The New Canaan Outback Teen Center has hired Kate Boyle as the new director and Mallory Gatison as assistant director.

"The board is thrilled to bring Kate and Mallory on board the Outback team," said Sangeeta Appel, board president. "Having two professional, full-time directors leading the Outback allows us to implement more robust programs and allows us to expand our operating hours to give preteens and teens more access to the Outback."

As the director, Boyle will work in collaboration with the New Canaan schools and community and develop programs and events for the teen center.

"I was attracted to the Outback's mission to provide a positive and enriching environment where teens are able to relax, socialize, participate in self-directed activities, and have the opportunity to contribute to the community," Boyle said.

"I believe in cultivating an enriching environment that focuses on understanding the relationship of achievement, social-emotional competencies, and the development of character and a core set of life principles."

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Boyle comes to the Outback with more than six years of experience in youth and child social-emotional and character development, as well as program and community enrichment.

Most recently, she worked as the school psychologist for Sterling High School district in Somerdale, N.J. There, she served as the harassment, intimidation and bullying specialist and collaborated with parents and the community to provide support directed at improving the overall well-being for adolescents and successful post-secondary outcomes.

In addition, Boyle has worked as an applied behavioral analysis therapist and within the Rutgers Social-Emotional Learning Lab, focusing on issues such as character development and identity, social decision-making skills, social support and sustainability of preventative interventions.

"I intend to apply my background in the positive development of the whole child to educating and creating an environment that will support the Outback and the community which we serve," Boyle said.

Gatison will be assisting Boyle with programming at the Outback. In addition, she will be managing the front desk and rentals at the facility.

"I was drawn to the Outback because I love working with kids," Gatison said.

She brings her expertise and experience with youth from her prior work with LEAP in New Haven and Marrekech Inc.

"As the site coordinator for LEAP, I led the development and management of senior counselors, junior counselors, assistant site coordinators and leaders in training while implementing social and academic programming.

"I also planned and coordinated activities to recruit children and managed a site of 65 youths ranging from 7 to 20 years old. At Marrakech, I was able to work and grow with the youth during the academic year. These kids had a variety of special needs and came from different backgrounds.

"I'm looking forward to working with and getting to know the kids in this community."

Expanded hours

The Outback's new expanded hours starting Monday, Dec. 3, are:

Administrative: Tuesday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Operating: Tuesday through Thursday from 2 to 7 p.m.

Friday: 2 to 10 p.m.

Saturday: 2 to 11 p.m.

Sunday: 1 to 6 p.m., twice a month

For information, call 203-594-3074, email or visit