Elaine Young, President
Elaine has been volunteering with Family Promise of Monmouth County since the agency opened its doors in July of 2001. She started out as a volunteer coordinator for a host congregation (St. Luke’s UMC, Long Branch). She also worked as a case manager for Family Promise from 2004 to 2006. In 2009 her church could no longer support the ministry and had to step down as a host congregation. Not long afterward, Elaine was invited to join the Board of Trustees. She became President of the Board in 2011.
Elaine has earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology and a Master’s degree in Counseling, both from Georgian Court University. She is a Licensed Professional Counselor and has a private practice in Colts Neck. In her spare time, she writes, sings and preaches an occasional sermon at her church.
Mike Meriton, Vice President
Mike has been an active member of the Board of Family Promise and supports our fund raising, community engagement, and advises on our business operations. Mike’s advocacy for homeless families includes key support for our FPMC 501 Building campaign and other fundraising activities. Mike and his wife Marie also have established a local Rainbows chapter in Monmouth County. Rainbows is an international non-profit providing support groups for children that have experienced loss due to separation, divorce or death of a family member.
Mike’s 25+ year business career in technology has included serving as an executive at Oracle and D&B as well as the CEO of GoldenSource. In 2005, Mike also co-founded the Enterprise Data Management (EDM) Council, a non-profit trade association for the global advancing data management where he currently leads industry engagement. Mike and his wife, Marie, reside in Monmouth Beach NJ. Their family is blessed with two daughters and four grandchildren.
Wendy Lightner Carofano, Secretary
Wendy is a licensed pharmacist currently working as a Director of Regulatory Affairs in the Pharmaceutical industry. Wendy received her Bachelors’ of Pharmacy degree From Long Island University in Brooklyn, NY and her Doctor of Pharmacy from the University of Florida. She has life-long interests in improving human health and quality of life. Wendy hopes to help improve the lives of members of her community by using her communication, organization, and analytical skills to work with Family Promise of Monmouth County to accomplish their mission. Wendy and her family live in Monmouth County and are happy to be involved with Family Promise of Monmouth County.
Jessica Stepanski recently joined the Board of Directors of the Monmouth Country chapter of Family Promise. An active contributor to various charitable organizations in Monmouth County over the past ten years, Jessica looks forward to serving the organization and families who benefit from its services. Prior to joining the Board, Jessica performed fundraising and event planning for the Monmouth County Day Care organization and several other eleemosynary foundations. Combining her experience in pharmaceutical sales with her Master’s Degree in Social work from Columbia University, Jessica applies practical corporate experience with extensive case work to help charitable organizations expand the impact they can have in their communities. A busy mother of four, Jessica is eager to contribute her extensive experience and expertise to such a worthy organization and cause.
Rev. Dr. David G. Henritzy
David is a minister in the United Methodist Church serving currently as the Director of The Bible and Common Prayer Book Society of the Episcopal Church. He is also Secretary of the English-Speaking Union of the United States, Monmouth County Branch.
Previously David served as Pastor of the Pomeroy United Methodist Church, Pomeroy, PA; Assistant Administrator-Chaplain for The Methodist Home for the Aged, Bronx, NY; and Executive Director at The Bowery Mission, New York City. He was also a Protestant Chaplain at the Terence Cardinal Cooke Health Care Center, New York City; Director for Healthcare Chaplaincies and Registrar/Data Manager at The Office of the Bishop for the Armed Forces of the Episcopal Church, New York City and ministered full-time in this office including clergy in hospital-healthcare chaplaincies, as well as prison/jail ministries. His portfolio included all non-military chaplains. David recruited, ensured the competence of, helped place, and supervised chaplains throughout the United States, on behalf of the Bishop. A very challenging, but important period was helping to coordinate the response of this office to the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. David created and “took on the road” a training refresher course aimed at enabling clergy to respond to the multitude of grief issues raised. He also became the major grief counselor for the employees at the Episcopal Church Center offices in New York City.
Traci Akins is a native of Neptune, NJ and a graduate of Neptune High School. She holds a Bachelor of Science (BS) in Administrative Systems Management with and endorsement in Business Education as well as a Masters of Education (M.Ed.) in Business Education both from Virginia State University.
Traci became an Educator at Thomas Dale High School in Chesterfield County, VA where she served students not only as a Business Teacher but also as an advisor for SAV (Students Against Violence). However, the call of corporate America would take her to Chase Manhattan Bank, in the financial district of NY. It would be here that Traci experienced the most life altering experience – she became a 911 survivor.
She joined Asbury Park High School as a Business Teacher at Asbury Park High School. Her stern hand and heart of love often lent her to influence the lives of students that seemed headed down the wrong path. She served as Student Council Advisor and from 2002-2012 where she raised the bar in the area of community service. Her students participated in activities such as; annual blood drives for the Central NJ Blood Bank, Christmas Cards for Soldiers in Iraq in partnership with the NJ Natural Gas, Co. Iraq. She served on countless committees that played an instrumental part in the school community’s restructure and overall success. Traci was also featured in the Asbury Park Press in December, 2007 for her role in teaching a Leadership class to help shape tomorrow’s leaders. “Being able to help shape not just the educational values in students but also the moral values,” is the best part of her job”, Akins says.
Mark Zill has accomplished career driving growth and profitability through business transformation and data/metrics driven execution. He is an expert in driving strategic revenue channels and building high performance offshore/onshore teams to maximize operational leverage.
Mark brings a strong track record of growth by offering new solutions to market, identifying and integrating strategic acquisitions, and divesting underperforming assets.
He has been recognized as a results driven leader, strong team builder, and effective mentor with a disciplined approach to assessing opportunities and problem solving. Mark earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Applied Research from City University of New York and Master’s degree from New York University Where he majored in Graduate Studies in Urban Planning and Computer Science. Mark also selflessly served in the United States Navy where he earned Navy Commendation and an Honorable Discharge.
Mark serves on various boards and contributes to community driven projects. He currently serves as the Vice Chairman for the Prevention Coalition of Monmouth County. He is a Contributor and Sponsor of Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) of Monmouth County, as well as the Clean Ocean Action Coalition an environmental group in Monmouth County. Mark has volunteered with Family Promise of Monmouth County for many years and is excited to join the board of Trustees as the Interim Treasurer.
Pastor Lyddale Akins
Pastor Lyddale Akins pioneered and began his ministry as a small house church called House of Prayer in 2006 in Asbury Park, New Jersey. The Lord open a door for his growing ministry to link with another ministry that was struggling, which lead him to merge his ministry and serve as the Pastor at Triumphant Life Church Assembly of God in Asbury Park, New Jersey.
Operating as the trailblazer, Pastor Akins found the pulse of his city. As a member of various community organizations ranging from Ministerial Alliances, Housing Authority Commissioner, Chaplin of the Asbury Park Police Department, and various other programs God began to open up favor and influence for the ministry to touch the heart of the people. Therefore, the ability to serve the community through outreaches, feeding the hungry, and serving the needs of his congregation has made Triumphant Life a thriving ministry. In February 2017 Pastor Akins and The Triumphant Life Church family relocated from Asbury Park to the historical Fort Monmouth Chapel on the former Fort Monmouth Army Base. This 16,000 sq. ft. facility is already opening the doors for him to serve their new community of Oceanport, Tinton Falls, and Eatontown communities while still having an active hand in Asbury Park.
Steve Introcaso was born and raised in Monmouth Beach and has lived in Lincroft since 1998. He is a 20+ year member of Lincroft Presbyterian Church. Steve has served as an Elder twice, and helped to bring LPC in as a Host Congregation for Family Promise of Monmouth County. “My personal mission is to help eliminate the wealth and income divide in America so all citizens have equal access to the American Dream. I hope to use my affinity for professional networking and business experience in that pursuit.” Steve and his wife, Lynn, have 3 daughters: Brianna, 26, is a Doctor of Physical Therapy in San Diego. Krista, 23, is a Pediatric Nurse at Inova Children’s Hospital in Falls Church, VA. And Cara, also 23 (yes, twins!) works in HR for Mott MacDonald, a UK-based Civil Engineering firm, in their Iselin office. Steve earned a BA in Political Science from Dickinson College. He enjoys golfing, gardening, cooking, reading, the Yankees and Giants, and music.