Kate Bech has almost thirty years’ experience in the not-for-profit sector. Before joining the Princeton Family YMCA in 2007, she served as the chief advancement officer for the Girl Scouts of Southeastern Pennsylvania in Philadelphia where she led the organization’s fundraising and communications programs for six years. Her other experiences included a six-year tenure with an independent YMCA association and another five years with a small Girl Scout council in suburban Philadelphia. Kate also directed the annual fund for the Masters School in Dobbs Ferry, New York and started her career with the Rosenbach Museum & Library as an events coordinator following college. In her volunteer life, she has served as president of a semi-professional theater, a trustee of her local library and facilitated strategic planning for several community groups. She is a member of the Garden Club of Trenton, and serves as the group’s corresponding secretary. Kate is a graduate of Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota and received a Certificate in Fundraising Management from the University of Pennsylvania. She lives with her family in Pennington, New Jersey.
Senior Director, Membership Initiatives & Wellness
Susan joined the YMCA staff in September 2008. A seasoned childcare and preschool administrator with more fourteen years’ experience, Susan came to the Y from the Kiddie Academy child care center franchise. Earlier in her career, Susan was a pre-school teacher and supervisor with the Mercer County CYO. Most recently, she served for 8 years as the Director of the Princeton YMCA’s Child Development Center. She earned her bachelor’s degree from LaSalle University and is a licensed teacher in New Jersey, N – 8, Alternative Route. Susan is also a group exercise instructor for the YMCA. She lives in Hamilton, New Jersey with her husband and two children.
Senior Director, Development & Communications
Denise Soto came to the YMCA in April 2008 and has over 15 years of non-profit experience. At the Y, she focuses on financial development including events management, major and capital gifts, communications and marketing as well as community partnerships and volunteer engagement. She has her Bachelor’s Degree in Media Arts from New Jersey City University and recently graduated from Springfield College with her Master’s Degree in Organizational Management and Leadership. She holds a Organizational Leader Certification from YMCA of the USA and is a YMCA Brand Ambassador. She is a lifelong Hamilton resident and lives there with her husband and two daughters.
Senior Director, Programs & Operations
Growing up a competitive swimmer, Paul Zeger has always been around water since he learned how to go off of the diving board at age 3 (without any floatation devices!). All of those years of swimming led him to the University of Tennessee where he majored in Recreation Administration and worked with the Lady Volunteers swim team as a student manager. He stayed at Tennessee to achieve his Master’s in Sport Management and served as a Graduate Assistant with the RecSports Aquatics Department. After graduation, he became the Princeton Family YMCA’s Aquatics Director, and has been at the Y ever since. Passionate about camp, Paul continuously serves as their summer camp director and co-chairs the Day Camp Network for the New Jersey YMCA State Alliance. Over the last nine years, Paul has held many different positions in Princeton: Aquatics Director, Sports & Wellness Director, Youth & Family Director, and Senior Program Director. Paul now serves as the Senior Director, Programs & Operations where he works as part of the Executive Team and with board committees to renew and expand the YMCA’s facilities for the first time since the building was erected in the early 1950’s. He recently achieved his Multi-Team Branch Leader Certification from YMCA of the USA and was highlighted by YUSA as the Cause Driven Leader of the Month in December 2017. When not at the Y, Paul has recently started to enjoy the “hobby” of running over the last year (thanks to his YMCA’s 5k/10k races) and cannot wait to participate in his next Ragnar Relay competition.
Youth Development and Outreach Director
Leigh Zink oversees the before and after school programs for the Princeton and Montgomery School Districts. Most recently, Leigh served as the Child Development Center’s Associate Director and Curriculum Specialist for eight years. Leigh came to the YMCA from the Cranbury School where she served as an assistant librarian and a kindergarten substitute teacher. For several years, she taught courses in early childhood education at Mercer County Community College, as well as managed child care centers in Northern New Jersey. Leigh graduated from Rutgers University with a bachelor’s degree in Political Science. She also earned her early Childhood Education teacher’s certificate from New Jersey City University. Leigh is trained in the delivery of the CATCH (Coordinated Approach To Childhood Health) program provided by the Horizon Foundation’s Healthy U that is delivered at YMCA afterschool and preschool sites throughout the state.