Annie Van Avery
Annie has a fifteen year history in nonprofit leadership including two previous roles as an Executive Director. She has demonstrated a strong commitment to social justice, youth outreach, and advocacy work throughout her career and volunteer commitments. Annie grew up in Minneapolis, Minnesota and has experience with community outreach work in cities on both coasts as well as rural communities. She has a gay father, a lesbian mother, and is herself the mother to two daughters, ages one and thirteen. Annie and her family live in Seattle, Washington.
National Program Director
Robin Marquis was brought into the world by a lesbian mother, a bisexual mother and a queer father. Raised in rural northern New Mexico, she found her pride in her family by connecting to a community of peers dedicated to eradicating oppression and privilege for all disadvantaged communities. Robin has a self designed degree from Fairhaven College at Western Washington University titled, “Empowerment Education through the Environment and Creative Arts,” with a LGBT Cultural Studies minor. Robin has worked in Seattle with Powerful Voices, Camp Ten Trees, YouthCare, and Teen Link providing social justice youth empowerment programming that creates leadership and healing arts education for marginalized youth. Robin lives in Seattle where she creates art that provides voice and color to silenced topics in her own life.
Director of Community Outreach
A longtime advocate for LGBTQ people and their families, Hannah began her first speaking circuit about her personal experience as a COLAGEr at the tender age of eight and has not stopped since. She is fueled by a profound passion for her family and the many ways in which being the child of gay dads molded her identity and catalyzed a life dedicated to social justice. Hannah pursued her love of social justice through her education at University of St Catherine, studying Sociology with a concentration in Critical Theories of Race and Ethnicity. Hannah has a wide variety of professional experience that makes her a well-rounded non-profit professional. Most recently, Hannah worked with at-risk youth for Free Arts Minnesota. She also served as the former Vice-Chair and Development Committee member on the Board of Directors for Rainbow Rumpus—the world’s only literary magazine for the children and youth in LGBTQ-headed families. Hannah lives in Minneapolis with her husband and their two daughters.
Lilli Simmons Plourde
Community Outreach Intern
Lilli is originally from Paraguay but grew up in Massachusetts with her two moms and younger sister. She is now a college student at the University of Vermont where she studies English. Lilli has been a Family Week participant in the past and is extremely excited to be an intern for COLAGE this summer.
Cecilia was born in San Antonio, Texas but has lived most of her life in Minneapolis, Minnesota with her two very protective older brothers and two very outspoken mothers. She is currently studying psychology and hopes to someday work as a therapist that specifically serves LGBTQ families. Because of Cecilia’s upbringing, she is a strong advocate for equality for all families and is truly passionate about COLAGE’s mission.
Family Week Intern
Joe Nowlan grew up mostly in Washington, DC, and the surrounding area. His father came out as gay when Joe was two, and Joe lived mostly with his mother and bisexual sister. He is currently a psychology student at the University of Vermont, and has worked and volunteered for various nonprofits including The Fund for the Public Interest, Kid Power DC, and Amigos de las Americas. As a second gen COLAGEr, Joe is pumped to intern at COLAGE this summer!