Maria is from Long Island – has been here all of her life. She has shared her life with Laurie Olson for 26 years, getting married in August of 2011 right after the marriage equality law passed in NY. Her passion is to be on the water sailing and boating with Laurie on the north fork of Long Island. Laurie and Maria have been residents at Cleaves Point in East Marion since 2005.
Maria spent over 28 years in the pharmaceutical industry, both in sales, advertising, and medical education. Maria is currently devoting herself full-time to nonprofit causes. These include the Human Rights Campaign, where she is on the Board of Governors and the Greater NY Steering Committee, and the Step-by-Step Charitable Foundation, an organization dedicated to raising funds for cancer, where she is the VP, Director of Operations.
At the HRC, Maria has been a volunteer leader for over 7 years, co-chairing the HRC Greater NY Gala in 2014/15 and since then being on the Gala Committee where she is a Corporate Sponsorship Co-Chair helping to raise donations through corporate giving. She has also been Chairperson of the annual HRC Greater NY Golf Outing since 2015. She has helped build that event from an 80-person golf-day and cocktail party to a 225-person full-day event, consisting of golf and then a mini-Gala with corporate sponsors, honorees, and local, state, and federal political speakers.
For Step-by-Step, she helped develop their partnership model with Northwell Health, and chairs the yearly benefit that takes place every fall. It attracts over 100 supporters and includes a Healthcare Hero Awardee and a patient/Inspiration Awardee.
Kikka grew up in Geneva, Switzerland and graduated from the University of Texas in Austin with a BBA in International Business, a BA in French Literature and Special Honors.
Her career as a banker was split between Geneva and New York working for banks such as BNP- PARIBAS, Credit Lyonnais and UBS in their commodities department.
Back in Geneva in 2010, Kikka leveraged her experience to become the Chief Risk Officer at an oil trading company and risk manager at another before choosing in late 2018 to live full time in Cutchogue where she’s owned a house since 2001 with her then partner.
She currently works at Sannino Vineyard in Cutchogue.
Kikka has been involved with NFWFWF since 2001 and looks forward to working with the Board to give back to the community what she considers a unique “safety net” that assists women of the North Fork socially and financially when in need.
Bernadette D. Hoban is a Corporate Vice President with New York Life Insurance Company where she recently celebrated her 40th anniversary. In her spare time, Bernie enjoys spending time with her lovely wife Marianne Kristoff and travels between her hometown of Bay Ridge, Brooklyn and Greenport, Long Island. They enjoy with their wonderful dog Nellie, gardening and sailing the east end waters of Long Island.
Bernie is an active member of her Brooklyn and Greenport communities and recently was voted President of the Peconic Bay Estates Homeowners Association in Greenport. She is also the past president of the Friends and Neighbors of Owl’s Head Park Community Group in Brooklyn and is an active member and past board member of the Knickerbocker Gay Sailing Association in NYC.
She has been a NFWFWF supporter for many years and now living in Greenport allows her to be more active with the group. She looks forward to helping advance its mission by being the president-elect of the organization.
Chris worked for over 35 years in education, starting her career as a middle school math teacher and retiring as a superintendent of schools in a Nassau County school district.
After retirement Chris and her spouse, Clare Cooper, moved to Northampton, Massachusetts where Chris was an active supporter of The Women’s Fund of Western Massachusetts. The Fund provided leadership development opportunities for women, enabling them to move into prominent roles in public and private organizations.
Chris was also involved with Grow Food Northampton, an organization that owns a 120-acre community farm and manages a large community garden. Chris was on the Board of the Giving Garden that was planted, tended and harvested by volunteers. Each summer the Giving Garden donated hundreds of pounds of vegetables to soup kitchens and food banks in the Northampton area.
Chris, Clare and their wonderful black lab Lily returned to Long Island this summer and purchased a home in Cutchogue. Chris enjoys traveling, cooking, golfing, swimming and is looking forward to buying a kayak in the spring.
Chris is delighted to serve the North Fork lesbian community as a member of the NFWFWF Board.
Lori was born and raised in Brooklyn. She splits her time between Park Slope and Mattituck where she, her wife Catherine, and their dogs Paolo and Tutti, and their cat Julian, bought a home 2012 after falling quickly in love with the North Fork. Shortly thereafter they discovered NFWFWF.
Lori was a marketing major in college after working in the NYC garment district for several years. She owns Id Salon, a hair salon located in Woodbury, which she has owned for 17 years. Over that time period she has also worked as a global stylist and educator for Sebastian and KMS. Marketing, including video production, and production and research development was one of her favorite parts of the job.
In 2017 Lori founded Beauty United Against Bullying, an international organization dedicated to raising money and awareness to prevent bullying against the LGBTQ community. Id Salon and more than 150 salons worldwide have become Safe Spaces through this work. Funds go to each city’s local anti bullying organization – on Long Island to the Long Island Coalition against Bullying.
Over the last few years Lori has become an avid golfer and she enjoys golfing with many of the NFWFWF board members. She is excited to join such a talented group of women doing such tremendous work.
Kristen was born and raised on the south shore of Long Island. After starting her career on the west coast Kristen decided to come back to New York and has lived in NYC for the past decade. After spending a lot of time on the North Fork, Kristen and partner Jessica, and their pup Stevie, recently moved to Laurel full-time.
Kristen is a seasoned Casting Director and Development Executive with series credits on every major network. She now runs Watercooler Casting with her partner Jessica. At Watercooler, Kristen is responsible for finding, developing, and pitching talent to various networks and production companies as well as overseeing all contract negotiations on behalf of new talent and Watercooler business development.
Prior to casting Kristen was a voice-over agent in Los Angeles where she handled many voices you hear – from The Simpsons to Family Guy to the infamous movie trailer voices and celebrity commercial campaigns.
Kristen is excited to be a part of the NFW Board and hopes to assist the organization by building a safe and healthy community for women on the North Fork.
Kim is an Ohio native who moved to Brooklyn 6 years ago to pursue a career in book publishing after spending the previous 8 blissful years in Arizona as a lifestyle magazine editor living like she was on a permanent vacation. The vacation quickly ended, and after getting slapped back to reality by the big city for a few solid years, Kim landed an opportunity to join Google as a Program Manager, and decided to take a career pivot for a while. She currently works for Google.org, partnering with state and local government agencies to build tech solutions that help them more quickly deliver much-needed benefits and funding to their constituents.
While living in Park Slope, Kim met her partner, Jesse, who is luckily a fellow animal lover and adventurer, and was willing to adopt a brood of special needs fur kids with her and take a chance on building a new life together in the North Fork. Currently, Kim spends most of her time living and working remotely in Greenport with Jesse, who is an OB/GYN at Northwell Health, their 3 dogs – Anita, Zoomie and Bo – and their 2 black cats – Peter and Inky. When she’s not exploring North Fork beaches, she’s cursing the neverending traffic outside of her apartment in Brooklyn, visiting family and friends in Ohio, or traveling the world.
Kim has devoted the majority of her adult life to giving back to whichever community she is a part of at any given time. She has worked and volunteered in the past for numerous animal rescue groups, in addition to homeless shelters, community organizations, and other non-profits across the country and internationally. She is thrilled to have been asked to join the Board of North Fork Women, and is looking very forward to learning from and serving her new community.
Elly is a native of Long Island and grew up on the Sound. In recent years, she and her partner Rama have fallen in love with Orient and the rediscovery of the north fork spending summers enjoying the community , the sun, beaches and numerous outdoor activities.
Over the prior ten years, Elly and her colleagues work with investment businesses providing outsourced finance and compliance services. Her career has been in financial services in both large and small settings principally holding accounting and operational roles. Elly holds her MBA in Accounting from Bernard Baruch College. She earned her BA at Long Island University and is a CPA.
She has held various Board roles over her career span, often in the role of Treasurer. She has been a supporter of NFWFWF since discovering Orient and looks forward to working with a fabulous team of women and community in continuing the good works of the Foundation. Elly is the current Treasurer for NFWFWF.