Emily joined NACC in June of 2021 with 5+ years of experience in nonprofit management, specializing in membership. At NACC, Emily is the direct line of support for members and any membership questions for both individual and organizational members. She supports the state coordinator program, and can also be found on the other side of the Zoom screen during NACC’s annual virtual conference. In partnership with the National Law School Student Organizer, Emily aims to support and connect the child welfare community.
Prior to NACC, Emily worked for an association management company where she oversaw membership for five state and national nonprofits. Emily received her Bachelor’s in Marketing Management from Thomas College in 2018. She is working towards getting her Certified Association Executive (CAE) certification.
Out of the office, Emily enjoys spending time with her dog Wilbur, growing herbs and veggies in the summer, and attending live music.
Leyda Garcia-Greenawalt joined the team in January of 2022 as NACC’s inaugural National Law School Student Organizer. Currently, Leyda is a Civitas Child Law Fellow and first-year student at Loyola University Chicago School of Law. Her first law school internship was at the Cook County Office of the Public Guardian where she observed child protection and juvenile justice hearings and conducted research on the Indian Child Welfare Act and its implementation across the United States.
In March of 2021, Ms. Garcia-Greenawalt was published in the Columbia Journal of Race and Law: Guilty: How Immigrating to the United States Became a Life Sentence to Child Welfare. The article was part of the Symposium: Strengthened Bonds: Abolishing the Child Welfare System and Re-Envisioning Child Well-Being, where Leyda was a speaker and responder to the opening panel.
Previously, Leyda served as President of the Foster Care Alumni of America – Illinois Chapter. In that time, she assisted with policy and legislative initiatives alongside other county-wide, statewide, and national organizations. She advocated for the passage of the Family First Prevention Services Act, IL HB 5122, which allows students with lived experience in child welfare to attend in-state colleges tuition-free.
Prior to law school, Leyda attended the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign where she obtained her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in social work. As a student she conducted and published research on the intersection of the child welfare system and intimate partner violence, as well as juvenile justice reform. Ms. Garcia-Greenawalt also served as the Undergraduate Representative for the Illinois chpater of the National Association of Social Workers.
When she is not working or studying, Leyda enjoys spending time with her family, watching movies, and cooking.
Allison Green, JD, CWLS
Allison Green, JD, CWLS joined Team NACC in 2019, and now manages the organization’s policy advocacy, oversees amicus work, and provides training and technical assistance to child welfare practitioners nationwide. She previously served as a Foster America Fellow at Missouri’s Children’s Division and as Senior Supervising Attorney at the Children’s Law Center of Washington, D.C. Allison started her career as a Jesuit Volunteer at Legal Services for Children in San Francisco and also worked as a counselor at a youth shelter. She earned her law degree at Georgetown, where she was a Public Interest Law Scholar and recipient of the International Academy of Trial Lawyers Student Advocacy and Juvenile Justice Clinic Public Service Awards. She is a certified Child Welfare Law Specialist (CWLS) and has volunteered as a Court Appointed Special Advocate. She is currently licensed to practice law in Washington, D.C.
Jonathan Green, JD
Jonathan Green, JD, joined the NACC team in October 2022. He is a member of the senior management team and provides leadership and accountability in the areas of finance, operations, and human resources. A key aspect of his work is to support the organization’s continued growth and sustainability. As a member of the senior management team, Jonathan is involved in strategic planning, program evaluation, and professional development initiatives.
Jonathan has years of experience managing complex nonprofits with national and international reach. Before joining NACC, Jonathan served as vice president and director of finance and operations for the Yale-China Association at Yale University. He was a member of the executive team and worked to ensure the success of a wide programmatic portfolio in the areas of health, education, arts, and public service. Prior to Yale-China, Jonathan served as an associate director of Kidsave. There he oversaw the fiscal and administrative functions for offices in Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, Moscow, and Bogotá. Before his work at Kidsave, Jonathan served as a divisional accountant at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine and as a financial and legal compliance auditor for the State of Tennessee. Jonathan holds a degree in accounting from the University of Memphis and a degree in law from Northeastern University. He studied as a Bergstrom Child Welfare Law Fellow at the University of Michigan Law School.
In his free time, Jonathan enjoys building LEGO sets, studying World War II history, and hiking wooded trails. He has served on several boards, including as treasurer and secretary of the Memphis Crisis Center and as a founding officer and treasurer of the Family and Youth Initiative in Washington, D.C.
Christina Lewis, JD, CWLS
Christina Lewis, JD, CWLS, joined Team NACC in January 2021 as Staff Attorney. In this role, Christina works closely with NACC’s Training Director in developing curriculum for and presenting at state custom trainings, organizing NACC monthly webinars, and editing NACC’s quarterly publication, The Guardian.
Christina previously served as a public defender with the St. Charles Parish Public Defender’s Office in Louisiana. During her twelve years as a public defender, Christina represented adults charged with misdemeanors, served as the defense attorney for the St. Charles Parish Adult Drug Court, and represented juveniles charged with delinquencies in juvenile court. She also provided high-quality legal representation to parents whose children were removed from their custody due to abuse and/or neglect. Christina graduated from Louisiana State University, Paul M. Hebert Law Center with a Juris Doctor and Bachelor of Civil Law. She began her legal career as a judicial law clerk with the Louisiana Third Circuit Court of Appeal for the Honorable Marc T. Amy for three years. She is licensed to practice in Louisiana.
Evan Molinari joined NACC in June of 2021. Evan develops and coordinates internal and external communications, including NACC’s web content, media relations, marketing, and social media. He also contributes to NACC’s national right to counsel campaign to guarantee legal representation for youth experiencing the child welfare system and provides technical assistance to advocates at the state level.
Prior to joining NACC, Evan worked for the Massachusetts Legal Assistance Corporation, where he amplified the voices of low-income residents in need of legal help and contributed to a team that increased state funding for civil legal aid. He earned a degree in history from Bates College and interned for Congresswoman Chellie Pingree of Maine. Evan lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Kristen Pisani-Jacques, JD, CWLS
Kristen Pisani-Jacques, JD, CWLS, joined the NACC team in February 2020 as Training Director. In this role, Kristen leads the vision, objectives, and direction of NACC’s training department to effectuate NACC’s strategic plan goals of promoting excellence in the child welfare field, prioritizing race equity and authentic engagement of individuals with lived expertise. She manages substantive coordination of NACC’s training offerings, including “Red Book” trainings, customized state child welfare trainings, monthly member webinars, annual conference content, and other grant or contract-based training. Kristen enjoys collaborating and consulting with law office leaders, NACC members, Court Improvement Program (CIP) directors, and state and national partners to identify and respond to the training needs of the child welfare field. She develops, delivers, and moderates trainings for national audiences of child welfare practitioners. Kristen serves as lead editor and coordinates content for The Guardian, NACC’s quarterly law journal for its members, and she is an editor of the fourth edition of Child Welfare Law and Practice: Representing Children, Parents, and Agencies in Neglect, Abuse, and Dependency Cases (“the Red Book”).
Prior to NACC, Kristen served as the Deputy Director of the Guardian ad litem (GAL) Project at the Children’s Law Center in Washington, D.C. Kristen helped to lead GAL program design, management, and evaluation, guided appellate strategy, and ensured high-quality representation of clients in the D.C. child welfare system. During her eleven years at the Children’s Law Center, Kristen also served as a case-carrying GAL, supervising attorney, and senior supervisor. She has over a decade of experience representing children in child welfare and high-conflict custody cases, as well as representing caregivers seeking adoption, guardianship, and custody. Kristen earned her law degree at Georgetown, where she participated in the Street Law and Domestic Violence clinics.
Kristen is currently licensed to practice in Washington, D.C. and Maryland and is a certified child welfare law specialist (CWLS). Kristen lives in Silver Spring, Maryland with her husband and daughter. She is happiest when she is having family dance parties, watching Jeopardy and the Real Housewives, and planning her annual family Halloween costume.
Cristal Ramirez, MS
Cristal Ramirez, MS, joined the team at NACC in June 2020 as our first Youth Coordinator, now Youth Engagement Manager. Cristal is originally from Bakersfield, CA and moved to San Diego, CA to attend school at San Diego State University. She obtained her BS in Interdisciplinary Studies in Three Departments and a minor in Cultural Proficiency in May 2018 and her MS in Multicultural Counseling with an emphasis in Social Justice education in May 2020. Cristal is a person with lived experience in the foster care system and is passionate about advocating for better policies and best practices for youth and families. Cristal enjoys spending time with her puppy, reading, going for walks, dancing, and listening to music.
Caroline Thuer joined the NACC team as an Administrative and Program Assistant in March of 2022. She earned her bachelor’s degree in Psychology with a sustainability studies minor from Indiana University of Pennsylvania.
Prior to joining NACC Caroline held positions in administrative support services and behavioral therapy. Caroline was a part of the educational team at McGuire Memorial, a not-for-profit, non-denominational facility. She worked creating individualized programs for children and adults with multiple physical and intellectual developmental disabilities to acquire skills and experiences to obtain a more independent life. She also held the position of Milieu Therapist at UPMC Western Psychiatric Hospital, a world-class academic medical center affiliated with the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. Here she provided patient support at every stage of care and recovery, including acute inpatient services, emergency and crisis services, and outpatient services for children and adults dealing with a range of conditions, including addiction, autism spectrum disorders, intellectual developmental disabilities, bipolar disorder, depression, anxiety disorders, complex trauma, schizophrenia, psychotic disorders, eating disorders and obsessive-compulsive disorder. Caroline’s goals are to connect individuals and families with appropriate resources and support.
Caroline was born in Pennsylvania and now calls Denver, Colorado her second home. Outside of work-life Caroline loves hiking, camping, and taking on new travel adventures with her two dogs.
Daniel joined the NACC staff in 2003 and has served in a variety of roles. He is currently the Director of Certification, Sales, and Technology. He oversees the Child Welfare Law Certification program, collaborates with CIP/CJA and states on live and virtual trainings, and manages NACC’s tech delivery platforms. He truly enjoys serving the hardworking child welfare community to deliver the best services that NACC has to offer.