Andrea Parker, THRIVE Director

THRIVE’s Andrea Parker Named a National 30 Under 30 Leader

Featured, In The News
January 4, 2022

Andrea Parker, THRIVE Director at Tominlson South Meridian YMCA, was one of 30 YMCA leaders chosen nationwide (out of 121 nominated) as an emerging leader.

When Andrea joined the Y as a director of a department, the programming that she developed was brand new to Treasure Valley Family YMCA. She was 28 years old when she accepted the role to shape THRIVE (Together Helping Realize Inclusive Victories Everyday). THRIVE provides a safe, positive, and happy place for children to be active, learn new skills, and discover new hobbies while under the supervision of the Y’s caring staff. THRIVE is designed for children and young adults who are neurodiverse, but all are welcome! 

Parker is a mentor to service-learning students and interns that come to THRIVE for the unique opportunities it offers to further their high school and college educations.

Andrea Parker’s first week on the job coincided with the week we had to close locations temporarily due to the pandemic. That didn’t stop her from hitting the ground running while working from home to plan programming and staff training. 

When we reopened, she created fun THRIVE programming that could be done safely and socially distanced like a Bingo Night for families, a walking club, pumpkin decorating, and cooking classes. 

Cooking class with instructor and students at THRIVE

More about Andrea:

“My hobbies include going to the river with my Labs, Tucker and Harper, and being a Disney fanatic. You can often find me in Disney-inspired dresses or planning my next trip to the beach. I started with the Y in March 2020 (a week before we closed for Covid). It was the strangest start-up but it gave me the opportunity to plan THRIVE for reopening. It also gave me the time to listen to the community and hear the needs before planning this new department.”

Parker was featured in a video presentation recognizing the YMCA’s 30 Under 30 Award recipients.

About the 30 Under 30 program: 

In 2017, the National Emerging Leaders Resource Network Steering Committee embarked upon a strategic planning process. Through research, the committee identified a substantial imbalance between the proportion of Millennials related to the total workforce in the USA and the percentage of Millennials who make up the YMCA workforce. In other words, the YMCA workforce is aging as the rest of the country’s workforce is getting younger. After conversations with stakeholders, it was determined there was a need to create a recognition program for emerging leaders across the Movement. This program seeks to identify and formally acknowledge 30 full-time YMCA leaders under the age of 30 for their accomplishments and recognize their potential to lead our many Y Associations in the coming decades. 

THRIVE programs are designed for children and young adults who are neurodiverse, but all are welcome! We are proud to offer a safe center and caring staff. Our staff are well trained and take great pride in keeping the THRIVE Center safe, clean, and positive for the comfort of both the participant and caregiver.