LEAF Staff

Dr. Trista Warren, Executive Director                 twarren@leaf-ohio.org

Dr. Warren earned her doctorate with Aspen University; her Ed.S in Educational Leadership, along with a Superintendent’s License and Master in Administration from Cleveland State; a Master in Curriculum and Instructional Design from Marygrove College; a Bachelor in Education and in English from Cleveland State; and a Bachelor in Social Science from Lake Erie College. Trista and her husband Michael live in Madison with their two adult children, Dilan and Autumn, and their dog Mugsy.

Stephanie Kubec, Advisory Director, Scholarship Manager, LEAF Advisor

Stephanie is a graduate of the University of Akron and has been a LEAF advisor since 2010.  Prior to joining LEAF, she was the GEAR UP Program Director for ACCESS Ashtabula, a college access program in Ashtabula County. In addition to being a LEAF advisor, Stephanie is also the LEAF Scholarship Manager and handles all LEAF and Community scholarships.

Liz Brainard, Associate Director, LEAF Advisor

Liz graduated from Houghton College with a Bachelor of Arts in both Communications and Biblical Studies and completed a Master of Arts in Theological Studies from Bethel University in St. Paul, MN.  She has served as a pastor for nearly two decades in Lake County, working specifically with teens and families.  She is looking forward to helping students determine their next steps and connecting families with resources through LEAF.


Jane Csaszar, LEAF Advisor                                            jcsaszar@leaf-ohio.org

Jane graduated from Grove City College with a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration.  Her background includes working for a Financial Adviser, many hours of school volunteer work and navigating college admissions and financial aid for her two children. She looks forward to helping students and their families with a roadmap for success after high school graduation as she has since 2002 when she began working with LEAF.

Elia De La Garza, LEAF Advisor

¡Hola¡ Elia De La Garza has two masters in Educational Leadership and a Certification in Special Education from National Louis University, and Curriculum and Instructional  Design from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and a bachelors in Education with a double minor in Early Childhood and Bilingual Education from Alverno College. Elia has an extensive background teaching in public and private schools and even teaching internationally.  Elia looks forward to helping students and their families to bring resources and assistance in order to be ready for college.


Michelle Fisher, Marketing Manager of Publications, LEAF Advisor

Michelle’s educational background includes a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Miami University and a Masters in Business Administration from Cleveland State. She has worked for large corporations and small businesses, but has found her non-profit work helping families and children to be the most rewarding. Michelle’s knowledge of college admissions and financial aid has recently been enhanced by her recent hands-on journey through the process with her daughters. Michelle is looking forward to helping local teenagers navigate the next steps as they explore their post-high school future.


Christine Jankowski, LEAF Advisor                   cjankowski@leaf-ohio.org

Christine has a Bachelor of Science degree in Dietetics from Bowling Green State University and a Master of Science degree in Nutrition from Case Western Reserve University. She has always enjoyed working with children and young adults; first as a dietitian and then as an educator. Most recently, Christine worked in early childhood education at a local school. Having been on 45 college visits through the last several years, Christine brings extensive college research to LEAF through experiences with her three children. She looks forward to assisting others with the college admissions and financial aid process.

Renee Morgan, LEAF Advisor

Renee graduated from Boston College with a Bachelor of Science in Finance and completed a Master’s degree in Education with a specialization in School Counseling at John Carroll University. She previously worked at General Electric in finance and marketing before pursuing a career in college admissions and financial aid counseling. Renee began working at LEAF in 2017. She advises at Aurora, Kenston, Chagrin Falls and Orange High Schools.

Cheryl Suszynski, LEAF Advisor

Cheryl received her Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology from John Carroll University and earned her Master of Education degree with a specialization in counseling at Kent State University. She finds it very rewarding to provide families with the resources and assistance needed to be successful after high school.

Christina Muha, Executive Office Manager

Christina studied Early Childhood Education and Office Administration at Columbus State.  She has 20 years of experience as a Bookkeeper/Administrative Assistant.  Her countless hours of volunteering in her community, like serving as Treasurer for non-profit Music Mentors, have become a big part of who she is today.  Christina is very excited to join the Leaf Staff.

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