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Dahlia was born and raised in Chicago and came to DeKalb to “get educated” as her mother put it. She met her husband, Michael, on the first day of placement testing. Dahlia is a first-generation college graduate with an undergraduate degree in child development from NIU, and a master’s in social work from Aurora University. She has over 20 years of child welfare experience within our community. Dahlia is an adjunct professor at NIU and works for a private practice offering mental health services. “Helping children and families is and always will be in my spirit,” she says.
“When I moved to DeKalb for college, I didn’t think this to be my new home. DeKalb is where I grew as a person and as a professional. This community is my home. I love the people here.”
Dahlia and Michael have three adult children JazMelinda, Esiah, and Nevali, and a grandson, Sebastian. Dahlia enjoys spending time with her family at home. She loves cooking and teaches these skills to her children so they can embrace the art of cooking authentic traditional Puerto Rican food (she may or may not sing and dance while cooking). In addition, she also enjoys painting, coloring, and listening to something motivational.
“With so many great experiences living and working in DeKalb, it feels great to represent my city on the Board of the Community Foundation. I am excited and humbled to serve. I look forward to learning more about DeKalb County.”
The Community Foundation Board of Directors are selected to represent communities throughout DeKalb County. The Board sets policy, formulates strategic planning, and determines priorities in grantmaking. Because of the willingness of these able, effective individuals who donate their time and talents to the ultimate betterment of DeKalb County, the Foundation continues to grow to enhance the quality of life for its citizens.