Pen Parentis Board Members

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Jamie B. Clarke,

2024 Board President

Former Board President Jamie B. Clarke has been a volunteer with Pen Parentis since its 2009 inception before joining the executive board and taking up the position of secretary in 2015. She returns to the vital position in 2022, bringing with her a wide variety of professional and volunteer experience to the organization.

Previous positions include the executive boards of the Allentown Public Library Association, the Saturday Evening Dance Club, the Allentown Food Pantry, and the Monmouth Council of the Boy Scouts of America.

In addition to her role with Pen Parentis, she is an active volunteer with Start2Finish and an enthusiastic participant in the Society for Learning in Retirement. She served as Pen Parentis' Board President during the Pandemic (2021-2022), and prior to this position, she was Board Secretary for many years.

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Irena Gecas-McCarthy,

2024 Board Treasurer

Irena Gecas-McCarthy has over 25 years of experience in financial services. She joined the Board in June 2020 and is Board Treasurer. She is a principal in Deloitte & Touche LLP's Banking and Capital Markets Risk and Financial Advisory practice with experience in providing a broad range of clients assistance with governance, regulatory, risk management, and compliance matters. Irena also serves as the leader of the Financial Services Industry Center for Regulatory Strategy, Americas, which is a source of critical insight and advice to clients. Prior to Deloitte, she was a senior examiner for the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.

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Andrew Meagher,

2024 Board Secretary

Andrew has watched Pen Parentis since its inception, attending many of the early salons when living in Lower Manhattan and then occasionally when visits to NYC happened to coincide. More recently following online and through the various missives.

As a father of three Andrew greatly admires the work that Pen Parentis does both in inspiring authors to keep producing through parenthood but also on a more basic level of recognising the importance of literature to society. He loves when his own children put down their devices and pick up a book and then want to talk about it.

He spent 17 years in Executive roles with Thomson and then Thomson Reuters with commercial responsibilities for the Financial News business.

In 2016 he returned to his native Sydney, Australia, where he still resides, and had been actively involved in working with the senior executives of foreign multi-national corporations operating in Australia.

He continues to consult with various media and technology companies in the USA and Europe.

He joined the board in 2023.

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Christina Chiu,


An executive board member since 2019, Christina Chiu was the 2023 Board President. The winner of the James Alan McPherson Award for her novel Beauty (2040 Books/sfwp), she is also the author of Troublemaker and Other Saints, which was nominated for the Stephen Crane First Fiction Award, won the Asian American Literary Award, and was chosen for Alternate Selection of the Book-of-the-Month Club. Her stories have appeared in Tin House, The New Guard Literary Review, Washington Square, and The MacGuffin, and she has won literary prizes from Playboy, New Stone Circle, El Dorado Writers' Guild, and Worldwide Writers.

She is a founding member of the Asian American Writers' Workshop and the recipient of the Wai Luk Award for Outstanding Service to the Arts. Chiu curates and co-hosts the "Let's Talk Books" Author Series sponsored by the New York Writers Workshop, as well as the Pen Parentis Literary Salon in New York City. She received her MFA in creative writing from Columbia University. She has been a treasured Salons Curator for many years.

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Advisory Board

Do you have what it takes to serve on our board? We want to hear from you. Contact us.