The ICAN Team
Shelby Pedersen, MPA, CFRE
Chief Executive Officer – 480.874.7576
“ICAN is a unique and distinctive organization that truly makes an investment in youth. I feel proud to be involved in the legacy it will leave behind for these deserving kids.”
Since 2008, Shelby has been privileged to lead ICAN’s philanthropic efforts and has substantially grown the organization’s marketing, special event, volunteer and community relations activities. During her tenure, ICAN completed a $5.65 million capital campaign and expanded philanthropic giving two-fold. In 2016, Shelby was recognized for her leadership efforts with ICAN and promoted to the role of Chief Executive Officer.
PPrior to joining ICAN, Shelby worked in the marketing department of the Colorado Women’s Chamber of Commerce and assisted with community relations and youth developmental outreach at Project C.U.R.E, while she completed her two-year AmeriCorps UCAN Serve term. She has a bachelor’s in marketing and a master’s in public administration.
Shelby is also engaged with organizations across the Valley, including: The Downtown Chandler Community Partnership, Valley Leadership Class 37 and Suns Charities 88. In her free time, Shelby enjoys spending time with family, traveling and doing anything that takes her outdoors.
“My favorite quote is ‘It takes a village to raise a child’ (African Proverb) since ICAN is able to play such an integral role in our kids’ lives and they need support coming from every angle.
Cassie has been involved in the non-profit sector for over 20 years with her experience residing in youth development organizations. Cassie was the Director of the Virginia G. Piper Branch at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale for several years and led the branch in receiving the highest distinction-Best Overall Club by Boys & Girls Clubs of America. She most recently served as Director of Philanthropy for ICAN.
She attended Arizona State University and received a degree in English Literature and Educational Psychology in 2005. Cassie graduated from the American Express Leadership Academy at ASU in 2013 and was on the Marketing Committee for the Downtown Chandler Community Partnership in 2015. In 2016 she was a member of Suns 88 and also served on the board for the Association of Fundraising Professionals, while chairing the Education Committee. This year she will complete her certification in Major Gifts through professional development with The Veritus Group.
Cassie enjoys long distance running, hot yoga, tennis, cooking, and just being outdoors as an active mom for her four and seven year olds!
Aaron Harris, MBA(Fin)
Chief Financial Officer – 480.874.7584
“ICAN changes lives through free programs for youth and families. Having worked at ICAN since 2001 I have had the pleasure of witnessing a lot of change in both the youth and families as well as ICAN’s own capacity to provide the services that are needed in the community.”
In April of 2001, Aaron joined the ICAN team as a Prevention Specialist. Over the years, he obtained his B.S. in Accounting as well as his MBA (fin) and currently sits on the executive leadership team in the role of Chief Financial Officer. Aaron oversees and manages all aspects of Finance, Information Technology, and business operations for ICAN. He is committed to making a positive difference in the lives of youth as evidenced by his many years of continued community involvement.
When he is not working or volunteering in his community, Aaron enjoys traveling with his family, playing sports, and photography.
Melissa Kowalski, MNpS
Chief Programs Officer – 480.874.7591
“I am fortunate to be a part of ICAN where I can see, on a daily basis, the positive impact this organization has on the community by providing valuable resources and programs for youth and families.”
Melissa joined the ICAN team in 2012 and currently serves as the Chief Program Officer, overseeing ICAN’s Youth, Family and Community Programs. Melissa brings over ten years of experience in nonprofit management and program development. She earned her bachelor’s degree and her masters degree in nonprofit studies from Arizona State University.
Melissa currently serves as President of the Chandler Non-Profit Coalition and is a past board member of the Greater Phoenix Child Abuse Prevention Council.
Melissa is actively involved in the community and currently volunteers on the St. Vincent de Paul Advisory Board and an alumni of Tempe Leadership. She also enjoys baking and running in her free time.
CEO – Shelby Pedersen, MPA – 480.874.7576
Administrative Coordinator – Alma Chavez – 480.874.7595
Executive Administrator – Cat Moran – 480.874.4207 (x409)
Chief Financial Officer – Aaron Harris, MBA(Fin) – 480.874.7584
Bookkeeper – Brenda Masters – 480.821.4207 (x401)
Chief Philanthropy Officer – Cassie Patris-Browne, BA – 480.874.7577
Philanthropy Manager – Courtney Taylor – 480.874.7575
Philanthropy Coordinator -Raven Jordan- 480.874.7580
Volunteer Coordinator – Deanna Schlagenhaft – 480.874.7578
Communications & Grants Specialist – Katie Stringham – 480.241.7128
Department of Programs
Chief Program Officer – Melissa Kowalski, MNpS – 480.874.7591
Youth Programs Manager – Nick Irigoyen – 480.874.7596
Youth Programs Coordinator – Anisa Villarreal – 480.874.7597
Family & Community Programs
Community Programs Coordinator – Ted Huntington – 480.821.4207 (x414)
Family Programs Manager – Alicia Perez, MPA – 480.874.7593
Family Programs Specialist – Jacqueline Robertson – 480.821.4207 (x406)
Teen Programs Coordinator – Desirae Smith – 480.821.4207 (x430)
Work with ICAN!
To apply for employment opportunities at ICAN, visit our Jobing.com page.