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Volunteer Staff

The small but mighty staff of Attachment Parenting International (API) is made up of a core group of volunteers dedicated to the Eight Principles and to promoting Attachment Parenting in the community. Their hard work can only continue with support from members and donors like you. Won't you consider helping them continue their good work?

Contacting Us

Attachment Parenting International 
P.O. Box 973 
Bristol, TN 37621 
Phone 615-398-2740

If you have a comment or concern, or want to help with a project, feel free to contact us directly by email, by leaving a message at (615) 398-2740, or, if you are unsure which person you need to contact, by submitting a message on our Contact Us page. We will return your email or phone message as soon as possible. You may also wish to check out API's FAQ section for answers to many common questions.

Volunteer Staff Directory

The following teams make up API's Volunteer Staff. For a list of available volunteer positions amongst these teams, review our volunteer descriptions.

Rita Brhel

Blog Editor

Rita Brhel Volunteer Staff

Rita Brhel is the API Blog Editor. She was formerly the Publications Team Lead for many years and served as Managing Editor of The Attached Family and APtly Said as well as various editorial projects.

She and her husband have 3 kids and live near Hastings, Nebraska, USA, where Rita works as a WIC Breastfeeding Peer Counselor. Rita is also a member of the Nebraska Breastfeeding Coalition's Leadership Team and Community Breastfeeding Initiative Taskforce, and a member of Breastfeeding USA's Editorial Review Board. Rita volunteers as an API Resource Leader and a peer counselor for Sidelines High Risk Pregnancy Support Network.

Lee Cutshaw

AP Group Leader Guide Editor

Lee Cutshaw Volunteer

My name is Lee and I am currently working in the College of Public Health, Department of Biostatistics and Epidemiology in position of Project Coordinator.  Although I am a native of New Hampshire, I have been in Tennessee since 1995, excluding a year and a half in northern Florida.  I earned my Associate of Science degree from the Pennsylvania State University, and my Bachelor of Science degree from The University of Tennessee, with a focus on Family Studies.

I have worked with women, families, and children in many capacities over the years, but most recently, I have been involved with research projects.  I have previously been employed by ETSU working on the TIPS project, addressing the concerns of smoking during pregnancy.  More recently, I was employed by Centerstone Research Institute, in collaboration with ETSU, working on the SBIRT project, primarily collecting and managing data.  I am currently working on a Master of Science in Child and Family Studies from Western Kentucky University

While away from work, I love to spend time with my family, dogs, rabbits, and horse.  Other activities I enjoy include reading, hiking, and camping.  

Naomi Davidson

Technology Support

Naomi Davidson Volunteer Staff

Naomi has a B.S. in Business Management and brings 20+ years of professional technology experience to API. Naomi’s motto in life is "Be passionate." She feels that volunteering for API and serving as an  API Leader, is the best way to feed both her passions -- Attachment Parenting and Technology. Naomi is happily married with 4 adult step-children that she loves as her own and 2 young daughters who are her life at home. Her hobbies include reading, writing, and exploring nature with her family.

Nilufer Devecigil

Turkish Translator

Nilufer Devecigil Volunteer Staff

Nilufer Devecigil, M.A received Transpersonal Counseling Psychology degree from Naropa University, Boulder, Colorado. She has been a practicing psychotherapist specializing in parent-child relationships and developmental issues. She is currently working at Kuraldisi in Istanbul practicing play therapy. She also has her own private practice where she gives seminars on parenting and provides counseling for both children and adults. She has a 3.5 year old girl called Irmak.

Samantha Gray

Executive Director

Samantha Gray Volunteer Staff

Attachment Parenting International's Executive Director and Business Management Coordinator, Samantha Gray, works with API's staff, Board of Directors and Business Management Team members to ensure that our organization is continuing to meet the mission and vision of API. She also ensures that all aspects of our organization are running efficiently and effectively.

She welcomes comments and concerns about API or information that you might not be able to address with another staff member.

Rachel Hinds

APtly Said Blog/WordPress Team

Rachel Hinds Volunteer Staff

Rachel Hinds is API’s Wordpress Assistant, working with the team to keep fresh, relevant content flowing through the blog for families. Rachel has been working with young children and their parents for over fifteen years and is currently a Child Development graduate student at Sacramento State University and Postpartum Doula in the San Francisco Bay Area. Her area of research interest is in how the intentional design of certain spaces can protect the nervous systems of little ones. When not immersed in matters of human development, Rachel can be found mostly hiking, gardening, and rearranging her tiny house interior for maximum minimalist living.

Maryam Jadali

Legal Advisor, Judicial Education Program

Maryam Jadali Volunteer Staff

Maryam Jadali is an attorney, specializing in business law. She graduated law school magna cum laude. She also has a B.S. in Business Management from Stony Brook University, where she graduated with honors as well. Maryam has experience working as an attorney for small law firms, big international law firms, well-known international corporations, as well as volunteer lawyers associations. Maryam has a 2 year old daughter, Mina, whom she loves spending time with. Maryam enjoys the company of her family and friends, traveling to new and familiar places, reading and learning, and a good cup of coffee/tea. Maryam has a passion for children's rights and their right to be treated with respect, compassion and love. Maryam leads API's initiative to bring Attachment Parenting to those involved in the legal system and families in need.

Rodney Kabiru

Special Projects

Rodney Kabiru

Rodney Kabiru is a university student in Kenya who wishes to use his skills to empower others and gain new skills. His interest is to be part of life cycle of compassion and connection that API promotes and support parenting practices that create strong healthy emotional bonds. He helps API with research and resource review projects.

Veena Kumaraswamy

Technology Support

Veena Kumaraswamy Volunteer Staff

Veena Kumaraswamy is a Freelance web developer,bookkeeper and a preschool teacher with a diverse experience of over 12 years.

She has a Bachelor's Degree in Computer Science and Engineering from an University in India. 

She believes in the principles of Attachment Parenting and tries to get the word out for new parents and the benefits of it for the entire family.In her spare time, she loves to spend time with her family, cook, play tennis and cross country ski.

Victoria LeBlanc

Parenting Educator Coordinator

Victoria LeBlanc

Victoria LeBlanc supports the Attached at the Heart Parenting Educators. She comes to API with over 10 years experience working in the mental health field. She is a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor (LCPC), holding a Master's degree in Health and Human Development with a concentration in Marriage and Family Therapy from Montana State University. She is a Certified Attached at the Heart Parent Educator and works part time as an online Psychology Adjunct Professor. Victoria has experience utilizing attachment theory, family systems theory, and interpersonal theory in her work with clients. Her specialties include at-risk youth, trauma, family therapy, and dual diagnosis. 

Stephanie McClain

SEO Specialist

Stephanie McClain Volunteer

Stephanie McClain is an experienced affiliate, and digital marketer who has over 8 years experience in web and graphic design. She holds an associate’s degree in visual communications. She is the owner of a clothing company called Afrinubi (Afrinubi.com). She is loves to read, nature walks, cooking, reading, working out, and spending time with her family. She loves to meet new people and  is also a computer nerd that loves social media. She is an expert at SEO and internet marketing. She is great at brand development and loves to assist small businesses with web presence creation (StephanieMcClain.com).

Tina McRorie

Parent Education Training Coordinator

Tina McRorie Volunteer Staff

Tina McRorie is the leader of Monterey Bay Parenting and an Accredited Attached at the Heart Parenting Educator. Before becoming involved with API, she earned degrees in psychology from the University of California at Santa Cruz and New College of California and worked as a social worker in the foster care system.

When not volunteering for API or working on launching her parenting education career, Tina enjoys reading, dancing, singing, hosting playdates, which, now that her two boys are teens, are called “hanging out,” eating the delicious food her husband Jeff makes, and napping. Tina’s family lives in Soquel, California, USA with three wonderful cats and their Corgi mix, Moxie.

Sandra

Grant Researcher

Sandra Volunteer

A Certified Nonprofit Professional (CNP) and an AmeriCorps alum, Sandra has 12 years of professional writing experience. She holds a bachelor’s in psychology and a master’s in communications. Having completed graduate-level coursework in child & family development, Sandra also has earned certificates in grant writing, trauma informed care/counseling, and strengths-based family work. She has worked directly with disadvantaged youth and families, and has a long history of volunteering with grassroots organizations. Sandra is passionate about child and family wellness, domestic violence prevention and education for disadvantaged youth. She enjoys photography and spending time outdoors with her family and adopted shelter dog (pictured here).

Amanda Nicolosi

Project Support

Amanda Nicolosi Volunteer Staff

Amanda has a BS degree from Georgia Tech and worked the past 11 years in the IT industry with focus in large database management systems. Mandy is now a full time stay at home mother. She and her son enjoy their days exploring nature and enjoying life. Mandy enjoys her drawing hobby and aspires to write children's books. Mandy has been an active member of API of North Fulton GA since 2006.

Laksha

Social Media Team

Laksha Social Media Team

Laksha is part of the social media team. She's a junior in high school based in Austin, TX. Laksha enjoys reading, baking, and listening to music.

Alma L. Ramos-Gilbert

Spanish Translator

Alma L. Ramos-Gilbert Volunteer Staff

Alma L. Ramos-Gilbert has a BS in Communication with a double major in Spanish. She's also a Social Worker, graduate of Columbia University School of Social Work. Alma is a native Spanish speaker and originally from Puerto Rico. She recently moved from NYC to Omaha, NE, where she hopes to become involved with the local chapter in Lincoln. Having worked in the communications field since 1997, Alma enjoys helping others and using media outlets to express different points of views. Alma became interested in Attachment Parenting prior to the birth of her 3 year-old son in 2006. Alongside her husband, she has enjoyed actively practicing attachment parenting. The hardest thing about her son growing up according to Alma, is not being able to wear him any longer!

Lisa Ricciuti

Independent Consultant for AP Group Leadership Preparation

Lisa Ricciuti Volunteer Staff

Lisa is available to guide the preparation process for those interested in becoming AP support group leaders. Lisa works with parents and professionals from the beginning of their process, learns more about their understanding of Attachment Parenting, level of empathy, and leadership abilities, and assists them as they complete the process of becoming local support group leaders.

Lisa Ricciuti worked with API for 15 years as the Leader Applicant Liaison and is an accredited leader. Lisa has guided hundreds of applicants through API’s accreditation program helping more than 130 parents become support group leaders. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Communication as well as a Master’s of Education with a focus on School Counseling. She believes that the process of peer-to-peer support is important for the well-being of a family which is vital to the health of the larger community. Lisa is inspired by all of the applicants who are willing to share their parenting struggles and successes and is grateful to have the opportunity to share resources and teachings based on API’s Principles of Parenting and non-violent communication techniques. Please contact Lisa if you are interested in her AP support group leader guidance.

Christy Sensenig

Volunteer Liaison and Professional Liaison

Christy Sensenig Volunteer Staff

Christy is part of the API team and provides assistance in various areas: Office Manager, Volunteer Liaison and Professional Liaison Assistant. She has experience and certification in working with children that have intellectual differences and their families, and with children in foster/adoptive care.

Bhavna Singh

Legal Assistance/Trademark Consulting

Bhavna Singh Volunteer Staff

Bhavna Singh is a legal professional, with LL.M. in Intellectual Property Law. She also has experience in Antitrust Law, Information Technology Law and completed her Cybersecurity and Privacy Law Certificate Program from Mitchell Hamline School of Law, Minneapolis. Bhavna has experience working as a legal counsel, legal consultant for Fortune 500 companies as well as an attorney with a law firm. Bhavna is an avid supporter of breastfeeding, babywearing and Attachment Parenting. Bhavna enjoys spending time in nature, clicking photographs, traveling to new places, reading books with her toddler and learning about spirituality. 

Katie Simmons

Web Designer

Katie Simmons Volunteer Staff

Katie is a South Carolina graphic designer, photographer, web developer, and artist. With more than 15 years in design and 11 years in website development, she is an expert in online marketing and a nerd when it comes to typography. Katie received her B.A. in English (Writing & Publication Studies) from Clemson University and an M.A. in Media Arts from the University of South Carolina. Her happiest days are spent helping brands tell their story and creating something that’s all their own. She's excited to join the API team and create a website that will allow the organization to continue supporting families around the world.

Jennifer Yarbrough

Advertising and Special Projects

Jennifer Yarbrough Volunteer Staff

Jennifer, mom of twin three year old boys, holds a BS in Business Administration and has a background in advertising and sales, with experience working at two universities. Jennifer is currently working on her API Leader accreditation and works part-time from home as a virtual assistant. She is passionate about attachment parenting and hopes to be able to help parents, especially parents of multiples and/or children with special needs, learn more about attachment parenting. Jennifer enjoys spending time with her husband and twins, who always keep her laughing and learning.

Art Yuen

Knowledgebase Coordinator

Art Yuen Volunteer Staff

Art Yuen is API's Knowledge Coordinator and an API accredited leader of API NYC. She holds a degree in finance-accounting and practiced business analysis and research in the financial industry before shifting her focus to the social sciences and parenting fields.  Art serves API in business roles and is increasingly involved in initiatives to develop, compile and disseminate API’s research base.  She lives in NYC with her husband and two children.

Jason Zheng

Special Projects

Jason Zheng Volunteer

Jason is a passionate writer, educator, and leader. He is excited to join API as a project manager to push forward their mission in promoting better parental practices that will create stronger and healthier emotional bonds between parents and their child/children, which will create a lifelong foundation for healthy, enduring relationships for generations to come. 

He spent his early professional years volunteering for the George Mason University Departments of Psychology and Global and Community Health, working with children, students, and adults of all ages. He is also experienced in the accounting/financial and customer service industries. As well, skilled in collaborating with officials from universities, local volunteering organizations, and the local, state, and federal government. 

Jason holds a BA in Political Science from George Mason University and an MBA from West Texas A&M University. He is also a recipient of the President’s Volunteer Service Award and lives in the busy Washington DC area. In his free time, you can find him cooking up new recipes, planning his next trekking adventure, thrifting for books, and volunteering in his community.