Brielle is a New Jersey native coming to GSE from the Oranges. Her high school years were different from most, as she attended a boarding school in Pennsylvania, where she was fortunate enough to be submerged into a culturally immersive experience, having been given the opportunity to study alongside students from varying countries and backgrounds. It was there that she quickly developed a knack for diversity, equity, and inclusion, as she realized that there were limited spaces for students who identified as black or gay, or both. Her passion began in peer group, where she was able to provide a voice and make room for minority and gay students in regard to student affairs and policies. Her passion followed her to Howard University where she was an active member of BLAGOSAH, now CASCADE, which focused on advocating for equitable treatment for Black queer individuals on an institutional and national level.
Brielle earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Social and Behavioral Sciences from Seton Hall University while beginning her journey at the YMCA. She ends her 10 year career as the Program Director at the South Mountain Y, one of the 7 branches across the state of New Jersey constituting the Metropolitan YMCA of the Oranges. She leaves having been the recipient of the Mission Impossible award (2017/19), for “extraordinary effort, resilience, and tenacity in accomplishing a difficult task in the face of obstacles while demonstrating a can-do attitude, and leadership qualities,” and two Association Innovation Grants (2017-2018), given to the most innovative programs that will benefit community needs, generate revenue, and prove self-sustainable. Her passion and experience in creating innovative programs extended to developing and revitalizing numerous summer camps, continually increasing the enrollment of extracurricular programming implemented throughout the district. This included Friday night programming, which was a dedicated space where kids with like-minded hobbies could come together to play games and create lasting friendships in spaces outside of school.
As a Program Director, her and her department assessed the needs of the communities of Maplewood and South Orange, specializing in the realm of youth development. Her department most recently revamped and redeveloped their entire programming catalog to accommodate the needs of youth during the pandemic by providing virtual and enrichment programming, all while partnering with a local foundation to provide all students the opportunity to attend despite financial hardship by providing full scholarships. Her passion for providing equitable opportunities for youth continued as she spearheaded the Annual Support Campaign for her department, in which she led the call to action in soliciting donations to fund the ability for all children to go to camps and enrichment programs, as well as providing financial assistance to families in need for before and after school childcare.
Brielle comes to GSE with years of experience and passion for professional and youth development. She has assessed, identified, and developed numerous training curriculums and workshops for staff, members, and youth on various subjects. She has also facilitated trainings across the state of New Jersey in venues with more than 200 people. She was an active member of the associations’ DEI Committee and LGBTQ Cohort. These teams worked to ensure that policies, forms, and programs were inclusive, that the diversity of members was encouraged and celebrated, and that all stakeholders were educated and trained on the different dimensions of diversity. Brielle leaves the Y having received a $10,000 mindfulness grant, through which she was on the brink of creating a LGBTQ youth development and mentorship program.