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YWCA Monterey County Board of Directors

In an effort to maintain a balanced Board of Directors, we collect applications on a continual basis. To find out more information and apply, please email our general mailbox at info@ywcamc.org

Georgina Mendoza McDowell, Chairman of the Board

Georgina has been working in the youth violence prevention and reduction field for over 14 years. In her current role as Senior Policing Fellow at Evident Change, she is a member of a Monitoring Team working closely with California DOJ, the courts, the community, and law enforcement. Her experience in this field ranges from local, national, and international arenas. She worked as a Senior Crime and Violence Advisor for Creative Associates International, based out of Washington, D.C. with an emphasis on juvenile justice reform, violence prevention, and family and community engagement, with an emphasis in the Latin America & Caribbean (LAC) region. Prior to Creative, Georgina had the honor of working as a political appointee in President Obama’s Department of Justice. She served as a Senior Policy Advisor at the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) with a focus on youth violence prevention efforts and reducing and eliminating race and ethnic disparities. Georgina served as the policy lead on the National Forum for Youth Violence Prevention, a White House initiative that brought diverse federal agencies to partner with local jurisdictions that create comprehensive, strategic city-wide plans to prevent and reduce youth violence by implementing prevention, intervention, enforcement and reentry strategies. Prior to joining OJJDP, she served as the Community Safety Director and Senior Deputy City Attorney/City Prosecutor for the City of Salinas, California. As Community Safety Director, Georgina led the effort to develop and implement a strategic work plan that incorporates evidence-based strategies for gang prevention, intervention, suppression, and re-entry. In October 2011, Georgina was invited by U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder to be a member of his National Task Force on Children Exposed to Violence.

Ms. McDowell earned her bachelor’s degree in History and Political Science from Santa Clara University and her Juris Doctor from Loyola Law School in Los Angeles, California. She is admitted to the California State Bar.

Georgina is also a proud mom to two happy, active and creative toddlers and wife to a wonderful man who recently retired from military service after 23 years. She likes hiking, eating good food with friends and family, and watching Peppa Pig with her kids.

Stephanie Mason, Treasurer of the Board of Directors

Stephanie Mason moved to Salinas in 1999 and attended Hartnell College in 2000. After attending Hartnell, she transferred to Cal State University Monterey Bay. She graduated in 2005, receiving her Bachelor of Arts degree in Social and Behavioral Sciences with a concentration in Sociology. While attending college, she also worked part-time at Monterey County Employees Credit Union while also raising her young son. Hence she continued to work at Monterey County Employees Credit Union after graduating and was employed there for 17 years. She is currently working at Central Coast Federal Credit Union as a Loan Officer. Besides being part of the Board of Directors of the YWCA for almost three years she is also part of the Community Involvement Committee at the Credit Union to assist in their volunteer work with local organizations, such as the United Way Foundation, Relay for Life, Alzheimer’s Association walk and others.

Kimberly Crossman, Director

Kimberly Crossman, a native Floridian, moved to the Monterey peninsula in 2017. She earned her M.S. and Ph.D. in Human Development and Family Studies from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Kimberly is an assistant professor at California State University Monterey Bay where she teaches courses on intimate and family relationships, family risk and resiliency, and research and writing within her discipline. Her research examines gender-based violence and promotes safety and support for women leaving abusive relationships. Kimberly is also passionate about educating young adults about healthy relationships, helping them to identify, understand, and prevent abuse.

Liana Shapiro-Lee, Director

Liana Shapiro-Lee is a California native, growing up in the San Francisco East Bay. She obtained her B.A. in Psychology and Social Behavior from the University of California, Irvine in 2003. Worked her way through college in varying roles including administrative, Human Resources, Sales, Staffing, and Office Management. She then received her M.A. in Counseling Psychology from Argosy University, San Francisco Bay Area in 2012. Since then she has worked the non-profit, Pajaro Valley Prevention and Student Assistance in Watsonville as a Mental Health Clinician and Referral Triage Coordinator. She currently has a Private Practice in the Monterey Lighthouse District treating PTSD and LGBTQ+ adolescents

Anna Maria Velazquez, Board Member

Anna Maria Velazquez was elected Mayor of the City of Soledad in November 2020 becoming the first female Mayor to represent the city in ninety-nine years. Anna was born and raised in the Salinas Valley by farmworker parents. Her father was an active member of the United Farm Workers Union (UFW) and fought alongside Cesar Chavez and Dolores Huerta to bring social, political and economic equality to farmworkers. Anna has over 20 years of experience in local government—including four years as a City Council member and many more in her current position as District Director for a State Senator. Her career in public service, includes 17-years with the City of Salinas where she held the position of Community Development Analyst in the Housing and Community Development Department and Neighborhood Services Coordinator in the office of the City Manager. Anna has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Criminology from CSU, Fresno and an Associate Degree from Hartnell Community College. Her passion for public service has led her to serve on numerous boards and committees focused on creating lasting and positive impacts in the community.

Anna’s policies will continue to focus on the development of affordable and workforce housing, bringing greater transparency and accountability in all functions of local government and creating systems and policies that are inclusive, embrace cultural diversity and encourage community engagement. Anna leads with will honesty, compassion and integrity.