Announcing Rise’s New Leadership: Co-Directors Jeanette Vega and Bianca Shaw

Rise’s Advisory Board is thrilled to announce that it has selected Jeanette Vega and Bianca Shaw as the next leadership of Rise. Currently, Jeanette and Bianca are Rise’s assistant directors. We are excited for these two outstanding leaders to take over the helm and lead Rise into the next chapter of development in its mission to support parents’ leadership to dismantle the child welfare system and create communities that invest in families and offer collective healing and support.

Rise has shown remarkable impact, and we recognize that the organization’s accomplishments are shared by the full team and have been led, particularly over the past year, by Jeanette and Bianca in partnership with Nora McCarthy, our founder and director. Jeanette and Bianca have long been integral to building the power of parents impacted by the child welfare system to realize anti-oppressive, just, compassionate, and healing communities, both internally at Rise and externally for parents affected by the child welfare system, systemic racism and poverty.

Through an extensive selection process, the Board gained a deep appreciation for Jeanette’s and Bianca’s passion for justice, for Rise’s vision and for Rise’s team. We are particularly elated that the next leadership will be two women of color, and will include in Jeanette a parent personally impacted by the child welfare system.

As the Co-Director for Leadership and Policy, Jeanette will continue the external-facing role that she has had at Rise, working closely with partners, supporters and allies to carry out Rise’s vision. Jeanette will build on her experience as a Parent Advocate and in leadership roles at Rise over the past 6 years.

“In my role as co-director, I plan to work hard to continue Rise’s vision and mission, uplift parents to become the leaders of tomorrow and support Rise’s shift to community organizing to fight for our communities. I bring my personal experience, my passion for change and my commitment to the growth of parents affected in leading this work. Rise’s values and the loving, family feeling that everyone gets when they come to Rise are so important to me. Sharing co-directorship with Bianca is exciting because we have the same mindset of what leadership means. We are two women of color who have experienced real life and have become strong women leaders in our own unique ways.”

— Jeanette Vega

As the Co-Director for Programs and Culture, Bianca will expand her role of managing and developing staff, programs, and Rise’s culture shift toward healing justice. Bianca brings three years of experience at Rise and previous experience with transformative mentoring programs for justice-involved youth. community organizing, policy and casework.

“I believe deeply in the power of impacted people and their ability to reclaim their truth. As a Black queer woman raised by immigrant parents, I have had many experiences of not only being silenced, but also having my oppressors rewrite my story and demonize my existence in the process. I honor the expertise of parents who have been marginalized, in and outside of the system. I am excited to lead Rise alongside Jeanette, who brings fierce and persistent advocacy, and passion and love for the work. Our appointment as Co-Directors is a reflection of Rise’s commitment to being an organization led by parents impacted and women of color.”

— Bianca Shaw

Rise’s founder and director, Nora McCarthy, will step down in June. Nora says: “This is a fantastic step forward for Rise. It’s been a privilege to work with and learn from Jeanette and Bianca over many years. As I step back from my role and join the board, I cannot wait to witness how Rise evolves and grows under their leadership.”

We thank all of our allies for supporting Rise’s growth and impact over nearly 16 years, and for welcoming Jeanette and Bianca to their new roles. It is because of the dedication and commitment of our team and community that Rise has accomplished all that it has. We are so excited to work closely with all of you and with Jeanette and Bianca to write the next part of the Rise story!

Warmest regards,
Hope and Bonnie
Hope Newton, Board Chair
Bonnie Kornberg, Board Vice Chair
and the entire Rise Advisory Board

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