Meet the Darien YW’s Board of Directors for 2017-2019

YWCA Darien/Norwalk Board of Directors 2017 06-22-17

YWCA of Darien/Norwalk Board of Directors (from left):  Samantha Casella,  Alison Loop, Louisa Stead, Aidan Welsh,Emily Boothroyd, Amie Willis and Holly Mitchell.  Not pictured: Sima Farmer, Colleen Morris, Eloisa Melendez, Diana Turowski and Wistar Wallace.

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YWCA Darien/Norwalk is proud to announce the Board of Directors for 2017-2019.  

YWCA Darien/Norwalk Board of Directors 2017 06-22-17

YWCA of Darien/Norwalk Board of Directors (from left):  Samantha Casella,  Alison Loop, Louisa Stead, Aidan Welsh,Emily Boothroyd, Amie Willis and Holly Mitchell.  Not pictured: Sima Farmer, Colleen Morris, Eloisa Melendez, Diana Turowski and Wistar Wallace.


Serving on the Executive Board is President Louisa Stead, Vice President Aidan Walsh; Secretary Wistar Wallace and Treasurer Emily Boothroyd.

YWCAElected for a two-year term are Sima Farmer, Alison Loop, Holly Mitchell, Louisa Stead, Wistar Wallace and Aidan Welsh.

Continuing for the second year of their two-year term are Emily Boothroyd, Samantha Casella, Eloisa Melendez, Colleen Morris, Diana Turowski and Amie Willis.


— an announcement from the YWCA of Darien/Norwalk


The YWCA thanks all of our board members for their time and commitment to serving our community and keeping our mission strong.

Meet the Executive Board

Louisa Stead (President)

Louisa is vice president for human resources for a global corporation. She has spent the better part of her career working in various HR positions in the U.S. and Europe, focusing on HR strategy, change management and talent development. Louisa has also worked in executive search form global airline companies based in Australia and the United Kingdom.

She has a masters of commerce degree in human resources management from the University of New South Wales, Australia. Louisa first moved to Darien in 2005 where she lives with her husband and two daughters.

Aidan R. Welsh (Vice President)

Aidan lives in Darien with her husband and two children.  Aidan is a Partner at a family and matrimonial law firm in Old Greenwich. He has practiced in this field for the past eleven years and her practices focuses on divorce cases, post judgment issues related to custody and divorce, premarital agreements, custody issues, and divorce mediation.

He is the current chair of the Connecticut Bar Association Young Lawyers Section and serves on the Executive Committee of the Connecticut Bar Association Family Law Section.

Emily Boothroyd (Treasurer)

Emily has worked as a local private wealth advisor for the past eight years and began her career as an attorney. Emily has been a guest speaker with organizations like Dress for Success and Workplace.

She has been featured in the Wall Street Journal and other online media outlets. Emily has her law degree from Quinnipiac University School of Law, and B.A. from St. Andrews Presbyterian College in North Carolina. Emily lives in Norwalk with her partner, Jim, daughter and Boston terrier.

Wistar Wallace (Secretary)

Wistar and her husband moved to Norwalk from Hoboken in 2014, where they could spend more time with their hobbies such a sailing and gardening.  Wistar is currently a vice president at a mid-sized advertising agency in New York.

She has been in this field for over 15 years, working both in New York and abroad in London. While working in television, she won an Effie Award for the Planet Earth campaign.

Wistar grew up in Princeton, N.J. and graduated from William Smith College with an English major/art history minor.  She is involved with the Junior League in New York, has travelled to Africa several times with Habitat for Humanity, and has done some volunteering locally for Opus for Person-to-Person.

New Members

The YWCA is pleased to welcome Sima Farmer and Alison Loop to the board this year.

Sima Farmer

Sima graduated from Tulane University with a B.A. in German Literature and Photography and also attended NYU School of Professional Studies where she earned certificates in credit analysis and financial analysis.

She worked in New York City for several European banks in leveraged finance for 11 years, eventually becoming a vice president and portfolio manager before becoming a stay at home mom.  Sima grew up in Greenwich and currently lives in Darien with her husband and four children.

She is an active volunteer at Holmes School — and on the executive board of the school parent-teacher organization — and a Girl Scout troop leader for her 11 year old’s troop and her seven-year-old twin daughters’ troop.  Sima has also sat on the Parent Awareness Committee of the YWCA Darien/Norwalk for the past six years.

Alison Loop

Alison Loop, BA, BSN,MS, CPNP, is a pediatric nurse practitioner. Until the end of February, she worked for the last 7 1/2 years at Kids in Crisis, an emergency shelter for children that services all of Fairfield County, and is located in Cos Cob.

Before that she was a news producer for close to 10 years with the national division of ABC news. She worked on PrimeTime Live, 20/20, World News Tonight, and Good Morning America. She primarily worked on medical segments.

She went back to school, attending at Columbia University in her 40s to pursue becoming a pediatric nurse practitioner. Alison is a single parent and  has lived in Darien for 14 years with her two boys, Wyatt (18) and Henry (16) Piedra. She also has an English Bulldog named Mortimer.

Alison is planning on freelancing as a nurse practitioner in the fall. This summer she is learning tennis and golf and will be traveling to Tokyo to meet her eldest son, who will be studying there this summer.

“I’m privileged to have worked with and continue to work with such a passionate group of talented women to bring the YWCA’s mission to life” said Stead, the board president. “We are also extremely grateful to our members, for supporting the work and mission of the YWCA and for choosing to be part of our journey.”

About the YWCA Darien/Norwalk

The YWCA Darien/Norwalk is a non-profit organization dedicated to giving women the support and tools they need to transform their lives, be confident in their choices and raise healthy families.

YWCA Darien Norwalk

Photo from the YWCA Darien/Norwalk website

The YWCA building at 49 Old Kings Highway North

Its national mission, eliminating racism and empowering women, translates locally into a vision to create opportunities for growth, leadership and empowerment for all women and families.

The YWCA Darien/Norwalk is located at 49 Old King’s Highway North in Darien.  For more information, please visit or call 203-655-2535.

Clarification: We’ve changed the wording of the article at 10:05 a.m., Friday, to make it clear Sima Farmer is on the board of the Holmes School parent-teacher organization.

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