Executive Director

Barbara de Nekker

Having grown up in the neighboring town of Northbrook, Barbara de Nekker is excited to return to her old stomping grounds to serve as Executive Director of Community – The Anti-Drug (CTAD). With over 12 years experience in drug prevention and coalition building, Barbara has demonstrated success bringing together community partners to achieve long-term, positive change. Through grassroots advocacy and youth engagement, her efforts contributed to the adoption of over two dozen smoke-free policies in Lake County. She has worked with local, regional and national drug prevention coalitions and presented at national conferences on youth advocacy, the social norms approach, and coalition development. More recently, as Director of Youth Activism at Truth Initiative in Washington D.C., Barbara provided technical assistance and training to teens, young adults, and coordinators of tobacco prevention youth groups across the nation.

In addition to drug prevention experience, Barbara worked as a nonprofit consultant for Veterans Moving Forward, Inc., a nonprofit that provides service dogs and canine therapy to veterans, and spent three years in the Netherlands, where she served as a social cultural worker helping foreign women integrate into Dutch society.

“It’s inspiring to work with so many compassionate residents and caring institutions eager to ensure a healthy and robust future for their youth,” Barbara shared.