Casey Holtschneider comes to the LYTE Collective with over 16 years of experience leading programs for youth in situations of poverty and housing crisis. She is the former director of an emergency shelter, transitional living program and aftercare program for unaccompanied youth experiencing homelessness in Chicago and is currently an assistant professor of social work at Northeastern Illinois University. Through her research and work at LYTE, Casey spends her days focused on increasing, and improving, the support available for young people who have been excluded from the resources, opportunities, relationships and safety all youth deserve. Casey completed her MSW at the University of Michigan and PhD in Social Work at the University of Illinois, Jane Addams College of Social Work. She has a profound love for youth work, people courageously fighting for systemic change, bringing back lost but not forgotten 90s dance moves, and macaroni and cheese.
CHIEF DEVELOPMENT OFFICER
Andrea (aka “Dre”) Kaltz got her professional start in youth work as a high school art teacher on Chicago’s south side, and has since transitioned into a career in programming focused on young people experiencing homelessness. She earned her BFA in Illustration from College for Creative Studies in Detroit, MI, where she also earned her K-12 teaching certification. With over 11 years of diverse experience effectively helping young people achieve their goals through direct service, advocacy, and community connections, she has been fortunate enough to be able to merge all of her passions into a career. Andrea’s dynamic experiences in both work and life have reinforced her belief that finding passion and living in truth are the key to not only the success of our youth, but of each and every one of us. Now if she could only figure out the key to nailing her arm balances in yoga class… Andrea enjoys traveling, family, the arts, her dog Birdie, and puns- particularly those that include “Dre.”
Megan Wickman, LCSW
CHIEF PROGRAM OFFICER
Megan Wickman is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker who has spent over 11 years working with youth in settings including schools, the foster care system, street and health outreach and housing programs, and served as director of the first drop-in and resource center for youth experiencing homelessness on Chicago’s south side. She believes that relationships and community are the foundation of collective impact and has a passion for developing programs defined by youth leadership, self-care, and developmentally and culturally affirming spaces. She holds a master’s of social work from Loyola University and a master’s of science in child development from Erikson Institute. Megan is immensely grateful to the young people she has met over the last decade for teaching her about strength, courage and living in truth… and for putting up with her mediocre cooking.
Carl Wiley, LSW
CHIEF INNOVATION OFFICER
For nearly 11 years Carl Wiley has been working with individuals experiencing homelessness and street involved youth in the City of Chicago and rural Illinois. In addition to his direct service experience Carl has worked on larger social justice campaigns including the racial wealth gap and partnered with the United States Interagency Council on Homelessness to promote employment as a pathway out of homelessness. Carl holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Illinois Champaign-Urbana, a master of social work from the University of Illinois at Chicago and is a Licensed Social Worker in the state of Illinois. Carl actively works in music recording and live performance and is inspired by supportive services focusing on music based interventions. Carl has a background in sketch comedy and, trust us, is totally not as funny as he thinks he is.