Board Members

Executive Committee

President, John Autin
Vice President, Rene “Rick” Vargas
Secretary, Janet Hoffman
Treasurer, Robert Rossman


John Autin moved to Mt. Airy with his wife, Kristy in 2015. John considers himself a career educator as he has worked as a Teacher, Operations Director, Recruiter, and Dean of Students in education systems in New Orleans, Washington, DC, and Philadelphia.  John hopes to support the MALT community with his educational experience throughout his tenure.

In addition to MALT, John has committed himself to the improvement of Mt. Airy by joining the board of EMAN, serving with Families for Houston, helping found Mt. Airy Nexus and even being a vendor of crafts and candles at several Supper Sessions on Germantown Ave. He enjoys walking with his family enjoying the Mt. Airy Architecture, pickup basketball games, doing crafts, and antiquing. 



Sue Beetle has lived in Mt. Airy since 1971, where she raised three great kids. She majored in English literature in college with a minor in cartography. Besides work

 in finance and business management, she has done engineering and architectural drafting and developed software to simulate operations of the railroad and rapid transit systems. She enjoys travel, movies, and being part of this community. She is detail-oriented, practical and respectful of organizational processes.

Sue now works as finance manager of Weavers Way Co-op. Before that, she was the finance director at the Neighborhood Interfaith Movement for 17 years. She served on the board of West Mt. Airy Neighbors for many years. She has assisted many local organizations in setting up/straightening out their accounting systems.



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Allison Cooper is a lifelong member of the Northwest Philadelphia community, growing up in Germantown and Chestnut Hill before settling in the Mt. Airy neighborhood. Allison’s background is in non-profit financial management and human resources and employee relations management. Currently, Allison is employed by The Sarah Ralston Foundation, formerly Ralston Center, working as the Grants and Finance Manager. Allison graduated from Germantown
Friends School before earning her B.A. in History from Pennsylvania State University and completing her M.P.S. in Human Resources and Employee Relations from Pennsylvania State University.


Janet Hoffman (above) first visited Mt. Airy in 1972, and she has lived in Mt. Airy since 1985. She has an undergraduate degree in English and a master’s degree in Library and Information Science. She retired in 2022 after a varied career as an indexer, editor, online services trainer, online services sales, software customer manager, business analyst, and project manager. Janet lives in East Mt Airy with her husband and has taken many MALT courses over the years including ice skating, tai chi, dream interpretation, wine tasting, and many local walking tours.


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Allyson Katzman has lived in Mt. Airy for almost 25 years and loves the friendliness, diversity and physical beauty of the community. Since becoming a MALT board member, she has served in multiple roles of the executive staff and is active on many committees. Some of her favorite classes at MALT have been Water Kefir, Kombucha’s Cousin, Pilates and Knife Sharpening.

Previously, Allyson was a board member of West Mt. Airy Neighbors (WMAN) for 13 years, before stepping down last year. She served on the planning committee for WMAN’s largest fundraiser Eat Your Heart Out for over 14 years and has been an active lead with the Streetscapes Committee. She helped initiate the Emlen Circle Beautification Group and works on other community based beautification projects.

Allyson enjoys traveling, yoga, Pilates, gardening, walking in the Wissahickon with her dog and fostering animals. Allyson has worked as a litigation paralegal for more years than she would like to admit and currently works downtown for an antitrust law firm.


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Lanina Nelson-Cavicchio, a native Philadelphian, has been an on-going supporter of MALT as a teacher, student, and board member; currently serving as the Secretary of MALT’s Board. Since becoming a board member, she has served in multiple roles of the executive staff, active on various committees but is often recognized for her leadership and active participation on the MALT Ball Committee which organized, promoted, and garnered support for the MALT Ball (a multi-year fundraising effort). Her professional background includes work experience among both private and public concerns. Currently, she works for a public utility company where she oversees and manages IT projects and acts as a liaison between IT and internal customers. She has varied interests which include: mystery book reading, line dancing, travel, classic movies, orienteering, and greyhound rescue.



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Patricia Robinson has been a native of Philadelphia since moving from Maryland in her early childhood. Pat is a MALT board member and has been active on the MALT Ball Committee for over seven years.

Her professional background includes working in the private sector and the health care industry. She is currently retired and She served as a co-block captain, volunteered at homeless shelters, the Philadelphia Flower Show, and provides pro bono notary service. Pat is a certified Dom Care provider for the Philadelphia Corporation for Aging and serves as an Election Board clerk. She very much enjoys interior decorating, architecture, comic movies, and reaching out to help whomever she can.



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Bob Rossman has many years of experience in computer technology. He began working as a computer programmer for INA (now Cigna) in 1970 when computing was on mainframes and employed punch cards. Now retired, his last position was providing technical support for a software company. His other interests include politics, bike riding, and cooking, all of which he has turned into courses for MALT. He has served on the board of Weavers Way Co-op and the Chestnut Hill Community Association. He is currently treasurer of the Interfaith Hospitality Network of Northwest Philadelphia and president of the Mt. Airy Community Services Corp. He has been on the MALT Board for over 25 years; over that time he has helped with computers and a host of other tasks and is currently the treasurer and serves on the building committee.



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Rene “Rick” Vargas  is a native of New York City, who moved to Philadelphia in 1978. In 1979, he began his professional career with the City of Philadelphia. During his thirty-five (35) year tenure with the City, Rene was involved in job training evaluation, Human Resources, and Labor Relations, where he spent the bulk of his career.

In 2013, after years as Labor Relations Analyst and Deputy Director, Rene was appointed Labor Relations Director for the City. He remained in this position until his retirement in January 2015. In 2015, Rene was approached by a MALT board member about joining the board. Having taken some MALT classes in the past, he accepted the invitation, and has been involved since then. He is a past President of the board, and is currently the Vice-President.

Rene has been quite busy in his retirement. He volunteered for five years at Kensington High School, has taken painting and dance classes, was part of an
investment club, and is an active alumni board member with his alma mater (The University of Vermont). Even though he has been involved with all these activities, Rene has to squeeze in three or four rounds of golf a weekly, weather permitting!!


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Rivkah Walton arrived in Mt. Airy in 1978, after sojourns in Illinois, Michigan, Georgia, and North Carolina. She holds degrees in psychology and fine arts, and also brings to the MALT board extensive experience as a non-profit administrator and program planner, with an emphasis on community-building and continuing education. She is currently pursuing an encore career as a photographer. Rivkah has enthusiastically taken a multitude of MALT courses over the years, among them swimming and tai chi, financial planning and house-buying, painting, cooking, and meditation! New to the Board in 2022, she is excited about the chance to “give back” to the community of teachers and learners at MALT.


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Jesse R. Wilson, II was born and raised in the East Mount Airy/West Oak Lane section of the city. Jesse attended Temple University and completed his undergraduate degree in accounting at Virginia State University. After returning to Philadelphia, he attained a master’s degree in Business Administration at Devry/Keller graduate school of management. He is married with one child and resides in the East Mount Airy section of Philadelphia. Jesse is currently employed with one of the major transportation companies in the area. He has many personal interests that include but not limited to: home remodeling, culinary, riding motorcycles, community involvement.

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