Board Member Profile Series: March Edition

Board Member Profile Series: March Edition

Curious about Philly Set Go? We are a bipartisan organization that’s run by an all-volunteer board.

 

This March we are profiling our newest board members: Hannah Ryan, Jenné Ayers, Ashley Lewis, Deanna Jenkins, and George Merrill.


Name: Hannah Ryan

Occupation: Nurse Practitioner

Other organizations: PennEnvironment, Planned Parenthood

What is your favorite part about Philadelphia in the Fall? I love the feeling of everyone “coming home” after a summer down the Shore or just busy with events and vacations. It feels great to have everyone back together as the seasons change.

What is the best park in Philadelphia? Fitler Square.

What do you think is the most overlooked problem facing our city? Litter. I think the appearance of your home makes a big difference in your pride and investment in it. Our citizens should feel proud of Philadelphia and be excited for it to move forward. Trash blowing across the street and scattered across neighborhoods takes away from a lot of the great work that Philadelphians are doing. 
Why did you join the board of Philly Set Go? I joined the board of Philly Set Go because I’m really excited for the future of Philadelphia. This city has an energy and attitude that can’t be replicated. I want to be part of encouraging citizens, particularly millennials, to become more involved with the democratic process in this city. The more engaged we become, the better and more representative the outcomes will be. 

Name: Jenne Ayers
Occupation: Attorney
What is your favorite part about Philadelphia in the Fall? I love walking on Kelly Drive and Forbidden Drive (in Northwest Philly). The air is crisp and the foliage is perfect. It's such a great way to appreciate the city's beauty.
What is your favorite SEPTA route? My favorite SEPTA Route is the 33 bus. The 33 route goes from Penn's Landing to 23rd and Venago. You get to see so much of the city on this bus. I rode the 33 after school traveling from Masterman to my grandma's house in North Philly.
What is Philadelphia’s strongest asset? Philadelphia's strongest asset has been and will always be its people. Philadelphians are hard working, passionate and kind.
What do you think is the most-overlooked problem facing our city? We have to increase voter participation and civic participation more generally. We must find ways to engage all Philadelphians in our local government processes and policies. We will achieve the best sustainable outcomes for our city when all voices are heard.
Why did you join the board of Philly Set Go? I joined the Board of Philly Set Go because I believe in the importance of millennial representation in politics. It is important that younger voices are heard.

Name: Ashley Lewis
Occupation: Analyst
What is your favorite neighborhood in Philadelphia? Cedar Park - it's where I grew up, very diverse, and a quaint section of "West Willy."
What is the best park in Philadelphia? Clark Park. I remember rolling down the hill into the huge "bowl" as a child. Also - the Farmer's Market and the Shakespeare in the Park series are neighborhood favorites.
What is Philadelphia’s strongest asset? It's people. Philadelphians - both natives and transplants - have a certain amount of grit, candor and zest for life that makes us special and unique. There must be something in the water, because Philadelphians are loyal to their city, and are not afraid to speak up and speak out.
How would you like to make an impact in local politics, policymaking, or millennial political engagement through Philly Set Go?  I look forward to engaging with millennials in sections of the city that are often underserved and/or overlooked so that there is greater representation of the diversity that exists within our generation. I think that one of the greatest barriers to engagement is a lack of awareness around how to get involved, and I hope to help others identify ways to engage in local politics.

Name: Deanna Jenkins
Occupation: Business Process Analyst
Other organizations: Board member for Mental Health Partnerships, SeniorLaw Center, and New Leaders Council. Young Professionals Committee Chair, MenzFit
What is your favorite neighborhood in Philadelphia? Mount Airy
What is Philadelphia’s strongest asset? Hands down-THE PEOPLE!!!  Although I've lived in other large cities, as a Philly native I firmly believe that our passion and authenticity are unmatched.  We're loyal to our city and fighting every day to make it better.  
How would you like to make an impact in local politics, policymaking, or millennial political engagement through Philly Set Go? Millennials have the potential to hold tremendous influence on the political process in Philly and across the country.  I want to help increase millennial engagement and representation in local politics and provide opportunities to leverage our collective voices and power to bring change in our communities.  
Name: George Merrill
Occupation: Middle School Social Studies Teacher
Other organizations: Central Roxborough Civic Association
What is your favorite SEPTA route? I love the 32. I get to see the dynamics of the city from Center City to Fairmount Park to the Ridge.
What is your favorite Philadelphia restaurant? Either Lucky’s off Main or Scanlon’s Saloon. Lucky’s burgers are amazing, still haven’t worked up the courage to try their PB&J Burger. Scanlon’s has two pool tables and affordable beer.
What are your hopes for the city in the next five years? I hope Philadelphia continues to keep it’s underdog attitude, the dedication and determination here is incredible. Philadelphia’s spirit makes me proud to live here.
What do you think is the most overlooked problem facing our city? The lack of transportation here is really interesting. I truly believe more affordable options for public transport would help develop and reconnect Philadelphia as a whole.
How would you like to make an impact in local politics, policymaking, or millennial political engagement through Philly Set Go? I want people to make an impact on politics. I feel like the apathy in the millennial community is a product of decades of the working people of the country not being heard. Philly Set Go is helping to connect people to the larger politics of area and I hope to support that mission.