"When I had my first child, I had no friends in Tucson who had kids. Being a mom can be a lonely thing. I knew I needed sympathetic people to share my joys and questions with. The problem was that I had no idea how to find them. In 2001, I was in the waiting room at my OB's office about to be sent to the hospital to have my second child, a woman sitting next to me told me about Tucson Moms. When my 2nd child was 3 months old I joined my first playgroup. In the beginning it was rather terrifying. Getting the courage to walk in the door of a house full of women I didn't know was tough. Every week it got better and I found that it felt so good to converse with another mom with the same issues that I had. Just hearing the "me too" and "oh, I know how that is" helped so much. After about a year of attending playgroup regularly, my kids and I ended up with a handful of really good friends. Having friends with kids similar ages to my own has made my life so much better. I would not be the mother I am today without their example and encouragement. I ended up being a playgroup leader, a Tucson Moms website volunteer, and finally I spent almost two years as one of the Directors of Tucson Moms. Tucson Moms has given me more gifts that I would have ever imagined. Tucson Moms can be a great way to have something fun to do once a week or it can be a great way to find good friends for both you and your children. I am thankful that I had the courage to try it out and keep on going until I found my niche." Sarah
Tucson Moms History
Our Mission: Tucson Moms is dedicated to providing support to mothers and their young families through friendship, playgroups, and education within a casual, family-focused environment.
Tucson Moms was started in 2000 by two moms; Lisa Locke and Elizabeth Boccardo. Lisa moved to Tucson from Northern California and started looking for a support group immediately. Not having much luck, she suggested to a group of moms she had connected with to start up a group here in town to offer support, guidance and friendship to the Tucson community. From this idea, the very first Tucson Moms playgroup was born! All of the women committed to volunteering and helping get the fledgling group off the ground.
In its first year, Tucson Moms was quickly established as a non-profit organization, and a website, brochure and newsletter were started within the first few months. The brochure was distributed throughout town much like it is today; to pediatrician offices, libraries, park and recreation classes, and the like. Many community groups and businesses were supportive with helping hand out the brochure, but word of mouth is what really grew Tucson Moms and in the first year, over 100 moms became members.
Playgroups were formed based on location and the year a child was born. These first groups met at Udall, Fort Lowell, and Mehl Park and were for babies born in 1997, 1998, and 1999. It’s hard to believe some of those babies are in high school now! A regular Moms Night Out and an evening educational series followed to help add to the Tucson Mom experience.
Today, we operate very much in the same way we did in the year 2000. We offer support and friendship to moms, children and the entire family. We hope you and your children will join us!
Tucson Moms Co-Directors
Jenaway Gallo moved to Tucson in 2005 from Park City Utah. Shortly after moving to Tucson, she met her husband and they were married in 2010. Jenaway has a Bachelor’s Degree in Animal Science from the University of Arizona and is a Certified Veterinary Technician through Pima Community College. She has worked in a veterinary clinic on the Eastside of Tucson for 6 years and currently teaches at Pima Community College, since 2009. Jenaway and her husband have two beautiful boys – AJ (3 years old) and William (almost 1). When her husband isn’t at work for the Border Patrol they enjoy building projects together or spending a day outside. Jenaway has been a member of Tucson Moms since the summer of 2013.
Vanessa Hoang is a native to Arizona. She grew up in Sierra Vista and moved to Tucson for the University of Arizona. After graduating with her Bachelors Degree in Retailing & Consumer Science with a minor in Business Administration she continued on to achieve her Masters in Management. She was the Store Manager of Kohl’s for 6 years before she decided to become a SAHM. Vanessa and her husband have been married for 3 years now; he works at Fort Huachuca with the Department of Defense as a civilian employee. They have a beautiful 2 year old son, Liam. Their days off are spent together; the Hoang family enjoys traveling and spending time with friends and family. Vanessa has been a member of Tucson Moms since the summer of 2012.
- Elizabeth Boccardo
- Lisa Locke
Board of Directors
February 2014 to February 2015
- Jenaway Gallo, Co-Director
- Vanessa Hoang, Co-Director
- Kristin Owens, Treasurer
- Kirsten Wallace, Secretary
- Rebecca McCourt, Registrar
- Amy Pertile, Newsletter Editor
- Lauren Romero, Adveristing
- Erika Button, Webmaster
- Lisa Locke, Founder
- Elizabeth Boccardo, Founder
Members at Large
- Kendra McDermed
- Jackie McGuire
- Rebecca Esposito
- Erin Anderson
- Krista Struthers
Tucson Moms Volunteers:
- Lela William and Meg Belen, NW 13
- Kristen Owens and Sara Longstreth, NW 12
- Jennifer Baker & Erin Anderson, NW 2011
- Renee O’Connor, NW After School Crew
- Kimberly Hornberg, Multiple Maddness
- Jenny Rienstra, South All Ages
- Vanessa Hoang , Vail Tots
- Carin Callie and Amy Pertile, East 2013
- Kim Williams and Sara Downes, Central 2014
- Allison VanDyke, GLBT
- Alexis Lercher, Military Moms
- Veronic Cruz, SW Tots
- Jessica Tocco, West All Ages
- Emily Blewett , East ’11 &’12
- Jessyka Bauer, Healthy Moms, Healthy Kids
- Lela Williams, Book Club
- Sam Callahan, Sahuarita All Ages
- Sam Russell, Oro Valley All Ages
- Kristen Owens, NW 14
- Amy Pertile, East 14
- Dina Ramirez, Rita Ranch