Your YIPA Team

Our Values

You’re the reason we do the work we do – YIPA team members work for you! We are driven by our values and we don’t just talk about them; we let them shine through in everything we do and in every interaction you have with us. Our values define who we are and let you know what you can expect from us.

  • In every interaction with us, you’ll feel valued, supported, and respected because we do genuinely care about you.
  • We know the work you do can be difficult at times so we’re here to support you. You’ll come to rely on our friendly, responsive and sincere service.
  • Earning your trust and keeping your loyalty comes from open and honest communication, being transparent about our work and building authentic relationships.
  • You’ll recognize our commitment to excellence because your programs deserve nothing less than our best. Our best will help the youth you serve achieve their best.
  • We value diversity where equity matters, everyone is welcome and encouraged to participate, share best practices, network and collaborate because we value community.
  • YIPA shares your passion for serving youth. Discontent with status quo, we’re always innovating and having the courage to try new approaches for your benefit.
  • We value a playful attitude just like the youth you serve. To best help you, we have fun while helping you with the seriousness of youth work.
  • Like you, our hearts are 100% invested in helping youth succeed.

Meet Your Team Members

paul meunier YIPA TEAM

Paul Meunier
Executive Director

Hello. I love my job and enjoy serving you as a way to impact the lives of our young people. I’m lucky to be connected with so many dedicated, passionate, and skilled people in this field of Youth Intervention. You and I share a desire to make life better for others and most of my work life has involved public service.

I worked directly with youth for many years as the lead of a therapeutic unit in a setting IV emotional behavioral disorder (EBD) program. I’m a trained psychologist and was also a City Council member and then Mayor of Ham Lake. Yes, I am a political junkie.

I’ve been involved with YIPA for over 25 years, as a member of YIPA’s Board of Directors and its Vice President before joining the team as an employee. Most people tell me I work too much and they may be right, but I always make time for family fun, working on projects at our cabin, fishing, and golfing.

Please know you can reach out to me anytime by emailing me at [email protected] or calling me at 763-434-4190.

Barbara Van Deinse
Membership Representative

Hi, I’m Barbara, your Membership Representative. In my role, I help ensure our youth worker trainings provide real learning so you can do your best for youth. I also spread the word about YIPA to youth-serving organizations everywhere to make our Association stronger.

Before joining YIPA, I worked in the corporate world. As a manager, I got to combine my love for helping people grow, solving problems, and providing exceptional customer service. The work had plenty of rewards but I felt I could do more to make a difference in the world.

My desire to do more meaningful work brought me to YIPA. And that’s when I discovered the amazing work of youth-serving agencies and the awesome power of youth workers! Helping you get the tools and training you need, advocating for the recognition and funding you deserve for the invaluable services you provide is the greatest work I’ve ever done!

I’ll help you make the most of your membership, so contact me at [email protected] or 651-688-3866.

Jade Schleif
Training Coordinator

Hello there! I joined YIPA because I believe in the power of youth workers. I’m committed to thinking critically and holistically about how our work can best serve you. Born and raised in Minnesota, I earned my B.A. in Sociology and Justice and Peace Studies from the University of St. Thomas. I served multiple terms as an AmeriCorps Promise Fellow at the American Indian Magnet School in St. Paul, as well as the Minnesota Alliance With Youth.

As YIPA’s Training Coordinator, I’m able to integrate my passions for youth work, connection, and lifelong learning in order to offer you opportunities for exceptional professional development. I’m devoted to Restorative Justice and facilitating Circles, as I believe they are key to being with each other in a new way that upholds compassion and accountability.

In my free time, I enjoy losing myself in nature, walking my cat, re-reading Kurt Vonnegut novels and crafting any excuse for a weekend trip to the North Shore! Please know that you can reach out to me anytime at [email protected] or 651-330-1090.