Meet the Team
Sixth Street Shelter Director
In October 2021, we welcomed our new Director, Robbie Matthews to the Shelter. Robbie started at Sixth Street Shelter in 2014 as the Office Administrator before becoming the Caseworker at the Turner Street Apartments transitional housing program. She also served as the director of Community Action’s "Work Ready Program" before leaving to pursue a Master’s Degree in Art Therapy at Cedar Crest College. Robbie oversees the daily operations of the Shelter and the provision of casework services to residents, in addition to being responsible for program development and financial management.
Jaana Kelley, (she/her)
Associate Executive Director for Community Service
Jaana joined the Community Action team in June, 2021. She brings experience from her previous roles including program analysis, directing admissions, and social work. A Delaware State University graduate, Jaana holds a Bachelor's in Psychology and a Master's in Social Work. In her position, Janna is responsible for providing leadership for the agency's community services programs with a goal to ensure excellence in the delivery of services across multiple programs, including supervising program directors, adding services and developing new programs.
Counseling and Intake Specialist
In October 2021, Lizette joined the Sixth Street Shelter as the Counseling and Intake Specialist and has been employed by Community Action for 23 years and counting! She began as a receptionist for Community Action in 1999, after graduating from her own time spent at the Sixth Street Shetler. After six years, Lizette became an OnTrack Customer Representative and in 2018, she was promoted to Director of the OnTrack program. In 2021, Lizette was also the Office Administrator for Second Harvest Food Bank, another program of Community Action Lehigh Valley.
Wendy's commitment to community and education shines through her work as a Development Officer at the Sixth Street Shelter and her previous roles, including Marketing and Community Outreach Coordinator at Treatment Trends, Inc., and Family Resource Specialist at JusticeWorks YouthCare.
As a passionate education advocate, Wendy has made significant contributions as a Prevention Specialist at the Center for Humanistic Change, a guest teacher in Lehigh and Carbon Counties, and a Student Assistance Program Liaison in Lehigh and Northampton school districts. She believes in the transformative power of education and strives to empower those facing challenges.
Inspired by her journey as a dedicated single mother, Wendy is driven to help others, drawing from her own experiences to make a meaningful impact.
The first half of Jean’s career focused on healthcare before she joined the field of education and development. Jean brings with her occupational experience from positions at Penn State Lehigh Valley, Lehigh Carbon Community College, PA CareerLink, YouthBuild Allentown, and Urban Career Pathway Project. Serving community boards, Jean is a Co-Chair on the Human Relations Commission with the City of Allentown. She also serves community boards at Star Community Health and YWCA Allentown. Jean is passionate about being a voice for the voiceless. In her free time, she enjoys cooking and gardening.
Craig joined the Sixth Street Shelter at the start of 2023 after leading a workforce development program in Allentown. His experience owning a construction business makes him a firm believer in, "hard work pays off" and his time spent coaching rugby has instilled the ideology that, "a little teamwork goes a long way." Guests of the Sixth Street Shelter can expect to experience a combination of those two philosophies delivered with a lot of energy and positivity!
Maritza Elmi is our Care Associate at the Sixth Street Shelter. Originally from "El Barrio" in New York, she understands the struggles of poverty and brings her ten years of awareness to assist our unsheltered families. In her spare time, Maritza is a loving mother of six and a sweet, caring grandmother of four.
Dominique has been in the housing industry for about four years. She started out in the Emergency Rental Assistance Program with Catholic Charities and fell in love with helping the community; her personal experience made her gravitate to this field. Dominique's family moved to the Lehigh Valley in 2005 and stayed at New Bethany Ministries shelter before moving to their transitional housing. She is a huge advocate for one of Community Action's slogans, “Affordable housing is a human right.”
Since working in the industry, Dominique has helped over 60 families obtain and sustain affordable housing. Her biggest goal in life is to one day open a family shelter. She is a twin to her brother - the oldest by eight long minutes - which she loves to brag about! In her free time, she loves to watch movies and research. The quote she lives by is “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”
Sixth Street Shelter Advisory Board