Executive Leadership

Nancy Jane Atkinson

Executive Director

As CEO, Nancy oversees six childcare centers, serving 300 families, and implemented an innovative mental health program for children who have been abused, experienced trauma or have attachment issues. She was responsible for the acquisition of the YWCA of Sacramento and their many programs, which is now a branch office. Nancy is responsible for the YWCA’s $4.0 annual million budget and supervises a paid staff of 65 and 25 volunteers.

Nancy holds bachelor and master’s degrees in recreation administration and youth leadership from Michigan State University, as well as a master’s degree in agency counseling. She has a master’s in counseling psychology from National University of Sacramento.

In addition to her work as CEO of YWCA of Contra Costa / Sacramento, Nancy serves as the Clinical Director for the YWCA Mental Health Program which now has two community-based mental health clinics in Martinez and Antioch. She supervises associates and marriage & family therapists. She specializes in working with families, individuals and children’s issues as well as attachment / adoption issues. She works with children who have obsessive compulsive disorder and youth who identify as transgender. She holds a number of certificates, including the International Play Therapy Association and has training in Theraplay®, trauma and attachment. She uses pet assisted animals – her dogs and birds – when working with children, working toward getting the YWCA certified as a pet assisted clinic.

Grace Bhairo

Acting Board President

Grace is currently a Product Manager at Wells Fargo. Her past professional experience includes consulting in Higher Education and working with academic institutions in various Financial and Administrative positions.  Her roles included serving as Director of Financial Services at a private College, providing consultative services in finance and technology for 2 and 4 year colleges across the U.S.  More recently, she optimized her experience in academia as she transitioned to Oracle Corporation as a Senior Product Manager in the Public Sector division, and later worked as a Project Manager at Bank of the West.  Grace has a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration and a Master is in Education and holds the PMP, Scrum Master and Six Sigma Black Belt certifications. Grace is passionate about women and children social causes and volunteers frequently with various non-profit entities including Junior Achievement, Operation Hope, and Habitat for Humanity, Glide Memorial and United Way.  She is a strong believer in the concept of “Each one teach one” and collaborates with various agencies to facilitate financial literacy, youth, and women empowerment workshops. She takes advantage of Bank-sponsored Community Development, and actively participates/volunteers on her company’s Diversity Council.  She believes in paying it forward, and whenever possible, collaborates with her community neighborhood to provide meals to seniors and organize fun children activities.

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