Board of Directors
Dominic Canuso (Chair)
Patti Grimes (Vice Chair)
Carl M. Freeman Foundation
Vickie Young Beam (Treasurer)
Cover & Rossiter
Charles Vincent (Secretary)
Pathways to Success
Patricia Dailey Lewis
Beau Biden Foundation
JP Morgan Chase
T. Rowe Price
Dr. Vita Pickrum
Delaware State University
Mary Van Veen
Discover Financial Services
Vice President of Marketing & Communications
302-777-5500 Ext. 6
Jenni serves at the Vice President of Marketing and Communications and is the Brand Ambassador for DANA. In her role, Jenni will work to further enhance the understanding and value of DANA and the nonprofit sector throughout Delaware. She brings more than 25 years of integrated marketing experience, as well as specialty in membership marketing. Previous to DANA, Jenni held membership and marketing leadership roles at a variety of nonprofits and trade associations, and also led digital marketing communications for nonprofit clients such as the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, the Advertising Council, and locally for United Way of Southern Chester County. She also served as Executive Director for the Delaware Veterinary Medical Association, as well as a Board Member for PAWS for People. Jenni and her family currently reside in Kennett Square, PA and maintain strong ties to Delaware.
President and Chief Executive Officer
302-777-5500, Ext. 7
Sheila joined DANA as President and CEO in August 2015. She is the former Executive Director of the Rehoboth Art League in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware. Her professional experience spans nonprofit, for-profit, and academia. She began her career in advertising, then in brand leadership positions launching new products, expanding businesses internationally, and developing strategic growth plans for brands such as Vlasic Pickles, Godiva Chocolatier, Corelle Dinnerware, Corningware Ovenware and Pyrex bakeware. She transitioned to provide strategic planning, new product and leadership consulting services to mid-size companies and nonprofit organizations in a variety of industries. Her work led her to pursue a doctorate in leadership, specializing in non-profit governance. Bravo has a PhD in Organizational Leadership from the University of Maryland Eastern Shore, an MBA in International Business from Thunderbird School of Global Management, and a BS in Business and Languages from Millersville University. Sheila lives in Lewes.
302-777-5500 Ext. 7
Mel Carney joins DANA with a strong background in office management and paralegal expertise. Mel spent several years in North Carolina, before moving back to the Delaware area to join a Healthcare Rehabilitation Center, where she served as the assistant to the Rehab Center Manager. Most recently, Mel was a bankruptcy paralegal in Wilmington. She brings excellent organizational skills and a bright personality to DANA. When not in the office, Mel enjoys spending time with her husband and pup, Super Dude.
Franca Del Signore
Director of Strategy
302-777-5500 ext 109
As the Director of Strategy, Franca will work with DANA leadership and the board in developing new services, program evaluations, and research for the organization as it seeks to build nonprofit capacity and advance the Delaware nonprofit sector. In addition, Franca will provide consultative support to DANA member organizations in the areas of strategy, innovation, and collaboration. A native Delawarean, Franca brings extensive background in helping nonprofits across the world build their capacity to expand and grow their services. For the past eight years, she has provided consulting services to nonprofits and companies in the Caribbean, India, Italy, and South Africa to collaborate, innovate, and re-engineer their operating models to better support vulnerable populations. Prior to that she served in both research and director-level roles for Catholic Relief Services in Baltimore, MD and throughout Uganda, Community Health Collaborative in Philadelphia, and the Centre for the Study of Violence and Reconciliation in Cape Town South Africa. In her earlier career, Franca worked as a chemist in both government and corporate settings globally. Franca earned her Doctorate of Business Administration from Wilmington University exploring successful models for impactful collaborations between nonprofit and for-profit entities. She has a Master’s in Public Health from West Chester University, Master of Science in Forensic Science from John Jay College of Criminal Justice and a Bachelors of Arts in Chemistry and Biochemistry at Drew University.
Director of Consulting
302-777-5500 Ext. 8
Tony Ferlenda serves as Director of Consulting providing support to DANA’s members primarily in Kent and Sussex counties. Tony has extensive nonprofit leadership and consulting experience. He recently worked with Horizon Philanthropic advising Delaware nonprofits on strategies for short-term and long-term fund development as well as strategic planning and leadership development. Prior, Tony served as the executive director of several regional and national nonprofits including National Fragile X Foundation, Sarcoma Foundation of America, and the American Red Cross. His early career included development and fundraising roles in social service and higher education nonprofits. Tony has a Masters of Public Administration from Syracuse University and a Bachelors of Science in Communication from SUNY, State University of New York.
DEI Program Coordinator
Jalissia joined DANA as the Program Coordinator for DANA’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion work. She graduated from the University of Pittsburgh in 2020 with Bachelor degrees in Politics and Philosophy, as well as Urban Studies. She is currently pursuing her Master’s Degree at the University of Delaware in Urban Affairs and Public Policy, while she works to build out DANA’s DEI program. She brings an assortment of experience in different fields such as education and mentorship to academic research and local political organizing.
Executive Vice President of Sector Advancement
302-777-5500 Ext. 2
Melissa brings a background in building partnerships, driving policy and advocacy to DANA. She was formerly the Director of External Affairs at the Rodel Foundation, where she guided policy strategy for education reform. As part of her work, she has been instrumental in creating a strong network of business, nonprofit, and school-based partners to advance the interests of Delaware students. Prior to her work at Rodel, she was Legislative Aide for the Majority Leader and Majority Whip in the Delaware House of Representatives. Before that, she held positions with the New Castle County Council and the University of Delaware in the School of Urban Affairs and Public Policy. A lifelong learner, she is pursuing her Masters in Public Administration at Wilmington University. She earned her Bachelor of Arts from the University of Delaware, and is a Leadership Delaware Fellow Alum. She has served as a board member with several Delaware nonprofits, and currently sits on the board of the Newark Day Nursery. Melissa and her family live in Newark, DE.
Vice President, Learning & Leadership
Todd brings extensive leadership and coaching experience to the DANA team. He most recently served as Founder of TAP Expert Educational Consortium, a leadership and coaching consulting firm. Prior to that, Todd served in several leadership roles in the education systems in North Carolina, South Carolina, and Arizona. In these roles, he has been instrumental in turning around and growing both public charter and private schools – working with boards, teachers and parents to improve student performance. Todd has a Masters in Educational Leadership and a Bachelor of Science in Liberal Arts from University of Pittsburgh.
302-777-5500 Ext. 1
Nyia joined DANA as a public policy intern, became the DANA membership coordinator, and now serves as the Engagement Manager. Nyia is completing her Bachelor of Science in Social work at Delaware State University. She brings prior experience in early childhood education and is eager to bring her skills to impact change in the social impact sector.
Executive Vice President of the Excellence Academy
302-777-5500 Ext. 3
Paul serves as the leader of DANA’s Excellence Academy which strengthens nonprofit leadership and organizational effectiveness through workshops, fellowships and consulting. His career spans more than twenty years in senior management positions in for-profit and nonprofit organizations. He has operations and quality management experience having run a direct fulfillment program supplying custom configured computers for Hewlett Packard to their enterprise customers in the United States. Paul has extensive process development and improvement experience as a consultant and employee. He is a Lean Six Sigma Green Belt, a practitioner for Myers Briggs instruments, and is a licensed Standards for Excellence Consultant. Prior to DANA, he served as a coach and leadership development instructor at Prison Fellowship’s Leadership Development Institute. He taught strategic planning for Prison Fellowship’s Eastern Region where he served as Executive Director for the Mid-Atlantic Region for seven years. Paul developed the Good to Great Strategic Planning model for DANA’s 2015 DANA Fellowship Program. He has worked with and developed local boards in Virginia, Maryland and Delaware. Stock received his B.A. from the University of Virginia and a Masters of Divinity and Masters of Theology from Trinity International University in Deerfield, Illinois.
Stephanie was on the English and Social Studies faculty at Wilmington Friends for twenty-one years. Before teaching in the classroom, she instructed wilderness courses at North Carolina Outward Bound School. She is currently pursuing a Masters in Public Administration at the University of Delaware’s Biden School and assisting with research projects at DANA.