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Rick Redmond
Founder, Executive Director

Rick comes from more than 28 years of working both directly and extensively with at-risk or off-track youth and families in the inner-cities of Oakland/San Francisco and Chicago including formal therapeutic mentoring, residential treatment, special education in the Chicago Public School system, direct intervention with gang affiliated youth and several years of nonprofit leadership and administration.  Most recently, he served as the former Executive Director of the Starfish Learning Center in Chicago where he significantly grew and improved programs and infrastructure before launching YouthTopia.  In addition to designing, developing and running many programs for youth and families, he has also recruited, trained and supervised undergraduate and graduate interns. 


Rick currently serves as Residential Case Manager with at-risk youth and families at Lydia Home Association, one of Chicago's oldest and largest nonprofit organizations where he once previously served in Residential Treatment for nearly 7 years after graduating from the Moody Bible Institute.  He is currently finishing his Masters in Social Work (Child & Family) at Liberty University  and is a grateful military veteran. He also enjoys music, writing and triathlon.

Additional training, memberships and certifications:

Nonprofit Leadership & Administration, University of IL - Chicago

Nonprofit Leadership Alliance

Case Management Certification, Rutgers University

Social Emotional Learning Leadership, Academy for Social Emotional Learning, College of St. Elizabeth

Character Education, University of San Diego 

National Mentoring Partnership

National Tutoring Association

Tribes Learning Communities

Positive Behavior Intervention Strategies

Life Space Crisis Intervention

Therapeutic Crisis Intervention

American Red Cross - Licensed Training Provider, Adult & Pediatric First Aid, CPR & AED

American Red Cross - Lakefront/Pool Lifeguard & Water Safety Instructor

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Sustainable well-being for youth, families & communities through innovative solutions, supportive relationship & resourceful, strategic partnership

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