Dynamo Girl is built on the conviction that competence in a variety of physical activities cultivates confidence in life. Every new skill gained – how to throw a ball, jump rope, work as part of a team – demonstrates to our girls that challenges in life can be met with confidence and self-belief.

Vanessa Kroll BennettFounder

Vanessa Kroll Bennett


I was inspired to start Dynamo Girl when I noticed the lack of opportunities for my daughter to play sports in the joyful, encouraging way she likes to learn. I created the program for her and all the girls who want the opportunity to be physically active in a supportive environment. Growing up, I swam, played soccer, basketball, tennis and softball from an early age. In high school, with the encouragement of great coaches, I learned to play two new sports: lacrosse and ice hockey. In the summers, I went to Camp Walden, an all-girls camp in Denmark, ME, and I received a BA in American Studies from Wellesley College, a women's college outside of Boston. Those experiences taught me the power of all-female environments in building girls' self-confidence. My original mission starting Dynamo Girl was to provide girls positive and empowering all-female experiences to build their self-esteem and help them grow stronger inside and out. What I have learned in the past several years is that there is so much that goes into building girls' self-esteem -- we now run puberty workshops, parenting workshops, coach and educator trainings, virtual programming of all kinds. I am the first Scholar in Residence in the Bert & Sandra Wasserman Center for Family life at the Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan where I work with families and staff to help get the best of the kids in our community.

I live in New York City with my husband and four children.

Mary Pat Draddy, LMSW

Outreach Director

I joined Dynamo Girl not long after my daughter left a playground frustrated because none of the boys would pass a soccer ball to her. As a social worker, I knew the questions to ask her to help her process the experience. I also knew I wanted my daughter to have a place where playing sports was a safe place for her. Through my work at Dynamo Girl, I have been able to help create that space for her and for so many amazing girls. As a former athlete, team sports helped me find and discover so many of the skills that I still utilize in a work setting- leadership, teamwork, communication and friendship. Through my MSW training at New York University, I knew that sports classes were a perfect place to get at the social-emotional work that so many of our kids need to feel the strengths they all have. Through our workshops and classes at Dynamo Girl, I get to help create environments where girls get to challenge themselves, discover new abilities and learn about how truly strong- physically and emotionally they are!

I live in New York City with my two kids, husband and two dogs.

Our Coaches

Dynamo Girl coaches are women of all different backgrounds who are passionate about helping girls enjoy physical activity while building their confidence. Our coaches are former athletes in a wide variety of sports who hail from all over the country and have degrees in areas like: Physical Education, Social Work, Psychology, Counseling and Outdoor Education. Dynamo Girl coaches are trained in our specially designed curriculum that builds girls' fundamental sports skills while providing them with social/emotional tools developed by Girls Leadership.