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Managing Director / Interim Executive Director
As Managing Director, Isabella provides strategic direction, fundraising support, and operational guidance for organizational sustainability as a member of the senior leadership team. Isabella collaborates with the CEO and COO on strategic priorities, including securing corporate and philanthropic investments and implementing innovative partnerships. As Interim Detroit Executive Director, Isabella leads regional programming, operations, and partnerships.
Isabella joined UA in 2017 as Director of Expansion & Strategic Initiatives to launch the organization’s core youth employment model in a new market. Isabella led UA’s successful expansion to Detroit by creating operational frameworks that enabled local program delivery, leading regional staff in an interim capacity, and collaborating with the CEO to secure revenue-generating partnerships that enabled UA Detroit to serve more than 100 youth over its first two years.
Until January 2017, Isabella served in the Obama administration as Special Assistant to the Secretary of Homeland Security, supporting the implementation of national security priorities in the third largest cabinet department. Isabella holds a B.A. in International Relations with a concentration in International Security from Tufts University and is a Council Member at NationSwell.
Azhar Aboubaker joined Urban Alliance as a Detroit region Program Coordinator in October 2019. Prior to joining Urban Alliance Azhar spent two years tutoring both college and high school students and assisting high school seniors with college preparation.
A Detroit native with experience in community-based initiatives, she has worked on creating access to opportunity for students from under-resourced communities by organizing college tours and assisting with job applications. Azhar Aboubaker received her bachelor’s degree in Sociology and International Studies from the University of Michigan.
Julia Blok joined Urban Alliance in September 2019 as the Detroit region Program Director. A founding member of Detroit’s Teach for America Alumni Board, she also serves as an English Language Arts content specialist, and instructional coach for Teach for America Corps members. Julia brings with her years of experience as a professional educator. Before joining Urban Alliance she worked as a program director, instructional coach, and secondary English teacher. Julia received her bachelor’s degree in English Language & Literature from Grand Valley State University in Detroit.