OUR BOARD OF DIRECTORS
New Hampshire Children’s Trust is governed by passionate and committed community members with a range of experiences and networks. 100% of the Board of Directors contribute financially to the organization.
Jenn Cronin, Board Chair
Jenn Cronin is a 1998 graduate of the University of New Hampshire with a BS in Communication. She grew up in East Kingston, NH, and now lives in Newmarket. Jenn is a a People Partner at The Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, supporting the Human Resources functions for multiple research labs and the administrative collaborative. Prior to Broad, Jenn spent over 20 years working in the staffing industry with many NH companies to support their HR needs and internal headcount. Jenn is a member of Kappa Delta Sorority and has served KD as a volunteer at the local and national levels since 2003, most recently supporting local housing volunteers across the country as the Housing Resource Specialist Team Manager.
Mark Knights, Esq., Vice Chair
Mark Knights is a New Hampshire native currently residing in Exeter with his wife Stephani and their three children. A graduate of the University of New Hampshire and the George Washington University Law School, Mark is a partner at the law firm of Nixon Peabody, where he represents individuals and institutions at all stages of state and federal government investigations, prosecutions, and enforcement actions. In 2021, Mark founded the Ride for Resilience, a 100-mile charity bike ride across the State of New Hampshire to support and raise awareness for the Children’s Trust and New Hampshire’s Family Resource Centers.
Karen Kersting, Secretary
Karen lives in New Boston with her husband David. As Executive Director of UpReach Therapeutic Equestrian Center in Goffstown since 1998, she has paired her love of horses with a desire to partner with them to improve the lives of children and families through equine assisted services and therapies. A former Vice President in Cash Management at Citizens Bank, Karen brings her skills in financial analysis, product development, and project management to the organization. A Summa Cum Laude graduate of Emerson College with a BA in Theater Education, Karen enjoys singing and can often be found performing throughout New England with her band Karen Morgan and Pony Express. Karen previously served on the Board of the New Hampshire Court Juvenile Diversion Network, is former co-chair of the PATH International Center Advancement Committee, and sits on the Granite United Way Youth Enrichment Partnership Team.
Janice Fitzpatrick, Treasurer
Janice Fitzpatrick is the Director of Financial Services at National Education Association—New Hampshire. She has also served as the VP and CFO of the NH Electric Cooperative and worked for 10 years in the banking industry. Janice holds a Masters in Accounting from Southern NH University where she received the Alumni Distinguished Service Award in 2000 for her leadership, dedication, and loyal service to the college. Janice is a resident of Candia and previously served on the NHCT board from 2010 - 2018.
Brian Beals, MD FAAP
Brian grew up in Southern NH but has other areas of the country while earning a Bachelor of Science from the University of Notre Dame in South Bend, IN, and a Doctorate in Medicine from Jefferson Medical College in Philadelphia, PA. He returned to NH to complete Pediatric residency training at the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon and established connections to Coos County and more specifically to the Berlin-Gorham area. Like much of NH’s North Country, this area is medically underserved and in fact, had not had a pediatrician for over a decade when Brian began practicing there. He and his wife, Wendy, have now been rooted for over 25 years, now as part of Coos County Family Health Services. Their 6 children have all thrived in the small town they call home and attended the local schools. Given the physical distance to pediatric subspecialty services, Brian has developed several niche areas to his practice that augment the more general services. He serves as the pediatric medical director at Androscoggin Valley Hospital in Berlin and helped implement and maintain certification in NRP and PALS to other providers and nursing staff. He has a strong interest in type 1 diabetes and volunteers at ADA Camp Carefree every summer. He is also actively involved with the network of providers who have extra training in completing medical examinations for children suspected of having been physically or sexually abused. In conjunction with being able to provide this medical care locally, Brian was directly involved with the creation of the CAC of Coos County and currently serves as President of its Board of Directors. His efforts to advocate for children also extend to being an Executive Committee member of the NH chapter of the AAP. He also manages to incorporate full-time clinical teaching into his practice welcoming students across all disciplines (MD, DO, PA and NP) into the practice to gain exposure to the realities of rural medicine while in training.
Taylor Breed grew up in Hopkinton, NH, and currently resides in New York City with his wife, Ann. The New Hampshire Children's Trust has been an important part of his life since childhood. Taylor's mother, Lucy Fowlkes Breed, was a founding board member and strong advocate for the Trust, recognizing the community's need and opportunity to empower and strengthen families in the Granite State through targeted resources and instruction. This mission was instilled in Taylor from a young age and has stayed with him throughout his life. Taylor graduated from Vanderbilt University and received his MBA from Georgetown University. His career has been in investment banking, focusing on helping mid-sized companies improve their operations and access needed capital for growth. He currently works at William Blair & Company, while volunteering with Meals on Wheels and the Nantucket Conservation Foundation.
The power of family, as displayed by his mother and father, energizes Taylor, and he is honored and humbled to serve on the Board of the New Hampshire Children's Trust, continue the Breed family legacy, and advocate for and serve families in New Hampshire.
Laura was raised in Durham, NH and now lives in Rochester with her husband. She knows firsthand what a positive, supportive, healthy family can offer young people and is passionate about strengthening families in our state. Laura has over a decade of experience in the financial services industry, having held positions in customer service, operations, and IT, with a niche in process improvement and innovation. She recently transitioned to project management in the IT consulting space, where she leads and manages projects implementing and optimizing Oracle Enterprise Performance Management (EPM) applications. She is a 2020 summa cum laude graduate of Southern New Hampshire University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Studies.
Elizabeth Susan Hodgson, MD FAAP
Known as “Dr. Sooze” to her patients and colleagues, Dr. Hodgson retired from 36 years of clinical pediatric practice in 2014 and returned home to New Hampshire. “Dr. Sooze” grew up in Concord, NH, and practiced in NH from 1987-1994 before her sojourn to New Jersey for the next twenty years. While in New Jersey, Dr. Hodgson served as medical director of two of New Jersey’s Regional Diagnostic and Treatment Centers (RDTCs), multidisciplinary centers for the diagnosis and treatment of child abuse and neglect. Dr. Hodgson helped establish New Jersey’s first and only free-standing Child Advocacy Center in Newark, NJ. She was on the teaching faculty at two different teaching hospitals in New Jersey. From 2006-2008, Dr. Hodgson served as the New Jersey Child Advocate, a Governor’s appointment. The Office of the Child Advocate monitored children in state custody or otherwise receiving state services and ensured that they were receiving safe, effective, and timely care. Throughout her career, Dr. Hodgson has been an active member of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) at the local, state, and national levels. She has been involved in policy, advocacy, strategic planning, and governance work with the AAP at the national and state levels. Dr. Hodgson is a graduate of Yale University School of Medicine and completed her pediatric residency at Yale-New Haven Hospital. She is Board Certified by the American Board of Pediatrics both in General Pediatrics and in the subspecialty of Child Abuse Pediatrics. She received her B. A. degree from Mount Holyoke College.
Erin Maskwa, Development Committee Chair
Erin Maskwa was born and raised on the New Hampshire Seacoast. A graduate of the University of New Hampshire, Erin holds degrees in Early Childhood Education, Project Management, and Executive Leadership. She is also a graduate of the Leadership Seacoast class of 2017. She spent the early part of her career as an early childhood educator in community-based programs as well as the public school system and later transferred those skills into data-driven educational improvement efforts. Erin lives in Nottingham with her husband and three children.
Adam grew up in New Hampshire and currently resides in Concord. He spent most of his professional career earning a living at automotive dealerships, but has transitioned and is now the Workforce Development Coordinator with the New Hampshire Automobile Education Foundation. In addition to serving on the board of New Hampshire Children’s Trust, he also spends a lot of time working with New Hampshire's high schools, community colleges, and is a participating member on several education advisory boards.
Pat was raised in Nashua and now resides in Bedford. She graduated from Rivier University with a Bachelor's Degree in Accounting, obtaining her CPA license in 1991. She brings over 30 years of accounting experience with a wide range of industry knowledge. starting a career with a regional CPA firm as an auditor gave her experience in all business areas, but she realize quickly that she enjoyed working in the non-profit sector. In 2009, until retirement in 2020, she was hired as CFP of a large local non-profit that specializes in housing, healthcare and supportive services for individuals and families who are experiencing homelessness and/or living with behavioral health disorders. Pat remains active as. retiree by consulting with small non-profits and enjoys spending time with her two daughters and six grandchildren.
Christine Tappan, MSW, CAGS, CWMF
Christine Tappen specializes in applying progressive practice, program, policy, strategy, and financial expertise across the health and human services spectrum. She brings 25-plus years of experience working in the public, social, and for-profit sectors, as well as primary and higher education, both in the United States and internationally. Throughout her career, she’s focused on building partnerships that use data and analytics to drive collaboration and integrate transformational change at key intersections of the social determinants of health, including early childhood, economic mobility, housing, behavioral health, child welfare, and juvenile justice. Currently, Christine is the Chief of Strategy and External Affairs with Ascentria Care Alliance a 150-year-old New England based non-profit empowers people of all backgrounds to rise together and reach beyond life’s challenges. Previously, Christine served as the Associate Commissioner of NH DHHS overseeing all human services and behavioral health services including those supporting and strengthening children, families and communities across the state. Christine is also the founder and lead guide for BirchWalking, a social impact organization that “brings beings together in nature and creates safe spaces to deepen connections that promote resiliency and capacity for all to thrive and live well”.
Christine has a Master’s Degree in Social Work (MSW) from the University of Michigan and Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work from the University of New Hampshire. She also holds a Certificate of Advanced Graduate Studies (CAGS) in Education & Leadership from Plymouth State University and is a Certified Forest and Nature Therapy Guide and Trail Consultant through the Association for Nature and Forest Therapists (ANFT). Christine is also certified as a Workplace Mindfulness Facilitator (CWMF) through the Mindful Leader Institute, Brown University.