Our Team

Cristina Dudziak – she/they

Outreach Coordinator 

Cristina joined the OUT MetroWest team after graduating from Bridgewater State University in 2023 with a degree in Psychology and a minor in Philosophy. They felt drawn to work at an LGBTQ+ nonprofit after working at their university’s Pride Center for 4 years. Through their work at the Pride Center, Cristina co-developed and co-delivered a training workshop called QPOC 101, which discussed the experiences of the BIPOC LGBTQ+ community and provided guidance for being an effective ally to this community. They also worked as a Peer Liaison and took an active role in planning both social and educational events for the BSU community. Cristina has a deep passion for social justice initiatives and sees it as a part of their life’s mission to work towards individual and societal healing. 

In their free time, Cristina enjoys attending cuddle parties and ecstatic dance events. They love going on walks in the woods and being outdoors. When the weather is warm, you will often find them bringing their laptop outside to do work emails. They love creating art in many different forms, from dancing to painting to poetry. They identify as a creative and spiritual being and love having deep conversations, particularly about philosophy and mental health healing. 

Sam Jean – she/her

Communications and Outreach Manager

Sam Jean brings her camp-counselor energy everywhere she goes, and is energized by community-driven programs. Sam has worked with LGBTQ+ youth of all ages, providing trauma-informed care to survivors in the LGBTQ+ community. She has previously served on the Board for Mass NOW, advocating for a number of intersectional feminist policies in the Commonwealth, including LGBTQ+ inclusive sex education. Sam takes a particular interest in the intersections of the LGBTQ+ community and (in)visible disabilities.

Sam is from upstate New York, and moved to Massachusetts to pursue a degree from Brandeis University in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies and Studio Art. In her free time, you can find Sam find participating in Queer Scouts Boston and finding vegan food spots all around Massachusetts. She lives in Waltham with her fiancé Andie (they/them) and their 10-pound orange cat, Orion!

Eli Lavin – he/him

Program Coordinator  

Eli started as an Adult Advisor at OUT MetroWest before taking on the position of Program Coordinator. In high school, he was the first to ever come out as transgender and sparked policy changes to protect transgender students. He was also a member of his high school’s GSA where they worked to make the school safer and more accessible to LGBTQ+ students.

Born and raised in Massachusetts, Eli graduated with an associate’s degree in communications from Bristol Community College and is pursuing a bachelor’s degree from Emerson College.

Outside of work, Eli loves to do photography, videography, spend time with his Bearded Dragon named Nico, and play Dungeons and Dragons with his friends.  

Mel Pace – they/she

Executive Director

To the role of Executive Director Mel brings with them experience in nonprofit leadership, LGBTQ+ youth program development, DEIB consulting, and community building and organizing. Before joining the OUT MetroWest team Mel most recently served as a Projects and Grants Manager at Love Your Labels, and as the Director of Social Justice Education at City Mission Boston. They are a community educator, activist, and group facilitator committed to a future of collective liberation. Guided by relationships of reciprocity, they enjoy visioning and co-creating spaces rooted in practices of abundance and joy.

Mel lives with their wife, Lauryn, and their sleepy dog, Pluto. When not at OUT MetroWest Mel can be found at the pottery wheel, in nature, learning to garden with her wife, or gathered around a table with friends. 

Lily Pearl – she/her

Program and Education Manager

As an Adult Advisor and alum of OUT MetroWest, Lily has been a part of OUT MetroWest in multiple forms. Since her days as president of her high school’s GSA, she has worked to educate people about the LGBTQ+ community. She advocated for policy changes in her high school’s curriculum and handling of bullying. She has worked with different organizations to support LGBTQ+ families and youth of marginalized identities.

Lily was adopted from China when she was 1 year old and has lived in Massachusetts ever since. She graduated from Smith College with a major in The Study of Women and Gender and a minor in Sociology. In her free time, you can find Lily feeding alpaca and emus on a farm and perfecting her matzo ball soup recipe. Lily lives in Southborough with her loving parents.

Nikki Prutsman – all pronouns

Development and Operations Assistant

After being an Adult Advisor for the last 6 months, Nikki is thrilled to take on the role of Development and Operations Assistant for Out MetroWest. Nikki served as Vice President and Treasurer of their college’s Pride Alliance and through this became an advocate for LGBTQ+ rights for all ages. Since graduating from Framingham State University, Nikki has worked for a variety of Youth Groups aimed at the education of sports and nature through Girl Scouts and the YMCA. In their spare time, Nikki enjoys powerlifting and hanging out with their cats, Gus and Arly, as well as their husband, Trent.

Lucy Sweeney – she/her

Director of Individual Giving and Engagement

Lucy brings 14 years’ experience in Boston-area nonprofits, with a particular interest in uplifting youth experiences and voices and in leveraging the power of relationships to build communities advancing equity and social change. Previously, Lucy was Director of Development at Science Club for Girls and worked in a variety of roles at The Food Project, including Associate and Interim Director of Development. Born and raised on Cape Cod and now a resident of Somerville, she earned a degree from College of the Holy Cross in Worcester. Lucy’s loves include soaking in vitamin D, cooking (and of course eating) delicious foods, and being silly with her toddler Alden and husband Sefton. 

Lucy is excited to be joining OUT MetroWest, growing its vibrant community, and learning to become a better ally to queer and trans youth and the LGBTQ+ community.

Adult Advisors & Peer Leaders

Our team of Adult Advisors and youth Peer Leaders help plan and facilitate youth programs on a weekly basis.

They plan meeting activities, lead discussions, and serve as LGBTQ+ role models for youth participants.

Board of Directors

  • Octavio González, Board Chair (he/him)
  • Ashley Seeley, Vice Chair (she/her)
  • Celia Harrison, Clerk (she/her)
  • Jim Bradstreet (he/him), Treasurer
  • Danica Wiles (she/they)
  • Dennis Hicks (he/him)
  • Jordon Bosse (he/him)
  • Lindsey Caliga, Alum & Board Member (she/her)
  • Francisco Gonzalez-Rauschkolb (he/him)
  • Laura Gramenelles (she/her)
  • Katherine S. Kaufmann, Director Emerita (she/her)
  • Anne Terhune, Director Emerita (she/her)

Growing Our Team

We believe that LGBTQ+ youth thrive when connected to diverse adult role models. When we have job openings, they will be posted on our “Join Our Team” page. Black, Indigenous, and People of Color are particularly encouraged to apply. If you are LGBTQ+ and a Person of Color and would like us to keep you in mind for future job or board service opportunities, please consider reaching out to our executive director, Whitney Retallic.

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