Trenton Circus Squad values a diverse workplace and strongly encourages women, BIPOC, LGBTQ+ individuals, people with disabilities, members of ethnic minorities, foreign-born residents, and veterans to apply. Trenton Circus Squad is an equal opportunity employer. Applicants will not be discriminated against because of race, color, creed, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, religion, national origin, citizenship status, disability, ancestry, marital status, veteran status, medical condition or any protected category prohibited by local, state or federal law.
Tom von Oehsen, Executive Director
Karen Ladd, Program Manager & Lead Coach
Regina Mundy, Director of Operations
Regina Mundy is originally from North Carolina and has a background in operations. She completed her degree in Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Wake Forest University where she was the Lead Manager for the Women’s Basketball Team. She worked summers as a Preschool teacher and has a passion for working with kids and providing access to opportunities and experiences. Regina worked in corporate operations for the last five years and joined our team to combine her skills, education, and passion as our Director of Operations.
Kordell Garland, Lead Coach
Kordell is one of the original Trenton Circus Squad members. Kordell was 15 years old when Mr. VO knocked on his door and asked him to join the Squad. He became a junior coach when he graduated from high school and was hired as a full-time coach to accommodate the demand for our outreach program in Trenton. Kordell is currently pursuing his degree. He represents the impact of staying with our program and working hard to achieve goals. Congratulations, Kordell! Trenton Circus Squad will “spot” you as you continue to take those big leaps!
In 2023, Kordell was elected Youth Coordinator on the Freedom Skate Park Board of Directors and graduated from the Trenton Area Soup Kitchen Emilio’s Culinary Program.
Andre Thomas, Life Skills Coach
Board of Trustees
Adriana Abizadeh, Board Chair
Kelly Ganges, Vice Chair
Kelly Ganges, a social worker by profession, is a native of the greater Trenton area. He believes in community engagement and cooperative efforts. In his spare time, he loves comedy of all types-slap stick, stand up, improvisation, and situation comedy.
Ganges was attracted to the Trenton Circus Squad because of his affinity for comedy and laughter. The Squad members are talented comics-as well as possessing other circus skills. He enjoys their comedic skits and routines. With a demanding and pressure filled job like serving as the Chief of Staff in Mercer County Government, Mr. Ganges needs a reliable form of catharsis at the end of the day. His involvement with the youth and the Board of the Trenton Circus Squad provides a much needed reprieve from work. Who can resist smiling and laughing when you see someone get hit with a pie in the face?
Michael Shapiro, Treasurer
Michele Russo, Secretary
Kieanna Childs Alexander
Kieanna Childs Alexander is a native of Trenton New Jersey and a passionate champion for youth.
She has served as Youth Council Advisor for the Trenton Branch of the NAACP, a mentor for students attending Trenton Central High School within the Leaders of Tomorrow (LOT) Mentoring Program, a basketball coach for the Hamilton YMCA Special Kids Organized Recreation, and has served on the National Executive Committee of NCNW as an At-Large Member, where she served on the Social Justice Committee and Co-Chair of the Resolutions Committee for the national organization.
Dr. Borland is a sociology professor at TCNJ with a focus on social movements. She is committed to community-based research and has worked with teams of undergraduate students to assess data from the Trenton Circus Squad, in particular the enormous growth squad members make in developing their self-awareness, confidence, and interpersonal skills.
The incredible results of this review inspired her to join the board. Dr. Borland is enthusiastic about continuing to foster youth social emotional learning, which are vital skills in all areas of life.
She also loves seeing the Squad teach new skills to younger kids from the Trenton community in workshops that include everything from clowning and juggling to unicycling. Their excitement is contagious!
Anne Hoppenot is an educator at heart. Any kind of education is her passion. She discovered the amazing work of Trenton Circus Squad when she organized a program connecting TCS members, her own students and high schoolers from Trenton Stem civic school! This experience was a testimony of how TCS can help kids learn precious knowledge and life skills through circus activities!
On top of being a teacher for 20 years, Anne started nonprofits such as the French American school of Princeton, PFC soccer club and KONEKTE Princeton Haiti. The latter is an organization that partners with schools and their community in Haiti to develop and fund educational programs empowering children and building the next generation of skilled Haitian Men and Women. Anne believes TCS’ incredible work is empowering children to be the change in American society.
Chanelle Williams Lester
Chanelle Lester is an experienced MBA Director for the College of New Jersey with a demonstrated history of working in the higher education industry. She is skilled in Career Development, Enrollment Management, Student Development, Admissions, and Career Counseling. Chanelle is a strong community and social services professional, graduating from Rutgers University – Douglass College and Temple University – James E. Beasley School of Law.
Mussa Sanoe is a finance professional with over 15 years of experience in financial management.. He provides guidance on general accounting, financial services, modeling analyses, and regulatory compliance.
Mussa maintains strong advocacy for community engagement, enhancing the capabilities of youth to build confidence and self-worth.
He believes it’s important that local organizations take an active role in developing the next generation, which is what drew him to TCS. He’s excited to further support, promote, and work with the amazing students, board members, and greater community in furthering the mission of the Trenton Circus Squad.
Kimberly de los Santos
Kimberly de los Santos believes in organizations’ ability and responsibility to contribute to the greater good, and she is grateful to be learning from the social circus model of inclusive education. She joined the board just before the pandemic and has been so uplifted by how Trenton Circus Squad members have creatively and movingly used their performances to reflect upon racial and social inequities. In Kimberly’s work at Princeton University, she supports college students learning about themselves, communities and the world through relationship-based service and civic engagement.
“I’ve spent my career working with unions and their membership because I care about economic justice. Before I started working for investment firms in 2005, I worked for labor unions, including the AFL-CIO in Washington, DC and progressive & diverse unions like the SEIU, the UFCW and the Hotel & Restaurant Workers Union.”
William Watson has focused his career on helping others overcome the artificial boundaries and insecurities that can stand in the way of reaching their full potential. Seeing young people from the community push aside these barriers and perform challenging circus maneuvers reflects the values and goals that have inspired him throughout his career.
He has served as Deputy Mayor / Chief of Staff to Trenton’s first African American mayor, led a public policy agency named in honor of his father, and served on a multitude of boards over the past five decades. He is currently the president of a minority business enterprise (MBE) that provides professional services and management to the utility industry. He’s eager to help TCS expand its reach into more communities in the new year.