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    Meet the Team

    We are Neighborhood Parents Network of Chicago

     

    Neighborhood Parents Network started in 1980 as a volunteer-run organization. Today, NPN is managed by a full-time Executive Director and a team of part-time directors and managers, and a group of amazing volunteers.

     

    Amy JohnsonAmy Johnson

    Executive Director

     

    Amy joined NPN in 2006. After finding a long-lasting nanny share through NPN , she began volunteering by planning small social events for parents in her neighborhood. She was thrilled to move into a part-time staff position coordinating volunteers in 2012. Amy’s role grew to managing NPN’s programming and events and building partnerships with NPN’s many supporters. She became Executive Director in 2020. Outside of work Amy has served on Burr Elementary School’s Local School Council, led a Cub Scout troop and volunteered with Habitat for Humanity. She lives in Irving Park with her husband, sons and dog.

    Laura BaginskiLaura Baginski

    Director of Marketing & Content

     

    A proud mom of two boys, Laura joined NPN in 2015 after 10 years at Time Out Chicago. She brings writing, editing, business strategy and social media experience to her position at NPN, which she first joined in 2013 as a new mom searching for a nanny. As Director of Marketing & Content, Laura ensures current and potential NPN members are aware of the many NPN member benefits via social media, blog posts, email and in-person event outreach. She and her family live in Old Irving Park.

    Jana KlineJana Kline

    Advertising Operations Manager

     

    Jana joined the NPN team in 2017 and is responsible for advertising operations. Her experience runs the gamut from small, privately owned companies to global conglomerates. As such, she brings a strong and varied advertising background to NPN. With two Chicago kids, Jana understands the unique challenges of raising children in an urban environment and the importance of finding the resources needed to do so. She is excited to bring both her professional and personal experience to NPN. Jana lives in Chicago’s North Side with her husband, two children and an ill-tempered cat.

    tareemaTareema Jean-Baptiste

    Programs Manager

     

    Tareema has been an NPN member and contributor since 2011. She is a devoted wife and mother of three. As a proud advocate for her oldest son, who has special needs, she has a passion to share with others, hopefully helping them on their journey. Using her Real Estate, event management and special needs parent advocate skills, Tareema will continue to support and facilitate NPN's programs. Affectionately nicknamed "The Connector" by her friends and family, she is excited to share creative and inclusive ways for all families to connect throughout the city.

    liz GElizabeth Gourio

    Events Manager

     

    Elizabeth Gourio joined the NPN team in 2021. She became an NPN member prior to the birth of her oldest child and found the New Moms Group to be very helpful in dealing with the anxiety and isolation of new motherhood. As a transplant from the suburbs of Detroit, Michigan, Elizabeth finds NPN to be a reliable guidepost in navigating the struggles and benefits of raising children in Chicago. Elizabeth has a varied work background in the arts, education, sales, project management and technology. She is responsible for managing the numerous events hosted by NPN. Elizabeth lives with her husband and two daughters in the Andersonville neighborhood of Chicago.

    Lauren Viera-small.jpgLauren Viera

    Content Manager

     

    Lauren joined NPN in 2015 as managing editor of Parent to Parent while navigating her first year as a mom. With a long career in writing for publication as a journalist, and copywriting for Fortune 500 companies, Lauren loves how narratives can broaden perspectives and bring communities closer. As Content Manager, she strives to share compelling stories of what it’s like to be a parent in Chicago. She lives in Logan Square with her husband and daughter.

    Sitaara Jones-20210727-small.JPGSitaara Jones

    Senior Social Media Strategist

     

    Combine blogging, social engagement, and content creation and you'll end up with the perfect mixture of all of the things that Sitaara enjoys. A proud mama of three, she enjoys bringing a diverse perspective to parenting and originally joined NPN as a blog contributor. Sitaara couples her experience as a former Chicago Public Schools educator with her experience in email and digital marketing, community engagement, and social media strategy in her position as Senior Social Media Strategist where she loves to make meaningful connections, test out new ideas, and analyze data. When she's not behind her computer, Sitaara enjoys taking in the beauty of the South Side of Chicago with her family. 

    Doloris SchomertDoloris Schombert

    Web Developer

     

    Doloris joined the NPN tech team in 2004. She desires to help families to grow with love. Doloris became a techno-geek when she took her first computer class at DePaul University. When she's not computing, you can find her and her family riding bikes along the lakefront.

    NeliaNelia Opperman

    Accountant

     

    Nelia’s involvement with NPN started in 2005 when she was approached by NPN management regarding tax issues facing the organization. Since then, she continued on being involved with NPN doing various tasks including data entry, event postings, bookkeeping, budgeting and planning, research, audit, tax and financial reporting. Nelia’s work experience includes international tax management positions at Motorola, Aon, and Baxter Labs. She has a BS degree in Education, an MBA, CPA, and attended Roosevelt University and DePaul University.

     

     

    Board of Directors

     

    Marie Lona

    President

    Anita Chandra-Puri

    Julie Busby

    Danielle Gould

     

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