Executive Director 

Candice Walsh grew up in the small town of Oxford, NC, just north of Raleigh.  She received a Bachelor's of Science in Business Administration with a concentration in Marketing and a minor in Psychology from Peace College in Raleigh, NC.  She later received her Master's in Social Work from Western Carolina University.  Candice joined The Boys & Girls Club in August 2014.  Candice was attracted to the Club for the incredible service it provides to the youth of Transylvania County and she feels so blessed to be a part of such an incredible movement that is impacting the lives of so many.  In her free time, Candice enjoys spending time with her daughter, Emma Beth, and exploring the many waterfalls, hiking trails and other outdoor adventures that Transylvania County has to offer.  She lives in Pisgah Forest with her husband, Sean Walsh and daughter, Emma Beth. 



operations director

Emily Taylor is a native of Brevard, NC. She attended Wingate University where she received her Bachelor of Fine Arts with a concentration in oil painting. She has worked at The Cindy Platt Boys & Girls Club since 2008, first as a seasonal employee each summer, but beginning full-time shortly after graduating college and returning home in 2011. Emily and her college roommate also opened a bakery/art gallery named Starving Artist's in fall 2011. It remained open until Emily married her husband, Ryan, in 2013. In her free time, Emily enjoys spending time hiking, biking, fishing, and playing sports. She also enjoys making wedding cakes and doing art, specifically landscape paintings which she sells on Etsy. At the club she enjoys getting kids active and excited about fitness through games and field trips! Email:


Kathleen de la Torre grew up in Jacksonville, Florida. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in Mathematics from Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, NC a very long time ago. She is married to Ernie and they have two kids, Asher and Anna, and a very demanding rescued dog, Dan. Her kids became members of the Club when they moved here in 2011 and they participated in the Junior Appalachian Musicians program (JAM) for many years. After serving on the Board of Directors for five months, Kathleen accepted the position of Finance Director in 2015. Although she is mostly squirreled away in her cubicle, she is honored to support the mission of The Cindy Platt Boys & Girls Club. She enjoys scuba diving with her family and watching her children in the Brevard High School marching band—Go Blue Devils! Email:



Teen Services Director 

Travis Hayes grew up just miles north of Charlotte, NC in the town of Salisbury. He received his Bachelor’s Degree in Youth Ministry from Southern Wesleyan University which is also where he met his wife, Lauren. Travis moved to Brevard in the fall of 2012 and has loved Transylvania County ever since. It is because of his love for the community and passion for teenagers that Travis pursued to join the Boys & Girls Club team in May of 2016. Before joining the BGC, Travis worked in pastoral ministry and at a local camp in Brevard. In his free time, Travis loves going on outdoor adventures with his wife, hanging out at coffee shops, serving on the worship team at Brevard Community Church, and watching the Carolina Panthers play. Email:



Middle school Director 

Courtney Hoffses was born and raised in Aroostook County, Maine.  She graduated from St. Joseph’s College of Maine in 2012 with a Bachelor's Degree in Political Science with dual minors in History and Sociology.  She went on to receive her Master’s Degree in Intercultural Youth and Family Development in 2015 from the University of Montana.  While completing her Master’s Degree Courtney interned at a Refugee Resettlement agency in North Dakota.  Courtney moved to Western North Carolina in 2015.  She started at the Club as a Program Specialist in September 2016 and is very excited for the opportunity to help grow our program for middle schoolers.  In her free time Courtney enjoys hiking, reading, being outside, and cooking.  She lives in Brevard with her boyfriend Matt and their black lab Monte. Email:



Alycia Andrade Benton grew up in Somerset, Massachusetts and made her way down South to attend Brevard College in 2005.  Alycia graduated from Brevard College in 2008 with a degree in Wilderness Leadership and Experiential Education.  For two years after college, Alycia returned North to work as a therapeutic mentor with at risk youth in Fall River and New Bedford, MA.  In 2011 the opportunity to return to Brevard presented itself when the Club was seeking a replacement for the Health and Wellness Director position.   Alycia has been the Health and Wellness Director at the Club since November 2011 and has been able to channel her passion for health, organic gardening and running into the programs that she implements at the Club.  Alycia lives in Brevard with her husband Sam and her dog and running buddy Evey.  Alycia is an avid runner, training and competing in several races a year.  She also enjoys spending time in the forest with her dog and her husband, gardening and listening to public radio podcasts. Email:


Education Director

Mary Jay was born and raised in South Carolina, spent 10 years in Pensacola, Florida and has now resided here in North Carolina for five years. She is a third generation educator with eight years teaching experience in pre-K through seventh grade. Mary graduated in 2005 with a BA in Missions with emphases in teaching and English. In addition to teaching, she has also had the opportunity to work as an assistant director of an after-school care program and to teach overseas.

In her free time, Mary loves spending time with her family, cooking, reading, and enjoying the beautiful outdoors. 

Mary is thrilled to bring her varied experiences to the Cindy Platt Boys & Girls Club and focus on giving each member all the help and encouragement they need to discover positive learning and study habits. She feels it is a tremendous honor to be a part of a focused and alive organization that has a real, everyday impact on young people.





Jackie Witherspoon moved to Brevard 20 years ago from Alabama to teach English and coach track and cross country at Brevard High School.  She is married to John Witherspoon and together they have two children, Eliza and Knox.  After serving on the board of directors of The Cindy Platt Club for many years, she accepted the position as Director of Resource Development and Community Outreach in 2009.  In addition to raising awareness and funding for our Club, she enjoys coaching the youth development program called SMART Girls Run every Wednesday.



Annual Campaign & Marketing/communications Director 

Tadd Hall, a native of Western North Carolina, joins the Cindy Platt Boys & Girls Club after a fortunate family move allowed he and his family to return to the mountains of Western North Carolina which they love so much.  

Most recently, Tadd served as the Director of the Annual Campaign for the Boys & Girls Clubs serving Wake County, NC; an organization which oversees seven individual clubs and one summer camp in Eastern North Carolina.  Prior to that, Tadd spent six years with the American Cancer Society with responsibilities in fundraising, volunteer development, and board development much of that time.  Before his work in the nonprofit world, Tadd worked in sales for the Durham Bulls Baseball Club in Durham, NC for three years, earning two International League Championship rings during that time, as a full-time member of the front office staff. Tadd holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Education with a concentration in Psychology from Appalachian State University as well as a Master’s Degree in Sport Administration and Marketing from the University of Northern Colorado.  Tadd currently lives just down the road in Mills River with his wife and three daughters. 






Open positions: Program Specialists 

To learn more about our open positions, please visit our Careers page here

The club also employs 10-12 part-time staff during the school year, and up to 15 part time staff during the summer months.