Meet Our Team

From our Case Managers to our Board of Directors, Kansas Big Brothers Big Sisters is composed of individuals who are compassionate and dedicated to doing whatever it takes to help change the lives of Kansas youth for the better.

Board of Directors

Bill Hanna

Koch Industries, Inc., President & COO (Retired)

KSBBBS BoD Chair Emeritus

Bill served as the President/COO of Koch Industries from 1987-2001 and Vice Chairman from 1999-2001. He started his career with Sunray DX Oil in Okla. before joining Koch in 1968. Bill has served on the Board for Security Benefit Corp. of Topeka, the KU School of Business and BBBSA, among many others. He has been a member since 1990 of the Engineering Advisory Council at Texas A&M, where he earned a BS degree in civil engineering and was recently honored as an Outstanding Alumnus of their Engineering College.

Brian Sikes

Cargill Protein & Salt Enterprise, Executive Vice President

KSBBBS BoD Vice Chair

Brian graduated from Texas Tech in 1990 with a BS in Ag Economics. He has worked in several positions at Cargill, including President of Cargill Meats Canada from 2007-2009, President of Cargill Value Added Meats from 2009-2011, and Managing Director of Cargill Meats Europe from 2011-2013.

James Nastars

Meritrust Credit Union, President & CEO

KSBBBS BoD Secretary

James has more than 18 years of credit union executive experience and became the President/CEO of Meritrust in 2013. He leads Meritrust with a commitment to integrity, focusing on members and caring for our communities. James brings more than 16 years of executive experience as the Senior VP of Lending and Collections at Univ. Federal Credit Union (UFCU) in Austin, a 76-year old credit union with $1.5 billion in assets, serving over 150,000 members in over 200 universities, associations and employers in Central TX and Galveston.

Nicole Corcoran

Kansas Athletics, Executive Associate Athletics Director

Nicole joined the KU Athletics Dept. as Chief of Staff to the Athletics Director in 2009. In July 2017, she was named Senior Associate Athletics Director/Senior Woman Administrator. Nicole graduated from Washburn Univ. with a bachelor's in communications with a public relations emphasis. In 2005, Nicole was named outstanding alumni by the Washburn Univ. Mass Media Dept. She currently serves as a Big Sister in the KSBBBS program.

Margaret Dechant

6 Meridian, Partner

Often credited as the visionary of the 6 Meridian team, Margaret has earned the informal title of “people architect.” Her ability to connect with individuals and harness their respective strengths is uncanny. And her passion for service is unmatched. At the start of her decades-long career in finance, Margaret was working within a private banking group when she saw what many others didn’t. Margaret’s ability to solve issues clients don’t even know they have yet is a coveted and advantageous quality. For Margaret, passion and dedication are in no short supply, and these traits extend beyond the office walls to other interests, namely travel and advocating for animals.

Tom Gentile

Spirit AeroSystems, Inc., President & CEO

Tom earned a bachelor’s degree in economics magna cum laude and an MBA from Harvard, and studied international relations at the London School of Economics. Prior to his roles at Spirit, Tom served as president and COO of GE Capital, and president and CEO of GE Healthcare Systems and GE Aviation Services. He has held numerous other leadership and strategy roles with McKinsey and Company, CBS and General Motors.

Joseph Johnson

SJCF Architecture, Senior Vice President

Joe received his Bachelor of Architecture from the Univ. of Illinois in 1971, and pursued graduate studies in the Hugo Wall School of Urban & Public Affairs at WSU. He joined Schaefer Schirmer & Associates in 1975 and became an owner in Schaefer & Associates in 1979. In 1986, the firm became Schaefer Johnson Cox Frey. Joe is a Registered Architect in nine states. He is also certified by the National Council of Architects Registration Boards and a member of the American Institute of Architects.

Mark Knackendoffel

The Trust Company, President & CEO

Mark founded The Trust Company in 1992. He began his career in trust and investment management in 1983 after earning his MBA and JD from KU. He is also a graduate of ESU with a bachelor’s in Public Administration and Economics. He formerly managed the Trust and Investment Dept. for First National Bank of Manhattan and was also VP of Commerce Bank and Trust of Topeka. His roles with The Trust Company include overall strategic and corporate management, fiduciary client service, and investment policy oversight.

Jeff Martin

Evergy, Vice President of Customer and Community Operations

Jeff received his BS in Electronics Engineering Technology from Pittsburg State University and his MBA in operations management from Kansas State University. Jeff was named Every VP of Customer and Community Operations in June 2018 after the successful completion of the merger of Westar Evergy and KCP&L. Jeff has held various roles in Regulatory, IT, and Operations with Evergy since he joined in 1993.

Steve Feilmeier

Koch Industries, Inc., Executive VP & CFO

KSBBBS BoD Chair

Steve began his career with Koch in 1997 as controller for Koch Chemical Group. He later served as VP of Tax, Accounting & Finance for Koch Industries. Steve earned a master’s degree in accounting from WSU and is a CPA. He currently serves on the boards of these Koch subsidiaries: Georgia-Pacific, Koch Chemical Technology Group, Koch Asset Management, and Molex Electronic Technologies Holdings.

Gene Camarena

La Raza Pizza, Inc., President/CEO

KSBBBS BoD Treasurer

Gene received his BS in Accounting and Business Administration from KU and a Master’s degree from Harvard. He is President/CEO of La Raza Pizza, one of the top 150 largest Hispanic owned companies in America. Gene has served on the Pizza Hut Advertising Committee for which he was responsible for marketing and product strategy for the 6,000+ U.S. operated Pizza Huts. He is also Past Chairman of the Board of the International Pizza Hut Franchise Association.

Maryann Balbo

Cox Media - Kansas/Arkansas, Vice President

Maryann is responsible for operations and advertising sales in Kansas and Arkansas. She has worked in broadcast, cable, digital and print. The majority of her career has been focused on sales and marketing. As an early adopter of digital platforms, Maryann has led changes among many organizations including Time Warner, NBC, The St. Petersburg Times and ABC/Disney. Maryann has served in several nonprofit roles including Dress for Success, United Way, Free 2 Teach and the Christian Women’s Job Corp.

Marty Cornejo

Cornejo Companies, C & S Group, Partner

Marty was born and raised in Wichita growing up in a family business started by his father, known today as Cornejo & Sons Construction. Fresh out of high school, Marty started as a full-time employee and through the years evolved into the President of Cornejo & Sons which grew into Heavy Highway Construction which was acquired by Summit Materials in 2010. Marty is co-owner of C&S Group which has active business ventures, real estate and investments.

John Foust

S and Y Industries, Executive Vice President

John has been with S and Y Industries for 16 years and has played a key role in its dramatic growth. Prior to John’s time with S and Y, he was VP of CM & Associates. He grew the company through innovative business concepts that generated over $6 million in new revenue. In the mid-90s, John joined the JPATs division of Raytheon Aircraft in Wichita. He honed his contract negotiating skills while working with the DOD on Navy and Air Force projects.

Ben Hutton

Hutton, President

After obtaining a construction management degree from K-State, Ben worked for a Colorado-based firm before returning to Hutton as a project manager, and later, leading the company’s development efforts. In 2010, he assumed the role of President, taking over for the man who instilled his love for construction, his father. Under Ben’s leadership, Hutton has grown consistently and considerably.

Herman T. Jones

Kansas Highway Patrol, Superintendent

Herman has been actively involved in law enforcement since 1977. He is a graduate of the FBI National Academy Session 248, 101st National Sheriff’s Institute Academy, Kansas Highway Patrol Academy – Class 18, and the 54th Kansas Law Enforcement Basic Academy. In addition to his involvement in many other law enforcement organizations, Herman actively serves his church as an elder, deacon, usher, and youth and Sunday school leader. Herman acquired a BS in Psychology from Emporia State University. He has been married to wife, Carlene, since 1982 and has two adult sons and one grandson.

Courtney Lisenmeyer-O'Brien, PhD, MHR, LPC

Psychologist, Self-employed

Courtney began her professional career in the psychiatry field in 2004 and opened her own practice in May of 2009. She currently specializes in sexuality, depression, anxiety, and addiction. Courtney enjoys working out to keep her mind and body healthy and was the Red River Bodybuilding Champion in 1995. Courtney received her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Oklahoma State University, her Master of Arts in Psychology & Sexuality from the University of Oklahoma, Tulsa, and her PhD from Saybrook University in Oakland, California.

Leadership Team

Dan Soliday

Dan has over 15 years of leadership in nonprofit and ministry capacities. He is dedicated to addressing the root cause of poverty and providing positive youth development to continue breaking the cycle of poverty.

CEO

Mary Shannon

Mary has more than 25 years of nonprofit leadership experience, and in her current capacity, works to engage staff, volunteers and the community. She is passionate about doing all we can to make a life-changing impact for our Kansas youth, just as she experienced through the power of mentorship.

President

Brandon Russell

Brandon has worked in the Emergency Medical Services field and has a master’s of public administration, as well as a graduate certificate in nonprofit management from WSU, He loves the mission-mindedness to serve kids facing adversity and believes in KSBBBS's strong projected growth model.

Chief Operations Officer

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Shared Services

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Erika Turner
Director of Administration & Special Events
Ashly Runnells
HR Generalist
Savannah Heller
Organizational Trainer/Coordinator
Holly Laird
Grant Writer
Shawndra Burgardt
Director of Accounting
Teresa Yost
Finance Associate
Shirley Dieker
IT Director
Tim Mertz
Senior IT Specialist
Tammy Boucher
For Kids Sake Manager
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Jennifer Bates
Northwest Area Director
Lexi Gardner
Match Support Supervisor
Tracey Andrews
Senior Match Support Specialist
Amanda Jacobs
Match Support Specialist
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Ryan Ausmus
Southwest Area Director
Leticia Guereca
Match Support Specialist
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Michelle Sink
North Central Area Director
Hannah Illies
Match Support Supervisor
Brittany Campbell
Senior Match Support Specialist
Skylar Mecca-Lipman
Match Support Specialist
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Shelly Chinberg
South Central Area Director
Tammy Boucher
For Kids Sake Manager
Denise Brodsky
Area Manager-Reno County
Haley Butts
Volunteer Manager
Stephanie McCarthy
Mentor Support Manager
Courtney Stuckey
Child & Family Manager
Brooke Porter
New Match Manager
Dayanna Chavez
Match Support Supervisor
Rachelle Roberson
Senior Match Support Specialist
Anna Gorges
Match Support Specialist
Rachel Hiwrade
Match Support Specialist
Molly Kush
Match Support Specialist
Brittany Lawrence-Cockrell
Match Support Specialist
Brooke Morris
Match Support Specialist
Darci Nightingale
Match Support Specialist
Debra Romero
Match Support Specialist
Lianna Sundine
Match Support Specialist
Madeline Will
Match Support Specialist
Theresa Murdick
Senior Development Associate
Debi Clark
Development Associate
Holly Herring
Development Associate/Marketing
Daniel Morford
Recruitment Assistant
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Eric Maydew
North Area Director
Catherine Chapman
Senior Match Support Specialist
Jacinta Bergkamp
Match Support Specialist
Abby Lindstrom
Match Support Specialist
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Jeffry Jack
Northeast Area Director
Patricia Hutton
Match Support Supervisor
Emmanuel Ramirez
Match Support Specialist
Dalton Hoffman
Match Support Specialist
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Match Support Specialist
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Monica Holmes
Area Director
Cassidy Owen
Senior Match Support Specialist
Ali Smith
Match Support Specialist
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CONTACT: 316-263-3300 / info@kansasbigs.org

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© 2019 Kansas Big Brothers Big Sisters.