Bonnie Billups, Jr.
Bonnie Billups, Jr. began his career in supportive services for families and youth at a young age. He first became involved with Ann Arbor’s own Peace Neighborhood Center as a child enrolled in the agency’s Youth Programs back in the early 1970s. Proving himself to be a reliable and mature young man, Bonnie was hired on as a Program Assistant at Peace in 1976. He continued in that capacity through 1985, helping the agency expand and establish many long-standing services such as Peace’s Summer Day Camp program in 1982. Bonnie left the agency in 1985 to travel to California and pursue a career in music. While in the Los Angeles area, he continued to work in the youth development field as a Youth Lead Specialist at Vista Del Mar Child and Family Services.
In 1991, he returned to Ann Arbor and Peace Neighborhood Center as the agency’s Program Director, a role he took on to great success for over 15 years. In 2006, he took over for the retiring Rose Martin as Peace Neighborhood Center’s Executive Director and continues to lead Peace in its role as a pillar of the youth and family service nonprofit community in Washtenaw County. Bonnie also has continued in his musical career as an instructor at Washtenaw Community College in the School of Music and Performing Arts. Bonnie is a member of the Ann Arbor Public Schools Blue Ribbon Committee where he advises the school district on decisions and strategies to provide effective service to at-risk youth. He is also a founding member of the Washtenaw Alliance for Children and Youth, serving on its Steering Committee and helping to define that collaborative’s role in establishing the best possible safety net for young people in Washtenaw County along with the other member youth development agencies.
Bonnie is proud to have served the youth and families of Washtenaw County for almost 40 years and to lead Peace Neighborhood Center into its fifth decade of its longstanding mission to break the cycle of poverty in our community.
MaryAnn Johnson, LMSW
Wellness Program Co-Director & Youth Programs Operations
MaryAnn has been a part of the Peace Neighborhood family since 2010. While in college at the University of Michigan, MaryAnn volunteered as a tutor and program assistant. Since then, MaryAnn has held different roles at Peace, including coordinating Ninth Grade Academy, volunteers, and children services. In 2018, MaryAnn earned her Master’s degree in Social Work and returned to Peace as Youth Programs Director.
MaryAnn, her husband, Matt, and their black lab, Ruby, love exploring the Westside of Ann Arbor.
Youth Programs Director
Raven’s education includes:
- B.A. Psychology – Cornell College | Class of 2017
- (Seeking) MSW – University of Michigan | August 2024
- Certifications: Positive Behavior Change | Applied Behavior Analysis, safeTALK Certified
When not at Peace, Raven enjoys being with her friends and family.
Bernice Hardman, LMSW
Wellness Program Co-Director & Social Work Intern Supervisor
Bernice’s education includes:
- Bachelor’s in Psychology & American Culture
- Master’s in Social Worker- Interpersonal Practice with Children, Youth, & Families
- Masters Social Worker License Clinical
According to Bernice, “Peace allows me to practice social work the way I envision it. a safe space for individuals and families to show up as their authentic selves and grow at their own pace, with a supportive community encouraging while holding them accountable along the journey.” Bernice holds a B.A, and MSW from the University of Michigan. She enjoys reading and/or watching documentaries on History, Pop Culture, and Social Relations in her free time.
Suzanne (Sue) Upton
Director of Major Gifts & Foundations
Sue holds a BA in Economics, and an MBA from the University of Michigan. She and her husband Joe have raised three children in Ann Arbor, and love the sense of community and generosity that’s long been a part of Ann Arbor’s DNA.
Director of Annual Giving & Communications
Director’s Administrative Assistant
An Ann Arbor native born and raised, DiOnna graduated from Pioneer High School and holds a Bachelor’s in Communications from Michigan State University. As a high school student, she was one of the founding members of the Neutral Zone and served on the Ann Arbor Area Community Foundation’s Youth Council. DiOnna brings a wealth of administrative and project management experience. Prior to joining Peace, she worked at Michigan Medicine for 14 years in the Otorhinolaryngology Department in different roles including Front-End Clinic Manager and Patient Relations Department Specialist.
“I am very happy to be a part of the efforts here at Peace. There really is no other agency that does the diverse number of things that Peace does. It hasn’t changed over the years, it just continues to grow. Seeing first-hand the lives that it touches, like with the recent holiday assistance program, it’s like, wow. Helping people like this is the ideal goal. I look forward to watching Peace continue to grow, especially with the opening of the HUB Center this year. It’s exciting to think about Peace [expanding] in order to help all of those who need us.”
Office Manager & Bookkeeper
Building and Ground Maintenance Supervisor
1. It’s not what you say but what you do that defines you.
2. The secret of good health is to live fully in the now
3. Let it go and it will be your forever
4. No one can walk your path for you
5. Happiness never decreases by being shared
6. Be kind to ALL
7. Don’t believe everything you are told to believe
Anabel Cruz, MSW
Maple Meadows Center Programs Coordinator
Anabel’s education includes:
- Master of Social Work with a focus in Advanced Clinical Practice (Summa Cum Laude) (MSW), Columbia University
- Bachelors of Science in Social Work (BSW), Field Practice: Families, Youth, and Children Services (Summa Cum Laude), Eastern Michigan University
- Associates in Liberal Arts, graduated with high honors, Washtenaw Community College
Additional slills include:
- Fluent in Spanish
- First Aid CPR AED certified
- Youth Mental Health First Aid USA certified
- Addressing Human Trafficking in Healthcare settings certification (CE)
- MHPSS (Mental Health and Psychosocial Support) Support Group Facilitator: Promoting Newcomer Health and Wellbeing
- Member of the Language Access Task Force in Washtenaw County
West Arbor Center Programs Coordinator
America Vicente, LLMSW
REACH Program Manager
America joined the Peace Family as an intern in the Winter term of 2022. She has a passion for youth empowerment and creating inclusive spaces that promote social-emotional learning and wellness for youth and their families. She has experience working with youth of all ages, from young fives to adolescents, but elementary-aged youth are her favorite age group.
America holds a MSW from the University of Michigan, B.S. in Psychology from Michigan State University, and is working towards her LMSW. She enjoys reading, spending quality time with family and friends, and finding new arts and crafts projects in her free time.
America’s full qualifications include:
- Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Michigan State University
- Master of Social Work (MSW) with a specialization of Welfare of Children and Families from School of Social Work, University of Michigan
- Limited Licensed Master’s Social Worker (LLMSW)
- Certificate in Social Work in School Settings from SSW-UMich.
A minor in
- Youth and Society from MSU, and the following certificates from UMich:
- Bounce Back Provider Training
- Addressing Human Trafficking in Healthcare settings
- Recognition and Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect
- PCIT for Traumatized Children
Middle School Programs Manager
“Working with Peace’s middle schoolers has been both challenging and very rewarding. Starting last summer, it took a little while to really start to develop relationships with the kids, but when we went on trips we were able to get into smaller groups and really start to form those bonds. As the school year has progressed, it has been nice to watch those bonds develop and I look forward to all we have planned this coming spring and summer.”
MacKenzie Grissom, BSW
Middle School Programs Manager
“I am very grateful for the job I get to do here. Peace is truly a place I enjoy. Last summer was a little difficult as we dove into leading programs and had to get to know the students in a bit of a hurry. Over the course of the fall and now into winter, there have been more opportunities to really focus on the social-emotional component [of our programming] with the kids in programs. Behavior is always going to be the biggest challenge. But as our relationships deepen, the kids get more relaxed and sillier and it just makes for a great environment to have deeper, more meaningful conversations about healthy habits, true self-care and the topic of empowerment. We are looking forward to Leadership Development Camp this coming summer…as we build on the relationships we have formed over the past year.”
High School Programs Specialist
Dwight enjoys producing and creating music, painting, golfing, and spending time with his family and dog, and holds an Associates Degree from Eastern Michigan University. Prior to Peace, Dwight worked for the AAPS before and after school care programs and was a youth leader at two area churches.
College & Career Prep Manager
“Even while at college, I stayed connected to Peace through Kenya, Lauryn and Bonnie. When I think of Peace, I am grateful because Peace will always do what it can to help someone, no matter what they face. I’m so happy to be a part of building a new generation of leaders who are confident and know themselves. I’m excited to be a part of that growth. I want them to know that there are many options available, not just 4-year universities, but many different ways to succeed. I hope to help them find the path that works for them.”
Elanda Curry, BSW
Deshara McKinney, LMSW, CAADC
Case Manager - Baker Commons
Deshara holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from Eastern Michigan University with a focus in Mental Health and Substance Abuse. She has worked in the Social Work field for over 15 years and has a significant background working with those who have experienced complex trauma and co-occurring disorders. Deshara started at Peace as a BSW intern and went on to work in different roles in the Substance Abuse field as a therapist before coming back to Peace to work at Baker Commons. Her motto is to assist clients with gaining the necessary tools to overcome any obstacles or barriers they may face, while striving to achieve their highest quality of life. Deshara’s goal is to provide services with compassion, assist in enhancing wellbeing, and help clients reach all desired goals.
Kelly Martin, BSW
Senior Case Manager - Baker Commons
Data Base & I.T. Specialist