Organization Staff:


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Matthew Cooney,
Executive Director

 

Matthew Cooney is the Executive Director of the Brookline Teen Center and was responsible for its build out and bringing the vision of a youth center in Brookline to an operational reality. Trained as a clinical social worker at Boston College, graduating in 2002, Matt worked first as a clinician with adolescent girls in a residential treatment center specializing in trauma and substance abuse at Germaine Lawrence in Arlington MA. In 2004, Matt moved to the Walker School, first as a Program Director and then as Director of Residential Services overseeing both long term and short term residential programs until June of 2012. At which point he came back to his Brookline roots and took on the challenge of opening the new Brookline Teen Center.  Matt is a father of three, lives in Brookline and is a graduate of Brookline High. Matt is an avid snowboarder, and outdoors person who loves working with youth and making a difference in his community.

 


 

Jennifer Bray,
Assistant Director

Bio Coming Soon!

 

George Zahka,
Assistant Director of Programming

My name is George.  I have the awesome opportunity to be paid to work with our amazing youth workers to develop and implement cool programming at the BTC.  I spent many years as a school based social worker at Wediko Children’s Services in Boston, before transitioning to start my own composting business.  While that business has evolved to more of a hobby, I still have a passion for connecting people to our earth and living sustainably.  When I’m not at the BTC I can be found spending time with my wife and two girls in our garden, or running up mountains.  If you’ve got an idea for a new activity at the BTC or just want to talk about how awesome microorganisms are, send me an email or stop by my office.

 

 

Youth Leaders:

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Brendan McCarthy,
Youth Leader

Hey I’m Brendan!  I have been working with children and teens, K-12, since college when I volunteered with Big Brothers/Big Sisters  and interned at a maximum security juvenile detention center.  After graduating from Ithaca College in 2009, I  worked at a residential treatment center for two years before receiving my Master’s in School Counseling at Boston University.  As a grad student, I interned at the Lincoln School and fell in love with the Brookline community.  
 
I’m originally from New Hampshire and I love the outdoors and being active.  My favorite activities include ultimate frisbee, soccer, snowboarding, and nachos! At the BTC, you can find me shooting pool or blasting 80’s power ballads over the loudspeakers.  Come chat with me if you want to plan a trip, start a BTC club, or if you just share a love of coffee or 90’s cartoons! 

  



Derron Golden,
Youth Leader

My name is Derron Golden, I’ve lived in Brookline since 1993, I went to the Lincoln school, then BHS after. Growing up in Brookline I never had a teen center so it’s only right that I worked here.

I coach middle school football had basketball at the Lincoln School, I’ve won 2 championships I’m my 3 years there. I found out that working with kids was my calling about 8 years ago, and I’ve been doing it ever since.



Jill Harvey,
Youth Leader

Hi my name is Jillian Harvey, but most folks just call me Jill. I am not a Brookline native or resident  like most of the staff here at the BTC. I was born and raised in Framingham and graduated from Framingham High School in 2009, but I currently live in Ashland. I attended the University of Massachusetts Amherst and graduated in the spring of 2013, with a BA in Anthropology.

I was very involved in college and high school, playing sports, being a member of various clubs/organizations and pursuing some of my life passions. I enjoy drawing and painting and exploring new art forms. One of my passions is working with kids! I spent my summers as a counselor at an overnight camp then a day camp. I worked with children mainly from ages 3- 13, so working at the BTC has been a great experience. I truly enjoy building relationships and getting to know the teens here.


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Kate Cordner,
Youth Leader

Hey! My name is Kate Cordner. I was born and raised in Brookline, MA. I attended the Lincoln School and then graduated from Brookline High School in 2009. My post- secondary education brought me to Keene State College in Keene, NH where I graduated in 2013 with a degree in secondary education and social sciences. Beginning in the fall of 2014 I will start to obtain my masters in school counseling. I also am currently a substitute teacher in the Brookline Public Schools.

Working at the Brookline Teen Center has been a great way to get involved with the Brookline community again and help provide a place where teens can hang out, something I wish I had when I was in high school.  At the teen center I work with teens to plan and organize different events such as field trips and dances. I also have developed great relationships with many teens. I hope to continue to build the teen center and keep it growing for years to come. Outside of work I enjoy being active whether it be at the gym, playing basketball, hiking, etc. and enjoying delicious food!


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Lesley Charles,
Youth Leader

Bio Coming Soon!