Jenny Pritchett Welcomes Terri Erwin as Executive Director of Nā Keiki O Emalia
Aloha Nā Keiki O Emalia ‘Ohana,
I wanted to take a moment to provide an update on Nā Keiki O Emalia’s leadership transition. As many of you know, Brooke Brown, Ph.D., the founder and first executive director of NKOE, retired as of December 31, 2019. Due to Brooke’s vision, passion, and steadfast commitment, we have accomplished many wonderful things under her leadership during the first five years of our organization’s life. Brooke created a beautiful legacy for her beloved daughter, Emalia, soothing her own broken heart through action in establishing this resource for grieving families throughout Maui. For this loving act –we thank her deeply.
The impact that NKOE is making in the Maui community is astonishing. To date, we have made over a thousand supportive contacts with grieving children and their families in our program. We presently conduct twelve peer support groups in eight schools and in the Maui community. This is important work that is only possible with the many volunteer facilitators that support our program. In 2019 we logged more than 2000 volunteer hours. This program could not exist without you and we THANK YOU for your time and dedication to the children! It warms my heart to think of the children that are working through the grief of a loved one (in part) because of this program and the safe space NKOE creates for them.
Knowing that Brooke was stepping away from the day-to-day leadership of the NKOE organization, our board of directors (past and present) knew that we would have some big shoes to fill, and needed to ensure a smooth transition process so our programs wouldn’t skip a beat. Over the course of 2019, our leadership went through the intensive process of searching for a new executive director. We spoke to many qualified people, both on Maui and abroad, searching for just the right one. We are happy to announce that we have finally found the perfect person!
Please allow us to introduce you to Terri Erwin. We are thrilled to have her lead Nā Keiki O Emalia in this next phase of impact and growth. Professionally, Terri has all of the qualifications on our wish list, she has a doctorate in psychology, and she has lived on Maui for the past ten years advocating for our community. She is a Wailuku small business owner, and she (unfortunately) understands losing a close family member and the impact that this has on a family, especially children. Her articulation of passion for and understanding of our organization’s mission to support Maui’s grieving children, teens, and their families made it clear to us that she was the one.
Terri joined us as executive director February 1st and has been hard at work over the past 4 weeks to get settled in. I’m sure you’ll be hearing a lot more from Terri very soon, and we hope that you’ll welcome her to the ‘ohana like we have–with open arms.
Looking forward to a bright future with you all.
Jenny Pritchett, President
Nā Keiki O Emalia