Kandice Henning

Founder, CEO

About Kandice

Kandice is the Founder and Executive Director of the Alive Not-for-profit Center in Naperville, Illinois. The first organization of its kind, Alive aims to provide the community with an inclusive experience of learning, sharing, and discovery that enables people to connect with what makes them come alive.  From the merger with NaperBridge in January of 2015, Alive will have an even stronger teen program. 

Kandice is a Life Coach and Certified Yoga Teacher (CYT). After spending 25+ years as an executive in the corporate world at Accenture and IBM, she is now following her true passion – helping people to create the life they desire. Kandice is a graduate of Life Coaching school, Coach for Life. She also is a certified Heal Your Life Workshop Leader (Louise Hay’s work). She has her 200hr CYT from Moksha Yoga in Chicago and is currently obtaining her 500hr CYT through ParaYoga (Rod Stryker). She has a B.A. in Communications from the University of Illinois. 

Elisa Henley

Chief Financial Officer

About Elisa

Elisa has been at Alive for 5 years as Manager of the Operations Department. Throughout her
long career, she has found herself wearing many hats, and expanding and honing her skills in
operations, human resources and accounting. She is a founding member of a local not-for-
profit that serves families, and was on their board of directors and an officer for many years.
She has found her passion being involved in an organization that works with teens and allows
them to grow and reach their potential. Elisa is married and enjoys traveling and spending time
with her family.

Marsha J. Carey, MNA

Grant Manager

About Marsha

Marsha has over 25 years of experience developing and growing grant-funded programs, particularly programs serving youth and families using evidence-based prevention and community coalition-driven strategies. Marsha has successfully written, been awarded, and managed grants from the U.S. Department of Education (USDOE), the Health Rural Services Administration (HRSA), the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA), Drug-Free Communities grants, and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ).

Her grant experience also includes grants awarded from corporate foundations, national foundations, local foundations, community foundations, family foundations and local businesses. She loves to prove the effectiveness of programs by collecting data and providing funders with evidence of successful outcomes. Over the years Marsha has served in many nonprofit roles and is energized by making a positive difference in the community.

She is a lifelong learner holding a Bachelor of Science degree in Public Administration from Indiana University School of Public and Environmental Affairs, a Masters degree in Nonprofit Administration from the School of Business and Nonprofit Management from North Park University, Chicago, and a Graduate Certificate in Applied Educational Neuroscience from the School of Education at Butler University, Indianapolis, Indiana.

Alex Anderson

Hanover Park Drop-in Supervisor

About Alex

Alex has spent the past 17 years as a mental health professional helping serve at-risk youth, working with inner-city adolescents and DCFS wards of the state in Chicago and the western suburbs. He graduated from Illinois State University with a Bachelors in Psychology, specializing in adolescents with mental illness and behavior disorders. Alex has worn many hats over the years in the social work field, starting as an Recreational Therapist, to a Unit Supervisor for a Residential Group Home, to Treatment Team Coordinator and Milieu Treatment Manager. Alex enjoys being active and works in many different capacities in order to help foster resiliency in youth. He uses his musical skills, humor, passion for life, and listening/understanding for connecting with youth.

LaVerne E. Mathews

Director of Donor Experience

About LaVerne

LaVerne E. Mathews is a non-profit professional with over 24 years of experience in philanthropy and fund development. She has worked in leadership positions at many Chicago area non-profit organizations specializing in healthcare, civic engagement, and education to include La Rabida Children’s Hospital, Chicago Voyagers, Constitutional Rights Foundation Chicago (CRFC), Civic Leadership Foundation (CLF), Pay-it- Forward House, and Fox Valley Food for Health.

Prior to her interest in non-profit management, LaVerne completed a successful 25-year career working with the U.S. Department of Labor, Illinois Bell /Ameritech and General Electric (GE). As a volunteer, she has donated her time and expertise to serve as Fund Development Advisor for the Illinois District 21 Parent Teacher Association (PTA) and Vice Chair of Marketing for Boy Scouts of America – Greater Southside District and other groups on Chicago’s South Side.

LaVerne holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Management (BSBM) from Olivet Nazarene University and a Master of Business Administration (MBA) with a concentration in Marketing from Keller Graduate School of Management.

LaVerne and her husband, Anthony, reside in Naperville, Illinois.

Nicole Kneeland-Woods

Marketing & Events Lead

About Nicole

Nicole is a graduate of Northern Illinois University with a Bachelor of Liberal Arts Degree in Communications. She is a licensed Illinois Realtor and Certified Marketing Director. Nicole brings over 20 years of experience from corporate marketing, event planning and sales to the ALIVE Center team. She was a Mentor for Stepping Stones Emergency Housing in DuPage County and Youth Mentor for the Community Consolidated School District 93. She is an active member of the Glen Ellyn Area Alumnae  Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated and has co-chaired their Annual Youth Summit for several years. Nicole is also a member of P.E.G.S. (Parents for Education & Global Success) of the Community Unit School District 308. Nicole is passionate about helping and supporting others with her knowledge and background, while engaging in new and diverse experiences. She enjoys planning events and traveling with her family. Nicole is married to her college love, Horace, and proud mother of 4 children.

Amy Logan

Naperville Drop-in Supervisor

About Amy

Amy has a Master’s Degree in Teaching and a Bachelor’s in Speech Pathology. She has worked the past 10 years writing inspirational children’s books and traveling to schools across the U.S. empowering kids and adults to focus on the power of their everyday kindnesses. Prior to that, she was an Area Leader for a Direct Sales Company inspiring her team of over 100 consultants. She has worked in the schools teaching and mentoring students, and currently runs The Kindness Gala Foundation with her husband and Kindness Ambassadors. She loves being around kids and making sure they know how much they matter.

Adilene (Ady) Sepulveda

ALIVE Aurora Manager

About Ady

A long-time resident of Aurora, Ady Sepulveda is a young Latina woman who has a passion for working with youth. In 2016 she received her undergraduate degree in Psychology, 2019 a Master’s in Social work from Aurora University, and in 2020 became a licensed social worker. Ady was one of the first university students to intern at the ALIVE Center for teens in 2017. A non-profit that serves teens 5-12th grade and helps them find a sense of belonging, resiliency, discovery, and leadership.  ALIVE was the internship she was hoping for, and it solidified her love of making meaningful connections with today’s youth. Seeing the impact a teen center such as ALIVE had on teens launched her dream of having an ALIVE Center in her city of Aurora one day. Today, Ady is continuing her journey with ALIVE, and she has joined the team as the drop-in Manager for ALIVE’s downtown Aurora location. She inspires teens to take on leadership roles, be creative, and find a place of belonging.

Learn More About ALIVE!