The Magic of Partnership: A Conversation between Dougy Center, New York Life Foundation, and the National Alliance for Grieving Children

2021 Education Sponsor
Live NAGC Webinars are
made possible by funding from:
Premier Sponsor
New York Life Foundation 

June 8, 2021 | 2:30 p.m. Eastern | 11:30 a.m. Pacific (1 hour)
Free Webinar

Presentation Description

In this webinar, Executive Directors Brennan Wood (Dougy Center) and Vicki Jay (National Alliance for Grieving Children) join Maria Collins (Vice President of New York Life Foundation) to discuss the value of partnership, the importance of community, and exciting new resources and support for the childhood bereavement field. Join us for this engaging conversation and a chance to receive a free copy of the new book, The Dougy Center Model: Peer Grief Support for Children, Teens, & Families (coming soon in Summer 2021!)


Brennan Wood

About the Presenters

Brennan C. Wood, Executive Director
Dougy Center: The National Grief Center for Children & Families

Brennan Wood has been the Executive Director of Dougy Center since 2015. Since 2004, Brennan has served in multiple roles at the organization. Brennan’s background and expertise is grounded in fundraising, strategic planning, organizational development, and capacity building. Brennan walked through the doors of Dougy Center for the first time in 1987 when her mother, Doris, died three days after she turned 12 years old. Her experience in a peer support group shaped her life and she now strives to provide the same opportunity that she had to other children and families show are grieving in her community, across the country, and around the world. Brennan currently serves as the Secretary of the Board of Directors for NAGC.

Maria Collins
Vice President, New York Life Foundation
Corporate Vice President, New York Life Insurance Company

Maria Collins is the vice president of the New York Life Foundation and a corporate vice president in New York Life’s Corporate Responsibility Department. She assists with grantmakingMaria Headshot strategy and the development and management of the Foundation’s national grants. In addition, she provides leadership for various initiatives of the Corporate Responsibility Department. Ms. Collins joined the company in 2000 as the program manager of the community service program. Since then, she has held positions of increasing responsibility, including developing and managing the company’s national community service program, managing and enhancing all of the employee engagement programs, disaster relief program administration, and the corporate grantmaking portfolio. The New York Life Foundation devotes the majority of its funding to programs that help children in the areas of educational enhancement and childhood bereavement. Since its founding in 1979, the Foundation has made nearly $240 million in contributions to New York City and national nonprofit organizations. New York Life’s corporate responsibility initiatives include the award-winning Volunteers for Good program, which helps New York Life employees and agents across the nation volunteer within their communities. Ms. Collins earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Fordham University and a Masters of Social Work from New York University. She currently resides in River Vale, New Jersey, with her husband and their two sons.

Vicki Jay

CEO, National Alliance for Grieving ChildrenVicki Jay 0

Vicki Jay serves as CEO for the National Alliance for Grieving Children. Ms. Jay was founding director of Rays of Hope Children’s Grief Center in Midland Texas. Her nineteen-year hospice career included End-of-Life Community Education Director and ten years as Founder and Executive Director of Rays of Hope Children’s Grief Center. She is recognized for her role in children’s advocacy and for her strengths in public speaking and community education. Jay has received many awards and recognitions for her work with nonprofits and in the field of bereavement, including the National Jefferson Award for Community Service, a prestigious national recognition honoring community and public voluntarism in America. Recipients are “ordinary people who do extraordinary things without expectation of recognition.” A graduate of Texas Tech University, Jay currently resides in Midland, Texas. In addition to her professional and community roles, Jay cherishes her role of wife, mother, friend and recently “Nana.”