Meet The Team

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Nes Espinosa; Associate Regional Director

Coming soon

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Monica Horvath; Philadelphia YoungLives City Director
Monica Linde Horvath has been serving as the Director of YoungLives Philadelphia since October 2009 and provides leadership for the four clubs in Philadelphia.  A graduate of Covenant College, she holds a degree in Interdisciplinary Studies with concentrations in counseling, business and music. Prior to joining staff full-time Monica, was a mentor with  YoungLives in Philadelphia for four years. She possesses a deep heart for the city of Philadelphia and Jesus and a strong desire to work towards goals as well as lead and guide teen moms, leaders, mentors and committee members.
Mariette and Kevin Chao; City Administrator and Center City Area Director
Kevin and Mariette Chao moved to Philadelphia in the summer of 2017 from Greenwich, Connecticut where he was on staff with Young Life for 6 years. Fondly known as “Chao”, he was born and raised in Greenwich, where he grew up in a  Catholic household and first encountered the love of God. It was through Young Life that he began to see that his purpose in life was to love others the way Jesus did. He spent 6 years in Cincinnati, Ohio where he received a B.S. in Architecture from the University of Cincinnati and worked for the Cincinnati Circus Company (ask him about it). Chao is passionate about sharing the love of Christ with everyone, listening to people’s stories, and helping people reach their fullest potential. He is excited to work alongside of churches, non-profits, recreation centers and other organizations to best serve and love adolescents in Center City.

Kevin serves as the Center City Area Director and Mariette serves as the administrator for the Associate Regional Director. 
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Theron Huff; Regional Trainer and UPenn College Director
Theron has been on staff for over 13 years full-time. Over the years, Theron helped start numerous young life club's- working traditionally with high school students. Most recently, in his move to Philadelphia Theron got to help start Young Life at a college level at Temple and the University of Pennsylvania. Theron's connection with Young Life dates back to 1986, when his dad started on our camp staff in Northern California. I was a volunteer leader during my time in Virginia. Currently, I thoroughly enjoy getting to engage college students who are skeptical about Christianity, Jesus, and religious institutions in general.
Maura Briscoe; YoungLives Administrator
Maura loves YoungLife and has been a part of the YoungLife community since she was a high school student growing up in Montgomery County. Maura briefly served as a leader in Montgomery County while attending Temple University. Maura graduated in May of 2018 with a Social Work degree and is currently enrolled at Villanova University pursuing a Masters in Counseling. Maura is excited to continue to her relationship with YoungLife as she is now working as an Area Office Assistant for YoungLives Philadelphia​.
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Mary-Bliz Ballesteros; YoungLives Mission Staff
Mary-Bliz first found out about YoungLives by being invited to their Annual Banquet in the fall of 2013. Being a former teen mom and also first hearing the true message of the gospel through a ministry similar to YoungLives in NJ, Mary-Bliz fell in love with the mission of YoungLives in Philadelphia. She has been a volunteer/leader and mentor for 4 years at Olney and recently joined part-time staff a year and a half ago. Mary-Bliz graduated from Cairn University with a dual Bachelor's degree in both Biblical Studies and Social Work in the spring of 2012. She currently resides in Kensington and also works as a community liaison for a non-profit social service agency in Philly. Coming to know Jesus Christ has and continues to radically change Mary-Bliz's life and she graciously strives to share this truth with others, especially through YoungLives.  
Glory Bull; North Philly Student Staff
I first joined Young Life in my freshman year at Temple because I wanted to get involved in a Christian community amidst a time where I’d be in a tempting, stressful and confusing environment. This lead me into being placed as a leader at Olney Charter High School. I am amazed at constantly seeing the Lord’s intention behind placing me at Olney, it could not be a more perfect fit. Young Life has provided me with such a vast community in Philadelphia  that it has become my home.​
Erika Velez; YoungLives Student Staff
"I have been involved with YoungLives for about five years now and have been on staff for a little over two years. I am a product of YoungLives; I first became involved as teen mom and later had training to become a leader. I have a five year daughter. I've grown up in Philadelphia. Being from the inner city and a teen mom; I am happy to be able to connect with young moms on many levels. I am currently in college studying to be a Nurse Practitioner with the hopes of working with pregnant women. I am proud to be apart of the movement of introducing Christ to young moms and whom ever I encounter​." -Erika Velez

Young Life Philadelphia |

Phone: 503 358-1818

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