André (they/them) has been passionate about creating inclusive environments where marginalized communities feel safe and heard and where they can obtain knowledge to make empowered decisions regarding their sexual reproductive health and personal lives. Acquiring a wealth of knowledge from their undergraduate and master’s institutions of Wells College and Geisinger Commonwealth School of Medicine, André has been able to help integrate policies and break down barriers affecting patients and physicians alike. André is dedicated to making healthcare accessible and medical services more effective and comfortable for patients, and they are thrilled to be able to continue this work at PPGNY.
Hometown: Queens, New York
Favorite Food: Sushi & Thai
Favorite TV Show: I love too many anime to list just one 😂
Ashley (she/they) is a Sexuality Educator for Project STIQ at Planned Parenthood of Greater New York (PPGNY). Throughout college, she was a Sexual Health Educator and peer mentor and she has experience working in community-based organizations ranging from a homeless youth shelter to an abortion doula network. Her community is made up of the beautiful combination of LGBTQIA+ folx, first-generation children of immigrants, Asian-Americans, NYC natives, and healers. In her free time, you can find her reading astrology charts and tarot, daydreaming (she’s a Pisces), and trying out new foods she saw on TikTok.
Hometown: Queens, NY
Favorite food: Spicy Chicken Korma + Naan
Favorite TV show: Euphoria
Bella (she/her) has been passionate about sexuality education ever since she attended Planned Parenthood sexual and reproductive health seminars when she was 13. At American University, she combined skills she acquired in grassroots organizing from the Human Rights Campaign and the local DC Planned Parenthood affiliate with her passion for sexual and reproductive health education as co-president of Students to End Abortion Stigma. Eager to continue down the path of accessible, comprehensive, evidence based Sexual and Reproductive Health education, Bella is ecstatic to continue this work as a sexuality educator for Project STIQ within Planned Parenthood of Greater New York.
Hometown: Los Angeles, CA
Favorite Food: My mom’s adobo
Favorite TV Show: Food Wars!
Destynee (she/her) started with Planned Parenthood in high school as a Teen Advocate, sharing information on Sexual and Reproductive Health (SRH) to her peers. She has returned to PPGNY as a Sexuality Educator to young people, where she hopes to fuse her love of Creative Arts, Child Psychology, and SRH to help youth develop the skills and knowledge to advocate for themselves.
Hometown: Manhattan, NY
Favorite Food: Turkey bacon, egg and cheese (TurkeyBaconEggAndCheese)
Favorite TV Show: Bob’s Burgers
Jessica (she/her/hers) is a Sexuality Educator for Project STIQ at Planned Parenthood Greater New York (PPGNY). As an undergraduate student, Jessica coordinated her campus sex education organization and facilitated sexual health and consent workshops at local high schools. She also provides direct support as an abortion doula and advocates for abortion access and is grateful for the community she has found in the Reproductive Justice movement. At all other times, you can find her cooking vegan recipes or making up her own.
Hometown: Los Angeles, CA
Favorite Food: Tofu banh mi
Favorite TV Show: Ru Paul’s Drag Race
Lauren (she/her) is a Sexuality Educator at Planned Parenthood of Greater New York. Prior to working with PPGNY, Lauren was a full-time classroom teacher for four years within the New York Public School system, teaching math to adolescents in grades 6-12. Combining her passion for human sexuality with extensive teacher training, Lauren is passionate about making sexual education accessible and inclusive to youth from all backgrounds. When she’s not making sex education magic happen, you can find her walking barefoot in nature, practicing yoga, and exploring different spiritual modalities.
Hometown: Chicago, Illinois
Favorite Food: Pizza
Favorite TV Show: Breaking Bad
Nelson (He/Him) is a Sexuality Educator/Trainer for Project STIQ & Signature Programs at Planned Parenthood of Greater NY. Nelson has dedicated the past 10 years to providing youth ages 11-24 with medically accurate Sexual and Reproductive Health information by facilitating workshops, pop-up events, and tabling at events in the community. Nelson’s main goal is to provide youth with the information and resources they need to protect themselves, live a healthy life, and know their options when it comes down to Sexual and Reproductive Health services.
Hometown: Lower East Side of Manhattan
Favorite Food: Lasagna
Favorite TV Show: Fresh Prince of Bel-Air
Nicole is a Sexuality Educator with project STIQ. She worked supporting youth in foster care where she saw the need for sexual reproductive health education. She believes every individual regardless of gender, race, age or ethnicity deserves to have access to sexual education and resources. Nicole is happy to be serving the community that saw her grow up.
Hometown: Queens, New York
Favorite Food: Al Pastor Tacos
Favorite TV Show: Nailed It!
Stephen joined the Project STIQ team in February 2021. Having worked in public health for about 4 years, Stephen has worked with teens and young adults to connect them with HIV prevention and treatment services, primary care, and mental health. Stephen graduated from Hunter College with a BA in Sociology and Africana and Puerto Rican/Latino Studies in 2019 and would like to become a nurse in the future. In his free time, Stephen loves to cook, travel, go to museums, listen to music, and listen to podcasts.
Hometown: New York, NY
Favorite Food: Pollo Guisado
Favorite TV Show: Desus & Mero
Meet Our Adult Role Models
Brenda (she/her) has been an Adult Role Models (ARM) since 2015. When she joined the program, she was the mother of a then 5-year-old toddler. Early on, Brenda used the techniques and skills she learned from the Adult Role Model curriculum to communicate with her daughter and offer support around sexuality. Over time, the conversation around sexuality continued, and Brenda has seen firsthand the benefits of providing that support. Her daughter turns to her for questions and support.
Dennis (he/him) has been an Adult Role Models (ARM) since 2004. Dennis has also been an active member of Planned Parenthood of Greater New York's (PPGNY) Activist Council and regularly participates in lobby days and fundraising events. In addition to his work with PPGNY, Dennis is a Deacon at the Collegiate Church of New York and currently serves on the board of The Interfaith Assembly on Homelessness and Housing. Dennis is the proud father of three daughters and five granddaughters. He is deeply dedicated to the mission of PPGNY and the health, safety and empowerment of all women, teens and families.
Diane (she/her) has been an Adult Role Models (ARM) since 2007. Diane believes that, because our children are being bombarded with many confusing messages and signals in the media and from their peers, it is crucial that the ARM Program exists to empower parents to help tease out those messages. Diane is an established leader in her church in Brooklyn, where she serves as the chairperson of the Parenting Ministry.
Francisco (he/him) joined the Adult Role Models (ARM) in 2015. Since joining Planned Parenthood of Greater New York, Francisco has increased his knowledge around sexual and reproductive health topics. His favorite part of being an ARM is teaching parents and grandparents the tools to communicate more effectively with young people. Francisco is bilingual and completed La Guardia Community College's community health worker certificate program.
Pat (she/her) has been an Adult Role Models (ARM) since 2007. Pat’s rewarding moment from being an ARM is helping prepare parents to be able to communicate with their children. When not out in the field giving workshops, Pat enjoys spending time with her family. She is also an active volunteer for her daughter’s Girl Scout troop.
Interested in learning more about Project STIQ or scheduling programming?