Volunteers

  1. Home
  2. chevron_right
  3. Volunteers

Senicia Burke

SBurke@ninthwonder.org

I am honored to be the Stylist Director at the Ninth Wonder Foundation and equally excited to apply my experiences to create happy moments for those in need.

At the end of completing my cosmetology degree, I participated in a supporting role at the non-profit Heartfelt Haircuts in Reno, Nevada. Wanting to have an impact in the community, I volunteered to cut hair for many homeless men and women to help boost their self-esteem during that difficult time in their life. I’d listen to their stories and help them get ready for the next chapter in their life and helped ready them for their job-hunting process. My experience with this non-profit allowed me to join the Saint Baldrick’s Foundation where I would shave the hair of volunteers to raise money for the foundation. This televised charity event reached a wide audience and the proceeds were donated to children with Cancer.

In my 19 years of being a stylist, especially becoming a hair extensions specialist, I learned to communicate better. I also learned a stylist can play a unique role in the need for change. Being a young mother of 3, I enjoy teaching my kids positive thinking, independence, and self-love. In my spare time, I enjoy hiking, going to sporting events, boxing, and spending time with friends and family.

Tania Kanga

Director of Events

Tkanga@ninthwonder.org

Tania Kanga has an extensive background in nonprofit work including several board/leadership positions as well as membership roles over the past 9 year in Houston. She holds a bachelor’s degree in microbiology and a minor in Zoology from Oklahoma State University and works as Marketing and Operations director for The Mercy Pharmacy. Tania has a passion for helping with nonprofit events and organizations, as well as individuals and private groups.

Kirsten Acosta

Director over Fundraising

Kacosta@ninthwonder.org

I’ve always had a passion for nonprofit work, which stems from my older brother’s Autism diagnosis and desire to serve my community. My brother, Chris has impacted my life in unimaginable ways. During my undergraduate career, I held various positions such as Community Service Chair for The Panhellenic Executive Council at Texas Tech University. I served on the UT Health Nursing Student Association as Community Service Chair, volunteering time to local community organizations throughout San Antonio.

My tour of Texas Universities ended in College Station at Texas A&M where I met my future husband, John. My true calling has always been working with children. When my husband’s job led me back to San Antonio in 2019, I continued my professional career as a caseworker for the state. When the opportunity arose to become involved in Be a 9th Wonder Foundation, I was excited to join this wonderful mission!

Marisa Acosta

Volunteer Coordinator

Marisa@ninthwonder.org

Volunteering has always been something I’ve been passionate about deep in my heart. After working in the pharmacy industry for 8 years, I decided it was time to become an agent of change. More love, less hate. Love, something the world needs more of. I’ve spent most of my life living in the dark. Born from two teenage parents, in an unstable environment. It got lonely. Gods placed some amazing mentors in my life along the way to finding my true self. So for me, I feel my life’s purpose is to help others. I’m here to help encourage others to uplift one another within our communities. There’s always a light at the end of the tunnel. You just have to find it.

Namaste

Adam Andrich

Executive Consultant

Adam@ninthwonder.org

Adam has a wealth of experience in the Private Equity, Venture Capital, Real Estate, and Distribution sectors over the last 20 years having responsibilities within over $17 Billion in total funds/organizations and holds various degrees in Psychology, Marketing and Executive Management. Currently, he spends most of his time with his wife and two children.

Through a long standing childhood friendship with our 9th Wonder Founder, Adam was drawn to Remi’s genuine passion and dedication for helping underprivileged youth and children with special needs. Having known Remi’s character and willingness to help others since they were kids themselves, he wanted to support in anyway he could by wearing any hat that’s needed.

In addition, Adam’s wife is a child Psychiatrist and through seeing the ins and outs of that world (and having been further educated by his amazingly beautiful, brilliant and 99.999% right of the time doctor wife) with the addition of growing up as an underprivileged child himself, this was a natural charitable path to jump into.

Jillian Simmons

Graphics, Media and Digital Design

JJ@ninthwonder.org

Jillian “JJ” Simmons is a veteran radio/tv host, Self-Love Coach, 3 X author and speaker from Cincinnati, Ohio. She has captivated audiences in major cities across the country, including New York City at the legendary WBLS-FM, where she worked alongside “The Queen of All Media,” Wendy Williams, Indianapolis, IN, Houston, TX, Atlanta, GA and more.

Today, her compelling message has been transforming audiences across four continents, Australia, Europe, North American and Africa! She has earned the reputation of being “transparent and real” which reflects who Simmons is on and off the stage. Many speakers talk about self-love, but JJ speaks to the power of self-love and provokes audiences to do the inner work of self-discovery to find their own paths to self-love. Jillian isn’t just delivering a speech, she is delivering lasting impact.

While JJ has always had an innate desire to empower women, raising a daughter has deepened her desire to foster change in the lives of young girls. Through the I’m Me Foundation, which she founded, JJ encourages at risk middle and high school girls to be the best version of themselves, by exposing them to leaders and influencers in the community who provide career and social development.

“As a survivor of domestic abuse, I’ve authored a book entitled Without Bruises that chronicles my journey from hurt to healing. In it, I sheds light on the often-missed signs of emotional and mental abuse and how I braved my own path to cultivate a healthy relationship. JJ’s engagements also include women’s empowerment, domestic abuse, college and high school, motivational and faith-based.

Brett Gunning

Life Skills Director/Basketball Skill Development

Bgunning@ninthwonder.org

Gunning has spent the last 26 years coaching in the College and the NBA. He began his career in 1994 as an assistant coach for Jay Wright at Hofstra University. Over the next seven seasons, he was a part of a staff that turned Hofstra into an American East powerhouse, posting a 72-22 (.766) record from 1998-2001. He was very instrumental in the development of the Pride players, as well as assisted with recruiting, scouting and film analysis.

He then went on to spend seven seasons (2001-08) as a member of the coaching staff at Villanova University, again working under the leadership of Head Coach Jay Wright. During his time with the Wildcats, Gunning played a vital role in recruiting and developing a unit that secured four straight NCAA Tournament berths and made three trips to the Sweet 16. He was named associate coach in 2005 and was recognized following the 2007-08 season as one of the top 25 assistants in the nation by Rivals.com. Gunning’s responsibilities with Villanova included on-court teaching, recruiting and scouting.

Gunning’s NBA career began when he joined the Houston Rockets in 2008 as the team’s director of player development. In that role, he was responsible for improving player performance through on-court, one-on-one skill development and the use of video analysis. He was later named an assistant coach for Rockets prior to the 2011-12 season before leaving to serve in that same role with the Orlando Magic for three seasons from 2012-13 through 2014-15. He then returned to the Rockets as an assistant coach in 2015, and from 2016-2020 he assisted head coach Mike D’Antoni coordinate the Rockets offensive scheme. During the 2017-18 season, the Rockets won a franchise record 65 games, and advanced to the Western Conference Finals.

Stephanie Tran

Director of Community Partnerships

Stran@ninthwonder.org

In order to be the change we wish to see in this world, we must first begin with our community. Being the Director of Community Partnerships, it’s my honor to connect the 9th Wonder Foundation with local businesses and organizations. By collaborating with other partners for our hosted events, we’re bringing together meaningful stakeholders who are invested in our mission to grow our reach. In addition to being an edupreneur at Tutor Route and restauranteur at Saigon House, I am a dog mama and a retired international figure skating competitor.

Menu