Our staff has a strong commitment to serving the many constituents of our organization. But first and foremost, they focus their energies on those who take advantage of our programs and services.
Our board represents a cross-section of our community and has a passion for our organization and those we serve. The members work hard to ensure long-term sustainability of the organization and oversee that the funds raised directly affect those in need.
Dr. Joseph Birli
President / Chief Executive Officer
Dr. Joseph Birli, has more than 30 years of experience in human services. He is a licensed professional counselor and nationally certified counselor. Birli also has a private practice for psychotherapy located in Akron, Pennsylvania, and serves as a graduate faculty member for several universities’ educational counselor programs.
"It is a true privilege and honor to become part of such a wonderful organization with a rich, 150- year history of continued commitment to provide healing and security to those who are wounded. It is my desire and hope to carry this dedication and commitment to all of those we serve as we embark on a journey of change, community partnerships, and providing beneficial services that will provide for the essential needs of children and families."
Birli received his Doctorate in education leadership from Wilmington University, his Master of Science in counseling from West Chester University and his Bachelor of Social Work from Eastern University.
Director of Human Resources
Colleen started her career at the Children’s Home of York in August of 2011 as the Director of Human Resources. She has 15 years of human resources experience including developing HR processes and policies, compliance, employee relations, performance management, recruiting, benefits, compensation, and training.
Prior to 2011, Colleen worked in the for-profit world of Manufacturing in New Jersey. Colleen and her husband, Jack moved to Pennsylvania in 2003. Colleen decided she would like to work for a not-for-profit organization and began working for a Continuing Care Retirement Community in Lancaster as the Director of Human Resources for almost seven years before coming to Children’s Home of York.
Colleen earned her Bachelor of Arts from Rider University majoring in Sociology and a minor in Political Science. Colleen went to Rider University on a field hockey scholarship. Colleen is a Dale Carnegie graduate. She is a member of the Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM) and the Lancaster chapter of SHRM.
In her spare time, Colleen enjoys spending time with her husband Jack and their dog Rascal. Colleen is an avid Philadelphia Eagles fan and loves to exercise.
Interim Director of Finance
Edward J. Watson
Director of Operations
A veteran of the United States Marine Corps, Edward Watson began his career at the Children’s Home in September of 1989. During his 28 years at the Children’s Home, Edward has held several positions within the organization. He began his career as a Diagnostic Caseworker and has held the positions of Program Supervisor, Program Director, Director of Training, Director of Residential Services, Vice President of Programs, and his current Director of Operations.
As a Licensed Social Worker, Edward has had the opportunity to lead the young staff at Children’s Home in their quest to grow and find their niche in the field of Social Work. He enjoys providing leadership and training to the staff at CHOY and watching them grow into professionals. He finds it especially rewarding to see the families and children that CHOY serves leave our care better equipped to face life’s challenges.
In his spare time, Edward is an outpatient therapist and enjoys his adult children, granddaughter, and is active in the community.