Our Leadership Team
Hamdi is the Executive Director of the African Community Housing and Development and has collaborated on numerous projects with the CCC, spearheading the use of the Community Café model for parent engagement in the refugee community. Hamdi’s vision and expertise is in building a strong family foundation from the earliest years of a child’s life.
Bilan joined the Leadership Team in 2018 whilst completing her Masters in Education at the University of Washington. She supports Café hosting teams working closely with communities, committed to family engagement in education, creating effective home and school partnerships for student success.
Tiesha is a parent leader and advocate in her community supporting the CCC as Project Manager and Program Coordinator with parent leadership programmes in the South Seattle School District. She is also an optimal well-being life coach with her own company Divine Appointments Consulting.
Sunny draws on her nonprofit background to support the team through writing, development, and managing day-to-day operations. She is proud to be a member of a team committed to furthering social justice and systemic change through the strengthening of families.
Fatima has been involved in the Community Café Collaborative for several years. She is a parent leader in her community. One of her dreams is for everyone to have the same opportunities to succeed in life.
Executive Director, Robin Higa is the founder of the Community Café approach and an active coach. She has over 30 years of experience in community activism and strengthening families work.
Jeanine MacQuarrie connects and supports the leadership team through communications. Together with her background in producing Theatre for Young Audiences in Ireland, she values the opportunity to be part of a team committed to upholding every child’s rights.
Maricela is a young community parent leader based in Olympia, WA. With a Business Administration background and her bilingual strengths, she supports the Community Café Leadership Team by helping others start cafés, communications and administrative work.
Fighting for change! I am a Teamplayer with Community Café Collaborative, a Parent Leader with the Road Map Project, a part of PTSA, a Girl Scout Co-Leader, an Individual Provider for homecare and a business owner but most importantly, I am a mother to 3.
Shereese is a committed parent advocate and leader in her community having served as a parent ambassador for Head Start/ECEAP, member of the Parent Leadership Team in the Road Map Region and working with OneAmerica’s grassroots education advocacy program. She believes in modeling the change she wishes to see for future generations through active engagement on issues like addressing the opportunity gap and expanding access to early learning for all.
My name is Carolyn Solitaire. I am a lifetime resident of Tacoma and a graduate of the Tacoma School District #10. I have a strong love for life and enjoy helping my community.
My belief is: “Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.” – Dr. Maya Angelo
Paula Steinke is grateful to be sustained and inspired by partnerships with Strengthening Families and Community Café and is the Director of SOAR, elevating community voice. Paula believes in honoring and building upon individual, family and community strengths. She is committed to undoing structural racism and working for social justice through listening to, learning from, and elevating community voices.
Our Board of Directors
Darlene Coleman is a Senior Tax Analyst and Business Accountant with an emphasis on 501(c)(3) startups. Motivated by and to encourage community youth to pursue high level careers. With the ultimate outcome of returning their gifts and talents to their communities for further growth. Darlene is an avid gardener, cook, designer and lover of people.
Joel Higa is the Chief Operating Officer of Skysthelimit.org, a 501(c)(3) digital accelerator that helps young underrepresented adult entrepreneurs accomplish their business dreams. He’s an overly caffeinated crypto-evangelist, home cook, concert goer, and outdoor enthusiast.
Joan is the Principal at Sharminski Associates, Strategic Consulting. Specialized expertise in child and family issues, including child abuse and neglect prevention/family strengthening; outcome based planning; policy analysis & system change; innovative & evidence-based programming; community building; public relations, writing and editing.