Staff

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Kenzo Nakawatase

Interim Director

Kenzo began his Lenfest journey in 2012 but he’s no stranger to North Philly because he grew up not too far away in Germantown. Nowadays you’ll most likely find Kenzo hanging out with his partner Leana and their new baby Ella at their home in West Philly. He loves to wake up and have his morning cup of coffee in a city that he knows is always real, for better or for worse. As a young high school grad, Kenzo traveled across the country to serve as a Corps Member in City Year San Jose. He worked on a team, served youth and families, made a difference in an underserved neighborhood and had an amazing and challenging time doing so. This experience galvanized his will to continue working to strengthen communities. Kenzo wants to make a difference in the world, to take whatever understanding, kindness, empathy and hope he has and contribute it in some way. If you’re interested in learning more about The Lenfest Center or if you teach, coach or lead youth in some way please contact Kenzo at kenzo@lenfestcenter.org or 267-908-9002.
“Be careful what you set your heart upon- for it will surely be yours.”  -James Baldwin 

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Tara Rose Brown

Counselor

As the Lenfest Counselor, Tara is always here to listen to our kids. With Tara’s guidance our kids are learning to manage emotions, cope with the challenges of growth and to celebrate their successes! Tara originally hails from the great city of Buffalo, NY and moved to Philly in 2012 to earn her master's degree. She spent her grad school experience molding her mind and skills around engaging youth in thinking, exploring themselves on a deeper level, and creating community. Tara is an explorer at heart and loves new discoveries!  She loves to find new things and explore new places, spaces, and theories while thrifting, traveling and taking in new knowledge! She also loves snuggling with her two adorable dogs, tending to her plants, cooking and baking.  Helping youth develop their emotional and social intelligence is what drives and motivates her as an individual. If you want or need resources for emotional health and wellness please reach out to Tara at tara@lenfestcenter.org or (267) 655-0600
“Our feelings are our most genuine paths to knowledge.” Audre Lorde

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Beverly Lott

Education Coordinator

Beverly brings a wealth of experience, knowledge and love to the Lenfest Center. Her passion for working with youth is apparent in everything she does! Although she was born in Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas USVI, she is a bonafide Philly chick! She moved to Philly as a baby and was raised in the Germantown section of Philly. It’s important to Beverly that she can give her time and talents to an organization that seeks to provide alternative learning opportunities for the youth of Hunting Park. Her previous experience as a classroom teacher has definitely been formative in fostering her desire to work in a place like the Lenfest Center because here we have the opportunity to help children access the quality educational resources needed for them to learn and grow. Contact Beverly if you are interested in knowing how the programs offered at the Lenfest Center would be ideal for your child or if you would like to learn about additional educational opportunities and resources.  
“The question isn’t who’s going to let me, it’s who’s going to stop me.” –Ayn Rand

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Kevin Oberst

Outreach Coordinator

No community center is an island. As the Outreach Coordinator, Kevin is tasked with broadcasting the mission of The Lenfest Center through whatever means necessary. His outreach efforts help families and neighbors connect to the resources at our center and our volunteers connect to powerful service opportunities with our children. Kevin has been involved with The Lenfest Center since 2010 when he served as a City Year Team Leader in the Young Heroes program. He discovered his passion for working with youth while leading powerful service learning projects across the city. Be sure to wave at Kevin when you see him biking into work; he’ll probably be thinking about his latest travel plans or his next camping trip. If you’d like to volunteer with us, or if you’re interested in finding out how your organization can partner and share resources with the Lenfest Center, get in contact with Kevin right away at kevin@lenfestcenter.org or 267-314-7403.
“I’m an idealist. I don’t know where I’m going, but I’m on my way.” – Carl Sandburg

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Emilia Autin-Hefner

Education Manager

Energy and enthusiasm are two words that describe Emilia perfectly! A true teacher at heart, she graduated from Temple University in 2014 with a degree in Early Childhood Education. She hails from Montclair, NJ but now proudly calls Philly home.  Emilia is passionate about music so if she’s not out dancing like crazy at the lastest music festival, you can find her at her small, cozy house playing with her cat Cleo. Emilia’s parents have always inspired her to lead a life of service. Both of them started non-profits that work with underprivileged youth so for as long as she can remember, she’s seen the differences that great organizations can make in the lives of children. Emilia began at the Lenfest Center in 2013 and has loved it here from the start. She loves how we equally stress both academic and character growth in our kids. We provide them with a space to find their passions and discover themselves. If you have questions about the Lenfest Learners after-school program or about our curriculum, you can reach Emilia at emilia@lenfestcenter.org or 267-460-0015.
“All grown-ups were once children…but only few of them remember it.” – Antoine de Saint-Exupery

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Brian Cann

Facilities Manager

 If you stop by the Lenfest Center and get the privilege to meet Brian, it is impossible to feel anything less than welcome here! As our Facilities Manager, Brian ensures the building is always in tip-top shape. Brian embodies the Lenfest spirit and keeps the center looking good while doing it! Brian is Philly born and raised so if you’re looking for recommendations on where to find the find the finest cheesesteak in all of Philadelphia, ask Brian and you won’t be disappointed! Brian takes pride in his hometown. He knows that our youth are the hope for our city’s future and he won’t pass on the opportunity to be a positive role model for all of our Lenfest Learners. Brian also understands how much our young people can achieve when they have the encouragement and support of a dedicated mentor. If you want to get in touch with Brian about anything, give him a call at 267-584-2033.
“The time is always right to do the right thing.” – Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

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India Blunt

Program Manager

India has been a member of the Lenfest Staff since 2014. She comes to Philadelphia by way of her hometown Baltimore, MD and loves how Philly has a lot of space for adventure, tons of places to visit and such a strong culture. A Temple grad, India has years of experience in youth programming. She is in charge of coordinating after-school clubs and programs at The Lenfest Center. India thinks it’s important for children to have homes away from home. She enjoys being part of a space that allows young folks to explore, learn, and try new things. If you know of a program that you would like to see at The Lenfest Center or have ideas for new programs or events contact India at india@lenfestcenter.org or 267-314-7402.
“All great achievements require time.” -Maya Angelou