New York


Allyson Crawford
Executive Director

Allyson Crawford joined Room to Grow in May 2014 with robust experience in the education space and non­profit external relations work. She previously served as the Managing Director, External Relations for Citizen Schools New York, where she led their fundraising, civic engagement, and communications efforts. At Citizen Schools, Allyson was responsible for raising a $5.5 million annual budget and for recruiting over 500 volunteers each year. Allyson also has a background in the private sector where she ran corporate events and adult professional education. She started her career as a preschool teacher in the Boston area, and later as a teacher for America corps member in South Central Los Angeles teaching second grade. Allyson graduated from Oberlin College with a double B.A. in Latin Language and Literature and Ancient Greek Language and Literature, and holds a Master’s degree in Education from Loyola Marymount University.



Bethany Brichta
Chief of Staff

Bethany Brichta joined the New York team in July 2014 as Chief of Staff. Bethany comes to Room to Grow from Forestdale, a foster care a child welfare agency in Queens, where she served as the Senior Community Development Associate. Prior to Forestdale, Bethany interned with Pencils of Promise, a non-profit organization that builds schools and increases educational opportunities in the developing world. She holds a B.A. in History from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. 




Elaine Chow
Director of Communications & Community Relations

Elaine joined Room to Grow in 2009 as Community Relations Manager and transitioned to Director of Communications & Community Relations in the late summer of 2013. She was previously the Associate Director of Alumni Affairs at School of Visual Arts (SVA), where her efforts included developing a comprehensive set of alumni benefits, programs and events. Before that she was the Internship Coordinator at SVA, where she managed and expanded the school’s internship for credit program. Elaine is also a painter. She holds a Masters in Fine Arts from School of Visual Arts and a B.S.  in Studio Art from New York University.




Eunice Cruz
Social Worker

Eunice has always been passionate about working with young children, in particular infants and toddlers. She received her B.S. from Utica College of Syracuse University with a dual degree in Psychology Child Life and Spanish Language/Literature. For over 8 years she worked as a Child Life Specialist in both the PICU and at an outpatient clinic. After receiving her Masters in Social Work from Hunter College, Eunice began work at The Brooklyn Hospital Center as their Family Program’s Social Worker. Her role included assisting HIV positive women through pregnancy, as well as provided supportive services to the hospital's Spanish speaking families. She looks forward to working with Room to Grow families, guiding them through the exciting first years of their child's life. In her spare time, Eunice practices Capoiera (Brazilian martial arts) and loves to cook.




Amanda Ferguson
Social Worker

Amanda joined Room to Grow in November 2014, bringing extensive experience providing clinical support and resource connection to women, children, and families who are affected by poverty. Her prior experience at Mount Sinai included engaging families in the pediatric emergency department, pediatric intensive care unit, and several years in the prenatal care units. Amanda has participated in collection of data to support grant-related programmatic design, and she presented in the International Social Work Conference in 2013. Her undergraduate studies completed in Amherst, MA, with a BA in social justice and advanced graduate ABA training at University of Massachusetts at Amherst. She holds a Master's degree in Social Work from New York University.




Joanna Groccia
Operations Associate

Joanna joined Room to Grow in August 2014 as Operations Associate to help manage the administrative and operational functioning of Room to Grow's office and program. Prior to joining the team, Joanna was a student at Fordham University where she graduated with a double Bachelor of Arts in Environmental Policy and International Political Economy.







Naomi Hanson
Inventory and Volunteer Coordinator

Prior to joining Room to Grow in the summer of 2012, Naomi worked as a Curatorial Assistant at the American Museum of Natural History, where she helped maintain her department's collection database and inventory. Additionally, she has dedicated over ten years to children and families working as a childcare provider throughout Manhattan and Brooklyn. Naomi holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from The New School's Eugene Lang College.






Stephanie Jackson
Senior Development Associate

Stephanie joined Room to Grow in the summer of 2014, bringing along experience in many facets of non-profit functioning as well as a passion for serving disadvantaged families. Prior to joining Room to Grow, Stephanie was an associate in the development departments at the Somaly Mam Foundation and the Rainforest Foundation. Additional non-profit experience includes working with the Bridgespan Group, the Los Angeles Alliance for a New Economy and the Pachamama Alliance. A California native, Stephanie holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Urban and Environmental Policy from Occidental College.

© 2014 Room to Grow National, Inc. All rights reserved. | Privacy Policy | Site Credits | Contact Us | Home