Nonprofit “Experience Camps” Names California’s Hanna Song, and New York’s Michael Goldman and Billy Matthews to its Board of Directors
Board Seeks to Expand Camp and Year-Round Programming that Supports Thousands of Grieving Children with Transformative Experiences
WESTPORT, CT, April 17, 2023 – Hanna Song, resident of Redondo Beach, California; Billy Matthews, resident of New York City; and Michael Goldman, resident of Harrison, NY have been named to the Board of Directors of Experience Camps, an award-winning national nonprofit that transforms the lives of grieving children through summer camp programs and innovative, year-round initiatives.
As Board members, they will leverage their unique backgrounds and talents across a variety of industries to support the organization’s programming, branding, and strategy with the goal to further the mission and transform the lives of grieving children.
One in five U.S. children will experience the death of someone close to them by age 18, and 6 million will mourn the death of a parent or sibling by age 18. Grieving children are at higher risk than their non-grieving peers for developmental disruptions, including relationship, academic, and career functioning; substance abuse; mental health challenges, including depression and suicide; and poverty.
Experience Camps programs connect grieving children to a community of peers who understand what they’re going through while normalizing the grief process and giving them hope for the future.
Hanna is the Senior Vice-President and Chief Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Officer at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles. She brings to the Experience Camps board a strong DEI lens, strategic expertise, and extensive experience in evaluation and assessment.
For Hanna, the mission is personal: “My mother passed when I was age nine; such a life-changing and salient loss that continues to impact every part of my identity and life. I wish I’d had an opportunity to process and feel my grief through a program like Experience Camps. Connecting with others who had to grapple with permanent loss would’ve helped me realize I am not alone and allow me to honor my mom’s memory in a way that felt meaningful and purposeful.”
She adds, “I hope to support the mission of Experience Camps as we offer opportunities to connect and build community for a diverse population of children who are navigating such significant loss in their lives. Now, more than ever, ensuring accessibility and culturally relevant experiences for children who’ve experienced loss is imperative for our communities and the world.”
Hanna received her BA in Sociology from UC Berkeley; her MA in Education (Policy, Organization, Leadership Studies) from Stanford; and MA and PhD in Higher Education and Organizational Change from UCLA.
Billy is Director of Credit Research at MUFG Securities America, a leading global financial group backed by 2,700 locations in over 50 countries and regions. A CFA Charterholder, Billy also is a Level 100 certified Alpine Ski Coach who loves reading books, traveling, and being outside year-round.
He discovered Experience Camps after his son died in 2021 and his daughter attended Experience Camps in Pennsylvania. “I have seen how one week of camp can help a child year-round,” he says. He added that Experience Camps helped him “find hope and helped my daughter feel like she is not alone.”
Billy looks forward to bringing his finance and fundraising skills to the Experience Camps organization, and working with the Experience Camps team to comfort those afflicted with grief.” He adds, “I am so excited to deepen my relationship with this incredible organization.”
Billy received his BA from Tufts University and his MBA from Columbia Business School.
Michael S. Goldman is an attorney who spent his entire 35-year career at Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP, in New York City, where he was the Head of the Banking and Credit Group. He retired from active practice at the end of 2022.
He says the Experience Camps mission resonates deeply with him: “I know the transformative power that even a week at camp can have on a kid. I was 14 when my father was diagnosed with a terminal brain tumor, and I know that the two summers I spent at camp during his illness were pivotal in helping me through it. And this was even without the professional (i.e., grief counseling) presence and the community of similarly situated campers that are so integral to the Experience Camps experience.”
Michael looks forward to bringing his legal and financial expertise to the board, with the goal to make Experience Camps available for as many kids as possible.
Michael is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania and Fordham University School of Law. In his spare time, he is a musician and songwriter, competitive masters athlete, and doting grandfather (not necessarily in that order).
About Experience Camps
Experience Camps is an award-winning national nonprofit that transforms the lives of grieving children through summer camp programs and innovative, year-round initiatives. Through compassion, connection, and play, we allow grieving children to embody a life full of hope and possibility. By amplifying their voices, we are creating a more grief-sensitive culture.
Media Contact: Michelle Cove, (617) 319-4434
For more information about Experience Camps, visit http://www.experiencecamps.org. Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and TikTok.
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