Natasha Prime, Executive Director
Ms. Prime holds a Master’s in Social Work from California State University Long Beach and a Bachelor’s degree in Sociology from Pitzer College. Ms. Prime has been working with adolescents, particularly high risk youth for nearly 20 years, with a hiatus in between to raise her own children. Since 2007, she has been working for the South Pasadena Unified School District. She has been an Intervention Counselor at the Elementary level, and is currently the Counselor for Special Education students at both South Pasadena Middle and High School, focusing on their social-emotional functioning in the educational setting. Ms. Prime spent several years working at the Los Angeles Youth Network in Hollywood, a shelter and resource center for homeless and runaway youth. She has also worked with foster youth and families in crisis, both as a therapist and a Children’s Social Worker for the Department of Children and Family Services. She has also been a Court Appointed Special Advocate for a teenager living in a State facility.
The Place was Ms. Prime’s inspiration.
Nicholas H. Taylor, President
Mr. Taylor holds a Master’s in Public Health from the University of Southern California and a Bachelor’s degree in Sociology from Pitzer College. Mr. Taylor has been working with homeless and runaway youth for 20 years and is known in the field and in his community as an expert in high-risk youth issues. During the past eight years, while at My Friend’s Place, a resource center for homeless young people in Hollywood, Mr. Taylor developed a health education program targeting homeless youth, to reduce their risk in the areas of mental health, sexual health, violence and substance use. Mr. Taylor has also worked with Common Ground in Santa Monica, an HIV service organization, to develop its first program for high-risk and homeless youth. Mr. Taylor also spent nearly ten years at the Los Angeles Youth Network, a shelter and resource center for runaway youth in Hollywood. While there, Mr. Taylor developed the street outreach and peer-education program and increased the agency’s capacity to mentor youth graduates, training them to be peer mentors and staff members. Concurrent to this, Mr. Taylor helped to harness community support for the needs of wayward youth in the Hollywood area through his public awareness campaign. This led Mr. Taylor to work to tighten the network of care via the Hollywood Homeless Youth Partnership (Co-Chair, 1999-2001, and to prioritize police and social service relations via the Hollywood Community Police Advisory Board (Civilian Co-Chair, 2000).
Ms. Tilem is an educational specialist who currently works as part of the South Pasadena Unified School District. She additionally has served as a member of Teach for America, an organization that focuses on providing educational equity to low-income children. During this time, Laura taught a variety of students with learning disabilities in South Central Los Angeles. Prior to this, Laura graduated from Pitzer College and then received her Masters Degree in Special Education from Loyola Marymount University. She currently holds an autism certification in addition to her teaching credential. Currently, she is enrolled in a Master’s program at California State University Los Angeles for School Psychology certification.
Ava Bozem is a current youth board member and has been a teen at The Place for two years now. She is currently studying environmental policy at Pasadena City College and has just accepted a job with Camp Med, through the City of South Pasadena. She hopes to continue acting as a youth board member and to later become more involved with the community garden, fundraising and new programming. Her ultimate dream is to become a caretaker of The Place’s future permanent residence. Ava is passionate about social justice, children, and the environment and feels that The Place has helped shape such interests.