Founder & Executive Director of Our Blended Families, Inc. (OBF), is a Certified Family Life Educator (CFLE-P) with a Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice and an MBA in Human Resource Management. She founded OBF in 2015 to help blended families work together to raise and nurture emotionally healthy children. Her vision for OBF is to create and maintain positive adult relationships within blended families, where each parent sees the value in communication, collaboration, and community parenting.
As a divorced mother of two who was raised by a single parent, Shaynel noticed early on that many blended families struggled due to poor parental relationships. Her own childhood trauma and co-parenting issues with her ex-husband led to severe depression; she was eventually diagnosed with bipolar disorder and anxiety. She later recovered, but shortly before being diagnosed Shaynel began a six-year career as a Probation Counselor, where she gained insight into familial relationships and socio-economic issues affecting blended families. This experience helped propel her desire to create OBF and fueled her passion to help others. She witnessed how the negative actions of many women, who didn’t receive support from their co-parents, caused emotional and psychological damage to their children. Shaynel also witnessed the family structure breakdown caused by the lack of support systems for non-custodial fathers. She realized that blended family issues affect millions of adults and children every day.
Shaynel has decided to dedicate her life to supporting and encouraging parents to work cooperatively through family life education, counseling, family court advocacy, parental coaching, community support groups, lectures, workshops, and other family-nurturing activities. Through OBF, she now works to provide blended families with tools and resources for healthy family functioning, positive emotional health, and strong interpersonal relationships.