Lisa Auerbach is the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) at Congreso. In this role she oversees the Fiscal and IT teams, focusing on transparency, customer service, teamwork and the drive to implement technology to eliminate paper driven processes throughout the organization. Lisa started working with Congreso in 2015 as a consultant to the CFO. She was hired in 2017 as Sr. VP of Finance and promoted to CFO in 2019.
As CFO, Lisa successfully restructured the Fiscal team to better align with the agency’s three programmatic divisions, took the agency paperless prior to the pandemic shutdown, and continues to seek ways to strategically move the organization forward with innovation and collaboration.
In 2020, Lisa was recognized as one of twenty-five top CFO’s in the Philadelphia region by the Philadelphia Business Journal. This award was determined by editors based on demonstrated contributions to growth and/or profitability, tenure and scope of responsibilities, leadership, success in overcoming challenges, respect and influence within the organization and community involvement.
In addition to her role as CFO, Lisa is a trustee for the Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education, an elected Councilwoman for Ambler Borough, an artist, a dog mom to a rescue mutt (Arlowe) and a Newfoundland gentle giant (Persephone) and mom to two beautiful daughters.
Brendan Conlin is Chief Program Officer (CPO) at Congreso. In this capacity, Mr. Conlin oversees the agency’s 3 programmatic divisions; Education and Workforce Services, Health Promotion and Wellness, Family and Housing Services, as well as the agency’s Data and Evaluation team. Since getting his start with Congreso in 2009 as an English as Second Language Instructor, Mr. Conlin has risen through the various programmatic levels of the organization, including serving as the Director of Adult Education and Vice President of Education and Workforce Services.
Mr. Conlin’s role as CPO is to drive Congreso’s strategic plan, titled Mission 2 Impact, to carry out Congreso’s mission to move clients towards economic self-sufficiency and wellbeing. Specifically, his work focuses on developing the infrastructure and capacity for using social innovation techniques to enhance Congreso’s services by embedding Human-Centered Design and Lean Impact methods into the organization’s program design strategy. These methods help Congreso continuously analyze their 60+ programs for optimal effectiveness and client value, empowering teams to use rapid experimentation and innovation techniques to drive measurable impact for families.
In addition to serving as CPO at Congreso, he represents the organization and the needs of Congreso’s community across with city, overseeing its partnerships with Philadelphia Works, Inc., Philadelphia Youth Network, Lenfest Foundation, Eastern State Penitentiary, Penn State Abington, Harcum College, Temple University and other leading institutions throughout the region. He is most excited about how his work can influence systems affecting youth on the cusp of leaving school and gaining access to higher education and the workforce.
Most recently, Mr. Conlin was recognized by the Greater Social Innovations Journal as a top innovator in the Healthy Workforce category, for his work on creating a system for running Human-Centered-Design Labs across the organization.
Julia Rivera was promoted to Chief External Affairs Officer in August of 2022 after serving as Vice President of External Affairs & Strategic Initiatives spearheading Congreso’s communications, marketing, community and advocacy work. In her new role as a member of Congreso’s Officer team she now oversees the agency’s fundraising and development as well. Julia started her career at Congreso in 2017 as Congreso’s External Affairs Director and during her 5+ years with the organization she has significantly increased Congreso’s digital marketing efforts and social media presence, coordinated the agency’s civic engagement work and major fundraising events, supported program teams across all service areas, and lead new initiatives to cultivate stakeholder engagement.
Julia was honored as a member of AL DÍA’s 40 Under Forty Class of 2022 and in August of 2020, Julia was selected as a Coors Light Líderes Finalist. She was one of twelve emerging Latino leaders across the United States nominated and selected for their civic leadership and who through their words and actions establish noteworthy improvement in the lives of individuals, communities and organizations.
Prior to Congreso, Julia was the Community Relations Manager at Trinity College in Hartford, Connecticut supporting the President’s Office and coordinating community engagement and partnerships. Julia also graduated from Trinity College summa cum laude with a B.A. in Sociology, Economics, and Urban Studies and an M.A. in Public Policy which she earned while working full-time. Julia has been a lifelong athlete playing field hockey for four years while at Trinity and representing Puerto Rico as a member of the Puerto Rican National Women’s Field Hockey Team since 2008. Originally from Silver Spring, Maryland, Julia is now established in Philadelphia and enjoys taking advantage of all the community events and festivals that the city has to offer.
Rafael Arismendi is Vice President of Education and Workforce Services (EWS) at Congreso. In this capacity, he oversees the agency’s Children and Youth Services, Adult Education, and Workforce Initiatives Departments, managing a $7M budget for comprehensive education and workforce initiatives within Congreso. EWS oversees the educational and workforce outcomes for more than 4,300 clients, including students in its K-12, GED, Harcum College at Congreso, adult literacy, and workforce training programs.
Mr. Arismendi, a native of Venezuela, built an extensive career as an executive in the private sector before joining Congreso in 2005. Since 2009, he has served as a leader within the EWS division before rising to the Vice President role in November 2017. Mr. Arismendi directed EWS business engagement initiatives which led to countless internship and professional development opportunities for Congreso’s clients. He was responsible for the design, management and evaluation of Congreso’s successful Learn and Work (LAW) initiative, which directly improved academic performance for hundreds of Philadelphia youth by offering internship opportunities and career exposure, along with academic supports. In addition, he led the agency’s workforce development programs which continue to successfully serve TANF families throughout the city. In his new position as EWS Vice President, he is excited to lend his business acumen and strategic planning expertise to influence systems that affect adults striving for economic self-sufficiency and youth who are in need of education and workforce services.
Mr. Arismendi holds a Master’s degree in Public Administration from Harvard Kennedy School, a Master of Business Administration from Alliance Manchester Business School (UK) and a Master of Science, Metallurgical Engineering from Simon Bolivar University (Venezuela). He has travelled extensively in Europe, Latin America and North America. He enjoys outdoor adventures and watching movies with his wife, Liliani, and their two young boys, Fabian and Gabriel.
Denise is Vice President of Fiscal Operations at Congreso. As VP of Fiscal Operations she ensures proper accounting of grants, contracts and special events. Denise oversees the Fiscal Operations of the Budget Analyst, Cash Receipts, and Fiscal Operations Team. Her role includes working with government funders, granters, and our year end outside auditors to ensure proper compliance, quality assurance, and best practices. It is important to her that all divisions are given consistent communication and positive results when working with the Fiscal Department. Denise looks forward to being a part of Congreso’s mission to help the community achieve self-sufficiency and well being.
Denise worked for a CPA Firm during college and after 2 years at York College took a manager position in accounting at a Printing Company. She completed her four year degree to become the Controller of the Printing Company in Philadelphia. Continued her work as an auditor of private schools and became the Controller of their curriculum division. Realizing the passion she had for the education of children she started a non profit business. She joined Temple University’s Board for the prevention of school violence, wrote several grants and started after school programs in middle and high schools in Philadelphia to keep children off the streets and in a safe learning environment. Her continued career in education included the Director of Fiscal Operations at Child Care Information Services.
Other positions include Fiscal Director for a non-profit working with participants with mental illness, drug and alcohol abuse and homelessness. Additional positions include grant reviewer for 21st Century Grant awards, and due diligence work for new business purchase.
Denise loves to read, work out, shop, and social golf, she enjoys her beautiful family and feels blessed to have so many wonderful people in her life.
Juan De Angulo is the Vice President of Quality Assurance who holds an MBA in International Economic Development and BA in Sociology from Eastern University. Juan started at Congreso in 2008 as the Data Coordinator, working one on one with staff to assure quality data. He quickly grew into new roles in the Data and Evaluation department as Manager then Director and in 2016 was promoted to Vice President. During his tenure, Juan has worked with program management to build, monitor and report data in Congreso’s well known centralized client database using ETO Software® He played a central role the development and implementation of the agency’s standardized service delivery model, Primary Client Model (PCM™), for which he leads continued development today. Juan is often supporting performance management efforts beyond Congreso through conferences, work groups, and consulting.
Juan has used his expertise in performance management to present nationally including at the Social Solutions Global Conference in 2011, National Council of La Raza’s Annual Conference in 2011 and 2012, and the Alliance for Children and Families’ Annual Conference in 2013. He was a member of the National Product Advisory Board for Social Solution, and of the Data, Performance Management and Accountability Work Group for Philadelphia’s Department of Human Services. Juan established a consulting business line for Congreso in response to an increase demand from organizations across the nation requesting support in managing ETO software and developing performance management systems. As a consultant, Juan supported local and national nonprofits, and government agencies with their data management and implementation of performance management systems. He is a Gold Certified ETO Administrator Certified Implementation Partner for ETO software.
Prior to joining Congreso, Juan designed program evaluation systems for Medicines for Humanity and MAP International in Bolivia. In 2011 Juan was one of four Fellows selected nationally for Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Evaluation Fellowship Program. More recently Juan was one of Philadelphia’s public leaders selected for the 2015 Leading for Change Fellowship, an intensive and experiential leadership development program that integrates the latest insights in business, leadership, public policy and innovation to strengthen leadership capacity. Mr. De Angulo currently sits on the board as Treasurer of the New Sanctuary Movement a non-profit organization that focuses on organizing communities to end injustices against immigrant communities regardless of status.
Judith Emmons is a public health professional with a passion for serving Latinx communities. Judith has dedicated almost a decade to working to improve health disparities in the Latinx community, with a focus on the social determinants of health. She graduated from Rutgers University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Spanish and Latin American Studies, and went on to obtain a Master’s Degree in Public Health from Drexel University. Judith has been working with Latinx serving non-profit organizations since 2009, beginning at Puerto Rican Unity for Progress in Camden, New Jersey, where she oversaw youth and health-related programming. She has been employed at Congreso de Latinos Unidos, Inc. since 2011, where she has served in both direct client service and administrative roles. From 2016-2021, Judith served as the Director of Primary Care at Congreso’s Federally Qualified Health Center, where she oversaw the daily operations of the clinic and its contracts. In her role as Vice President, Judith is responsible for leading the consolidation of the FQHC and HIV/AIDS Services departments into one cohesive health care team unit, in alignment with Congreso’s strategic plan, Mission to Impact, and specifically to the organization’s programmatic strategy for high-impact wellbeing services. Judith is committed to ensuring that clients of Congreso continue to receive high quality healthcare, through expansion of programming and integration of services.
Jamie Hughes is Congreso’s Vice President of Programmatic Development. In this role, she oversees Congreso’s Grants team and grantwriting efforts, as well as works closely with agency leadership on Mission to Impact projects and vision to drive Congreso’s growth strategy. Ms. Hughes also works closely with Congreso’s administrative teams to maximize agency operations and systems for efficiency, including budgeting and contract management.
Jamie started at Congreso as an AmeriCorps VISTA member in the Education and Workforce Services division, working with the Adult Education department to expand GED and English as a Second Language classes and testing programs. Since that initial role, she has served as Education and Workforce Services Division Manager and most recently Director of Programmatic Development to support the agency in a various of programmatic and administrative capacities.
Prior to working at Congreso, Jamie worked for a nonprofit community development organization in the Dominican Republic for several years, working with communities across the country in education, health and water system projects. She holds a BA in Spanish and Latin American Studies from American University in Washington DC, as well as Certificates for Spanish and Medical Spanish translation.
Daisy Rosa is Vice President of Family and Housing Services. In this capacity, she oversees the agency’s child welfare, parenting, housing, senior services, financial literacy and tax site programs. She came to Congreso with 18 years of experience in social services and has held a number of positions in administration, including the management of a $55 million system established by the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare designed to help over 15,000 welfare recipients a year move to economic self-sufficiency.
She currently serves on the Board of Directors of Latinas in Motion (LIM) a nonprofit which encourages, inspires and empowers women to stay healthy and fit. She also chaired the Board of Directors of Work Opportunities, Inc, a non-profit dedicated to helping welfare clients become gainfully employed.
Born in Jersey City, New Jersey, Ms. Rosa and her family moved to Guanica, Puerto Rico when she was thirteen, thus completing her secondary education there. She later returned to the mainland and graduated with a B.A. in Sociology from Rowan University.
She resides in Cherry Hill, NJ with her husband Brian and daughter Brianna. In her spare time, you will find her running with her Doberman Pinscher, Klaus. She has a passion for the sport and has completed several marathon races including a 100 mile ultra marathon. Ms. Rosa is also a certified running coach with Road Runners Coach of America.
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