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(She/Her) A New Orleans native and a National Park Service alum, Sheena’s passion for working in our nation’s parks peaked when she began working on the interpretive staff over twenty years ago at Klondike Goldrush National Historical Park in Skagway, Alaska followed by her time as a Park Ranger Interpreter at Petersburg National Battlefield in Virginia. Since then, she has worked in labor relations, non-profit administration, community development finance and business development. Her passion lies at the intersection of climate innovation/resilience, sustainable infrastructure development and building the capacity of underserved and marginalized communities. She is a detail oriented strategist and sustainability consultant with a knack for project management, entrepreneurial thinking, relationship management and equitable community development. With nearly 20 years in the non-profit and business industry, she holds a degree in Urban Sustainability, Master’s in Public Administration and is currently a seminarian studying Innovative Ministry with long term plans to pursue a terminal degree. Sheena was a graduate Fellow of the United Nations Association where she focused on the seventeen sustainable development goals and a Fellow alum of the Clean Energy Leadership Institute (CELI) where she focused on renewable energy and decarbonization in majority minority communities. Sheena is well traveled (37) countries and has studied abroad in South Africa, Zimbabwe, Ghana and El Salvador.
She has visited over 150 national parks, monuments and historical sites and has a keen interest in ensuring Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens moves the needle in its philanthropic efforts through strategic partnerships, maintains sustainable infrastructure development to withstand the impact of climate change, is accessible to all and serves as an anchor institution for wellness as an urban oasis. When she is not working or serving, you can find her jamming at a music festival, on a weekend road trip, playing the guzheng, shopping at local thrift store, experimenting with her manual camera, strolling through a farmers market, volunteering through board service, mentoring, gardening, cooking up a Louisiana staple (especially Gumbo), spinning from her extensive vinyl record collection, trekking in the mountains or relaxing by the ocean. She credits her faith, family, and friends for helping her continually evolve as a servant leader. She is excited to use her passion and gifts as the Executive Director of Friends of the Kenilworth Aquatic Garden to ensure the park is well-maintained, well-enjoyed and welcoming for all. When you see her, say hello and you may follow her on linkedin at https://www.linkedin.com/in/sraefoster/
Senior Programs & Development Manager
(She/Her) Shannah joins the Friends of Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens with a wildlife biology and conservation background. She graduated from Towson University in August 2016 with a Bachelor’s in Biology. She has studied black caiman, prairie dogs, and box turtles, among other species. Her passions include connecting minority groups to science and giving back to her community. She mentors undergraduate members of her multicultural sorority (Sigma Lambda Gamma National Sorority, Inc.) and encourages them to spend time in nature. She enjoys hiking, rock climbing, watching anime and cosplaying, going to the movies, trying new recipes, and exploring outdoor spaces around Maryland and DC.
Since joining FoKAG in January of 2021, Shannah has assisted in implementing the volunteer program, WELLderness: An Outdoor Wellness Series and leading pond-dipping exercises with campers during week-long Jr Ranger Adventure Squad camps. She is excited to continue fostering the connections she has made with the residents in Wards 7 & 8 and regular volunteers.
Outreach & Event Coordinator
(She/Her) Recently relocating from Philadelphia, Alivia is thrilled to join the Friends of Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens as the 2023 AmeriCorps VISTA. She graduated from Tufts University in 2021 with her Bachelor’s degree in Biology, where she fostered her love of botany, sustainability and environmental justice. Prior to moving to DC, Alivia enjoyed many hours in The Wissahickon Valley Park teaching children how to be good stewards of their environment. In her free time Alivia enjoys singing, dancing, crafting and exploring nature. She looks forward to meeting the many neighbors and supporters of this beautiful park.