Denise Hinds: As the Associate Executive Director for Foster Care, Juvenile Justice and Supportive Housing.As Associate Executive Director of Foster Care, Juvenile Justice and Supportive Housing, Denise Hinds oversees all of the agency’s ACS-funded residential programs, as well as several residential Juvenile Justice programs, a community based program for court involved youth and two supportive housing programs for young adults. In 2002, Denise played a significant role in the development and implementation of the Chelsea Foyer, the agency’s first supportive housing program for young adults and one of the first programs of its type in the country. During her 29 years at Good Shepherd Services, Ms. Hinds has been instrumental in developing a variety of innovative youth development driven programs. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Maryville College, in Tennessee and a Masters in Social Work from the Hunter College School of Social Work and recently completed the Executive Education Program at Columbia University Graduate School of Business. She is certified as a New York State Licensed Master Social Worker, as well as a Clinical Field Instructor. She has also served as a Faculty Advisor for the Hunter College School of Social Work.
Joya Thompson: Her journey started with the grassroots nurturing of her parents. After several years of positive experiences in Newark’s Summer Youth Employment Program, she became a board member for the Youth Employment and Referral Network after being a member for over a year. The greatest turning point in her career of service was as a 20 plus year member of Quest Ink, inc Youth and Family Services. Under the graceful mentorship of Joyce Smith Carter, the organization’s founder and Executive Director, Joya went from being a member of the Quest Youth Radio and Television team in 1989 to a Senior Mentor and volunteer by the time Quest closed its doors in 2011. During this time she also volunteered with the Newark Boys and Girls Clubs as an assistant to the photography instructor and volunteered with the Vortex monthly Hip Hop Culture series in Harlem, NY.
She was inspired by the students to begin attending Kean University, graduating in 2009 with a Bachelors of Science and again in 2015 with a Masters of Arts degree in counseling. As she is currently servicing and supporting LGBTQ youth in the Greater Newark Area with The Hetrick Martin Institute of New Jersey while serving as a board member of the Newark LGBTQ Community Center.
Beatrice Simpkins, MPA: is originally from Jersey City, NJ and has lived and worked in Hudson and Essex Counties, NJ in the field of nonprofit program development and management for over 20 years. She currently works as the Program Director for St. Clare’s Homes and her professional experience includes program evaluation, leading and participating in community-level organizing, and organizational capacity building in the areas of LGBTQ concerns, health care, education, social justice, and health and human services. She is a former board member of the Freedom Center for Social Justice located in Charlotte, NC and the Newark Community Health Centers located in Newark, NJ. She received a certificate in public policy and urban studies from Saint Peter’s College, completed the Emerging Leaders in Public Health Program – UNC- Chapel Hill, NC and earned a Bachelor Degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Public Administration from University of Phoenix.Ms. Simpkins holds a Master Degree in Public Administration from Rutgers School of Public Affairs and Administration (SPAA) – Newark. Beatrice is also the current elected President of the SPAA Alumni Network (SPAAAN).
Whitney Strub:Whitney Strub teaches in the history department and directs the Women’s & Gender Studies program at Rutgers-Newark, where he also co-directs the Queer Newark Oral History Project. As a scholar, he writes about LGBTQ history and the history of sexuality, and has written two books and articles in such venues as Radical History Review, American Quarterly, Salon, OutHistory, and Vice.