Young Professional Advisory Board (YPAB)

The Young Professional Advisory Board (YPAB) is a group of emerging Boston-area leaders and early career professionals dedicated to enhancing the school's mission of preparing each student for success in college, inspiring a lifelong love of learning, and fostering responsible citizenship.
Please contact Julia Esko, Development and Communications Manager, at for more information.

Members of the Young Professional Advisory Board:

Leslie Ahlstrand

Kate Austin
Kate currently works as a Financial Advisor with the Grinnell Souza Group of Wells Fargo Advisors. Kate earned a Bachelor in Fine Arts in Dance Performance with a minor in French from Butler University, where she was a Dean’s List student. She was a professional ballet dancer at the Richmond Ballet in Virginia and a Brand Ambassador at Saks Fifth Avenue. She later pursued her passion for finance, earning her MBA and MS in Finance at Boston College’s Carroll School of Management. Kate was born in San Clemente, CA and currently lives in Beacon Hill in Boston and enjoys hiking, yoga and travelling.

Sydney Axelrod
Sydney is the Training Facilitator for the Home Care Aide Council, a non-profit organization that advocates for the home care workforce. Through her work at the Council, Sydney oversees the organization and facilitation of all grant-funded training activities conducted through the foundation. She is responsible for the marketing, scheduling, and instruction of training programming and is also involved in training curriculum management and development. Prior to joining the Home Care Aide Council, Sydney received a Master of Arts in Peace and Conflict Studies from The University of North Carolina Greensboro. Her work in the Greensboro community focused on expanding access for conflict transformation resources across diverse populations through the use of mediation and conflict resolution education. Sydney received her Bachelor's degree from SUNY Geneseo in Sociology and Conflict Studies.

Erin Florence
Erin joined Next Street in June of 2017 as a Business Development Analyst. As a Business Development Analyst, Erin works to advance Next Street’s business development efforts as well as to develop firm-wide knowledge management infrastructure. Erin previously interned at the Clinton Foundation where she supported the initiatives of the offices of the CEO and COO. She graduated from Vanderbilt University in May of 2017 with degrees in Economics and Human & Organizational Development, with a focus in International Leadership & Development. Erin is passionate about youth development and responsible citizenship and is honored to support PHACS through the Young Professional Advisory Board.

Kevin Hazel
Kevin is committed to values-driven work that creates more equitable and inclusive economies and is deeply passionate about education.  Currently, as a Professional Services Manager at Panorama Education, he works with school administrators across the United States to act on data and ensure that K-12 students have access to exceptional education at great schools, powered by effective teachers. Prior to Panorama, Kevin spent six months living in Ghana, working for an international literacy organization called Pencils of Promise that brings quality education, safe school infrastructure, and impactful health and hygiene programming to children in rural villages around the world. Before moving to Ghana, Kevin spent two years as an Analyst at Next Street, a mission-driven advisory firm that serves as a trusted advisor to some of the country's most dynamic organizations, providing strategic and capital advice to revitalize communities, grow businesses, and create jobs. Kevin received his BBA in Finance and Economics from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. 

Katiana Jolimeau
Katiana, or “KJ,” is the owner of Trips Travel Agency, a concierge travel company. Prior to entering the travel industry, she spent many years in the Financial Services industry in Boston and Washington DC. She completed her undergraduate degree in International Relations at Stonehill College and earned her MBA at Marymount University.

Brooke McDowell-Calixte
Brooke is a Provider Service Manager at Financial Engines in Boston where she works to demystify the retirement planning process. She’s a marketing communications professional with deep experience in personal finance, employee engagement, and multi-channel marketing programs. Brooke earned her BA in Sociology at Cornell University and her MBA from Babson College. Originally from Newport, Rhode Island, she caught the tourist bug early in life and likes to travel and enjoy new experiences in her free time.

Vadilson Pina
Vadilson works as a Regional Service Associate at Eastern Bank and is also the Executive Vice President of Marketing for Anawan Street Productions, a video production company. Vadilson is a first-generation American (both of his parents were born and raised in Cape Verde,) a first-generation high school graduate (from Prospect Hill Academy in 2007), as well as a first-generation college graduate (he received his Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology from Haverford College). He has lived in Boston, suburban Philadelphia, and downtown Los Angeles, and has held supervisory/managerial positions in all three cities across different disciplines. When he’s not playing basketball or climbing mountains with his BHG family, he’s helping the public with housing, film production, or banking needs.

Erica Sandrock

Neha Sharma
Neha is a technology integration consultant in Accenture’s Healthcare and Public Service practice. She works on large-scale implementation projects using Oracle products. She is responsible for interfacing with clients to gather and understand system and functional requirements, and working with technical teams to analyze those requirements and design system solutions. When she is not working with clients, Neha leads the LGBT Employee Resource Group out of the Accenture Boston office. Neha was born in India, but has spent most of her life in and around Boston. She attended Prospect Hill Academy from 1st through 12th grade, and graduated from Boston University in 2013, where she majored in Mechanical Engineering.

Olabode Tunde-Lukan
Olabode Tunde-Lukan is a Data Analyst on the Fixed Income Data Administration team at Putnam Investment, a privately owned investment management firm that assists individuals and institutions pursue successful investments. Previously, he worked as a Fund Accountant at State Street Corporation, where he reviewed the income earned for a number of client’s funds. Bode received his B.A. from the University of Massachusetts Amherst with a major in Economics and is currently enrolled in Suffolk University’s M.B.A/ M.S.F program. Bode is also an alum of Prospect Hill Academy Charter School. He graduated in 2006.

Sarah Wheeler
Sarah currently works with The Grinnell Souza Group of Wells Fargo Advisors as a Financial Advisor. She helps families and individuals align their investment strategy with their personal values and evolving lives. She has particular expertise in planning and guidance for women. Sarah received her bachelor’s degree from Georgetown University, where she graduated with a Varsity Letter in field hockey and also as a dean’s list student. She worked at General Dynamics in their Contracts Division for Homeland Security, as well as Macy’s Executive Development Program at their New York corporate headquarters. She earned her MBA and MS in Finance from Boston College’s Carroll School of Management. Born and raised in Weston, Massachusetts, she now lives in the Seaport of Boston, MA. She enjoys being involved in the community and cooking.

2018-19 Meeting Dates

The YPAB will hold four quarterly board meetings at 54 Essex Street in Cambridge:
  • Tuesday, September 11, 2018; 7:00—8:30 PM
  • Tuesday, December 11, 2018; 7:00—8:30 PM
  • Tuesday, February 26, 2019; 7:00—8:30 PM
  • Tuesday, May 14, 2019; 7:00—8:30 PM