Steve Davis (President & Director)
snkids.org was not the plan. I thought by now I was going to be designing board games or writing about computer security. When Eleanor and I decided to have kids, we also decided that it was important that one of us stay home with them. Eleanor’s career was on the upswing and I was doing consulting, so the choice was easy.
Stay-at-home dad time.
First Clara came, then Geoffrey. Then came Geoffrey’s autism diagnosis just before he turned three. At first I thought that the challenge was one of “working the bureaucracy” better and how we should approach his diagnosis and treatment (read some of my early posts).
The more I dug into the problem, the bigger it seemed.
Meeting with other parents, I found that our different diagnoses didn’t matter much. We were all working with (or working around) the same systems. We were all dealing with many of the same needs for the same services yet too often what we could get to help our kids seemed more like a game of Russian Roulette than any sort of sensible process.
So, here we are.
Chelsea Bonini (Treasurer & Director)
I have two boys (10 and 14 years old), one of which is currently receiving special education services through the San Mateo-Foster City School District.
Through the process of determining how to get services, what our rights were, and eventually (3 years in) getting to the right place, I decided that this experience was less than ideal, and I want to do whatever I can to help ensure that other parents don’t experience the isolation, mis-information, and lack of continuity in the process and systems that our family did.
The confusion and crisis that is common for parents with special needs kids is something that can be avoided, and I know in my heart that we can have better systems that work to bring about better experiences and outcomes for our kids. It’s essential that we figure out how to do this better.
I join the team at SNKids.org with recent experience as a member of the Governing Board of the San Mateo-Foster City School District. During my Board term, I also served on the Executive Board of the San Mateo County School Boards Association and on California Assembly Member Pro Tem Kevin Mullin’s Educational Advisory Committee.
I hold a B.S. in Elementary Education & Psychology and taught Kindergarten, First Grade and Title I reading in the South San Francisco Unified School District from 1994-1998, after which I attended law school at U.C. Hastings. I graduated and was admitted to the California Bar in 2001. My current business and transactional law practice serves a variety of entrepreneurial and business clients, and I also work part-time as In House Corporate Counsel for Lundberg Family Farms.
For over a decade, I have served in community-based leadership roles, including participating in various community-based Boards, task forces and steering committees within San Mateo County, with a focus on education, community building, housing needs, wellness, early literacy supports, and access to arts. I have been a strong advocate for equitable opportunities and support structures for all students, including students with special needs. This is my passion.
Jenny McPherson (Secretary & Director)
I am excited to join SNKids.org. I have served on the Laurel Elementary PTA Board as Fundraising Chair for 3 years and Student Activities Chair for a year, as well as serving on the Carlmont Parents Nursery School Board for 3 years. I was recently appointed to the San Mateo County SELPA’s Resource Parents Council in which I will work improve communication about special education to families in the San Mateo-Foster City School District.
I hold a B.A. in Child and Adolescent Development and a Multiple Subject Teaching Credential from San Francisco State University. I have taught 3rd Grade and am currently a substitute in the SMFCSD. In addition, I am also co-owner of Dodge and Associates, a Project Management Corporation.
I have dedicated my life to the education and the wellbeing of all children. My focus has been on early intervention, literacy and the arts. I have and continue to serve as an advocate for children with special needs and their parents. My goal is equity for all children and to help create an educational environment that us geared towards inclusion, early intervention and access to resources.