ABOUT

Hello there! I am the Founder & CEO of Raising Girls, a nonprofit organization that provides personal hygiene products for girls in our community. I am committed to helping girls who have little or no access to necessary resources that they need. I have worked and volunteered for over 30 years in nonprofit organizations as a community advocate for students and parents, developing outreach and vocational programs and I have been an active participant in each community I have called home. I hold a Master’s degree in Communication Studies & Organizational Development. 

 

I received the 2019 BECU Member Volunteer People Helping People Award recognizing my work with Raising Girls. I currently serve as a member of the Board of Directors with Hilltop Artists, a Palmer Scholars Mentor, member of the American Leadership Forum (ALF), a volunteer with Girls Scouts of Western Washington, a member of Tacoma Rotary 8 Club, a member of South Sound 100 Women, and a member of the Women’s Council of Realtors (WCR). I also served on the Greater Metro Park Foundation Board of Directors for 9 years. 

 

In 2015 I was nominated and selected as Girls Scouts of Western Washington Woman of Distinction. I work full-time as a real estate broker with Windermere Professional Partners and I am also a trained Washington State Housing Finance Commission Homebuyer Education Instructor. I am a member of the Professional Women of Color Network in the Pacific Northwest, an organization rooted in community and service. I am also a member of the National Association of Professional Women. 

 

I love the outdoors and enjoy working in my garden, teaching cooking classes, and tackling interior decorating projects. I am also an avid photographer and have a passion for travel, exploring parks, great cuisine, and the arts.

​MISSION AND HISTORY

It started with my mother Mary, our small-town community organizer, letter reader, money changer, church minister, and caretaker of so many. She taught me how to care about people at a very young age. I remember her putting supplies in a basket and sending me off to a neighbors’ homes to deliver everything from washrags to body lotion. She also had a beautiful way of tying the kitchen towel in a decorative knot when she sent me with delicious meals.

Working in our community I hear stories about challenges and triumph, need and plenty, access and barriers, haves and have-nots. There are many girls in our community who do not have access to daily care products to refresh themselves as they go to school and being outside of their homes. Imagine the stigma attached to “not smelling good” and being told so to your face regularly.

Raising Girls aims to help ensure that all girls feel pride in who they are and understand the power they have to be unique individuals, who can make a difference. We provide necessary hygiene products to girls in the South Sound, while partnering with local organizations committed to serving our youth.

By donating items for Raising Girls to distribute, you make it possible to eliminate humiliation, promote pride and share love to thousands of girls in our community!

Sharon Chambers-Gordon

Meet Our Leadership Team

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Christina Blocker

Christina’s passion for building equitable communities drives her commitment to her work. After working within the mental health field for 7 years -along with her studies in the field of psychology, Christina decided to utilize her skills within the political sphere through her political consulting firm Archway Consulting Group. In addition to her political expertise, Christina also specializes in fundraising, digital strategy, and community development/ outreach. She currently serves as Board Chair for Bates Technical College’s Board of Trustees, President of the national African American Caucus of Community College Trustees and also serves on the Board of Directors for the Hilltop Action Coalition. Christina is honored to serve her community through Raising Girls because of its mission to empower young girls who are in need. Christina serves as Website Creator for Raising Girls.

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Stacey Gendreau

I was born and raised in the Pacific Northwest and I am proud to call it home today! My enthusiasm for our state and city is reflected in my detailed knowledge of local businesses, schools, recreational and volunteer opportunities. I’m always ready and willing to help, or to organize my community to serve the needs of others. Before my career in the real estate industry, I worked as a retail marketing manager where I was in charge of 25 stores in 5 states. Currently, I live in North Tacoma with my partner, and in addition to volunteering, we both love beekeeping, urban gardening, hiking, biking, stand-up paddle boarding, and of course—we LOVE the mountain! Travel is important to me, and I’ve adventured to Singapore, Thailand, Costa Rica, China, Chile, Mexico, Canada and all over the U.S.A. I know that understanding and learning about all our differences is what will bring us closer together! I enjoy the opportunity travel offers, in that seeing how others around the World live, helps me appreciate and thrive in my own community. Organizing and doing volunteer work here in Tacoma, ensures I am always learning and growing from others, and at the same time, guarantees I am contributing towards creating a healthy and vibrant community. I am excited to be a part of the Raising Girls Organization! It gives me an opportunity to help the young women and men in our community build self-confidence, pride in themselves, and to show them the effect volunteering can have on one life, or on a whole community. It is my hope, that by my example, the youth who are receiving from Raising Girls, will grow into young adults that prosper, become leaders in their own communities and see the value being a volunteer can bring to their life and the lives of others. Stacey serves as the Community Outreach Coordinator for Raising Girls.

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Kristen Blankenship

Kristen is a business attorney at Eisenhower Carlson, PLLC and was born and raised in the South Puget Sound. Kristen is passionate about supporting the success of women and girls and she discovered the incredible the Tacoma community while studying Economics at Pacific Lutheran University. Kristen is always searching for meaningful ways to provide encouragement and support for youth as they explore, learn, and grow. Kristen believes that a student’s concerns about basic necessities, including hygiene, can serve as barriers to success in the classroom and that removing those barriers can be a critical step toward leveling the playing field. Kristen is inspired by the Raising Girls mission and grateful for the opportunity to serve on the leadership team and help girls build confidence and focus on becoming their best self.

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Karena Glodowski

Karena Glodowski, M.Ed, was born and raised in Tacoma and attended Tacoma Public Schools. She grew her love for the community as she volunteered with Safe Streets as a teenager with her mother. She graduated from Western Washington University with Bachelors degree in Business Administration where she participated on the rowing team. She worked several years in retail management before realizing that her true passion was to work for the community. She returned to school at Pacific Lutheran University to become a teacher and serve the Tacoma community. Karena is in her fifth year as an educator of English Language Arts. This is her fifth year as an educator for Tacoma Public Schools serving both Henry Foss High School and Lincoln High School during that time. Karena has 3 daughters ranging from 3 years to 8 years old. Connecting with Sharon felt like a great opportunity to further support her community and youth of Tacoma. Karena is happy to work with local girls in their efforts to stay equipped with the resources they need.  She works primarily with 9th grade students and has witnessed their various level of needs. She hopes to empower young ladies by providing them with the support they need to be successful. She has also served as a mentor for the Washington Youth Academy. Karena serves as Education Ambassador For Raising Girls.

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Dale Golder

Dale Golder has worked as a Mortgage Banking Professional for 40+ years. Her expertise in mortgage banking and her personable customer service continues to earn the trust of her customer. She loves having the opportunity to help people realize the American Dream of Home Ownership. Dale is very involved in her community as Board Chair of Pierce County Coalition for Developmental Disabilities (PC2). As a Leadership Team Member for Raising Girls, Dale has the opportunity to show young girls they are valued, respected and can face the world with confidence! In her spare time, Dale  enjoys spending time with family and friends, glamping, dancing, singing on her church worship team and plans to do more sewing & traveling. Dale serves as Board Secretary for Raising Girls.

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Amara Gordon

Amara Gordon is a recent graduate of Dartmouth College and she is currently a Program Manager at Microsoft. Amara was raised in the Puget Sound and has always had a passion for giving back; Raising Girls is the perfect avenue for her to do that. The mission of Raising Girls resonates with her because she knows that there are so many in need, and she was once a Tacoma Public Schools student facing the challenges of being a teenager. Amara is excited that Raising Girls gets to play a role in making the world a better place. Empowering girls is extremely important, and hygiene products are necessary for a girl to feel confident and ready to take on the world! This is an opportunity to have a positive impact, and Amara is grateful to be a part of such an exciting organization that is doing just that. Amara loves to volunteer at food banks and her hobbies include dancing, playing the violin and reading. Amara serves as Social Media Coordinator and Web Content Manager for Raising Girls.

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Renee Houston, PhD is Associate Dean of Experiential Learning and professor of Communication Studies at the University of Puget Sound. Renee has been involved in several organizations focused on empowerment of women and girls including the Fund for Women and Girls, the Greater Metro Parks Foundation, and the National Center for Women and Information Technology. She has also served as president of The Organization for the Study of Communication, Language and Gender. Renee is happy to support local girls in their efforts to stay focused on their education and feeling self-confident. Renee serves as the Education Ambassador For Raising Girls. 

Renee Houston

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Jasmyn Jefferson

I currently work as the Principle Managing Broker of Windermere Professional Partners Tacoma and has been a full time REALTOR since 2003. Born and raised in Tacoma, I attended Tacoma public schools and began a love for volunteering in my community by tagging along with and eventually helping along side my father.  I now share this passion with my daughter and friends as often as possible. Growing up with a single father, I was fortunate enough to not experience period poverty. I did however, have friends that experienced bouts of homelessness and home life disruption and my dad and other family members would help out by providing care packages and sharing my personal hygiene items. Connecting with Sharon and Raising Girls has been a natural fit. Jasmyn serves as the Community Outreach Coordinator for Raising Girls.

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Jasmyn Jefferson

I currently work as the Principle Managing Broker of Windermere Professional Partners Tacoma and has been a full time REALTOR since 2003. Born and raised in Tacoma, I attended Tacoma public schools and began a love for volunteering in my community by tagging along with and eventually helping along side my father.  I now share this passion with my daughter and friends as often as possible. Growing up with a single father, I was fortunate enough to not experience period poverty. I did however, have friends that experienced bouts of homelessness and home life disruption and my dad and other family members would help out by providing care packages and sharing my personal hygiene items. Connecting with Sharon and Raising Girls has been a natural fit. Jasmyn serves as the Community Outreach Coordinator for Raising Girls.

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Lori Ricigliano

Lori grew up in New Jersey and moved to the Pacific Northwest to attend graduate school at the University of Washington. She has lived in Tacoma for more than 40 years. She recently retired from the University of Puget Sound as the Associate Director for User Services at Collins Library where service to students and faculty were integral to her work. She founded the Race and Pedagogy Journal in 2014 and continues to serve as its managing editor. She is also the digital archivist for a professional theatre organization and a member of a community garden where she delivers produce to a local food bank. Lori was invited to join the Board of Raising Girls in 2019 and assists with researching and writing grants to support the important ongoing work to those in need in our local community. By providing personal hygiene products, Raising Girls empowers girls to feel confident in school so that they can achieve their full potential and thrive in life. Lori serves as a member of the grant writing team for Raising Girls.

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Katrina Self

Katrina is an attorney, U.S. Army veteran, mother of two, and a passionate advocate.  Katrina currently practices estate planning and complex trust and probate administration at Eisenhower Carlson PLLC in Tacoma.  Prior to moving to the Northwest, Katrina was a Diplomat at the U.S. Embassy in Ukraine, where she was Professional Associate in the Public Affairs Office, handling delicate international relations in a fast-paced, high-profile environment.  Katrina began her legal career as a Judge Advocate in the U.S. Army, where she was a criminal prosecutor in the most active criminal law jurisdiction in the military.  Katrina also served as the sole legal advisor to a forward deployed U.S. Army unit in northern Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom and later advised the Director of the National Security Agency on national and international legal matters.  Katrina continues to serve as a Major in the U.S. Army Reserves. Katrina was immediately inspired by Raising Girls’ mission to meet a desperate need in the community while building confidence to thousands of our local girls.  She is extremely grateful for the opportunity to serve on the Raising Girls team and to help all girls become whomever they want to be. Katrina serves as a member of the grant writing team for Raising Girls.

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Cheri Warner

I am a military spouse, a mother of four, an entrepreneur, business woman and true girlfriend. Slaying all challenges and opportunities with a “can do attitude”. I believe my life’s purpose is to help others see their full potential and support them in achieving their goals, personally and financially, in business, and in life. I am a business owner of a property management company and real estate school, a real estate investor and managing broker, Realtor, mentor and trainer to new Realtors entering the field of real estate. I support small businesses, volunteer with my church and the USO. Currently a Board member of Habitat for Humanity. "Raising Girls' mission is in line with my vision to serve where needed. Our young people are the future and they need to know that, and KNOW they are cherished. Raising Girls is doing that. I’m proud to be a part of this organization." Cheri serves as Marketing Coordinator for Raising Girls.

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Sharon Winesberry

My name is Sharon  Winesberry. I am a U.S. Army Veteran, married to Cornelius Winesberry, Jr. for 45 years and he is very supportive of my various volunteer work in the community. When founder, Sharon Chambers-Gordon shared her vision of supplying personal hygiene products to school aged girls, I immediately wanted to be a part of Raising Girls. It would have been great for an organization like Raising Girls to have been available for me when my period started, while  sitting in class at school. Then, I would have had the proper supplies when available, just as I needed them, because I would have headed to the nurse’s office to pick up a care bag. I am happy to serve and have a positive impact on girls who need us to be there for them. My hobbies include decorating, gardening and re-purposing items. Sharon serves as Special Assistant for Raising Girls.

Raising Girls was founded in 2017 with a mission to alleviate period poverty, or lack of access to hygiene products caused by adversity, by collecting and distributing care bags to girls and teens aged 10-18 in the South Sound area. 

 

We are committed to empowering young girls to recognize their own potential by building and encouraging self-respect. We provide necessary hygiene items to girls throughout Tacoma, wherever the need is greatest, partnering with local organizations committed to serve our youth.

© 2020 by Raising Girls Organization
 

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