Joined Bright by Three in January 2012. As CEO, Jean is charged with all facets of leadership and management to support Bright by Three’s vision and mission throughout all 64 counties in Colorado. Jean works directly with the board of directors to establish the strategic direction of the organization, as well as serves as chief liaison with community groups. Additionally, she ensures program quality as well as oversees the design, marketing, promotion, and delivery of products and services. Jean also oversees fundraising planning and implementation. Prior to joining Bright by Three in January 2012, Jean served as the Director of Education with the Vail Valley Foundation and prior as the Director of the US Olympic Committee responsible for securing major gifts and as the founding executive director of the Children’s Literacy Center. Jean has a degree in speech and hearing science from the University of Washington.
Joined Bright by Three in July 2015. Jared manages Bright by Three’s fundraising and communications, engaging foundations, corporations, and individual supporters to fuel Bright by Three’s program supporting children’s physical, social-emotional, and cognitive development. He leads the development staff and oversees grant proposals, fundraising events, major gifts, earned income, and all other revenue streams. Jared is committed to charting a path to long-term, sustainable development growth that lets Bright by Three focus on what it does best -- helping give children the best start in life. Before joining Bright by Three in the summer of 2015, Jared managed the fundraising and financials for four political campaigns, most recently in the 2014 Maryland Governor/Lt. Gov race. He has a degree in history from Yale University.
Joined Bright by Three in July 2016. Nim oversees all technology and development of Bright by Text. He also supports the scaling and expansion of Bright by Text statewide and nationally. Nim is the Principal at NimbleIQ, a company that works with Business Founders to launch MVP's that solve real problems, and Business Owners/Managers to create software solutions that transform their business. Nim is an adjunct professor at the University of Denver, Daniels College of Business, and a Mentor for the Unreasonable Institute.
Joined Bright by Three in December 2016. Ashleigh Kirk, LSW, is an infant and early childhood mental health specialist, with an interest in policy and program development. Ashleigh’s professional focus on early childhood systems development began in her Masters in Social Work program at Washington University in St. Louis, and continued into her work in Chicago. In Chicago, Ashleigh attended Erikson Institute and received a Certificate in Infant Mental Health, while working at a non-profit to improve children’s mental health systems in Illinois. Ashleigh is also the current President of the Colorado Association for Infant Mental Health. In this role, Ashleigh leads a volunteer Executive Board who focus on providing professional development, networking, and policy opportunities for infant-family providers across Colorado. Most recently, Ashleigh worked at Colorado Assuring Better Child Health and Development, as a Community Outreach Coordinator. She provided technical assistance, training and support to community stakeholders in counties across Colorado to build quality developmental screening and referral systems.
Joined Bright by Three in January 2017. Lynn Debilzen comes to Bright by Three with over a decade of experience in the child development and nonprofit management fields. Lynn will manage the New Generation Initiative in conjunction with PBS and the David and Lucile Packard Foundation/ Overdeck Family Foundation national scaling grants for Bright by Text. She’s passionate about early childhood, building partnerships to maximize impact, and supporting parents and families. Lynn recently served as a Senior National Trainer at Playworks based in Colorado, and before her move out west, she was a Jumpstart Site Manager in Massachusetts, a Youth Development Peace Corps Volunteer in the Philippines, and an AmeriCorps member in Wisconsin and Montana. She earned her MBA at The Heller School for Social Policy & Management at Brandeis University, her MA in Intercultural Youth & Family Development at The University of Montana, and a BS in Social Work at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.
Joined Bright by Three in September 2017. Alex manages the communications efforts for Bright by Three and Bright by Text. She works on all things graphic design, content writing, digital media, and earned media. Alex originally worked for Bright by Three in 2015 as the Development Coordinator, but realizing her true passion was in communications, left the organization to go to the Office of Early Childhood at the Colorado Department of Human Services (CDHS) where she was the Child Care Quality Initiatives Communications Specialist working on Colorado Shines. In September 2017, Alex left CDHS to become an Independent Communications Consultant, and once again began working with Bright by Three. Alex specializes in communications for early childhood organizations and is passionate about helping the youngest in our communities. Alex has a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in Communication from the University of Wyoming, where she taught public speaking.
Jennifer works directly with the 200+ partners we have across Colorado. As a Program Manager, she has recruited over 100 volunteers and partners across the state and has helped expand our outreach among the diverse community of families that live in our state. Additionally, she has helped in the development of trainings, partner materials, and bright by text content to make sure that all of our program is the most up to date to better serve all families and caregivers in the state. Prior to joining Bright by Three in 2015, she managed the fundraising and evergreen donors of another Colorado state nonprofit: New Era Colorado. Jennifer has a degree in Sociology for Colorado College and is committed to always finding ways to improve the Bright by Three program and increase the outreach throughout the state.
Joined Bright by Three in January 2017. Nichole supports collaboration with Bright by Three’s development partners, and contributes to grant proposals and reporting. With decades of experience managing projects and programs in the corporate and nonprofit sector, Nichole is committed to applying her skills and knowledge to organizations and causes impacting vulnerable families. She holds a B.S. in Business Marketing and Organizational Management from the University of Colorado, Boulder. As a dedicated advocate and volunteer, she has served as founder, board member, and operations advisor to a variety of nonprofits serving children, families, and educators.
Joined Bright by Three in May 2016. The Rocky Mountains make Colorado a great place to live and Kathy Brendza is supporting families throughout several mountain regions for Bright by Three. She is responsible for 17 counties - from Summit to Yampa to Mesa and beyond. Her strong background in early childhood education supports Kathy’s outreach to community partners and families throughout the mountains and Western Slope. With two Master's Degrees, Kathy also participated in the Buell Early Childhood Leadership Program. Upon completion she earned a Director's License in Early Childhood. In the past thirty years, Kathy has received many accolades for her work including the Colorado Governor’s Award for Excellence in Education; accommodations from the Colorado Senate and House of Representatives; the National Educator’s Award sponsored by the Milken Family Foundation; a fellowship award from The Colorado Trust; the Karen A. Patterson Award for Community Organizational Change from Regis University.
Joined Bright by Three in February 2018. Alex guides both development initiatives and communications projects, integrating refined writing skills with keen fundraising strategy. Following his passion for elevating the standard for early childhood education, he focuses on upholding Bright by Three’s brand presence and cultivating relationships with new foundations and community organizations. Alex is dedicated with Bright by Three’s expansion nationally to change the paradigm of caregiver awareness to the pivotal nature of the early years of life. Prior for joining Bright by Three, Alex worked as an editor at Tethered by Letters’ literary magazine, journalist at 303 Magazine, marketing assistant at Book Trust and international business developer at Glamping Hub. Alex graduated in March 2017 from the University of Denver with a degree in English and minor in Spanish.
Joined Bright by Three in February 2018. Rebecca manages the New Generation Initiative in conjunction with PBS and the David and Lucile Packard Foundation/Overdeck Family Foundation national scaling grants for Bright by Text. She enjoys building partnerships that maximize impact, and provide excellent support for parents and families.
Prior to joining the Bright by Three team, Rebecca worked with the Daniels Fund for six years, during which time she held high-level administrative and management positions in both the Scholarship and Communications departments. In these roles, she learned a great deal about the structure, management and guiding philosophies of non-profit organizations. Rebecca has also worked at the Denver Art Museum, where she designed and implemented educational programming targeted specifically toward families with young children.
Rebecca earned an MA in Arts Administration from the University of Denver and a BA in Arts History from the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs.
Joined Bright by Three in February 2018. Karen Verdier, MBA CPH, is a marketing, project management and public health professional with extensive experience working for vulnerable populations and coalition building. Karen’s professional credentials include working for Mountain Resource Center, a family resource center, where she served as Lead Public Assistance Specialist and Health Services Director for the pediatric health clinic as well as international marketing and finance work for a Fortune 100 company. Karen served as a Consumer Representative on the State’s Customer & Community Partner IPT Committee, as well as on Jefferson County’s Citizens Budget Committee. Karen received her Masters in Business degree from the University of Denver and a Certificate in Public Health from Colorado School of Public Health: Anschutz. Karen is a dedicated and tenacious advocate for the clients she serves and brings that energy to Bright by Three. Her expertise and interest in program management and policy will help to develop and nurture partners who reside within the northeast quarter of Colorado and Denver Metro area. Karen likes to construct bridges between organizations that seem to have disparate interests by listening and finding a common thread to build upon for the benefit of all.