Heather kennedy, PH.D.
When she was 15 years old, Heather lost her mom due to heavy cigarette use and co-occurring mental health problems. At 16, her counselor told her about a youth movement that was working against the tobacco industry, and Heather started a local youth coalition at her school. She learned the power of her voice. For 20 years, Heather has worked to ensure youth voices are a part of decision-making in their schools and communities. She even earned her Doctorate so that she could be a better advocate for youth voice. As the Program Manager for UpRISE, Heather manages the budget and supervises staff. She has started over fifteen different youth leadership boards in communities across Colorado. She is forever an advocate for youth, particularly those who have felt that their voice has been silenced.