Contact CAN Staff
Mailing address: Becker Elementary, 906 W. Milton St., Rm. 201, Austin, TX 78704
Email: See below.
Vanessa Sarria Executive Director
Vanessa Sarria has served as the Executive Director of the Community Action Network (CAN) in Austin, Texas since March 1, 2007. CAN is a collaboration of governmental agencies and public/private organizations working to improve the social, health, educational and economic well-being of the community. As a convener, informer and connecter, CAN works to enhance awareness of issues, strengthen partnerships, connect planning efforts, and support the development of collaborative strategies.
Ms. Sarria serves in an advisory capacity to a broad range of organizations and coalitions working to collaboratively enhance the community's well-being. Ms. Sarria currently serves on the Board of Envision Central Texas and as President of the National Association of Planning Councils. Ms. Sarria has worked for a range of organizations including Workforce Solutions - Capital Area, Austin Travis County Health and Human Services Department, Montgomery County United Way, Austin/Travis County Integral Care, National Public Health and Hospital Institute, and the National Association of Public Hospitals in Washington, DC.
Ms. Sarria received a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Texas at Austin in 1989 and a Master of Public Administration from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University, New York, in 1992.
Mary Dodd Assistant Director
Mary Dodd has served as the Assistant Director for Community Action Network since February 2008. She has facilitated a Steering Committee of local experts to develop a Community Dashboard of 16 key socio-economic indicators of the health and well-being of Austin and Travis County. Ms. Dodd writes CANews, an email newsletter that is published twice a month highlighting research, reports and opportunities to participate in community planning. She is also the key writer for other CAN publications, including the annual Community Dashboard report and the CAN End of Year report.
Ms. Dodd provides staff support to the CAN Community Council and the annual Butler Awards nomination and selection process. She also facilitates the Regional Housing Stakeholders Work Group and is the CAN representative on the Aging Services Council, the Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Coalition, the Housing Repair Coalition, and the Kirwan Institute Opportunity Mapping Project.
Ms. Dodd has previously worked as Executive Director of Austin Area Research Organization and facilitated the Health Care Industry Steering Committee and the Semiconductor Manufacturing Industry Steering Committee as an Industry Liaison with Capital Area Training Foundation. She has worked in fund development and communications for The Austin Project and UT Elementary Charter school. Ms. Dodd is a trained facilitator and has a B.A. degree in journalism from the University of Oklahoma. She began her career as a televesion reporter and news anchor.
Chantel Bottoms Senior Research Analyst
Chantel Bottoms has been a part of the CAN staff since March 3, 2008. Ms. Bottoms' role at CAN includes data collection for the Community Dashboard, analyzing community planning documents, convening a group of mappers and planners from across the region, and serving as the liaison to several Issue Area Groups (especially ones focused on children's issues).
Ms. Bottoms received a Master of Arts in Social Service Administration (with a concentration in Management) from the University of Chicago in 2007 and a Bachelor of Science in Child Development from Florida State University in 2005. Previously Ms. Bottoms has worked in a variety of positions from serving as a court advocate for victims of domestic violence with the Jane Addams Hull House Association to working as a toddler teacher with KinderCare.
Ms. Bottoms enjoys hiking and the outdoors and spends much of her free time with her boyfriend, his two daughters, their three cats, and their dog Wilson.
Michael Danburg Web Site Developer