Photo of Hilary Flanagan

Hilary Flanagan

Executive Director

Phone: 206.220.6088

Building/Room: PAVL 110E

My pronouns:  She, Her, Hers

Undergraduate alma mater: United States Coast Guard Academy

Graduate alma mater: University of Maine

Favorite place in the city: Hugging the shoreline swimming Lake Washington between Leschi and Madison Beach

Hobbies and interests: Triathlon, Travel, Outdoor Adventures, Board/Card Games, and Reading

Collegiate internship and job after graduation:  US Coast Guard Capitol Hill Intern; Weapons Officer on board a USCG Medium Endurance Cutter

Best piece of career advice I received: You work for them - not the other way around

How I lead a life of purpose and impact: Bringing my authentic self into every interaction; putting a strong value/priority on time for family, fun, sleep, fitness, nutrition, and professional development; striving to bring out the best in those around me as a renewable source of inspiration; and laughing 

My social justice areas of focus:  Serving Veterans, Literacy, Well-being, and Animal Welfare


Photo of Carol Lwali

Carol Lwali

M.B.A, M.A.

Associate Director of External Relations

Phone: 206.296.6177

My pronouns: She, her, hers or they, them, theirs

Undergraduate alma mater: Drury University

Graduate alma mater: Webster University

Favorite place in the city: Is it sunlit? ✔ And does it have a beach or view of a large body of water? ✔

Hobbies and interests: Travel, reading, event curation, and volunteering

First internship or job: Food Service: Cafeteria/catering/banquet attendant

Best piece of career advice I received: I’ve two that ring true to me - As you navigate through the rest of your life, surround yourself with people who challenge and inspire you. Spend a lot of time with them and it will change your life. And the other is that there will be failures, roadblocks, and detours in our careers, but do not be discouraged. Instead, be persistent and resilient.

How I lead a life of purpose and impact: I try to live by this quote – “For to be free is not merely to cast off one's chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others. - Nelson Mandela

My social justice area of focus: Human Rights, diversity, equity, and inclusion – particularly when it concerns immigrants, refugees, asylees and international persons. These communities are extremely vulnerable and frequently marginalized and excluded from realizing their full value.


Photo of Leezel Ramos

Leezel Ramos


Associate Director of Career Education

Phone: 206.296.6085

My pronouns: She, her, herself

Undergraduate alma mater: California State University, Fullerton
Graduate alma mater: Seattle University
Favorite place in the city: International District/Chinatown
Hobbies and interests: Food, traveling, and hanging out with my Greyhound dog
First internship or job: I was a barista at a hospital coffee shop
Best piece of career advice I received: "Your degree makes you qualified, but it's your experience that will set you apart from others. Start exploring, experiencing, and engaging now." And, "sometimes, social justice is most needed in 'non-traditional' social justice spaces."
How I lead a life of purpose and impact: Mentoring and community organizing
My social justice area of focus: Civic engagement, leadership development

Photo of Melissa Minato

Melissa Minato


Assistant Director of Career Education

Phone: 206.296.8473

Building/Room: PAVL 110

My pronouns: she, her, hers

Undergraduate alma mater: Santa Clara University

Graduate alma mater: Seattle University, Master of Nonprofit Leadership ’20

Favorite place in the city: Fremont or Discovery Park

Hobbies and interests: Trying new restaurants, drinking coffee, spending time with friends, camping, letter writing, volunteering, Netflix binging

First internship or job: Catering Attendant (Food Service)

Best piece of career advice I received: Do not resist or shy away from discomfort. The projects that stretch you are often the projects that will enable you to grow the most.

How I lead a life of purpose and impact: I lead a life of purpose and impact by reflecting on my experiences, values, and gifts and applying this knowledge through intentional decision making. I strive to serve in work or volunteer positions that I know will create a positive impact on the community. This has led me through incredible experiences that range from Ameri Corps service, working with the YMCA, to serving on the YNPN Seattle board. In my personal time, I recharge by spending time with the people I love.

My social justice area of focus: Leadership development and civic engagement education for young adults, access to education for all, and family services.

Photo of Sabrina Wise

Sabrina Wise

M.Ed. '21

Assistant Director of External Relations

Phone: 206.296.6082

My pronouns: she/her

Undergraduate alma mater: Whitman College

Graduate alma mater: Seattle University ‘21

Favorite place in the city: Top three: Discovery Park, Volunteer Park Conservatory, and Ada’s Books & Café

Hobbies and interests: Hiking, singing, reading, gardening, cooking with friends, building cardboard mazes for our cat

First internship or job: Greenhouse maintenance on a basil farm

Best piece of career advice I received: Building your career isn’t just about the job you want or need—it’s about the life you want or need. The more you know yourself and your community, the easier it gets to figure this out. So really, the first part of career exploration is paying attention.

How I lead a life of purpose and impact: I work to ground my actions in care, justice, community, and self-reflection, inspired by the words of Adrienne Maree brown: “I have to use my life to leverage a shift in the system by how I am, as much as with the things I do. This means actually being in my life, and it means bringing my values into daily decision-making. Each day should be lived on purpose.”

My social justice areas of focus: College access, inclusive literacy, food justice


Photo of Christian Russell

Christian Russell


Assistant Director of Career Engagement

Phone: 206.296.6080

My pronouns: He, Him, His

Favorite place in the city:  Madison Park Beach; swimming with endless views of Rainier and the Cascades

Hobbies and interests: Hiking, National Parks, exploring around the city, and everything Georgia. Usually found eating and drinking coffee.

First internship or job: Legislative Aide, Georgia House of Representatives

Best piece of career advice I received: Networking, networking, networking! I met my first boss by walking into their office and asked for an informational coffee meeting. I was hired two days later. 

How I lead a life of purpose and impact: Reminding myself of what kind of citizen I want to be. My favorite book, Soul of a Citizen: Living with Conviction in Challenging Times, reminds me my efforts can do more for others and ourselves-than we may ever imagine, we don’t have to wait for the perfect situation to take action, change happens little by little - step by step, we should savor the journey of engagement-even if our ultimate goal is unknown, and the impact of our individual and collective effectiveness will often ripple outward in ways we can’t predict.

My social justice area of focus: Equitable access to resilient and sustainable communities, civic engagement, and social enterprise.

Photo of Marijo Manaois

Marijo Manaois

Career Engagement Specialist

Phone: 206-220-8278

Building/Room: PAVL 110

My pronouns: She/Her/Hers

Undergraduate alma mater: University of Washington

Favorite place in the city: Hood Famous Café + Bar

Hobbies and interests: Tennis, Movies, Board Games, Dancing and Singing

First internship or job: McDonalds Drive Thru

Best piece of career advice I received: Remember that a job, even a great job or a fantastic career, doesn’t give your life meaning, at least not by itself. Life is about what you learn, who you are or who you help. Don’t ever forget your community. When opportunity knocks on your door, make sure to keep it open so that others can enter as well.

How I lead a life of purpose and impact: By centering my work in service to others while practicing gratitude, humility, and joy.  Furthermore by mentoring and affirming talent in underserved communities.

My social justice area of focus: Identity focused community building and empowering marginalized youth of color into positions of leadership and impact.

Photo of Johnny Wang

Johnny Wang


Career Engagement Specialist

Phone: 206.296-6081

Building/Room: PAVL 110

My pronouns: he/him

Undergraduate alma mater: San Diego State University

Favorite place in the city: on a kayak around the Arboretum 

Hobbies and interests: basketball, music, clothing, playing with my husky, cooking & eating out

First internship or job: Student Assistant at Student Disability Services, San Diego State University

Best piece of career advice I received: Not exactly advice that I received, but was course material I was given when I was a Course Instructor at the University of Vermont that I incorporated into a lesson plan and loved which is Carol Dweck’s Growth Mindset. Look at obstacles and barriers as opportunities for growth, learning, and creativity. Don’t avoid a certain job or class because one piece of the responsibilities scare you away (for me that was always public speaking), but instead challenge yourself to take these as chances to become a more well-rounded individual and professional. In these situations the only person telling you that you can’t do something is yourself!

How I lead a life of purpose and impact: I lead a life of purpose and impact by recognizing and reflecting on my privilege and how they affect my experience as a person. I am also always challenging myself to be aware of the assumptions that I make and where they come from in order to dismantle my own socialized beliefs and ways of thinking. At the same time, making sure to take care of myself and allow rest to reduce stress and prevent burnout.

My social justice area of focus: Making knowledge and resources relevant, accessible, and digestible for folks who need it most.