Who We Are

PIP would not be possible without the hard work of our key players on staff, our founders and the Board of Directors

Staff

Jessica Burleson | Executive Director

Jessica has dedicated her career to serving nonprofits and is excited to help Partners In Parenting grow so that Austin parents are supported during the transition to parenthood. Originally from Louisville, KY, she brings a decade of grant writing and leadership experience through serving as Grants Manager for the Sustainable Food Center in Austin; the City of Louisville Department of Community Services and Revitalization; and The Center for Women and Families in Louisville, KY. Most recently, Jessica has worked as co-founder and consultant with Wordvine Consulting, LLC, helping small nonprofits sustain and grow their powerful missions. She has been certified by the Grantsmanship Center, is a certified health coach through the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, and received her MA in Women’s and Gender Studies from the University of Louisville. An active member of the Austin nonprofit community, Jessica is the current Treasurer of the Austin-Central Texas Area Chapter of Grant Professionals Association. Jessica has two young children who have given her first-hand experience of the challenges and joys that accompany new motherhood. 

RACHEL LADOV, LCSW  |  Program DIRECTOR

Rachel has over 15 years of experience creating and implementing programs for youth and families at local nonprofit organizations. Before joining PIP she worked at the Girls Empowerment Network building programs to help girls navigate the often rocky terrain of the pre-teen and teen years. During that time, she went through her own life-changing experience of becoming a parent. Nothing could have prepared her for the highs, lows, and sleepless nights and she is grateful for all those who are by her side on the journey. She is passionate about helping new parents feel supported and confident in their own transformation to parenthood. Rachel's first interaction with PIP was as a Group Leader, where she fell in love with the work PIP is doing to create community and parent support networks in Austin. She is excited to help the organization reach more parents. Rachel is a master's level clinical social worker and a certified life coach to teen girls. She has a BA from Haverford College in Pennsylvania and an MSSW from the University of Texas at Austin. She is also the mom of two sweet, curious, and energetic young boys!

 

Val rios  |  PROGRAM Manager

website 4.jpg

Val is thrilled to be a part of the Partner in Parenting team. She has held an array of positions in the corporate and non-profit world. Prior to moving back to Austin, she lived abroad and knows the value of having a supportive community around you when transitioning to parenting. She is excited about bringing her professional skills to the table in order to propel Partners in Parenting forward. In her spare time, you can find her practicing and teaching Iyengar yoga. Together with her own special partner in parenting, Floris, they have one spunky little girl!

Founders

CAROLYN OPPS

Carolyn was born and raised in Minnesota, attended college at Drake University in Iowa, and received a Master's Degree at DePaul University in Chicago. She spent eight years living and teaching in Chicago, but decided to move to Austin in 2006. Following three years of teaching 4th grade, she and her husband decided to throw caution to the wind and travel around the world for a year. After returning to Austin she continued her teaching career for several years before devoting herself to PIP as the Program Coordinator after co-founding the organization in 2014. Carolyn continues to serve as a board member and devoted volunteer. In addition, she has two children that keep her days full!

KRISTA MILLER

Krista has been in the technology and software industry since graduating magna cum laude with a BFA in Photography from the University of North Carolina at Asheville. When her son turned one, she left a position managing a web development department at a local software company to devote her full attention to him. Fresh from the new parenting experience, and so grateful for the group of women that inspired her to form her own village of support, she co-founded and launched Partners in Parenting in 2014 as the next chapter in her journey. Krista spent the first two years of the organization in the role of Executive Director, and continues to serve as a devoted volunteer.

Board of Directors

The women on our board lend their passion, skills and expertise to help guide PIP in many respects, from operational oversight to strategic planning.

The key requirements for PIP board members is a passion for the organization, our mission, and our community of parents. The board is truly a working board, and all members have spent a tremendous amount of time volunteering in different ways - from facilitating PIPsqueaks Groups to planning events and more.

2017 Board of Directors

Elizabeth Nelson President
Elizabeth has extensive experience in education and non-profits. She graduated from Rhodes College and holds a master of public administration from the University of Washington. Elizabeth resides in Austin with her husband and children and keeps in close contact with her PEPS friends in Seattle.

Whitney Moskowitz Secretary
Whitney graduated from the University of Texas with a degree in psychology, and has been working at Google since 2009 in sales, marketing, and most recently recruiting. She spent 5 years in Boston before moving back to Austin to start a family. She enjoys spending her free time with her husband and toddler daughter, and is passionate about helping families and supporting new parents.

Sarah Rosen Treasurer
Sarah is originally from Boston but has been in Texas for most of her adult life. She graduated from the University of Colorado with a degree in psychology and a minor in business. After a brief stint in Houston, she moved to Austin in 2009 and has been working at Dell in various marketing roles ever since. In her free time she loves to spend time with her family and looks forward to the upcoming addition of her second son this Spring! 

Carolyn Opps
As a co-founder, Carolyn is an active member of the board and continues to contribute to the growth of the organization.

Caroline Freedman
Caroline Freedman is the CEO and co-founder of NurturMe, an Austin-based organic baby and toddler food line with a focus on digestive health. The award winning line is sold in over 5,000 stores nationwide including Whole Foods, H-E-B and Babies”R”Us and has been featured in the Wall Street Journal and Today Show. Prior to founding NurturMe, Caroline worked for 10 years at Dell, where she met her husband with whom she has 3 daughters. She is involved in LifeWorks Austin and regularly volunteers at Mobile Loaves and Fishes. She has a BA from Bucknell University.

Amanda Neal
Amanda was raised in Minnesota (where she attended the College of St. Benedict), met her husband in Chicago (where she started her career), spent a few years in Sydney (where she scratched her itch for international travel) before finally making her way to Austin in 2010. Amanda works in digital media where she focuses on connecting brands with consumers. She lives in Allandale with her husband, their son and beloved pup and enjoys spending time with her family and friends in all the free time she’s able to manage with a busy toddler.

Erin Ryan Mazcko
Erin is a mom and has experienced the power and support of a parenting village first-hand. She originally hails from Massachusetts but now calls Austin home with her family. Erin is a communications professional in the technology industry and holds degrees from Northwestern University and Northeastern University. She is thrilled to be a part of the PIP team and passionate about helping Austin families build their villages. 

Ilana Zivkovich 
An experienced executive, clinician, and clinical development officer, Ilana Zivkovich serves as the Chief Clinical Officer for Northbound Treatment Services, and operates a private practice as a therapist, trainer, and facilitator. Trained in positive psychology, Ilana believes in the strengths and potential of every individual she interacts with.  A leader in her industry, Ilana’s career is focused on helping individuals and organizations truly thrive.  She meets this goal via cultural and organizational development, the creation of innovative programs, and strategic and managerial oversight.

While Ilana continues to be ambitious in her career, she has found her deepest passion in her new (cherished) role of motherhood.  Ilana and her husband Zach participated in their first PIP group following the birth of their daughter, Aviana, in June 2016.  The PIP group gave the young family the gift of a community of other’s navigating the same stage of life – a community that proved priceless as the family adapted to the new (exciting and sometimes intimidating) lifestyle as a three person unit.

Nikki Moriarty
Nikki was born and raised in Northern California.  She graduated from Santa Clara University with her Undergraduate degree in Sociology in 2004 and with her Master's degree in Higher Education Administration.  She started a non-profit in 2004 at Santa Clara University called The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (www.scu.edu/osher).  Currently she works for Google, where she has been since 2010.  She relocated from San Francisco, CA to Austin, TX in 2013 with her husband, Mike.  She enjoys spending free time with her family and when she isn't doing that, she is busy doing hair for weddings and making brides feel beautiful on their big day!

Traci Gaskins Bermiss
As a native of Stamford, CT, moving to Austin, while expecting their first child, was less daunting because of the supportive village she and her husband quickly developed.  With an B.A. in Sociology from Spelman College and an M.B.A. from the University of Michigan, Traci has enjoyed a marketing career that has spanned multiple industries.  She extends her marketing acumen into her community involvement and loves most anything that involves families and children.  She and her husband Sekou have two young children and equally enjoy the rare quiet quality family moments, as cheering each other on during activities and traveling.

Anna Rigby
Anna recently moved to Austin from London, UK with her husband and two children. Anna graduated from the University of Warwick with a degree in Mathematics, is a qualified accountant and has worked for over 15 years in investment banking, most recently for Barclays Bank. Her career is now taking second place to her family! She enjoys spending her free time with her husband and kids, and is passionate about helping families and supporting new parents.

Liz Waldman

 

Board Alumni

Krista Miller (Founding Board Member 2013-2017)
Tanya Vermeeren (Founding Board Member 2013-2015)
Rebecca Nunan (Founding Board Member 2013-2015)
Megan Barnes-Zesati, LCSW (2014-2016)
Meredith McDaniel, CFA (2014-2016)
Kristen Warms (2014-2016)
Robyn Burchfiel (2015-2017)