advocacy in various forms, including meeting with political leaders, testifying against anti-choice bills, and utilizing relational organizing to encourage others to exercise their political privileges with those most marginalized in mind. She prioritizes keeping her work intersectional, culturally-competent, accessible, and evidence-based as failure to do so only promotes erasure, misinformation, and further harm against marginalized individuals. Likewise, she recognizes that we are beyond one individual or small group of political figures, and that real power lies within grassroots organizing, engagement, and mass movements. With all this in mind, she is thrilled to join the MOASH team to continue her advocacy efforts!
LORI RASMUSSEN - HUMAN RESOURCES Contractor
Lori Rasmussen (she/her) has worked 17+ years non-profit sector and the last year in the HR field. Lori graduated from Michigan State with her Bachelor’s Degree in International Relations and from Grand Valley with her Master’s in Public Administration In 2018 she attained the coveted SHRM-SCP credential. Her work includes spearheading successful change management processes, overseeing recruitment and talent management, creating improved processes and procedures to increase efficiency, managing teams, board governance, overseeing complex budgets of up to $4 million, conducting needs assessments, and program evaluation. Lori serves on the board of Family Promise of the Lakeshore, a local organization providing support to homeless families. Lori lives in Muskegon with her husband, twins, dog, cat and a bunch of wildlife. She is excited to be on the MOASH team supporting the great work being done!
CHARDAE BROCKMAN - PROGRAM COORDINATOR
Chardae Brockman: Through her professional and volunteer experiences, Chardae has worked with thousands of youth in the Metro Detroit area, including adjudicated youth, pregnant and parenting teens, as well as young women exiting the commercial sex industry. As an advocate for youth, she has developed multiple social integration activities to help build stronger support systems for adolescents. Chardae completed her undergraduate education at Michigan State University, obtaining a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Journalism. She continued her educational journey by completing the Sexual Health Education Certificate Program through the School of Social Work at the University of Michigan. She went on to obtain her Master’s Degree in Community Based Health Education from Wayne State University. Chardae is excited to bring her experiences, energy, and enthusiasm to the MOASH team.
Katie andrews - BOOKKEEPER
Katie Andrews (Ann Arbor) is a bookkeeper for MOASH. She holds a master’s degree in statistics and an undergraduate degree in mathematics with a concentration in economics. Katie is passionate about youth education. She has worked for over 20 years as a mathematics teacher of adolescents and young adults. She has also worked in various settings as a bookkeeper, tax preparer, and statistician. Katie and her husband raised three daughters who are now in their 20s, one of whom is part of the LGBTQ community. Katie is excited to support the incredibly important work that MOASH is doing.
PATTY DURELL - SEXUAL VIOLENCE PREVENTION COORDINATOR
Patty Durell (she/her) is a lifelong Michigander and the state's biggest fan. She holds undergraduate degrees in Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies and Political Science. Her favorite role is community member, and she is committed to centering direct care and mutual aid work in and out of nonprofit spaces. Prior to MOASH, Patty was a community organizer for reproductive freedom and collaborated on environmental conservation efforts. She has worked closely on destigmatizing abortion and addressing implicit biases to help better ourselves and our causes. She has 7+ years of experience in youth empowerment and curriculum creation. Patty is thrilled to work alongside students in support of sexual violence prevention and healthy relationships.
DEVIN GOLDSTEIN - DISABILITY ACCESS COORDINATOR
Devin Goldstein (he/him) is a Deaf Disabled trans man. He is the Disability Access Coordinator and MY Access Youth Advisory Council facilitator. A former YAC member, Devin brings a youth's voice to MOASH's staff. Leading using both personal and professional experiences, he is working to standardize approaches to accessibility and inclusion throughout MOASH and sex education for youth in Michigan. A student at Gallaudet University, Devin studies the 'epistemology of intersectionality: gender, sexuality, and disability.' This gives him the educational background to empower Disabled Michigan youth to learn about and advocate for sexual health services and education for the Disabled community. Devin is a fierce advocate for youth and has volunteered in a mentor capacity working with hundreds of LGBT+ and Disabled youth since high school years. Devin is so excited to take this next step in creating accessible and Disability-focused sex education with MOASH.
NOELLE KELLOGG - Communications contractor
Noelle Kellogg, CHES (Lansing) graduated from Central Michigan University in 2016 with a Bachelor of Science in Community Health Education, which was where she first facilitated a sexuality education program as an intern in the Office of LGBTQ Services. Since then, she has continued to work and volunteer in the fields of sexual and mental health as an educator, facilitator, and advocate, both in Oklahoma City and in her home state of Michigan. Her areas of interest include comprehensive and affirming sexuality education, healthy relationships and violence prevention, and LGBTQ+ health and wellness. She is particularly passionate about fostering authentic youth partnerships to build a safer and healthier future for all, and is so excited to be a part of the MOASH team.
shane shananaquet - program coordinator
Shane Shananaquet (He/Him) is a Program Coordinator at MOASH. He is currently a Junior at the University of Michigan majoring in Sociology and Social Work. Before serving on the MY Voice council for 2 years, Shane spoke in front of the Michigan State Board of Education in regards to passing a Guidance to protect LGBTQ+ students, served as a Youth Ambassador for both the Women’s March on Washington and the Tyler Clementi Foundation, and interned for the ACLU. He has a strong passion for promoting intersectionality and inclusivity in schools and is excited to be joining the MOASH team. In his free time, he enjoys road tripping and going to concerts, shows, and festivals.
NATASHA THOMAS - PROGRAM COORDINATOR
Natasha Thomas is a writer, youth advocate, and artist-activist. From 2009-2018, she served as co-founder and Executive Director of RAISE IT UP! Youth Arts & Awareness (RIU), an award-winning organization that promoted youth engagement, expression, and empowerment through performance, literary art, and social activism. In 2018, she became a Regional Organizing Director for NextGen America’s NextGen Rising initiative, the youth organizing and voter mobilization and of NextGen America. Her writing has been featured in digital publications and academic journals such as the Hollywood Reporter, The Body is Not an Apology (TBINAA), AlterNet, and Kalfou: A Journal of Comparative and Relational Ethnic Studies. Natasha has performed/presented at various venues, conferences, and festivals including Harry Belafonte’s inaugural Many Rivers to Cross Music and Social Justice Festival in Atlanta, at the African-American Policy Forum’s (AAPF) Breaking the Silence Retreat at Vassar College, and for the #SayHerName Campaign at the African American Women and the Law Conference in Washington, DC. As a poet and speaker, she has had the honor of sharing the stage with artists and activists such as Stevie Wonder, Kimberle’ Crenshaw, bell hooks, Janelle Monae, Barbara Smith, Ryan Coogler, Sonia Sanchez, Jessie Williams, John Legend and more.
JAMES TULPPO - POLICY INTERVENTION COORDINATOR
James Tulppo is the Policy Intervention Coordinator at MOASH. He graduated from Michigan State University in 2020 with a BA in Public Policy, minoring in Leadership of Organizations. James worked part-time as a Project Assistant on the Michigan Department of Education’s LGBTQ Students Project, on which MOASH is now the fiscal agent, for 4 years before joining full-time as Policy Intervention Coordinator. He is an identical twin and very passionate about cat-themed knick-knacks and social justice, not necessarily in that order.
Katie Lemmer - Program coordinator
Katie Lemmer (she/hers) is a Program Coordinator at MOASH. She graduated from the Ohio State University in 2021 with a BSEd in English Education and a minor in Women’s Gender and Sexuality Studies. In college, she was a leader of a student organization that focused on volunteering at local LGBTQ+ organizations and was a LGBTQ peer mentor through the Multicultural Center. Katie worked part-time as the Project Assistant on the Michigan Department of Education’s LGBTQ Students Project, on which MOASH is now the fiscal agent, for 5 months before joining MOASH full-time. She is excited to be doing work supporting her passions of education and youth wellness as a part of the MOASH team.
Meet MOASH's Board of Directors:
Colby spencer cesaro - BOARD CO-CHAIR
Colby Spencer Cesaro, MPA, (Ann Arbor) is Vice President at the Michigan Independent Colleges and Universities association (MICU). In her role, she focuses her time analyzing data on the contributions of higher education institutions, their students, and graduates to the economy, enhancing awareness of the importance of higher education to policymakers and the public. Outside of MICU, Ms. Spencer Cesaro is Board Co-Chair of the Michigan Organization on Adolescent Sexual Health (MOASH). MOASH’s work is focused on mobilizing youth voices, engaging community partners, and educating decision-makers to advance sexual health, identities, and rights for youth. Ms. Spencer Cesaro is also Board Chair of The Arts Alliance, a non-profit focused on arts advocacy throughout Washtenaw County and the State of Michigan. The Arts Alliance works collaboratively with National Endowment for the Arts and other organizations nationally. Ms. Spencer Cesaro holds a Bachelor of Science in elementary and special education from New York University with a concentration on vocal performance and music. She holds a Master of Public Administration in urban/social policy and econometric/quantitative analysis from the School of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University in New York City.
Craig VanKempen - Board Co-Chair
Craig VanKempen, LMSW, MPH (Ypsilanti) is a Program Specialist with the Adolescent Health Initiative at Michigan Medicine in Ann Arbor. He is also a clinical therapist in private practice at Integrative Empowerment Group in Ypsilanti, specializing in working with members of the LGBTQ, poly, and kink communities. He has been working on improving the sexual health of adolescents for over two decades. He lives in Ypsilanti with his wife Angela where they spend most of their free time working on theatrical endeavors with the Neighborhood Theatre Group.
NAOMI KHALIL - BOARD TREASURER
Naomi Khalil, (Farmington) is in the eighth year of serving as Director of Instructional Equity for the Farmington Public Schools. In this role, Ms. Khalil leads a number of initiatives, including but not limited to: district diversity initiatives (student lead diversity program, activities for staff and parents, Social Justice training, Minority Student Achievement Network representative, Farmington/Farmington Hills Multicultural Multiracial Council representative, Civil Rights compliance officer); federal programs and grants coordinator; section 504 district coordinator; career focused/career tech education director; and district student assistance program coordinator. Prior to coming to FPS, Ms. Khalil worked for two years as a Spanish HS teacher in Utica Community Schools before spending 11 years as a teacher, curriculum coordinator and principal of the Academy of the Americas school, a dual language immersion K-8 school in the Detroit Public School system. Ms. Khalil also develops and delivers professional development to educators in a number of areas, including privilege & oppression, whiteness, race politics, and gender identity. She roots these sessions in the needs of students as she works diligently to be an advocate for and ally to student voice. In addition to her educational experience, Ms. Khalil is a champion of her middle eastern heritage, has native fluency in Spanish, and has lived and traveled extensively abroad. This vast experience, coupled with her life experiences that she shares with her wife and two children, allows Ms. Khalil to bring a unique, yet powerful perspective to the world of diversity work.
DANIEL VANDER LEY
Daniel Vander Ley, MsE, BSEE (Detroit) works in the semiconductor industry as an Applications Program Manager at Osram Opto. Daniel has spent his professional life designing, developing, marketing and selling components in the fields of: Autonomous Systems, Braking, Batteries, Air Bags, and Light-based safety products. With his community engagement Daniel focuses his efforts on building opportunities for youths. In addition to MOASH, he presently serves as the Board VP at a Detroit charter school and has served on the board of the Ruth Ellis Center, a Detroit LGBTQ+ homeless services organization. As a member of the LGBTQ+ community, Daniel is particularly sensitive to the challenges of sexual education and cultural acceptance of sexual and gender minority youths.
Laurie Bechhofer, MPH, (Lansing) has been an advocate, champion and change agent on adolescent sexual health and effective HIV/STD and sex education programs for the past 25 years. She believes in the power and strength of young people to make informed decisions about their relationships, their sexual health, and their future. She has been the HIV/STD Education Consultant with the Michigan Department of Education since 1996, working closely with schools, parents, and communities to promote HIV/STD programs for youth that are consistent with student needs, community norms, the law, and research and best practice. Laurie is committed to acknowledging and addressing the structural barriers that impede equitable health and education outcomes for young people. She has been the project director for a federally-funded grant to promote exemplary sexual health education, access to sexual health services, and safe and supportive school environments for all students. Laurie leads a statewide initiative, A Silent Crisis: Creating Safe and Supportive Schools for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Questioning Students. In 2008, she co-founded the Michigan Organization on Adolescent Sexual Health (MOASH). She has been invited to serve on numerous national panels including the National Sexuality Education Standards Committee, and to speak at a sex education briefing on Capitol Hill. Laurie is a past president for the Society of State Leaders of Health and Physical Education, a Fellow with the American School Health Association, and co-author of a chapter in the book, Case Studies in Global School Health Promotion. She earned her M.P.H. from the University of Michigan and her B.A. in Psychology from Cornell University.
Jen Hsu-Bishop (Grand Rapids) currently serves as Director of the Milton E. Ford LGBT Resource Center at Grand Valley State University. Previously, she served as Director of LBGT Student Services at Western Michigan University and Executive Director of the OutCenter in Benton Harbor, Michigan. With over ten years of experience in higher education and non-profit leadership and administration, Jen has dedicated her career to centering the voices of LGBTQIA+ people and all historically marginalized communities. She is inspired by the resilience, agency, and creativity that comes from community building and co-creating anti-oppressive spaces. Jen holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Michigan and Master of Public Administration degree from Western Michigan University. In her free time she loves to explore new places, food, and ideas, especially with her partner, Kat.
Micaela Stevenson (Ann Arbor) is a medical student at the University of Michigan. She graduated with her Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry and Women’s Studies with a minor in Health and Illness Interdisciplinary Studies. Micaela served on the MY Voice Board for 3 years before becoming a member of the Board of Directors. Currently, Micaela acts as the Executive Director of the Health Equity Scholars Program at the University of Michigan and is the social services coordinator for the University of Michigan Student Run Free Clinic. Micaela currently conducts a wide variety of research, much of which deals with adolescent health. Micaela hopes to become an obstetrician gynecologist in underserved urban communities the future. In her free time, Micaela loves to read and bake cookies.
MAE LEXI ZURITA
Mae Lexi Zurita is a 18 year old transgender woman from west Michigan. She's worked with MOASH on the MY Voice and MY Trans Voice groups as liaison to bridge communications. MOASH has given her the wonderful opportunity to be on the MOASH board as a youth member, and she will not squander the opportunity. While she is young, she hopes to make the most change possible for young queer students all over the United States of America. Politics, policies and law are a few of her side interests as she climbs the mountain of advocacy in America. She's currently studying Organizational Leadership at Davenport University with the goal of making her own LGBT+ focused company after college. You can find her on social media as DuarfS.
Dr. clyde barnett, III
Dr. Clyde Barnett, III, is an educational consultant and an adjunct professor of the Leading for Equity and Justice program at Eastern Michigan University. Dr. B focuses on investigating the possibilities of and barriers to advising through a transformative leadership lens in P-20 education spaces. This investigation occurs through the collection, exploration, and analysis of community voices in both K-12 schools and higher education institutions to inform advising, policy, and practice. To further this work, Dr. B established an educational consulting agency, Discover Without Barriers, where he works on challenging educators through reflective, transformative, and continuous learning. Here, he's fostered numerous partnerships with public schools, charter schools, and government agencies to develop educational professionals into scholar-practitioners. His work is centered on incorporating the voices of students, parents, and community stakeholders who have been historically excluded from decision-making in P-20 spaces. To turn the tide, Dr. Barnett is currently leading numerous student and community voice projects throughout the state of Michigan.
Jenny Wein, CPA, PMP (southeast Michigan) is an IT Manager for the Great Lakes Water Authority. She has over 20 years of experience in business, technology improvement, and organizational change management. Jenny joined MOASH in order to help improve people’s sexual and reproductive confidence and to increase the quality and quantity of resources available to welcome their unique desires. Jenny has a Masters of Business Administration and Masters of Science in global sustainability from the University of Michigan and a Bachelors of Arts in accounting from Michigan State University with a specialization in international business. Outside of her full-time work and volunteering Jenny owns and manages a handful of rental properties and she enjoys creating gardens and habitat for native wildlife.
Nkenge Burkhead is the Organizing Director of Mothering Justice. As organizing director I coordinate community conversations with mothers of color to understand what the community needs are, using their life experience to determine what we ask of legislators. Nkenge has an extensive background in community organizing. She served as fundraising chair for Black Live Matter Detroit. She co-organizes a national community baby shower that specifically serves black mothers. Before coming to Mothering Justice, Nkenge was employed as a prevention specialist for Intimate Partner Violence and advocated for trafficking survivors who experienced homelessness in Detroit. Nkenge believes that being a black woman is a political experience within itself and organizing mothers of color will create the equitable society activists dream of.