Alliance for Girls mobilizes girls’ champions to address barriers facing girls, create conditions for their success, and advance systemic change to achieve equity.
To advance equitable communities in which every girl thrives.
We are the largest regional alliance of girl-serving organizations and leaders in the country. Our membership includes 100+ organizations that employ 2,400 people with more than 5,100 volunteers serving more than 300,000 girls across nine Bay Area counties.
Since its inception, Alliance for Girls has been catalyzing agencies and systems to work strategically, passionately, and collectively to dramatically shift gender-specific realities and to ensure that the next generation of women and girls realize their full potential. View our timeline →
Our Spirit: Inclusiveness, Collaboration, Fearlessness, Self-Care, Participation
Our Goals: Leadership Development, Collaboration, Research, Advocacy
That those closest to the problem are closest to the solution
In moving beyond the gender binary
That diverse leadership is more effective leadership
In the power of the collective
Alea Chedekel joins Alliance for Girls as the Executive Assistant. In her role, Alea coordinates executive correspondence, strengthens organization for internal databases and systems, and supports a variety of grant and reporting work in order to grow Alliance for Girls’ administrative capacity.
Alea graduated from American University in 2019 with a B.A. in Political Science with a focus in Gender, Race and Politics, and Public Health. Alea brings internal coordination and organizing experience from a breadth of political campaign and non-profit work, including multiple member organizations of AFG such as NARAL Pro-Choice California and Shalom Bayit. Alea’s passion for gender equity work stems from her connection to the Jewish value of Tikkun Olam, “repairing the world,” and her commitment to advocate for reproductive justice and liberation.
Outside of work Alea can be found learning to cook something new, reading about sustainable fashion, volunteering to improve reproductive health access, or enjoying a local hiking trail.
Alliance for Girls’ (AFG) is thrilled to announce the promotion of Chantal Hildebrand as the organization’s first Deputy Director. Chantal first joined AFG in February 2021 as the Director of Programs. Chantal’s leadership and expertise will help shape the next phase of impact of our dynamic organization, whose budget and staff have grown tremendously in recent years, and whose programs continue to grow in complexity, scale and reach.
Chantal has almost a decade’s worth of experience working in the nonprofit sector to advance equity, through community mobilization, capacity building, advocacy, technical assistance, community-based participatory action research, and program management in international and California-based programming. She brings an intersectional lens and a passion for creating spaces for historically oppressed populations to share their diverse experiences and lead decision-making processes to improve their lives and wellbeing, and that of their communities. Prior to joining AFG, she worked as a program manager at Rise Up where she managed the organization’s programming in five sub-Saharan African countries and California, developing the capacity of civil society and nonprofit leaders in girl and women-led advocacy to advance improve the lives of women and girls in their communities and countries. Through these programs, Chantal helped fund over 50 civil society organizations’ advocacy strategies that contributed to the amendment, passage, and implementation of over 20 policies, implementation guidelines, and budgets addressing issues of gender inequity at the local, state, and national level.
Chantal received her Masters degrees from the University of California, Berkeley in Public Health and City Planning, where she explored the relationship between the built environment, health, opportunity, gender, race, access, policy, and socio-economics.
Outside of work, Chantal is an artist and printmaker and volunteers with local and global organizations fighting for racial justice. She enjoys spending time in nature, swimming, and trying new foods.
Interim Executive Director
Cynthia Nimmo is a global leader for gender equity. Most recently, as the President and CEO of the Women’s Funding Network (WFN) she expanded its membership of women’s funds and foundations to include a multi-sectoral, $400mm, global alliance unified in a shared goal of achieving gender equity. Under her tenure, millions of dollars were raised to establish multi-state partnerships to erode the systems keeping low-income women in poverty by focusing on holistic approaches to economic security. WFN’s sold-out Women Funded conferences highlighted the most entrenched challenges society faces – from gender-based violence to the climate crisis – and spotlighted the women and girl leaders from around the world with the expertise to meet these crises.
Cynthia has worked as a strategic advisor to UN Women, She the People, and other non-profit organizations advancing the lives of women and girls. She is a native of the Bay Area and serves on the Board of Directors for Santa Clara University. Cynthia is Peruvian-Amerian, and the proud daughter of an immigrant, with extended family throughout the U.S. and Peru.
Finance and HR Administrator
Danielle Sims Montgomery
Danielle has worked for more than 20 years in administration, bookkeeping, and Human Resources. She has her Masters Degree in Psychology and has earned her Professional Human Resource Certification. She specializes in working with small organizations and non-profit industries and has a passion for helping youth and young adults reach their full potential.
Favorite Quote: If you do not have a goal, you are just complaining!
In her free time she enjoys spending her free time with her sons and her husband of 29 years.
Founding Executive Director
Emma Mayerson is the Founding Executive Director of Alliance for Girls (AFG), the nation’s largest membership association of girls-serving organizations. Under Ms. Mayerson’s leadership AFG has become the nation’s largest regional alliance of girls’ organizations, working collectively to ensure girl-serving organizations are more connected, more effective and better able to prepare the girls of today to be the leaders of tomorrow.
Prior to AFG, Mayerson was a community organizer for the Domestic Workers Bill of Rights, and worked in development for the Jewish Community Federation of San Francisco and the Women’s Foundation of California. She has also served on the Board of Directors for Bend the Arc: A Jewish Partnership for Justice, ProjectGlimmer, and the Jewish Community Federation’s Impact Grants Initiative.
Mayerson is a recipient of Oasis for Girls’ Spark Award for Visionary Leadership, the National Council on Jewish Women’s Outstanding Advocate for Social Change Award, the Delilah Beasley Award, Love Never Fail’s Advocacy for At-Risk Girls Award and the National Girls Initiative Innovation Award. She has also received honors in recognition of her leadership from the San Francisco Commission on the Status of Women and Equal Rights Advocates. Her work has been featured on CBS Channel 4 News, ABC 7 News, KCBS, the Oakland Post, NPR’s All Things Considered and Telemundo.
Haleema Bharoocha joined Alliance for Girls’ staff in June 2019, as the Advocacy Manager to build out a girl’s policy agenda and mobilize alliance members for gender justice. Now as Advocacy Director, she leads county and state level advocacy to meet the expressed needs of girls and gender expansive youth. Most recently, she led advocacy with AFG members to secure funding to address period poverty, support the needs of young moms, and address safety from gender-based violence on public transportation.
Haleema is a sociologist, public servant, and change maker driven by her commitment to the collective liberation of all people. Uplifted by generations of women of color in her family, Haleema centers her work in compassion, justice, and service. Following the teachings of the Quran which says “stand firm in justice even against yourself and your parents,” Haleema speaks truth to power in her advocacy and engages in critical self-reflection.
She believes in the power of people to make systematic change. Outside of Alliance for Girls, Haleema is a consultant and trainer, facilitating equity-focused workshops for advocates on topics including bystander intervention, Islamophobia, racial equity, and gender justice and has trained over 700 people. Haleema is also a self-defense trainer and facilitator at Malikah, a nonprofit that builds safety and power for all women.
Haleema studied Sociology at Seattle University, where she founded the Gender Justice Center, a student-led community center serving gender non-conforming, trans*, and female-identifying students, which provided trauma-informed healing circles, access to lactation facilities, non-binary sex education, and a free community food and hygiene pantry. She is an alumnus of the Women’s Policy Institute, Greenlining Institute, and Rockwood Leadership program. Her work was featured in the Seattle Times #UsToo highlighting the voices of Muslim women of color. Her views have been shared in Teen Vogue, San Francisco Chronicle, and Gizmodo, and other media outlets.
Outside of organizing and social justice work, you can find Haleema at her local CrossFit gym where she does weightlifting or at the beach drinking coffee.
Director of Membership Services
Kailin Chou joined Alliance for Girls’ staff in July 2014, providing broad support for leaders of girl-serving organizations, managing membership engagement and outreach, developing Alliance for Girls’ communications, and coordinating services and resources among members and the community. Since joining, Alliance for Girls has become the largest alliance of girls’ organizations and champions working collectively to effect powerful change for girls, young women, and their communities.
Kailin has a strong passion for supporting children, youth, and marginalized communities. She has more than a decade of experience in the nonprofit sector, both in direct service and in management and administration. This includes mentoring children, supporting unhoused people at emergency shelters, developing the digital strategy for a large international NGO, consulting local nonprofits, and leading awareness campaigns on human trafficking.
Kailin has a Masters in Public Administration from the Middlebury Institute of International Studies, with concentrations in Nonprofit Management and International Development. Her studies culminated in a consultancy for the Community Alliance for Safety and Peace, an alliance of over 30 stakeholders in Monterey County working together to reduce gang violence in Salinas and its surrounding areas. She also holds a B.S. in Management Science/Economics from the University of California, San Diego.
Kailin enjoys cooking, the outdoors, art and design, traveling, and learning languages.
Associate Program Manager
Kendall Roberts joined the Alliance for Girls’ (AFG) staff in January 2022 as the Associate Program Manager. Kendall holds a Masters in Social Work and is a Certified Community Coach. Over the last six years, her work has been centered in supporting BIPOC youth and adults that experience exploitation and gender-based violence, through 1:1 counseling, advocacy, healing circles, and educational workshops.
Kendall’s goal is to redefine how community organizations support BIPOC folks that experience sexual violence. She believes that it begins with service providers, providing community leaders and organizations with the necessary tools to build healing spaces within their own communities.
Outside of AFG, Kendall is a consultant, coach and healer. She creates accessible healing spaces for BIPOC folks to heal, learn, and rediscover their joy by reconnecting them with traditional and ancestral modalities of healing through plant medicine, healing circles, and storytelling.
Krystele Chavez joined the Alliance for Girls’ (AFG) staff in August 2021 as the Communications Manager. Through this role, she leads their communications efforts to amplify AFG’s mission and programs, as well as to inspire and engage AFG’s diverse network of stakeholders, funders and partners to improve the lives of girls* on the margins.
Krystele has nearly a decade’s worth of experience working in the public sector. She believes in the power of storytelling and its ability to inspire good and advocate for change, utilizing her bachelor’s degree in communications and political science from Simon Fraser University, certification in video production from the University of British Columbia, and leadership training from the Justice Institute of British Columbia. As a youth mentor and leader in her local community, she especially believes in giving back and making a difference.
Although she was also a marketing content writer for an international tour operator, her strong purpose-driven conviction led her to the affordable housing and homelessness sector in Canada. For five years, Krystele led the development and implementation of the digital communications infrastructure for the BC Non-Profit Housing Association and their Housing Central partners, the Co-operative Housing Federation of BC, Community Land Trust Foundation of BC and COHO Management Services Society.
Krystele also serves as a Board Member to international charity People of Grace International Foundation, is a Committee Member for the Women’s National Housing and Homelessness Network in Canada, and hosts an annual fundraiser to give back to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at the hospital where her preemie son stayed for three months. As an avid traveler, her experiences abroad, particularly in India, Nepal and Indonesia, have influenced her perspective on life, especially in overcoming adversity, building authentic connections and transformation.
Miari Stephens joins Alliance for Girls (AFG) as the Program Coordinator. In this role, she provides support for event and meeting planning to ensure smooth and efficient program administration for both AFG and member-led events. She brings experience from organizing event programming, conferences, and workshops within campus-based organizations for graduate students of color. Miari is passionate about youth education and mentorship- she has served as a mentor for college student researchers through the Leadership Alliance’s Summer Research Opportunity Program at Harvard and as faculty for the Pre-College Summer at Harvard program teaching a course on Race, Gender, Class and Politics of Beauty and Aesthetics for visiting high school students. As a Ph.D. candidate in African & African American studies, Miari is writing a dissertation centering Black Puerto Rican women’s use of social media to organize for racial and gender justice through strengthening networks of Black feminist organizing and curating community-driven narratives online.
Interim Director of Operations
Ronni Goldfarb joins Alliance for Girls as Interim Director of Operations. In this capacity, Ronni is leveraging her considerable organizational development expertise to support AFG as it advances best practices in internal policies and operational practices in fulfillment of AFG’s mission.
Ms. Goldfarb is the Founder of Equal Access International (EAI) and served as President & CEO since EAI’s inception in 2000 until January 2018. Under her leadership, Equal Access International grew from zero to $12.5 MM annually and developed its mission and unique people-centered methodology for creating measurable social change for millions of the most marginalized people across the developing world. Under her leadership, EAI implemented award-winning programs that created measurable positive change with regard to violence against women and girls, human rights, and youth empowerment through direct community engagement and interactive social and educational media programming. During her tenure, EAI grew from a single program in one country – to have large scale country programs in 10 countries, reaching more than 200 million people across Asia, Africa, and the Middle East, with more than 75 million active/regular listeners and viewers and engaging more than 100,000 participants in interactive community engagement activities and social media platforms.
Currently, Ronni serves on the EAI Board of Directors, where her extensive knowledge and expertise contributes to EAI’s continued growth. Ms. Goldfarb is a Global Social Benefit Institute (GSBI) – Miller Center for Social Entrepreneurship Fellow. In 2010 Ms. Goldfarb was appointed by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton as a Commissioner on Education to the National Commission to UNESCO.
Prior to founding Equal Access International, Ms. Goldfarb worked for more than 16 years as an Executive Producer/ Strategic Communications Consultant where she implemented innovative communication initiatives, multimedia events, and programs for United Nations Agencies and Fortune 500 Corporations. Ronni holds a Bachelor of Arts cum laude from SUNY Buffalo and studied Cultural Anthropology at New York University, and Media at NYU Film School and the School of Visual Arts.
Uchenna Esomonu is the 2021 Membership Fellow at Alliance For Girls. She joined the organization in 2020 serving on the Young Women’s Leadership Board where she helped champion youth-driven research that produced the Uniting Isolated Voices: Girls and Gender-Expansive Youth During COVID-19 report. She also served as a youth design strategist on the first Bay Area community and youth-led effort to end gender-based violence on public transportation. She hopes to leverage this position to amplify her work as a gender justice advocate and community leader.
She is passionate about expanding support services for girls* and gender-expansive youth as well as increasing girls*’ awareness and access to these services. Her goal is to help create a society that prioritizes girls*’ wellness and safety – one where barriers to girls*’ success no longer exist.
Outside of work, Uchenna is a full-time student at Sacramento State University working to earn a Bachelors Degree in Journalism. She has worked as a student journalist covering important issues to Sacramento locals. She is also a fiction writer striving to tells stories that humanize and celebrate people who have been written off of popular narratives.
Viviana Arenas is the 2021 Advocacy Fellow at Alliance for Girls where she joined the team to co-lead the “When Young Moms Thrive, We All Do” one year pilot program in Santa Clara County. In addition, Viviana is supporting Alliance for Girls’ overall advocacy program to facilitate collective advocacy for systemic change to create radical safety for girls* and gender-expansive youth at the local and state level in California.
She hopes to continue her work by helping people get access to valuable resources, knowledge, and to be an advocate for her community. Viviana is passionate about breaking down the barriers that young families face such as unaffordable child care costs, access to basic resources, and gender inequity. She envisions a world where all young families and their children have the resources they need to thrive.
Outside of work, Viviana is a full time mom of three, two girls and one boy. She is motivated everyday by her children who inspire her to create a better future for them. Viviana served as an Ambassador for Teen Success Inc. (TSI) for the last four years, and is an alumni of the 2017 program cohort. Through her perseverance and determination, she was able to receive a scholarship through TSI upon graduating from high school. She is also a part time college student in the Bay Area studying to receive her Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration.
Alliance for Girls' work is possible thanks to the leadership, wisdom, and dedication of many incredible girls' champions.
Here are some of them below.
The Advocacy Committee is responsible for guiding Alliance for Girls' work to advance systems change. The committee is tasked with co-creating AFG's Girls Policy Agenda by providing detailed feedback, identifying the political feasibility and will of policy, and working closely with their community/constituents to bring key input into the agenda.
2009: Founding Members Convene
Directors of eight girl-serving organizations convene to confront the shared challenges and barriers they face in fully realizing their missions with emphasis on:
- Lack of support for leaders of girls' services
- Lack of infrastructure to share resources, collaborate and refer girls
- Lack of advocacy for girls’ programs
2012: Official Launch
Organizing Conference is held with 80 organizational leaders to identify individual and sector-wide needs within the framework of three programming areas:
- Self-Care: Leadership development for staff of girls' services
- Collaboration: Online directory of girls' services and opportunities
- Advocacy: Unified voice for seat at decision-making tables
As well as shared values:
- Spirit: Inclusiveness, collaboration, fearlessness, self-care, participation
- Goals: Leadership development, collaboration, advocacy
2012-Present: Realizing the Vision
Alliance for Girls continues to develop, refine and expand its programming in line with the organizing vision:
- Leadership Development: Knowledge sharing, relationship building and training between agencies
- Collaboration: Growth from eight to 100+ members, enabling greater resource-sharing and collaboration
- Research: Production of original, girl-led and community-driven research reports on the lived experiences of girls
- Advocacy: Development of strong voice to effectively advocate for girls and girls' services
Some key stats:
- 200 total members
- Collectively serving 300,000 girls and gender-expansive youth
- 85% membership renewal rate
- 100+ collaborations between members