Our Staff

Cito Vanegas, President & CEO

Cito Vanegas has been with NEW Solutions since 1997, bringing three decades of non-profit experience and an unwavering passion for serving the aging workforce. As President and CEO of NEW Solutions, Cito provides leadership, direction, and commitment to ensure the success and expansion of experienced worker programs throughout the United States. He graduated from the University of Mary Washington with a BS in Business Administration, followed by the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) designation in 1993. He later earned an MBA from George Mason University and a Nonprofit Executive Management Certificate from Georgetown University. In 2023, Cito was awarded a Public Leadership Executive Certificate from Harvard Kennedy School. Cito lives in Arlington, Virginia, with his wife and two children.

Kathleen Branch, Chief Operating Officer

Kathleen has considerable executive-level experience in nonprofit program development and implementation, and a history of building relationships with diverse audiences at the local, state, and national levels. Prior to joining NEW Solutions in 2016, Kathleen worked for seventeen years for the National School Boards Association (NSBA) as the Director of National Advocacy Services and Programs. She has a BS in Communications from Ohio University and a Master of Education degree from George Mason University. Kathleen is also Certified Association Executive (CAE) and Project Management Professional (PMP).

Linda Holiman, Chief Financial Officer

Linda Holiman is the Chief Financial Officer of NEW Solutions. Prior to joining NEW Solutions in 1998, Linda worked at a regional public accounting firm as an auditor focusing on not-for-profit organizations. Linda has extensive experience in individual and corporate income tax preparation. As CFO and a key decision maker, she ensures NEW Solutions’ compliance with Federal rules and regulations and is responsible for the organization’s budget. She has a Bachelor of Science in Accounting and is a licensed Certified Public Accountant (CPA). Linda is also a Certified Association Executive (CAE).

Barbara Bronislawska, Director USDA ACES, ESP & EWP Programs

Barbara joined NEW Solutions in May 2001. She oversees the operations of the ACES, ESP and EWP Programs for the Natural Resources Conservation Services (NRCS), the U.S. Forest Service (USFS), Economic Research Service (ERS), Agriculture Research Service (ARS), National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) and National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) at the Department of Agriculture. She holds a B.S. degree from Trinity University and an MBA from American University. Barbara also received the Project Management Professional (PMP) Certification in December 2020.

Bridget Farley, Director EPA SEE & FWS ESP Program

Bridget oversees the EPA Senior Environmental Employment (SEE) Program, The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Experienced Services Program (ESP) and most recently, the U.S. Geological Survey’s ESP Program. She holds a B.A. in Environmental Studies from The George Washington University and an M.P.S. in Strategic Human Resources from The University of Denver.

Beth Stover, Director ESP & DOL Programs

Beth oversees the Experience Services Program (ESP) and DOL Program. Beth is retired from the federal government with over 35 years of experience in Administrative and Human Resources positions. She holds a B.S. in Social Science from Boise State University. Beth personally relates to our mission as an experienced professional who wants to continue providing value to federal agencies and progressive non-profit organizations.

Tammie Reynolds, Manager of Field Operations

Tammie began her work with us as a Recruiter in the Eastern Field Office before moving to Rochester, NY to manage operations for the three field offices. Ms. Reynolds earned a B.A. from State University of New York and loves working at an organization where she can make a difference. Her spare time is spent with her husband, Arthur, and daughter, Zatanna.

Pamela Lewis, Manager, NRCS ACES Program

Pamela started as a Recruiter for the Western Field Office before becoming the NRCS ACES Program Manager. Her background includes working in the Denver Public Schools Administration and extensive work with medical records in nursing homes. She has also served as Executive Secretary and loves the culture of teamwork at NEW Solutions.

Kate O'Dell, Senior Manager, DOI Programs

Kate brings over 10 years of project management and outreach experience with the government. She has an extensive background in program management, environmental policy, regulatory development, training, and compliance for federal agencies. Kate is a graduate of the University of Maryland with a M.A. in Geography and a B.S. in Environmental Science and Policy.

Adela Rexhepaj, Manager, SCSEP Programs

Adela is a seasoned nonprofit professional with over fifteen years of experience who joined NEW Solutions in January 2021.. She has spent the last eight years in the workforce development space, specializing in federal grant management and transforming process and financial strategies into solutions that drive efficiency. Prior to her current role, Adela was an executive leadership team member, where she managed a budget of $22 million. Prior to entering the field, she provided legal assistance to immigrants and worked on immigrant rights issues, including workforce development and immigration reform with diverse political groups. Adela holds a B.A. in Political Science from Westminster College and a J.D. from Hamline Law School, where she focused on administrative law. Her educational background and her practical experience have equipped her with a comprehensive understanding of the legal and regulatory frameworks that impact the nonprofit sector and federal grant management.

Dorothy Mackendrick, Manager, BLM Programs

Dorothy Mackendrick joined the staff of NEW Solutions in March 2023 as a Program Manager supporting the Experienced Services Programs. Dorothy has 20+ years of non-profit management experience in the arts and higher education. She began her career in Los Angeles where highlights include coordinating educational programming for an exhibit on the life and science of Albert Einstein and launching a new grant program with LA County to support non-profit organizations using the arts to strengthen their programs. She has extensive budget building and operations management experience and loves untangling complicated situations. Dorothy is a graduate of Wellesley College and has an MBA from Pepperdine University.

Mei Lee Strom, REE Program Manager

Mei Lee started as a recruiter before becoming the REE Assistant Program Manager in April 2021. She has over 20+ years of full cycle recruiting and human resources experience in the legal industry and has an extensive background in recruiting for law firms. Mei Lee is a graduate of George Washington University with a B.A. in Journalism. In her spare time, Mei Lee enjoys riding her horse, travel, taking in all that Washington, DC has to offer, and attempting to play a passable round of golf without embarrassing her friends.

Tim Forbert, Acting Program Manager

Tim is a Senior Recruiter and Human Resources Professional with over 15+ years of full cycle recruiting experience supporting corporations, the Department of Defense, and state and local government agencies. Tim completed a Certificate Program in Human Resources Studies from Cornell University and attended De Anza College in Cupertino, California where he majored in Business and Computer Science. When he is not serving as a bridge between experienced workers and federal agencies, Tim enjoys being outdoors with his wife and 2 Siberian huskies or training for his next running or cycling race.

Gael Thompson, Assistant Program Manager

Gael’s background includes advertising consulting, sales, marketing, recruiting and office management in a variety of industries. She is passionate about helping people and organizations form strong relationships. In her spare time, Gael enjoys playing golf with her husband.

Ana Portillo, EPA SEE & NRCS ACES Program Assistant

Ana joined NEW Solutions in December 2021 as the Program Assistant for the Senior Environmental Employment (SEE) Program with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Agriculture Conservation Experienced Services (ACES) Program with the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS). Ana brings more than 20 years of experience in sales, management and customer services in technology and real estate. Ana is a native of Washington D.C. and studied at The George Washington University. In her free time she enjoys traveling, watching movies and spending time with friends and family.

Delma Johnson, Lead EPA SEE and FWS Recruiter/Program Specialist

Delma has been with NEW Solutions for over 20 years. She began as a Payroll/AP Specialist and later became a Recruiter/Program Specialist for the Eastern Field Office. During her tenure, Delma has witnessed the growth of the organization and always strives to provide the utmost in customer service to our Enrollees and clients.

Sandy Skrien, Team Lead - ACES Recruiter/Program Specialist

Sandy joined our team after a 42-year career in the US Forest Service as the National Wilderness Program Manager. She began her career on the Superior National Forest writing wilderness permits, working as a wilderness ranger, winter and summer trails crews, and YCC crew leader. Sandy then spent 20 years on the Tongass National Forest working in two large visitor centers and on two districts as recreation, wilderness, land and minerals staff officer. She has a BS in Biology from St. Cloud State University. Sandy’s lives in Minnesota with her husband Wayne and yellow labs Cedar and Juniper.

Mary Vigil, Team Lead - ACES Recruiter/Program Specialist

Mary joined NEW Solutions after working 30 + years with Colorado State Government, including work as an HR specialist in the Department of Natural Resources. Mary understands the inner workings of government and natural resources and has a background in onboarding, developing policy and procedures, drafting position descriptions and job analysis. She is a native of Colorado and loves to build relationships with experienced workers and the programs that need them.

Liz Soch, BLM and NPS Program Specialist

Liz Soch works part time as a Recruiter/Program Specialist in the South-Central Field Office. She has a B.A. in History from the University of Texas at Arlington. Prior to joining the team, Liz was a Social Studies teacher for 30 years. In her free time, she enjoys traveling, reading, and working in her garden.

John Davenport, Forest Service ACES Recruiter/Program Specialist

John joined the NEW Solutions team in April 2021 as the Program Assistant for the Forest Service Program. John brings 10+ years of Information Technology experience and strong customer service experience to the FS ACES Program. In his free time, he enjoys working on cars and grilling for family and friends.

Kristin Langhammer Kokalis, ACES Recruiter/Program Specialist

Kristin is a Recruiter /Program Specialist with the Forest Services ACES program. She has a background in both education and HR, but always dreamt of working at a non-profit organization. Kristin’s passion for job comes from helping her grandfather elevate his technology skills so he could keep working. She enjoys spending time outdoors with her daughter, her mom, and her dogs.

Jane Gornall, ACES Recruiter/Program Specialist

Jane is a Recruiter/Program Specialist supporting the Western Field Office. She has over 20+ years of HR experience including recruiting, talent management, employee engagement and training. Jane has a BS in Business Administration and Human Resources from Indiana Wesleyan University. In her free time, she likes fishing, spending time with family and friends, traveling, and watching scary movies.

Lynn Dang, Senior Recruiter/Program Specialist

Lynn has accumulated over 10 years of professional experience in the field of recruiting, with a focus on higher education, talent acquisition, HR, and business development. She is proud to work for NEW Solutions because of the organization’s mission to help experienced workers. In her free time, she enjoys spending it with her husband and kids, her two golden retrievers, and experiencing new foods.”

Paula Cote, Senior ACES Recruiter/Program Specialist

Paula began her career with NEW Solutions in May of 2021, working with both the Forest Service and the NRCS ACES programs. She retired from the US Forest Service after more than 30 years specializing in National Environmental Policy Act planning. Paula graduated from the University of Colorado with a B.A. in Environmental Conservation. Paula and her retired wildlife biologist husband enjoy all outdoor activities.

Elika Rafi, Program Coordinator

Elika Rafi joined NEW Solutions as a Program Coordinator in January 2022. She has 10 years of prior experience in managerial and supervisor roles. Elika hopes to utilize her work ethic and to immerse herself in NEW Solutions especially because their mission is something that she loves, to help where she can. Traveling, and meeting new people from different backgrounds are some of Elika’s interests.

Bonnie Calvert, ACES-NRCS Program Specialist

Bonnie joined the team in 2014 after championing for the older workers as a SEE Enrollee Administrative Assistant for seven years at the EPA National Enforcement Investigation Center (NEIC) Laboratory in Denver. Bonnie’s diverse background includes bison ranching and owning a manufacturing company that provided parts and services to the U.S. Department of Defense and NASA. Bonnie is a Colorado Native who loves the outdoors but does not ski!

Linda Elliott, ACES-NRCS Program Assistant

Linda has over 30 years’ experience in Human Resources that began at IBM. After her career at IBM, she worked for the State Dept of Revenue and Colorado Natural Resources, where she retired in 2016. After a brief retirement, she found her way back to Colorado to the ACES Team. She is excited to be a part of such a talented and self-less team.

Gary Petito

Gary Petito, Senior REE Recruiter/Program Specialist

Gary has over 15+ years of experience in recruiting, workforce development, career services, team leadership, partner support and technical account management for corporations, state, and local government agencies. Gary served on active duty with the Texas Army National Guard for 6 years as a Recruiter and Logistics Specialist. He has a bachelor’s degree from Texas A&M University-Killeen and enjoys hiking, cycling, DIY home projects, and being with his family.

Scott, Tonya

Tonya Scott, Senior BLM and NPS Recruiter/Program Specialist

Tonya has over 10 years of progressive human resource experience including employee relations, training & development, strategic planning, and business consulting. She has worked in a variety of industries, including non-profit, health, education, and aerospace. She holds a MBA with a concentration in human resources. In her spare time, Tonya enjoys reading business articles, writing stories, traveling, and watching documentaries.

Connie Dismuke, ACES Recruiter/Program Specialist

Connie has over 15 years of customer service, sales, full-cycle recruiting, training, conducting seminars, and recruiting events. Her mantra is to be a difference maker while pursuing her passion for encouraging others. She enjoys interior design and spending time with her grandkids and binge-watching HGTV.

Venkata Boggavarapu, System Support Specialist

Venkata (Ven) has degrees in Chemistry and Chemical Engineering and over 30 years of experience in business, technology, and management. He came to NEW Solutions Headquarters in March, 2020 as a Program Assistant and now works to assist monitors and enrollees with their usage of the payroll system. Ven was previously a NEW Solutions SEE Enrollee supporting the Environmental Protection Agency.

Nancy Altman, Senior Director of Accounting

Prior to joining NEW Solutions, Nancy (Nan) worked for MicroStrategy, Inc. for nearly 16 years where she led accounting operations for their U.S. and Canadian subsidiaries. She began her accounting career at Ernst & Young, LLP working in both the audit and tax practices. Nan has a B.S. in Accounting from George Mason University and is a licensed Certified Public Accountant.

Isa Welch, Director of Finance

Isa (pronounced Lisa, no L) joined NEW Solutions in April 2023 as a Director of Finance and brings 25 years of experience in accounting, project management and financial analysis across multiple industries. Isa graduated from the Florida State University earning a BS in Accounting, holds a Lean Six Sigma Certification and earned her MBA from Fitchburg State University. In her spare time, Isa enjoys cycling, pickleball, gardening, reading and spending time near the water

Keith McBean, Senior Grants Analyst

Prior to joining the team in 2010, Keith spent 10 years working for the University of Maryland, College Park as Business Manager and Director of Administration in grants management. He currently oversees financial and analytical reporting for the ACES Program. Keith has a B.S. in Finance and a Masters in Accounting & Info Technology from University of Maryland University College and remain a member of the Maryland Association of Certified Public Accountants (MACPA). Keith is proud to work for an organization that is inclusive and encourages excellence.

Jessica Huang, Lead Accountant

Jessica began her career in consulting and software development, but later transitioned to accounting and administration. She has 15 years of payroll processing, accounting, and office management experience in the IT sector. Jessica has an M.P.S. in Sustainable Urban Planning from the George Washington University and a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Illinois. She enjoys board games and puzzles and is passionate about waste reduction.

Mina Tanna, Senior Financial Analyst

Mina joined NEW Solutions as Grants Accountant in May 2016. She was promoted to Senior Financial Analyst position within six months. She brings considerable experience and expertise in finance and accounting functions to the team along with outstanding leadership, teamwork, organizational, and customer service skills. Prior to joining NEW Solutions, she worked for the American Red Cross in Biomedical Finance, Business Planning & Analysis Department. Mina is a graduate of George Washington University with a M.S. in Project Management and has a B.S. from MVM Science College. She is proud to work for an organization with such a unique mission which provides opportunities for experienced workers and values their skills and experience.

Jessica Lengkong, Associate Accounting

Prior to joining at NEW Solutions, Jessica worked for National Rural Utilities Cooperative Finance Corporation for over 10 years as a credit analyst in the Credit Risk Management group. She is a graduate of College of William and Mary and earned a B.S. in Accounting. Jessica is excited to be a part of an organization that promotes age-diverse workforce through expanding employment opportunities in government agencies.

Linda Jones, Lead Accounts Payable Specialist

Linda brings considerable accounting experience in the nonprofit industry. Prior to joining NEW Solutions, she worked as an Accounts Receivable Specialist at Community Health Charities and served as an Accounting Analyst (Contractor) at the U.S. Department of Agriculture at the Natural Resources Conservation Services. Linda also worked for IBM Corporation/PricewaterhouseCoopers Consulting. Linda is a graduate of Virginia Commonwealth University with a B.S. in Accounting. She also completed the Federal Government Certificate Series at George Mason University.

Daniel Bersoma, Senior Accounts Payable Specialist

Daniel worked in non-profit organizations for over 14 years, including Experience Works, Inc. and the John F. Kennedy Center for Performing Arts as an accountant and accounts payable specialist. He graduated Strayer University with a bachelor’s degree in accounting. Outside of work, he enjoys spending some quality time with family and watching basketball.

Andrea Vigil, Lead Grants Accountant

Andrea joined National Experienced Workforce Solutions (NEW Solutions) in April of 2021 as a Grants Accountant for the Forest Service, ACES program. Andrea has 14+ years of diverse accounting experience, the past 11 years she worked as a Grants Accountant, where she is fulfilling her passion for helping others.

Julia Hunt, Manager - Grants Accountant

Julia has over 17 years of experience in financial management, working in a variety of accounting and financial analysis roles at different organizations. She was directly responsible for administrating federal and non-federal awards, and held management roles in non-profit organizations such as National Endowment for Democracy, National Fish and Wildlife Foundation and Experience Works. Julia holds a B.S. degree in Accounting from George Mason University. In her free time, she enjoys listening to audiobooks, hiking and cooking for her family and friends.

Jim Zalenski, Principal Grants Accountant

Jim has over 30 years of experience including accounting, project management and financial analysis in several industries. Most recently Jim worked in the Financial Planning & Analysis (FP&A) area in the aviation industry and after a long career in telecommunications at MCI. Jim holds a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Bucknell University and MBA from the University of Michigan.

Scott Sweatman, Grants Accountant

Prior to joining NEW Solutions, Scott worked as a Grant Accountant for the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) and has over 15 years of experience in non-profit accounting and operations management. He has earned the designation of Certified Grants Management Specialist. Scott is also a member of the National Grants Management Association, serves on the membership committee and volunteers on the Certification Council Nominating Committee. Scott resides in Rustburg, VA with his wife and three sons and enjoys playing disc golf and watching crime dramas.

Yung Joo, Assistant Grants Accountant

Yung has 40 years of experience in accounting and financial reporting functions in three non-profit organizations such as Experience Works, Inc., National Trust for Historic Preservation, and American Automobile Association. Yung holds a bachelor’s degree in Home Economics from Seoul National University and a high school teacher certificate in South Korea. She also completed the Grants Management Certificate Program at Management Concepts. Yung is very grateful to work for an organization that cares about staff and experienced workers.

Aleth Almelor, Payroll Director

Aleth Almelor joined NEW Solutions in October 2010 as Payroll Specialist. In December 2017 she was promoted to the position of Payroll Director. Prior to working at NEW Solutions, she worked for an international logistics company as a payroll coordinator.

Lois Whittington, Senior Payroll Specialist

Lois Whittington joined NEW Solutions as Sr. Payroll Specialist. She has been working/processing payroll for over 16 years. Lois is so excited to start this new chapter with NEW Solutions and to help contribute anyway she can to its mission and goals. Lois has worked in companies that help our teens who have lost their way get back on track! They helped them find a trade that they loved and watched them flourish and graduate, some they even helped find job placement. Lois is so excited to work for a company that helps our experienced workers find job placement, she has seen firsthand with her Dad just how hard it can be to find a job, and to have NEW Solutions able to help is amazing! Lois looks forward to see the amazing things NEW Solutions has in store and is honored to be able to be apart of the team!

Eileen Stewart, Senior Payroll Specialist

Eileen has over 25 years of experience in payroll, accounts receivable, and billing at Progressive Nursing Staffers, a temporary nursing agency. She graduated from Clarion University of Pennsylvania with a B.S. in Business Administration. Eileen enjoys traveling, hiking, and skiing.

Jennifer Peacock

Jennifer Peacock, Human Resources Director

Jennifer has more than 30 years of diverse experience in human resources ranging from consulting to corporate HR leadership. She is a specialist in compensation, benefits, recruitment, compliance, HRIS, performance management, data analytics, reporting, and employee relations. Jennifer has a bachelor’s degree in communications from Towson University and a master’s degree in business administration from The Johns Hopkins University.

Lauren Schreter, Senior HR Generalist

Lauren has several years of diverse experience in Human Resources. She is a specialist in compliance, HRIS, performance management, data analytics, reporting, and implementing efficiencies across the board that streamlines processes. Lauren has a bachelor’s degree in Business Management with a minor in Human Resources from The University of Colorado.

Nina Larson, Benefits Manager

Nina joined NEW Solutions in May 2021. She started her career in HR by traveling with Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey for five years, 2 as an HR Generalist. She has an additional 11 years of experience in benefits and workers’ compensation management in all 50 states and Puerto Rico. Nina graduated with a B.A. in Cultural Anthropology from Beloit College, has a Professional in Human Resources® (PHR®) certification, and is working on her Certified Employee Benefit Specialist (CEBS) certification.

Patricia Blakey, Staff Recruiter

Pat joined NEW Solutions in February 2023 as a Staff Recruiter for corporate positions. She has over 15+ years of experience in full-desk recruiting, marketing, business development, consulting, and coaching. Pat is passionate about connecting people. She believes in bringing the best process possible for all involved in job placement. As a Colorado native, Pat enjoys walks/hikes in nature, spending time with friends and family, playing various sports, the arts, writing, cooking and is an avid Colorado Avalanche hockey fan.

Reza Rafi, Operations Director

Reza has over 25+ years of senior level operational and financial leadership experience with nonprofits and accounting firms. For the past 16 years he has worked as an instructor for George Mason University and the University of Phoenix. Reza served as the Chief Operating Officer at NEW Solutions from 1996 – 2004 and as the Manager of Finance and Administration for the SEE Program at AARP. Reza has a B.S. in Accounting and an MBA in Finance.