Austin Smiles Staff

Austin Smiles - Communications Director - Renee Hanson-Malone Photo
Renée Hanson Malone
Executive Director

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Austin Smiles - Communications Director - Ellise Perry Photo

Ellise Perry
Programs & Communications Director

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Kate Wang
UT Work Study

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Austin Smiles - Communications Director - Renee Hanson-Malone Photo
Renée Hanson Malone
Executive Director

Renée Hanson Malone has 15 years of management, resource development, and communications experience, raising millions of dollars and community support for underserved populations in Austin, TX. Her greatest strengths are donor development, communications, corporate giving, special events, grant writing, program development, and public relations.

Renée received her M.A. in Latin American Studies and was employed as a Lecturer by the Latin American Studies and Spanish Departments at the University of Kansas. Much of her work in Austin has been dedicated to strengthening and diversifying funding sources in order to expand services to underserved populations.

Before joining Austin Smiles, Renée served as the Chief Development Officer for the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Austin Area. Before that, she was the Director of Development for the Austin Child Guidance Center, the Grants Development Specialist at Easter Seals Central Texas and the Education Program Director/Grant Writer for Manos de Cristo.

She currently serves as the Board President of LOLA-Local Opera Local Artists. In addition, she is a current Board member for Vela and serves on the Non-Profit Advisory Council forI Live Here I Give Here. Renée was a member of Impact Austin from 2015-2017. She volunteered as the international matching grants coordinator for the Rotary Club of Austin Downtown and is a past board member of Austin Cops for Charities.

Making a difference in the world and inspiring others to support humanity is her life’s work. She has always admired Austin Smiles’ work in the community. She is honored to join the team and be a part of our life-changing work for so many children in need.

Renée Hanson Malone has 15 years of management, resource development, and communications experience, raising millions of dollars and community support for underserved populations in Austin, TX. Her greatest strengths are donor development, communications, corporate giving, special events, grant writing, program development, and public relations.

Renée received her M.A. in Latin American Studies and was employed as a Lecturer by the Latin American Studies and Spanish Departments at the University of Kansas. Much of her work in Austin has been dedicated to strengthening and diversifying funding sources in order to expand services to underserved populations.

Before joining Austin Smiles, Renée served as the Chief Development Officer for the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Austin Area. Before that, she was the Director of Development for the Austin Child Guidance Center, the Grants Development Specialist at Easter Seals Central Texas and the Education Program Director/Grant Writer for Manos de Cristo.

She currently serves as the Board President of LOLA-Local Opera Local Artists. In addition, she is a current Board member for Vela and serves on the Non-Profit Advisory Council for I Live Here I Give Here. Renée was a member of Impact Austin from 2015-2017. She volunteered as the international matching grants coordinator for the Rotary Club of Austin Downtown and is a past board member of Austin Cops for Charities.

Making a difference in the world and inspiring others to support humanity is her life’s work. She has always admired Austin Smiles’ work in the community. She is honored to join the team and be a part of our life-changing work for so many children in need.

Austin Smiles - Communications Director - Ellise Perry Photo

Ellise Perry
Programs & Communications Director

Ellise Perry is a 2018 graduate of the University of Texas at Austin. She studied and got her BS in Communication Sciences and Disorders with an emphasis in Speech Pathology. During her college career, Ellise found Austin Smiles while searching for a cleft centered organization to get involved within Austin. She, having been born with a cleft lip and palate herself, fell in love with Austin Smiles, attending events like Camp Amigo and the Spring Picnic for local kids.

Ellise currently owns a family and child photography business in Austin, known as Ellise Nicole Photography LLC. She has been on a mission to El Salvador and Guatemala and loves being able to capture the smiles, tears, and love between patients, their families and Austin Smiles volunteers with her camera.

Ellise has a passion for photography, working with children, and volunteering. She is interested in communications, social media marketing, non-profit management, and bettering the lives of children born just like her!

Ellise Perry is a 2018 graduate of the University of Texas at Austin. She studied and got her BS in Communication Sciences and Disorders with an emphasis in Speech Pathology. During her college career, Ellise found Austin Smiles while searching for a cleft centered organization to get involved within Austin. She, having been born with a cleft lip and palate herself, fell in love with Austin Smiles, attending events like Camp Amigo and the Spring Picnic for local kids.

Ellise currently owns a family and child photography business in Austin, known as Ellise Nicole Photography LLC. She has been on a mission to El Salvador and Guatemala and loves being able to capture the smiles, tears, and love between patients, their families and Austin Smiles volunteers with her camera.

Ellise has a passion for photography, working with children, and volunteering. She is interested in communications, social media marketing, non-profit management, and bettering the lives of children born just like her!

austin-smiles-staff-erika-wey-acuna photo

Kate Wang
UT Work Study

Kate Wang is our Work-Study from the University of Texas at Austin

Major: Unspecified Business Major with a Minor in Management Information Systems

Favorite Quote: We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.

― Oscar Wilde

I am with Austin Smiles because it is through acts of service that people spread love and inspiration. It is deeply touching that communities of doctors and workers work to give children a better life, so I wanted to be a part of that community too.

Kate Wang is our Work-Study from the University of Texas at Austin

Major: Unspecified Business Major with a Minor in Management Information Systems

Favorite Quote: We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.

― Oscar Wilde

I am with Austin Smiles because it is through acts of service that people spread love and inspiration. It is deeply touching that communities of doctors and workers work to give children a better life, so I wanted to be a part of that community too.

Austin Smiles Interns

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Sophia Viola
University of Michigan – Ann Arbor

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Giovanna “Gio” Alanis-Vega
Concordia University – Texas

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Mary Claire Henderson
The University of Texas at Austin

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Michelle Liu
UTHealth School of Public Health – Austin

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Sophia Viola
University of Michigan – Ann Arbor

Major: Health Behavior and Health Education with a concentration in Public Health Genetics

Favorite Quote: “No one really knows why they are alive until they know what they would die for.” – Martin Luther King Jr.

Being a part of the Austin Smiles mission to change the stigma surrounding oral clefts and help those around the world and the Austin community is truly an honor. I am thankful to the Austin Smiles team for supporting my passions for global health and public health education. I feel that working with this amazing team will help me achieve my goals to help those in need and work towards equitable medical care for all. I am really looking forward to learning everything I can from this wonderful organization and gain valuable knowledge regarding non-profit function and purpose.

Major: Health Behavior and Health Education with a concentration in Public Health Genetics

Favorite Quote: “No one really knows why they are alive until they know what they would die for.”
– Martin Luther King Jr.

Being a part of the Austin Smiles mission to change the stigma surrounding oral clefts and help those around the world and the Austin community is truly an honor. I am thankful to the Austin Smiles team for supporting my passions for global health and public health education. I feel that working with this amazing team will help me achieve my goals to help those in need and work towards equitable medical care for all. I am really looking forward to learning everything I can from this wonderful organization and gain valuable knowledge regarding non-profit function and purpose.

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Giovanna “Gio” Alanis-Vega
Concordia University – Texas
Major: Masters in Public Health

Favorite Quote: “The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.” – Eleanor Roosevelt

I am extremely excited to be part of the Austin Smiles team this upcoming semester. The work they do for the cleft lip and palate community locally and globally is amazing. I am truly blessed to learn about their work and make a small contribution to the lifetime impact Austin Smiles has on the lives of children and their families.

Major: Masters in Public Health

Favorite Quote: “The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.” – Eleanor Roosevelt

I am extremely excited to be part of the Austin Smiles team this upcoming semester. The work they do for the cleft lip and palate community locally and globally is amazing. I am truly blessed to learn about their work and make a small contribution to the lifetime impact Austin Smiles has on the lives of children and their families.

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Mary Claire Henderson
The University of Texas at Austin

Major: Speech, Language and Hearing with a concentration in Speech Pathology also on the pre-Dental track

Favorite Quote: “Dream big because dreams do happen.” – Alex Morgan

I really wanted to intern with Austin Smiles this semester to experience the change they make in patients’ and their families lives. This organization is so special and does so much good for its local and international communities. As a future medical professional and a student currently studying speech pathology, this experience will allow me to join both of my educational passions as well as my passion to serve others. I am so looking forward to this opportunity and can’t wait to watch lives be forever transformed!

Major: Speech, Language and Hearing with a concentration in Speech Pathology also on the pre-Dental track

Favorite Quote: “Dream big because dreams do happen.” – Alex Morgan

I really wanted to intern with Austin Smiles this semester to experience the change they make in patients’ and their families lives. This organization is so special and does so much good for its local and international communities. As a future medical professional and a student currently studying speech pathology, this experience will allow me to join both of my educational passions as well as my passion to serve others. I am so looking forward to this opportunity and can’t wait to watch lives be forever transformed!

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Michelle Liu
UTHealth School of Public Health – Austin
Major: MPH, Behavioral Sciences Health Promotion and Health Education

Favorite Quote: “I loved clinical practice, but in public health, you can impact more than one person at a time. The whole society is your patient.” – Tom Frieden

At Austin Smiles, I hope to put my knowledge and skills in promoting community health into practice. I am thrilled to take part in making an everlasting difference in the lives of children born with cleft lip and palate. I am grateful for the opportunity to work with such an amazing team that continues to inspire me to lend a helping hand to others during a time of need.

Major: MPH, Behavioral Sciences Health Promotion and Health Education

Favorite Quote: “I loved clinical practice, but in public health, you can impact more than one person at a time. The whole society is your patient.” – Tom Frieden

At Austin Smiles, I hope to put my knowledge and skills in promoting community health into practice. I am thrilled to take part in making an everlasting difference in the lives of children born with cleft lip and palate. I am grateful for the opportunity to work with such an amazing team that continues to inspire me to lend a helping hand to others during a time of need.

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Connally Mooring
The University of Texas at Austin

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Juanita Lizbeth Rocha
UTHealth School of Public Health – Austin

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Maranda Giebler
Texas State University

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Natasha Pelayo
Concordia University – Texas

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Connally Mooring
University of Texas at Austin

Major: Communications and Leadership, Minor in Business

Favorite Quote:“Keep your face always toward the sunshine – and shadows will fall behind you.” – Walt Whitman

I am looking forward to my time at Austin Smiles this fall because of its impactful mission to support mothers and children who have been influenced by a cleft lip/palate. Austin Smile’s ability to unite individuals with similar experiences is encouraging and gives me hope towards a united Austin community. I am eager to get started and to help in any way possible.\

Major: Communications and Leadership, Minor in Business

Favorite Quote:“Keep your face always toward the sunshine – and shadows will fall behind you.” – Walt Whitman

I am looking forward to my time at Austin Smiles this fall because of its impactful mission to support mothers and children who have been influenced by a cleft lip/palate. Austin Smile’s ability to unite individuals with similar experiences is encouraging and gives me hope towards a united Austin community. I am eager to get started and to help in any way possible.\

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Juanita Lizbeth Rocha
UTHealth School of Public Health – Austin

Major: Master in Public Health, Epidemiology with Certificates in Health Disparities and Genomics

Favorite Quote: “Your hard work and dedication will ease the troubles of others.”

Public health is not a linear field, it encompasses an array of diverse fields and individuals with health and well-being as an end goal. Austin smiles works endlessly to bring justice to that statement, they bring together doctors, public health professionals, donors, and volunteers to contribute to the lives of the children with oral clefts and their families. Coming from Brownsville, Texas, a border town, and experiencing some of the effects that lack of financial support and resources brings about to the health of your community, I hope to play a part in Austin Smiles’ mission to serve beyond a border and bring my experience to the table. My goal is to contribute to communities that encounter health disparities beyond their control and serve to mend the bridge that equity has created. I know that I will have the team and support at Austin Smiles to continuously push my goal beyond its limits

Major: Master in Public Health, Epidemiology with Certificates in Health Disparities and Genomics

Favorite Quote: “Your hard work and dedication will ease the troubles of others.”

Public health is not a linear field, it encompasses an array of diverse fields and individuals with health and well-being as an end goal. Austin smiles works endlessly to bring justice to that statement, they bring together doctors, public health professionals, donors, and volunteers to contribute to the lives of the children with oral clefts and their families. Coming from Brownsville, Texas, a border town, and experiencing some of the effects that lack of financial support and resources brings about to the health of your community, I hope to play a part in Austin Smiles’ mission to serve beyond a border and bring my experience to the table. My goal is to contribute to communities that encounter health disparities beyond their control and serve to mend the bridge that equity has created. I know that I will have the team and support at Austin Smiles to continuously push my goal beyond its limits

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Maranda Giebler
Texas State University

Major: Master in Health Information Management

Favorite Quote: “Living your best life is your most important journey in life.” – Oprah Winfrey

Being an intern for Austin Smiles is such an amazing opportunity. I am grateful to be able to work with an outstanding team and an excellent company. Being able to implement a new electronic health record system and to learn more about IT database systems will advance my career mindset. I want to contribute as much knowledge as I can to this superb company that goes above and beyond for its patients. I am looking forward to working for this wonderful company and gaining as much knowledge as I can.

Major: Master in Health Information Management

Favorite Quote: “Living your best life is your most important journey in life.” – Oprah Winfrey

Being an intern for Austin Smiles is such an amazing opportunity. I am grateful to be able to work with an outstanding team and an excellent company. Being able to implement a new electronic health record system and to learn more about IT database systems will advance my career mindset. I want to contribute as much knowledge as I can to this superb company that goes above and beyond for its patients. I am looking forward to working for this wonderful company and gaining as much knowledge as I can.

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Natasha Pelayo
Concordia University – Texas

Graduate student: Master of Public Health

Favorite Quote: “Spread love everywhere you go. Let no one ever come to you without leaving happier.” – Mother Teresa

I feel so blessed to work with Austin Smiles this fall. Helping and serving others is my ultimate passion in life and being part of this wonderful organization whose mission is to provide care for children is truly an honor. Everyone deserves to have access to the health services they need, and I so admire the team at Austin Smiles that makes this possible for children across Central Texas and Latin America. I am incredibly grateful for the opportunity to learn from everyone involved in Austin Smiles’ mission, and I am looking forward to being a part.

Graduate student: Master of Public Health

Favorite Quote: “Spread love everywhere you go. Let no one ever come to you without leaving happier.” – Mother Teresa

I feel so blessed to work with Austin Smiles this fall. Helping and serving others is my ultimate passion in life and being part of this wonderful organization whose mission is to provide care for children is truly an honor. Everyone deserves to have access to the health services they need, and I so admire the team at Austin Smiles that makes this possible for children across Central Texas and Latin America. I am incredibly grateful for the opportunity to learn from everyone involved in Austin Smiles’ mission, and I am looking forward to being a part.

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Austin Smiles - local services Camp Amigo photo

Our History

Since 1987 Austin Smiles has changed lives one smile at a time

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Intern with Austin Smiles

Make a difference locally and globally

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Our Supporters

We are grateful for our philanthropic partners