Kanileah Anderson

Kanileah Anderson<br>Board Member<br>2024-2025<br>
Kanileah Anderson
Board Member

Kanileah Anderson, born in Newark, is currently residing here with her husband and daughter. A Master’s level social worker, Kanileah earned her degrees at Rutgers University Livingston College and the Graduate School of Social Work. A consummate advocate for children and families, Kanileah has always worked directly with youth and families starting in the early nineties with the Youth Advcoate Program (YAP) of Middlesex County. Kanileah then pivoted and worked for a brief time at the Lennard Clinic as a substance abuse counselor and ultimately as the Clinic’s Supervising HIV Counselor in 1997 at the height of the epidemic. In August 1997, Kanileah began her 26 year career with the Division of Child Protection and Permanency, formerly DYFS. Serving in many capacities including investigator, Litigation Specialist and adoption supervisor. Kanileah has accomplished much including finalizing forever homes of at least forty children in 2006-2007.

Beyond graduation from Rutgers, Kanileah also has a Post-Bacculareate Certificate in Child Advocacy from Montclair University, a certificate in Violence Against Women and Children from Rutgers University and is a Department of Children and Family’s Data Fellow and a DCF Substance Use Disorder Fellow. Kanileah has served on the Board of Trustees at the Lennard Clinic and served as the Board’s President from 2005 to 2015. A founding board member of Newark GALS (Girls Acquiring Life Skills) Inc., Kanileah serves as the treasurer of this Newark based non-profit organization to date. As a mother of a young adult with Autism, Kanileah has been engaged and active in ensuring that her daughter and all of her peers have the most equitable and fulfilling school experience academically and socially. Kanileah remained active in Newark SEPAC (Special Education Advisory Council) for many years and had been a parent leader and advisor to parents district wide.

Since 1998, Kanileah has volunteered countless hours with local grassroots organizations doing activities such as voter registration and community outreach. Kanileah’s other community activities include graduation from LISC’S Newark Resident Leadership Academy in 2017 and then serving as a member on the Neighborhood Grant’s selection committee. Also active in the Muslim community, Kanileah and Newark GALS, Inc. have held an annual iftar (Ramadan break fast) for the past ten years and she proudly led the salat for about 100 sisters at the inaugural iftar in 2013! Continuing the legacy of her grandparents Leonard and Wilnora Holman and her mother Kathleen Witcher, Kanileah will join the school board with every intention of moving the district’s mission forward with the utmost integrity as an education advocate and change agent.