A Mexican-American born and raised in the border town of El Paso, Texas, Adriana began volunteering with Casa Chirilagua as an interpreter and mentor in 2011, then joined the staff in 2012. As Executive Director she helps bridge the gap between our families, students, staff, volunteers, churches and school partners. She holds a Bachelors in Theater Arts.
A California native now on the East Coast, Marissa provides support to the programs team and works to connect Casa’s community partners with our programming. She joined the staff in 2016 and is passionate about walking alongside our families as they develop as leaders. She holds a bachelors degree in International Affairs with a Public Health concentration from George Washington University.
Community Development Director
Liz recently moved to Virginia from Guadalajara, Mexico, and joined Casa Chirilagua in September 2017. She has worked to support human rights internationally and is now dedicated to promoting a positive community and strong social bonds within the local community.
Elementary Programs Director
Diana’s first connection with Casa Chirilagua was as a Kids Club student when she was just 8 years old. After being the first in her family to receive a high school diploma, she is also now the first to attend college, studying to receive her bachelor’s degree in education. Diana grew up in Chirilagua and has a passion for working with children. She is proud to be a part of Casa Chirilagua which she says has been a haven to many in the community.
As a first generation Salvadorean-American, Jose was raised in the Northern Virginia area. He has attended Northern Virginia Community College and currently attends George Mason University pursuing a bachelor’s degree in political science. Jose believes that positive influences help shape perspectives. He facilitates this by matching youth in the Chirilagua neighborhood to adult mentors while building relationships with families, volunteers and schools.
Lauren lived in New Orleans, LA for 20 years before relocating back to Arlington, VA with her husband and family. She joined our staff part time in May 2019 bringing years of experience as a controller for several small family owned companies. She holds a Masters degree in Business Administration and a Bachelors degree in Accounting.
A Virginia native who ended up in Alexandria for an internship in the summer of 2013. He started volunteering with Casa Chirilagua in 2014, joining staff in 2019. He describes himself as a neighbor, friend, missionary, practitioner, ordained minister, social activist, community organizer, and hopeful social entrepreneur. He lives with his wife Abby in the Lynnhaven Neighborhood of Alexandria.
Lisa joined the not-for-profit sector after leaving a corporate finance career and became a Certified Advocate so that she could support survivors of sexual violence. In 2019 Lisa joined our staff part time to direct the organization’s fundraising activities and development plans. Lisa holds a B.S. in Foreign Service from Georgetown University and an MBA from the George Washington University.
Jennifer joined the staff team as a part-time role to capture stories of hope and help Casa Chirilagua reach more people. She has a Bachelor’s in Cinema & Photography from Ithaca College. Jennifer also brings over 10 years of experience in media & communications roles from her past in Christian summer camp ministries and church planting networks.
As a first-generation Honduran-American, Angy has lived in Chirilagua her whole life and has been part of the Casa family since it started. She first met the founders of the organization when they moved into the apartment above her. She is a college student that is currently studying to become a nurse. As she has been working as a Local Leader, our kiddos in our programs have made a change in her heart to become a pediatric nurse.
As a first-generation Salvadorean American, Erick was raised in Alexandria. He graduated from TC Williams High School. Erick is the first generation in his family to attended college, and is currently a Freshman at Virginia State University studying in criminal justice. He has been working at Casa Chirilagua since September and loves teaching the kids in Kids Club.
As a second-generation Bolivian-American, Fabiola was raised in Alexandria, VA. She has graduated from Thomas Edison High School and currently attends Northern Virginia Community College. She plans to transfer to George Mason University pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Community Health. Fabiola aspires to make a long-term impact on children by providing guidance and support. She enjoys working with children and working alongside the community to help make a positive change.
Lisa Treviño Cummins
Founder and President, Urban Strategies
Adriana Gómez Schellhaas
Executive Director, Casa Chirilagua
Staff Attorney, Restoration Immigration Legal Aid
Development Committee Chair
Fundraising and Development Consultant
Finance Committee Chair
Security Director, Chemonics International
Strategic Direction Committee Chair
Economist, US Coast Guard
Associate, Booz Allen Hamilton
Engineer, Clark Construction Group, LLC
Our relational network of volunteers and donors reflects a diverse group of individuals from all over the Washington, D.C. metro area. As a non-profit, we rely on the community for assisting program directors on-site, being mentors, supplying the needs of our food pantry, and everything in between. Each member of our Casa community holds a unique gift, whether time, talent or treasure.