our board.


Jay Tobias


“I am drawn to valo because in the age of social media, there is a deep need for personal connection. This organization empowers youth with the skills needed to bridge this gap. I can see the awakening in these teens as they are eager to relay their story, embrace vulnerability, share emotion and express empathy.” 

Jay began his career as a financial advisor, initially as a limited partner at Edward Jones after graduating from Hillsdale College. He later served as the first vice president of investments at Smith Barney and senior vice president of investments at The Danforth Group of Wells Fargo Advisors in Portland, Maine. In 2014, he formed The Tobias Group of Wells Fargo Advisors in Bend, Oregon. He then launched the independent Katahdin Financial Group in 2017. Jay has served on several nonprofit board and especially cherishes the chance to work with young people. 


Nancy Kennedy


"I believe safe, intentional, reflective spaces can be powerful mediums for young people to discover, engage with, and give expression to their authentic voices. Valo honors this sacred work and the role that caring adults can play in bearing witness to youth on their path to living their own light."

Nancy is the Vice President for Camp Chewonki in Wiscasset, Maine, which teaches and encourages life-long learning in nature. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Women’s Studies from the University of Maine, a Master of Divinity from Bangor Theological Seminary and a Ph.D. in Natural Resources and Environmental Studies from the University of New Hampshire. Nancy served several Congregational Churches and was a professor before returning to Maine where she has been providing leadership to summer camp programs for 10+ years.


Sam Boss


“At a time when teens and young adults are dealing with tremendous pressure and anxiety about the future, the nurturing foundation that valo provides through retreats, activities, and deep listening exercises is truly special, and much needed. I am thrilled to be a part of this board and cannot wait to see what the future holds.”

Sam works at the Harward Center for Community Partnerships at Bates College, where he coordinates projects with partners around the Lewiston-Auburn community as part of coursework and student research. Sam grew up in rural central Maine. He graduated from Colby College and went on to earn is Ph.D. from Brown. Sam is particularly committed to helping students from low-income backgrounds find their interests and realize their potential.