Amy Taylor, Executive Director
Amy combines her passion for education and youth development with a strong background in fundraising and management including 15 years of successfully growing and sustaining programs and organizations. Amy started her career at the YMCA working in before and after- school care and summer camps. From there she served in AmeriCorps working for a program called Youth as Resources, which brought youth and adults together through board membership and service projects. As Executive Director of Formative Years Foundation, Amy helped launch a comprehensive resource directory for child care options, education, playgroups, and health for families living and raising children in Chicago. While pursuing her MSW at Boston University, Amy interned for Early Education for All, a multi-agency committee; and worked as a case manager in the Mission Hill Housing Development linking families to community resources. After graduation, Amy returned to Chicago and worked for Glenwood Academy, a private boarding school for children from low-income, single-parent families. As Director of Development, Amy was instrumental in helping create strategic thinking to diversify the school’s fundraising revenue streams and increase its support from foundations and corporations. During her tenure at Glenwood Academy, Amy transitioned into a case manager role to work directly with youth and their families. Most recently, Amy served as Managing Director of Development and Operations at Accelerate Institute, a non-profit education reform agency, where she oversaw fundraising, and operations.
Hailing from Northwest Indiana, Amy benefited from after-school programming by connecting with her life-long passion of running through cross-country and track. It was during those after-school hours that Amy discovered her athletic ability, formed lasting friendships, and learned how to compete and lead. Amy now embraces Chicago as her hometown after living in the city for over 15 years. Amy lives with her husband and daughter and enjoys every minute of living in such a diverse and beautiful city.
Julieanne Pizarro, Fundraising & Staff Assistant
Working closely with the Executive Director, her roles include prospecting funds and raising awareness, cultivating new and current corporate, public & private foundations, and individual relationships, organizing fundraising events and helping to implement the overall marketing and social media strategy for the Chicago chapter. She is also responsible for managing the team in areas of operations and human resources as well as supporting and maintaining the Young Professionals Board.
Prior to joining the ASAS Family in January 2017, she received her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology, minoring in Moving Image Arts from University of Illinois – Chicago, initially going to grad school in the field of Health Sciences. After volunteering much of her time in the non-profit space, she now focuses on making an impact to her community through fundraising and philanthropy.
During her spare time, you can find Julieanne biking down the Lakeshore trail, creating travel vlogs of near and far places or seeking out local breweries from around the country.
Megan Walbergh, Program Manager
Megan comes to us from Milwaukee, Wisconsin where she recently completed Teach For America as a second grade teacher at Milwaukee College Prep. During her commitment, she served as the head of the math department for her grade-level team and focused on character development of her students. In Milwaukee she received her MA in Education from Alverno College and has her BA in Sociology from DePaul University, where her focus was in public health, specifically HIV/AIDS advocacy. In her free time you can find Megan running the 606 trail, eating ethnic foods from the diverse Chicago neighborhoods, or attending concerts around the city. She is excited to return to the city that she loves and begin working for ASAS.
In her role as Program Coordinator, Megan ensures the success of all ASAS program initiatives in Chicago, with a specific focus on We Are Ready, as well as general program support across all ASAS Chicago schools.
Alyssa Plotkin, Regional Program Manager
Alyssa Plotkin joined the ASAS team in 2013 and currently serves as the Regional Program Manager for the Central Region. Alyssa is responsible for providing programmatic support to ASAS’ Chicago, Cleveland, Columbus, North Texas, San Antonio, and Toledo chapters. Prior to assuming this role, Alyssa was the first-ever ASAS National Program & Volunteer Coordinator, responsible for developing ASAS’ best-in-class corporate engagement and volunteerism program in partnership with ASAS’ development team. Alyssa has also overseen the execution of countless ASAS enrichment camps across the National Network. Prior to joining the ASAS team, Alyssa was a high school ESL mathematics teacher in Miami, FL at Miami Central Senior High School, through Teach for America. She resided in Washington, DC from 2013-2016, where she was a frequent volunteer at the White House. Alyssa currently resides in Chicago, IL and is an avid reader, a volunteer mentor for young women, and a spinning enthusiast.
Alyssa attended the George Washington University in Washington, DC, and holds a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science.