Geori Berman Seldine – Executive Director

Geori Berman Seldine, Executive Director of Florida’s Children First (FCF), has spent most of her career fearlessly advocating for children and ensuring that children and youth are put first when making policy decisions. She has worked to make meaningful, sustainable changes to the child welfare system to transform children’s lives. Geori became Florida’s Children First’s Executive Director in 2022, after nearly a decade of working at Florida’s Children First.

Prior to becoming Executive Director of Florida’s Children First, Geori served as the Statewide Director of Florida Youth SHINE (FYS), a statewide youth advocacy organization for current and former youth involved in the child welfare system. During this time, she organized, expanded, and developed Florida Youth SHINE into a national model for youth advocacy best practices while managing the daily operations, communications, curriculum, grants, and programs for FYS. She worked alongside young people to recruit, engage, train, educate and empower them by providing innovative programs and a platform to amplify their voices on a local, state, and national level. Geori’s advocacy and commitment to including youth with lived experience in systemic change has resulted in significant policy and practice changes that improve the lives of Florida’s Children.

Geori brings a broad range of experience to the organization including program development, fundraising, leadership and advocacy skills, expertise in child welfare policy, and leadership in the non-profit sector. Furthermore, she has served on numerous statewide and national committees, and workgroups focused on child-welfare issues. She is an experienced program designer, curriculum developer, and trainer as well as the author of several tool kits, manuals, and curricula. Recipient of the Janet Knipe Exceptional Adult Ally Award, Geori is a passionate child advocate and speaker.

A change agent, Geori is committed to advocating for all children as if they are “our” own. She is grateful to be at this unique organization that provides sustainable change to the foster care system and that centers youth at every decision to truly “work” for children and their needs. Florida Youth SHINE’s youth-led vision is fundamental to her work, and she is committed to ensuring the integrity and utilizing lived experience to inform Florida’s Children First’s work.

Prior to joining Florida’s Children First, Geori worked in the field of Student Affairs in leadership, social justice, and student programming where she developed innovative programs to arm students with the tools and support they need to be successful change agents and leaders. Additionally, she worked with the Enough is Enough Anti-Violence Campaign, The Global Center for Social Entrepreneurship, and as an AmeriCorps at Boys Town.

She is a graduate of Leadership Florida’s Connect program and has served as a National Officer to Theta Phi Alpha, a Conference Delegate for the National Panhellenic Council, a Mentor for the Clinton Global Initiative University, and as a member of the Junior League of Boca Raton.

Geori received her Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership from the University of the Pacific and her Bachelor’s Degree in Communications and Sociology from Florida Atlantic University.

In her free time, Geori enjoys spending time with her family, friends, husband Matt, and dog Maggie, cooking, traveling, being outdoors, and staying active.

Please Contact Geori HERE.

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Alexia Nechayev

FYS Events & Meeting Chair
(Palm Beach)

Hello, My name is Alexia Nechayev. I am 25 years old and I am an alumna of Florida International University where I received my B.A. in Psychology. My future career goal is to be a Lawyer. I was in care for about one year from age 17 to 18. Prior to entering care, I only knew about the negative stigma regarding foster care and while in care that narrative was unfortunately my experience.

In school I felt like I was on display because my status in care was broadcast to other students and in my placement behavior was leveraged for “privileges” that should be a natural right of all children. Because I did not know my rights I did not know that what I was experiencing was wrong. Today this is exactly why I advocate, because I don’t want this to be the same for other youth who are experiencing foster care.

This is my second year on the FYS Statewide Board and I’m happy to be the Events and Meetings Chair this year because my main goal through advocacy is to reach as many people as possible. My favorite thing as a board member is to see how comfortable members become while working together. The community needs to know that youth in foster care are real people, going through some of the hardest moments of their life and youth need to know that their voice is powerful. I believe that we have to speak up and bring these issues to people’s attention so that they do not forget us. Advocacy, education and consistency is the only way.

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