Young Professionals Network
The LitWorld Young Professionals Network (YPN) is a community of people who believe that the time we spend networking can also change the world. Our different backgrounds and shared desire to make a difference bring us together in both community and service. Together, we learn, grow, and amplify LitWorld's work to strengthen global communities through literacy and the power of personal stories.
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Meet our 2019-2020 YPN Leadership Team!
The YPN Leadership Team is a group of young leaders that aims to expand and amplify LitWorld’s impact through fundraising, advocacy, and community-building initiatives. We represent a broad array of professional expertise and personal passions, but we’re unified by a belief in the LitWorld mission.
Caelyn Cobb, Co-Chair
Caelyn Cobb is an editor for nonfiction books on global history and international politics at Columbia University Press. She has been working with LitWorld since 2015 and traveled to visit their programs in Haiti as part of her graduate studies at NYU. Her favorite books growing up were Ella Enchanted and anything from the Nancy Drew mystery series.
Olivia Chase, Co-Chair
Olivia Chase is a Humanities teacher at Lab Middle School for Collaborative Studies in Manhattan, and she has been a member of the YPN Leadership Team since 2014. She has taught both middle school and high school English in addition to teaching in France and China. Her favorite children's book (although arguably it's for adults too!) is A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle.
Eric de Lemos, Secretary
Eric de Lemos is a human being recently returned to New York City and was very excited to join the YPN leadership team in 2017. His favorite children’s book is Singularity by William Sleator.
Anxhelina Prenika, LitWorld Liaison
Anxhelina Prenika joined the LitWorld staff in 2017 as Director of Operations and HR. At her core, Anxhelina is a facilitator with a passion for operations management, who enjoys challenging and impactful work that strives to make a difference in the community. In her free time, she enjoys learning languages, traveling, volunteering, and mentoring youth social innovation programs. Her favorite children's book is The Little Prince.
Ilana Solomon, LitWorld Liaison
Ilana Solomon is LitWorld’s Development Manager and has been involved with LitWorld since 2015, when she was an intern. She completed her MPA Capstone with LitWorld and joined the YPN Leadership Team in 2016, and she became a staff member in 2018. A proud Hufflepuff, her favorite children's (but really, for everyone) book series is Harry Potter.
Afia Tamanna was born in Bangladesh but has lived in NYC all her life — more specifically, the Bronx. Currently, she works at Grace Institute, a women’s workforce nonprofit where her lifelong passions of advocating for women from the inner cities and immigrants, education, and economic mobility all come together. She’s read Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen and the Harry Potter series countless times.
Alexis Kuzma is an associate sales representative at HarperCollins. She is excited to be joining the YPN leadership team this year. Her favorite modern day children’s book is The Lines on Nana’s Face, and her favorite classic is A Bad Case of Stripes.
Angela Januzzi has spent her career in publicity, marketing, and internal and external communications for the worlds of book publishing and non-profit development (in education reform and environmental conservation). She also writes and makes things under a few different names, which she might tell you if you ask. Growing up in Northeast Ohio, as a kid her favorite books almost always seemed to be about mysticism, good witches, the natural world, and social justice. Some things never change.
Deedi Brown, an Upstate New York native and Hufflepuff, is a content writer for a women-focused financial services company. She also runs a book blog. Her go-to "fun fact" is that she read 100 books in 2016, one of which was her favorite book recommendation, The Giver. Actually, make that the whole quartet — you're never too old for a great story with an even better lesson.