Staff Spotlight Series
UTEC is proud to have a team of dedicated and accomplished staff members. Get to know some of the exceptional individuals and their work a bit better below.
Paul (Viengsamay) Chaleunphong
Transitional Beginnings Program Manager
Shawnic first started with UTEC in 2004, where she joined as a Young Adult. She gained experience as an Americorp Youth worker and a Transitional Coach, before reaching her current position as the Transitional Beginnings Program Manager.
As the Program Manager, she witnesses the obstacles and struggles that Young Adults face everyday, but has found her passion in helping them be the best person they can be.
Director of Grants and Contracts
Judy has been with UTEC for over a year and has settled into the routine of meeting deadlines and fulfilling detailed requirements for grant proposals.
She especially values the collaboration and support from all of her colleagues and remarks “grant writing is a team sport!”
Judy is most proud of the policy and systems change projects she’s contributed to: “It’s inspiring to see the changes that happen when young adults share their stories and advocate for new policies.”
Shambra has been involved with UTEC for almost three years now and stays busy in the kitchen as the Culinary Instructor.
Around UTEC, she’s known for being able to make deep connections with young adults and offering them a safe space. Shambra has found her passion in working with youth, acting as a positive role model, and helping them find their voice.
Some fun facts about Shambra: The last song she listened to was Rich Flex, one item on her bucket list is to visit African safaris, and when she’s not at UTEC, she’s busy running her own catering company Red’s Kitchen and Catering!
Facilities Crew Leader
Dave started with UTEC more than seven years ago. And his job looks different everyday — he steps up to meet different staff needs, event requirements, and essential facility services.
A project he is most proud of is helping to get the UTEC daycare up and running. Dave said his favorite part of the job is getting to watch young adults make positive changes for themselves and their community.
Julie has been involved with UTEC since she was 14, and she is now a Staff Accountant who is ready to tackle anything that comes her way!
She is proud to be a Black woman in the finance field and to be part of an administrative staff who represent the demographics we serve in our community at UTEC.
One of Julie’s favorite parts of the job is when the organization comes together for the holidays, reminding her of the special time she spent as a young adult attending the holiday dinners.
Angel Ace Vasquez
Lawrence Streetworker Manager
Angel is passionate about bringing the community together and solving complex problems. He knows firsthand what it is like to be involved in street life: “I experienced the hopelessness and loss of so many talented young adults. It made me realize that I could only help my community by first changing myself.”
As Streetworker Manager, he now works to make a difference for so many young adults and appreciates the moments where he can help spark a new beginning for someone who is struggling.
Lead Transitional Coach
Sadyra has been involved with UTEC for over 7 years — she started as a Social Justice Specialist and has now made her way to being the Lead Transitional Coach.
She’s proud to work with UTEC for a few reasons: the young adults, the advocacy work, and the relationship building.
While Sadyra may not know what to expect on a day-to-day basis, she embraces going with the flow. She is most proud of the fact that young adults welcome her into their lives so she can help support them — when things are going great and when challenges arise.
Social Enterprise Assistant
Gianghi has appreciated the work and outreach done by UTEC in the community, and is now excited to be a part of getting the job done.
The most challenging part of the job is also her favorite: Gianghi is responsible for synthesizing Enterprise data, and finds it rewarding as, “others can focus on doing the hands-on work and growing the Enterprises, which will then produce revenue that can go back into UTEC.”
Originally from Springfield, MA, Gianghi is proud to be a part of UTEC’s mission in reducing gang violence and giving back to the community.