Young Professional Leadership Council
Hana Shahin, co-chair
Hana is an Accounting Manager at MacAndrews & Forbes, a top private equity firm. She is a finance professional with an exceptional track record leading business development initiatives that drive savings and enhance productivity. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Accounting and Finance from the National Liberal Arts and Engineering School, Paris, France, and will be embarking on her Executive MBA at Cornell University starting in 2017. She is fluent in French and Dutch. Hana has been inspired by her foster family and her childhood to use her business acumen to make a difference in the not-for-profit world.
Maria Vlassenko, co-chair
Maria Vlassenko is an attorney in New York City. She has extensive experience representing public and private companies in connection with various corporate and securities law issues. She is fluent in her native Hebrew and Russian languages, and is proficient in German. Maria holds an LL.M from Columbia Law School, and an LL.B from Tel Aviv University. She has joined Children’s Rights because she believes that every child deserves a happy childhood.
Christine Rivera, treasurer
Christine is a financial services professional with 13 years of experience leading teams coupled with accounting, finance, financial services and project management experience. She is presently responsible for driving, coordinating and implementing a portfolio of Wealth Management programs for the Americas within Deutsche Bank. Christine holds an Executive MBA from NYU Stern and is a graduate of Boston University, where she earned her bachelor’s degree in finance.
Kevin Landau, secretary
Kevin Landau is Managing Partner of The Landau Group. Kevin’s experience as an attorney, General Counsel and business advisor, expands over four continents, several countries, a variety of industries and companies ranging from the modestly funded start-up to Fortune 500. Such sectors include but are not limited to: tech/social media, fashion/lifestyle, entertainment, PR, culinary/spirits, hospitality and healthcare. Kevin’s tailored approach, albeit distinct from that of the traditional lawyer, provides a proven dimension to each client’s needs. He is particularly adept balancing the legal considerations with a client’s business objectives. As such his areas of primary focus consist of: business law, contract negotiations, deal formation, project/brand development, M&A and litigation. Beginning with his integral participation with Project Synergy, a federally funded education program dedicated to addressing the needs of urban youth deemed “at-risk”, due to socio-economic or domestic challenges; to his involvement with Sheets From Home, a grassroots non-profit aimed at appointing the hospital beds of sick children with certain comforts, Kevin has remained passionate about improving the lives of children. As a lawyer, he understands the necessity of making changes at a policy level to effectuate profound and sustainable progress. Children’s Rights provides the voice, dedication and power required to be this champion and Kevin is honored to be a part of this cause.
Jason Bressner is an entrepreneur and educator. A biomedical engineer by training, he is the founder of Limpiagua, an innovative startup that employs small tree branches as filters to provide local, clean drinking water for communities in developing countries. He also is President of the Bressner-Santana Baseball Agency, serves as an elected official in Lexington (MA) Town Meeting, and teaches college physics at a small university in Boston. Jason is a graduate of Harvard College and Tufts University, residing in the Boston area with his 5-year old twins. His experiences as a dad are what inspire him to serve with CR, providing highly vulnerable foster children with a powerful voice and a sense of hope.
Jenine Bressner is a maker, a teacher, and a parent. She has been sculpting glass with torches for nearly 20 years, and she also specializes in lasercutting textiles. Jenine has been a Fellow of Craft for the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts. She studied glass at the Rhode Island School of Design and digital fabrication through MIT’s Fab Academy.
“We have art in order not to die of the truth.” – Friedrich Nietzsche
Brittany Davis is a master of science in Social Work candidate at Columbia University studying advanced generalist social work practice and programming with an emphasis on contemporary social issues and a minor in law. She is a graduate of Brown University, where she earned her bachelor’s degree in public policy. A passionate and empathetic advocate, Brittany is committed to empowering individuals who have been exploited through oppressive societal structures. She has experience working on a variety of social justice issues including working to reform the child welfare and criminal justice systems, and eradicate human trafficking and gender-based violence. She has also engaged in direct practice with adolescents and justice-involved women. Her skills include advocacy, case management, classroom facilitation, crisis management, event planning, mentoring, mitigation, policy analysis, program development and evaluation, project management, public speaking, research, small group facilitation, staff training and development, supportive counseling, trauma-informed practice, writing reports, and youth leadership development.
Candice Chachkin is the Northeast Regional Recruiter for NFC Amenity Management. As a Red Cross Licensed Training Provider she runs employee certification classes and is also the owner of Saving Certs, an organization that teaches lifesaving skills to professionals and laypeople. With a 5-year history in the foster care system, Candice is dedicated and committed to Children’s Rights and their mission.
Motell G. Foster
Motell Foster is a graduate of the NYU Tisch School of the Arts. Hailing from Alabama, Motell has a love for nature and the Alabama Crimson Tide. At the age of 7 he was placed into foster care and remained under state custody until aging out at 21. Foster care reform is a central passion for Motell. Theatre is as well. At the moment Motell is attempting to combine the two and is in the early stages of developing a drama therapy framework for older foster youth. Motell is excited to be a part of Children’s Rights and its mission.
Cindy L. Taylor
Cindy Taylor is the founder of Full Extent Coaching LLC, a coaching and consulting practice. Cindy has over 20 years of experience in Financial, Retail and Accounting corporate offices helping leaders and their employees meet the challenges of a business world that is constantly changing. Cindy has a long history of volunteering with organizations focused on youth engagement, supporting women and their children and food pantry support. Cindy is a Certified Coach, holds a MS in Organizational Change Management, BA in Liberal Arts and has formally studied the field of Fundraising and Philanthropy.
Samrat Singh is a Vice President and Private Client Associate with U.S. Trust, Bank of America Private Wealth Management in Princeton, New Jersey. Samrat earned his M.B.A. from the Johnson Graduate School of Management at Cornell University. He also holds a master’s degree in industrial & systems engineering from Texas A&M University and a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Ramaiah Institute of Technology in India. He began his career as a financial advisor in New York City and also worked as an industrial engineer in private industry before joining U.S. Trust.