About Us

The Warming House Youth Center is a non-profit organization located in Wilmette that welcomes all junior high and high school students. The Center provides participants with a supportive environment and teen-focused programming. Staff members are dedicated to helping youth build healthy relationships and a strong sense of community.


The Warming House Youth Center offers 6th through 12th graders the opportunity to enjoy a structured and supportive environment. Teens can speak freely in a confidential space, seek guidance from staff and peers, build healthy peer relationships, and develop valuable leadership skills. The professional staff is trained to assess teen needs and address relevant issues through educational, prevention-based, and recreational program offerings.


The Warming House Youth Center is supervised by a full-time Executive Director who is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker. Volunteer, Intern, and Part-time Paid Youth Workers make up the skilled staff that work with Warming House teens. Staff members are either in undergraduate or graduate school for Social Work or Psychology, or have graduate degrees and work full-time in the field. Staff members are prepared to guide and support teens, provide referrals when needed, and intervene in crises.


Emily Schnell

At The Warming House since 2015

Credentials: Licensed Clinical Social Worker with a Bachelor's degree from St. Norbert College and a Master's Degree from Loyola University Chicago.

Fun Facts about Emily: I absolutely love spending time at my lake house. If I could be outside, on the lake all day, I would. I'm a proud dog mom who has a puppy that also loves being out on the lake! 

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Christina Munro

At the Warming House since 2020

Credentials: Graduated in May 2020 with a Bachelor’s of Science in Psychology and current Masters in Social Work student at Loyola University Chicago

Fun Facts about Christina: I have so many hobbies including, dance (ballet/jazz/contemporary), yoga, reading, cross
stitching, and painting. I usually combine my hobbies with other interests when I can like
Disney, Marvel, comedies, etc.

Why the Warming House?: In previous experience I have worked with teens and I love working with younger people. The Warming House offers a safe and open setting where teens can be their authentic selves with a supportive staff. Building healthy relationships with staff and other teens, and enjoying recreational programming is a large part of the Warming Houses’ appeal.

Daniel Samuel

At the Warming House since 2020

Credentials: Bachelor’s in Political Science and Psychology from DePaul, currently working at Northwest Community Hospital: Behavioral Health

Fun Facts about Daniel: Reading, board games, video games, anime, and building things. 

Why the Warming House?: Adolescents are my favorite population to work with, especially in regard to psychological development.

Daniella Asapokhai

At the Warming House since 2019

Credentials: Junior at Northwester University studying Communications. 

Fun Facts about Daniella: I'm a tap dancer. I love books and comedy. I also like exploring new neighborhoods and trying different restaurants, finding fun stores, and talking to new people. 

Why the Warming House?: I love working with, learning from, and supporting young people. I appreciate that the Warming House is a safe place for teens and an open, welcoming community. 

Lisa Gresch

At the Warming House since 2018

Credentials: Licensed speech-language pathologist with a Master’s degree in Speech, Language, and Learning from Northwestern University and Bachelor’s degree in Communicative Disorders from California State University, Fullerton.

Fun facts about Lisa: I enjoy ballet and tap dancing and love all things Disney/Pixar.

Why the Warming House?: I love that the Warming House provides a safe space for teens where they can develop relationships and be themselves! School can be tough, so having a place where they can have fun and have people to talk to who will truly listen is so valuable.   

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Reycel Fortugaleza

At the Warming House since 2020

Credentials: BSW student at Loyola University’s School of Social Work

Fun Facts about Reycel: I love spending time with my son, spending time outdoors and traveling!

Why the Warming House?: A supportive and safe environment is so important during adolescent development. I believe that with the support of a caring community, teens can successfully navigate through the changes and challenges they may encounter during adolescence. I appreciate that Warming House is a place in the community where teens can feel safe and have access to a support system.

Maks Giljen

At the Warming House since 2019

Credentials: Senior at Northwestern studying Neuroscience and Psychology

Fun Facts about Maks: I love neuroscience and psychology, so I try to learn and get involved in research as much as I can! Aside from academics, I love listening to music and watching movies with my friends and family. 

Why the Warming House?: I’ve been involved on campus in psychology research on adolescent personality, but the Warming House provided an opportunity to get real world experience with helping teenagers build healthy relationships in an open and welcoming environment. Not only do I get to develop my interests and experience in clinical psychology, but I get to be a part of a space that makes young people feel safe and understood!

Abby Blum

At the Warming House since 2019

Credentials: Senior at Northwestern University studying psychology and creative arts.

Fun Facts about Abby: I love hiking, writing short stories, and travelling (especially with my family).

Why the Warming House?: As someone interested in pursuing a career in clinical psychology (with a focus on adolescent depression and anxiety), I looked forward to the opportunity to work with teenagers and get some hands-on experience in the field. 

Alyssa Pierce

At the Warming House since 2019

Credentials: Junior studying psychology at Northwestern University.

Fun Facts about Alyssa: I love to play softball. I was on the team in high school and play over the summer on teams with my dad and brother. I also really enjoy nature and any chance I get to go hiking or be outside in general. 

Why the Warming House?: I have always enjoyed working with teens and the opportunity to build connections with both them and the other staff members enticed me from the start. The mission of the Warming House is also something that is really important and I am excited and grateful to be a part of it. 

Nicola Kiela

At the Warming House 2016

Credentials: Graduated in 2015 from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio with a degree in Psychology and Public Health. Current MSW student at University of Chicago.  

Fun Facts about Nicola: Running, yoga, Blackhawks, relaxing, Netflix, sleeping! I love to spend my free time with friends and family. 

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Joe Feldman


Jeremy Hollis


Lori Heger 



Raul Babolea 

Kevin Buzard

Jeff Holcomb

Amy Koplow

Jon Parker

Jenna Pahnke

Barbara Perce

Martin Perdoux

Laura Rusche

David Schmitt

Shiela Steiner