Lynn Johnson | Co-Founder/CEO

Lynn Johnson 2016 HeadshotLynn Johnson is a social entrepreneur and girl advocate dedicated to igniting a compassion revolution by putting girls center stage. She is the Co-Founder and CEO of Spotlight:Girls, the producer of Go Girls! Camp.  Based in Oakland, CA, Spotlight:Girls celebrates and activates girls and women through multi-media learning experiences, products, and events.

Lynn knew that she wanted to be an actor when she was just 5 years old and has spent her whole life centered around the learning, teaching, and creation of theater. She spent her childhood moving throughout the northeastern U.S. until her family settled in Concord, MA her 8th grade year. Being a “drama geek” and 1 of only a few African American students living in the town at the time, Lynn developed a strong awareness of and commitment to those who live their lives “being different.” At a young age, she began to develop a personal and professional mission dedicated to using the art of theater to celebrate difference while building strong, peaceful, loving, and diverse communities.

Lynn has spent the past 25 years working with people of all ages from all over the country using theater as a tool for personal transformation and community development.  After graduation from Northwestern University, she discovered her entrepreneurial tendencies when she founded TurnStyle Teen Theatre, a multicultural teen ensemble. The company used the process of creating original productions to explore themes central to the lives of its members. Also in Chicago, Lynn worked as a company member for Child’s Play Touring Theatre, a nationally recognized theater that performs stories and poems written by young people throughout the United States. Later, in Chapel Hill, NC she designed and directed a number of community-based educational programs that focused on literature, oral history, community building, and personal narrative. She served as the Education Director for both the StreetSigns Center for Literature and Performance in Chapel Hill and Burning Coal Theatre Company in Raleigh. She also created programming for the Opera Company of North Carolina and directed The Village Whippersnapper Ensemble, a group of home-schooled students and their mothers that adapted and performed classics and original stories for local school groups and libraries.

Lynn regularly works as a facilitator, speaker, workshop leader, and consultant in the areas of girls education, youth development, arts education, social/emotional learning, and creative entrepreneurship. Lynn serves on the National Advisory Board of Teaching Artists Guild and the Board of Directors of the How Kids Learn Foundation.

Lynn lives in Oakland, CA with her wife, co-founder, Allison Kenny, their daughter, and two small dogs.  Allison shares the adventures of their queer, multi-racial, adoptive family on the blog Raising a Go Girl!.

Allison Kenny | Co-Founder

Allison Kenny Headshot 2016Allison Kenny is an actor, writer, blogger, teaching artist, co-founder of Spotlight:Girls, producers of Go Girls! Camp.  Based in Oakland, CA, Spotlight:Girls celebrates and activates girls and women through multi-media learning experiences, products, and events.

In March 2013, Allison published her first chapter book, Starring Celiathe story of a fourth grade girl who experiences painful name-calling – and responds by slapping the girl who bullied her. But when Celia enrolls in a Go Girls! Camp, she learns to stand up for herself in peaceful and powerful ways.

Allison is also the author of the newly-released Go Squirrel!, a series of coloring books aimed at teaching young readers complex social/emotional lessons through fun and accessible social stories.

Growing up in Phoenix, AZ in a house with 3 other sisters, Allison built her values through active engagement in softball teams, theater productions, show choir, and youth ministry programs. She was a natural leader from a young age who was particularly influenced by her role in WomanStory, a Phoenix-based organization that supports the spiritual and emotional development of women and girls in intergenerational, arts-based camps and retreats.

Prior to moving to San Francisco in 2002, Allison earned her B.A. in Theater Performance from Northern Arizona University. Performing and directing with Theater Outreach for Social Change, Allison traveled throughout the Southwest, touring a series of vignettes that depicted social issues central to the lives of teens and young adults. It was here that Allison’s passion for creating meaningful theater emerged.

Since 2002, Allison has worked in the Bay Area as a theater teaching artist with kids ages 2-18. For 5 years, she studied Floortime Play Therapy with Dr. Ilene Lee and worked as an inclusion facilitator with kids on the Autism Spectrum. Allison served as a Youth Development Trainer and specialist with the YMCA of San Francisco and The Children, Youth and Families Minister at First Congregational Church of Oakland and an ECE Trainer to Preschool Teachers across Alameda County. In 2012, she became a Certified Instructor with Kidpower, Teenpower, Fullpower International and leads safety workshops for kids and families all over the Bay Area.

Allison studied Self Revelatory Theater, Expressive Arts and Drama Therapy with Armand Volkas, MFT and the Living Arts Counseling Center. She is an ensemble member of the Living Arts Playback Theater Ensemble, a troupe of improvisational actors and musicians who “play back” personal stories of audience members in ways that both honor and illuminate the original experience.

As a girl advocate, Allison believes women and girls are the world’s greatest natural resource. We bring creativity, compassion, nurture, resilience, reliability and love to any challenge and situation. When we forget that, the whole world suffers. Allison’s work is to create art, experiences, and books for girls and women to remember who we are and why we have value.

In 2015, Allison and wife, co-founder Lynn Johnson, adopted their first child through the foster care system.  She writes about her family’s adventures on the blog Raising a Go Girl!.

Chrissy Mulvihill | Program Director

Chrissy Headshot Staff Page

Chrissy Mulvihill is an award-winning teacher, champion coach, and facilitative leader with over 25 years experience empowering children and youth to make a difference in their own lives, their communities, and in the world.  

An expert in team-building, service learning, and leadership development, Chrissy is particularly excited to be able to share her gifts with Spotlight: Girls.  

Chrissy comes to Spotlight: Girls with a deep commitment to the mission of putting girls center stage.  She has worked as a facilitator for both Girl Power (an AZ-based summer camp that teaches life skills to girls ages 8-12) and WomenStory (an intergenerational program for girls and women ages 13 and up focused on building positive female connections through personal testimony, ritual, and retreat).  She remembers that low self-esteem caused her to miss out on too many opportunities in her own youth.  As a grown up Go Girl!, she is passionate about helping girls to love themselves enough to know they can accomplish anything.

A credentialed K-8 public school educator, Chrissy has taught both physical education and mathematics in the Phoenix, AZ area where she won a “Pride of Peoria” Teaching Award (2014) as well as the Student Council Advisor of the Year Award (2013).  As a student council advisor, she takes great pride in having prepared hundreds of 5th-8th graders to take leadership through organizing and planning events, mentoring younger children, and collaborating with adults to provide service to the school and community.

In addition to teaching, Chrissy has worked as a coach, youth minister and summer program leader with programs throughout the Phoenix area.  A former athlete, Chrissy has coached youth softball, basketball, and track.  Currently, she coaches club volleyball in the 12 and under girls division, where her team defeated dozens of teams from all over the world to take 1st place in “The Volleyball Festival.”

Chrissy is the mother of 2 daughters, ages 16 and 19 and a 14 year old son.  She lives in Phoenix with her kids, her husband, Mike, and their 2 dogs.  Chrissy enthusiastically admits to be the sister of co-founder, Allison Kenny, and is super grateful that she gets to escape the Phoenix summer heat while she spends her summers here in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Hannah Gavagan | Outreach Coordinator

Hannah is a performing artist, teacher, adventurer, mentor, and the star of Go-To Go Girl: our weekly YouTube show talking to tweens about using the Go Girls! Culture Code in their real lives.

Julie Douglas | Program Administrator

 

Julie Douglas HeadshotJulie is a Bay Area actor-creator, director, teacher and clown. She holds a B.A. in Theatre Arts from the UCSC and an MFA in Ensemble Based Physical Theatre from Dell’Arte International. Julie celebrates the empowering, connecting, expressive, collaborative, playful power of theatre and the arts. Making theatre can change the world and how we experience what is possible. She loves working with Go Girls! to create something that is uniquely theirs, allows them to take center stage and shine. Julie has been a Play Director with Spotlight:Girls (formerly Glitter & Razz) since Fall 2011 and the Administrator since 2013. She has also taught in youth programs with SF Shakespeare, We Players, SF Public Montessori, Yes Theatre of Marin, International Studies Academy, Dell’Arte International, Ferndale Repertory, and Summerfield Waldorf. 

Lead Teaching Artists

Kelly Takunda Orphan (Music) is a vocalist, percussionist, songwriter and dancer, who has performed music around the world.

Kiona Medina (Expressive Arts) is currently pursuing her Masters in Expressive Arts Therapy and is a certified Kidpower Instructor.

Our 2016 Summer Staff

Board of Directors

Steve WrightJoining co-founders Lynn Johnson and Allison Kenny on the Board of Directors is Steve Wright.  Steve is a thought leader and social enterprise consultant with 25 years of experience creating practical systems uniquely tailored to the needs of mission based organizations.  Learn more about his work at conches.org.

Advisory Board

Amy Ahlers Wake-Up Call Coach, Author, Big Fat Lies Women Tell Ourselves, Speaker, Coach, Co-Founder of Inner Mean Girl Reform School 

Christine Carter, PhD – Sociologist, happiness expert, author of Raising Happiness and Sweet Spot: How to Find Your Groove at Work and Home

Derek Goldman, PhD – Theater Director, Professor, Playwright, Artistic Director of Davis Performing Arts Center at Georgetown University

David Green – Social Entrepreneur, MacArthur Fellow, Ashoka Fellow

Bryan Holdman – Television Writer, Producer on Pretty Little Liars, Young Adult author

Mike Johnson – Marketing & Business Development Executive, VP of Digital Media at The Marketing Arm, Founder of PlaygroundDad.com

Esther Pearl – Founder & Executive Director of Camp Reel Stories, former Pixar manager

Betty Ray – Director of Programming & Innovation at Edutopia, George Lucas Educational Foundation

Brandi Riley – Social Media strategist, Content Creator & Online Influencer, Social Media Manager at BlogHer, Founder of MamaKnowsBest.com

Phil Weglarz, MFT –  Professor, Expressive Arts Therapy at the California Institute for Integral Studies

Michael Topf – MBA, Finance/Accounting, VP/Controller at Jamba Juice

Irene van der Zande – Founder & Executive Director of Kidpower Teenpower Fullpower International

Sally Woodhouse PhD – Economist, Vice-President & Partner at Cornerstone Research