Shirley Barna - Super Girl Facilitator Trainer
Shirley has a passion for psychology and working with children. She has over 10 years of experience working with children, families, and adults in the capacity of a counselor, problem solver, and advocate. Shirley received a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology with a minor in Family Studies at Northern Arizona University. At age 15, Shirley’s passion with working with children began, at her first job working at a summer camp with children with cerebral palsy, mental retardation, and other physical handicapped conditions. She continued working with children in various capacities as a summer camp counselor, lifeguard, swim coach. After college, Shirley worked as a social worker for the State of Arizona and had the experience of working with hundreds of children and families. Shirley currently works in the field of Human Resources as a Director of Employee Relations where she is able to use her Psychology degree by assisting nearly 1,000 employees with employment related conflict and problems. Although she no longer directly working with children, Shirley continues to feed her passion by serving on board of directors with a non-profit groups in Phoenix who raise money for various children’s charities, and she also completed countless hours of organizing and participating in hands-on activities with girls and young women. Shirley believes that passion for working with mental health issues and giving stem from caring for a father who has battled his own mental health illness for her entire life.
Carrie Severson - Founder and CEO
In January 2011, at the age of 32, with only her savings and 401k dollars in hand, Carrie took a leap of faith. She knew deep down she was always meant to make a big impact in the world. More specifically, she knew she was meant to be a light in the world.
She learned how to share her light when she created Severson Sisters, and empowerment organization for females headquartered in Phoenix, Arizona. Severson Sisters provides programs and services that help girls ‘Connect to their Inner Super Girl’. The organization’s mission is to inspire girls to live their life as their authentic, awesome, super self. Severson Sisters plays a role in the lives of Super Girls to help them become confident Super Women who will lead their communities. We do that by offering a creative and supportive program called the Super Girl Program.
In 2012, Carrie was honored for her work with Severson Sisters through Sally Hansen’s ‘Best of You’ recognition in New York City and was featured in the September 2012 issue of Glamour magazine. She was the first nonprofit to graduate from the prestigious AAAME program, sponsored by APS, for small, minority and women-owned enterprises throughout the Phoenix area. In January 2013, she was honored as the Young Non-Profit Professional of the Year for Phoenix by the Young Non-Profit Professional Network – Phoenix Chapter. She was included in the 2013 Top 50 Power Women issue of New Made Revolution Magazine. Most recently, Carrie was selected by USA Network and NBCUniversal as one of the 2013 “Characters Unite” award winners.
She believes her life purpose is to be a light for girls so they do not endure the same darkness. Her motto is “Be the change you want to see in the world”. And she wakes up every day with that intention in mind.
Interested in joining our Advisory Board or Board of Directors? Please fill out our Board Interest Form!
Holly (Severson) Hammerquist
Holly is an integral spoke in this wheel – and the real sister in Severson Sisters! As an educator in Phoenix, Holly brings so much of her education and experience to our programs. Holly makes sure that the girls enrolled in the Severson Sisters Super Girl Program always show their true colors. She strives to do her personal best every day and expects the same from her students and the people she surrounds herself with. She enjoys empowering girls. She is currently enrolled in a Master’s Degree program, studying curriculum.
Anne is a licensed psychologist who has worked with children, adults, and families in a variety of different roles including counseling, psychological testing and research. She has functioned as a advocate for children, adults, and the elderly, always focusing on positively affecting their sense of well-being. Her experience includes providing services for a myriad of settings, including disabled students at state universities, intake and crisis management at local hospitals, psychological and counseling services for local schools and social service agencies, and conducting clinical drug trials for mood disorders. Anne completed her Pre-Doctoral internship at Sinai Medical Center in Milwaukee, WI, where she specialized in behavioral medicine and focused on helping others cope with the psychological aspects of medical illnesses. She then returned to the Phoenix area and completed a Post-Doctoral fellowship with the Sheriff’s Office, conducting pre-employment evaluations, employee crisis management, and counseling services. She currently provides consultation services to medical personnel as needed and lives in Scottsdale with her husband and three young children.
Board of Directors
Kristina Beres - Treasurer
Kristina Beres has 15 years in the financial services industry and is Vice President Client Advisor at J.P. Morgan Chase Bank N.A. We do keep her pretty busy with Severson Sisters, but this Super Girl still finds time to further her education! She is in her graduate program at University of Phoenix. She’s also a former kids Martial Arts instructor and Dog Lover! Send Kristina a note if you’re interested in donating to our mission.
Christian F. Johnson
Christian F. Johnson, MBA, MS, LCSW is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, Lecturer, & Consultant that received her education from Northern Arizona University, Columbia University, and University of Phoenix. She gained her psychotherapy, counseling, and consulting experience from providing services to a diverse background of individuals, couples, families, groups, and organizations in school and community based settings.
She founded Wholistic Counseling & Wellness Alternatives, LLC in 2006 based on the belief that self- reliance is achieved when your life is balanced and functioning as a whole. Additionally, Ms. Johnson is also a locally and nationally recognized Trainer, Consultant, and Speaker. She has been featured in local and national media interviews with media such as KFNX 1100 AM-The Pulse AZ, KTVK- News Channel 3, Phoenix Public Access 12, Black Enterprise Magazine, and National Association of Social Workers- AZ Chapter. Christian F. Johnson is a National Certified Trainer for the Olweus International Bullying Prevention Program, and a Faculty Associate for two local universities. In addition, she participates in the community as a Community Organizer, and serves on local boards and commissions.
In her spare time, she enjoys participating in progressive political and social causes, traveling, and attending music, performing arts, and cultural events.
Ed is the CEO of Lutrum LLC, his own business. With a background and B.S. and A.A.S. in Information Technology, Ed’s our tech guy! We put him in charge of the fulfillment process for the Severson Sisters Super Girl Kits. He’s a Dad’s Club Member for Settler’s Point Elementary School, Contributor to Arizona Students Recycling Used Technology organization, 2010 Arizona Republic’s 35 under 35 Entrepreneurs, and lead previously owned IT organization to 2009 Small Business of the Year and 2010 Chandler 100 recognition.
Debbie Accomazzo brings over 20 years working with small businesses and corporate entities, and has extensive nonprofit experience, which has been the highlight of her career. Debbie has amassed a strong record of success in moving charitable missions forward and increasing their viability. Her achievements are grounded in a study focused on Business and Marketing, with an emphasis on Corporate Procurement, supplemented by targeted professionals and personal development opportunities.
Since 2005, Debbie’s efforts have been directed toward girl-focused organizations. While working in crisis pregnancy, she quickly identified the societal gap between home, school, and community, in educating young women about their maturing bodies, their developing minds, and the impact of peer relationships. Debbie has dedicated the last five years to advocating for young women regarding issues surrounding puberty, relationships, sexuality, and substance abuse, and has supplemented her education through Women’s Health and Nonprofit Leadership studies. The Severson Sisters mission of inspiring girls to live life as their authentic, awesome, super selves aligns perfectly with Debbie’s desire to empower young women in the world, and she believes the six core principles of the Super Girl Program create a foundation upon which they can.
Andi was born and raised in Arizona, attending Centennial High School in Peoria and then Arizona State University for her Bachelors degree. She has spent the majority of her career working in digital marketing at both Philosophy and Riester Advertising agency, and she is currently with Pearson Education as a Publisher’s Representative.
Andi previously volunteered with the Valley of the Sun Active 20-30 club and held board member positions for two years. As the daughter of a now retired elementary school teacher, she is very passionate about the difference the Severson Sisters organization is making in schools around the country.
Super Hero Squad
The Super Hero squad is made up of passionate individuals who help raise funds and awareness of our Super Girl program.
Maura is an Arizona native and attended Xavier College Preparatory High School in Phoenix. Maura earned a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration from Gozanga University and Juris Doctorate from University of Arizona James E. Rogers College of Law.
She currently practices Law at the law firm of Roshka, DeWulf & Patten, PLC, where she practices in the areas of securities and commercial litigation.
Having attended an all girls high school and also having three younger sisters, Maura loves opportunities where she can work with other women and young girls to enhance and add value to each other’s lives. Maura is very excited about getting involved with Severson Sisters.