Board Members 2020
The ALP Board of Directors represents a broad spectrum of membership representing communities across the nation.
Dr. Baginski joined Leadership Lake County in January 2012. She has over 35 years of experience in communications, marketing and management in public, private and nonprofit organizations.
Dr. Baginski was Laketrans first Director of Public Relations and Marketing from 2000 through 2010. During that time, she earned numerous national awards for communications and was an annual presenter at the American Public Transit Associations Marketing & Communications conference. Prior to Laketran, she was the Director of Development for Society for Rehabilitation, a nonprofit rehabilitation agency for children and adults with disabilities. She has also served as an adjunct professor at Cleveland State University in the College of Education.
She has been a long-standing and active member in the Mentor Chamber of Commerce, the Ohio Governors Council on People with Disabilities Youth Leadership Forum, and Leadership Lake County. She is a graduate of Leadership Ashtabula 1996 and Leadership Lake County 2004. Dr. Baginski graduated from the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses program in May of 2016.
Dr. Baginski earned her Associate of Arts in Business from Lakeland Community College in 1996; Bachelor of Arts in Management at Ursuline College in 2000; her Master of Arts in Education from Marietta College in 2008; and her Doctor of Philosophy in Urban Education with a specialization in Leadership and Life Long Learning from Cleveland State University in 2011. Her dissertation was a narrative study the lives of students serving in New Orleans in the weeks following Hurricane Katrina and the role community service played in preparing them to be there.
She is a member of Lakeland Community Colleges Hall of Fame. In 2008, she received the Maureen Fitzgerald Leadership Award from Governors Council on People with Disabilities for positively impacting the lives of students with disabilities. In 2014, she was a recipient of Lakeland Community Colleges Woman of Achievement Award.
Kay Fitzsimons is the Director for the Community Institute at Lone Star College in The Woodlands (TX). Her programs include Leadership North Houston, Leadership North Houston Alumni Association, Leadership High School (Montgomery County, North Houston and Northwest), Lone Star Leadership College, and the Texas Community Development Institute (CDI Texas).
Kay grew up on a large farm in rural Nebraska and is a tried and true Husker fan even in the land of Longhorns and Aggies. She received her Bachelors of Journalism from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and is a graduate of the Fort Bend Leadership Forum and a Lone Star College System Academy.
In my life before community leadership development, I actually used my degree and managed the production of a network of nationally distributed sports magazines, newsletter and specialty publications for almost 10 years. I serve on various non-profit boards and advisory councils in addition to serving as an executive committee member of the national board of the Community Development Council (CDC).
I got my start working in community leadership development with the Fort Bend, Texas Chamber of Commerce in early 2000 directing programs such as the Fort Bend Leadership Forum, Leadership Excellence for Non-Profits and Youth in Philanthropy. The scope of that involvement has continued to expand through various positions within the Lone Star College System and my current position overseeing the Community Leadership Institute.
Cynthia Knapek is the President/CEO of Leadership Louisville Center. In 2012, she was named President of the Leadership Louisville Center, only the fifth director the organization has had since its founding in 1979.
Before joining Leadership Louisville, she was Executive Director of Brightside, an innovative public private partnership that works to build civic pride in the community and keep Louisville clean and green. Cynthia was named to Business Firsts Top 40 Leaders Under 40 in 2001 and received the Citizen Laureate award in 2013 from the Younger Womens Club. Cynthia was a founding member and the first President the Young Professionals Association of Louisville (YPAL). She is a graduate of the Bingham Fellows Class of 2009 and of Leadership Network in 2006.
Cynthia is active in several community organizations and serves on the boards of Greater Louisville Inc., Metro Parks Foundation and the advisory board for the Young Professionals Association of Louisville. Shes also served on the boards of the University of Louisville Alumni Association, the Mayors Commission on Public Art and the Catholic Education Foundation.
She has a Masters degree from the University of Louisville. Cynthia married her college sweetheart Mark and they have two boys
In Cheri Gangers' role as director of community programs, she is responsible for the Chambers community engagement programs, including Leadership Twin Cities and the Minnesota Keystone Program. She also provides support for the Chambers Executive Womens Council and Small Business Committee. Prior to joining the Chamber, she held positions with the Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce and Saks Incorporated. She studied Political Science and Latin American studies at the University of Iowa.
David Sachs grew up in Baltimore, moved to MA for college and stayed for nearly 20 years. During that time, he married, went to graduate school and began a career in leadership development. He moved back to Baltimore in 2005. David's passion is to create transformational learning experiences. He has pursued this professional passion in higher education (Harvard Business School, University of Maryland, Baltimore County, Johns Hopkins University, and the Maryland Institute College of Art) and the corporate sector (T. Rowe Price).
Our program is a single program equivalent to the flagship or core programs offered by other organizations. 10 months in duration. While we meet for a day/month similar to other programs, we supplement those full-days with a variety of field experiences (e.g. police car ride-a longs, overnights at transitional housing shelters, visits to key social service providers and economic assets), evenings at cultural institutions and lunches with civic leaders. The programs objective is to help participants become more effective civic leaders in Baltimore by helping them to develop a better understanding of the regions challenges and assets, building a network of authentic collaborative relationships, and strengthening their civic leadership skills.
Yemi Akande-Bartsch has close to 20 years of experience in designing and facilitating leadership training, development, diversity & inclusion and coaching programs. She has served as vice president of leadership and alumni programs for FOCUS St. Louis, senior director of civic education for the Cleveland Leadership Center and program director for the Cleveland Executive Fellowship. Prior to joining FOCUS, she was managing partner at YsA Group, a leadership training and development company based in Cleveland, Ohio.
Yemi was also a lecturer at The Boler School of Business and Assistant Professor of Communication and Theatre Arts at Ohios John Carroll University, and was the host of a weekly radio show called Making the Case on Clevelands WJCU 88.7 FM, which featured interviews on Leadership and Legacy. She has also worked in the field of International education for many years. She has been working in the field of community leadership development for close to 10 years.
Barbara Boone has had the distinct pleasure to have worked with 2 community leadership programs in her career. First with Leade she serves as Executive Director. Her time at Leadership Jacksonville began when participating in LJ Class 1991 representing the Junior League of Jacksonville. She brought a history of working in the social work profession and volunteering in the community to the organization. For the next several years, she was able to learn firsthand about community trusteeship from some of the finest community leaders in Jacksonville, most notably from longtime LT ED Eleanor Ashby who passed away. She was later hired as Program Director for Leadership Tallahassee take the organization into the 21st century.
Cathy is a native of Maryville, TN. Prior to her move to Middle Tennessee in 2011, Cathy served for six years as Executive Director of Leadership Blount County with a focus on educating local leaders on issues affecting Blount County and the region including education, sustained growth, health care and environmental issues.
Cathy has twenty years experience with the outdoor, leadership training and development company Mountain Challenge at Maryville College developing course outcomes and facilitating groups in ropes course and indoor, leadership exercises and served as Assistant Dean of Students at Maryville College in the 1990s.
Cathy has spent many years serving as a volunteer and in leadership capacities for organizations such as the Tennessee Association of Community Leadership, East Tennessee Regional Leadership, American Cancer Society, Family Promise of Blount County, Junior Service League of Blount County and most recently with the newly-formed Williamson County Education Foundation, the Oasis Center of Nashville and the Tennessee Residence Foundation.
Kathy Coffey, Executive Director of Leadership Snohomish County (LSC), is known for her enthusiasm, generosity and authenticity. Just as she did with her TEDx talk entitled, Connect and Lead, How We Create Community, Kathy jumps in with both feet. She champions LSCs mission wherever she goes, seeking people and organizations to engage in her quest to strengthen and diversify community leadership. As a local leader who walks the talk, Kathy serves as a member of Lynnwoods Human Services Commission, is a South EverettMukilteo Rotarian and sits on the board of directors for the YMCA of Snohomish County.
Prior to joining LSC in 2014, Kathy spent 16 years in higher education. She was Assistant Director of Edmonds Community College Foundation and Development Relations Coordinator at Bastyr University. She was also co-owner of Pivot Edmonds, a community magazine, online marketplace and community engagement site.
Accomplished leader with more than 20 years of progressively responsible experience and successful results in executive positions. Proven track record in developing and implementing strategic plans. Exceptional interpersonal and communication skills with ability to forge successful working relationships with customers and consumers, employees, boards, public-private partnerships and community leaders.
Tami serves as the Director of Leadership Development for the Greenville Chamber working with Chambers Leadership Development programs. Tami has served as a State Examiner for the South Carolina Governors Quality Award and served on the Board of Examiners for the National Baldrige Performance Excellence Program. Her backgrounds in the education and corporate sectors combined with her passion for the community have intersected in her current role with the Greenville Chamber connecting individuals to their passions in the community by engaging and inspiring the current and future leaders of our community.
Nicole A. Morristell is currently the director of Leadership Lackawanna, (Scranton, PA) a non-profit organization dedicated to community leadership and professional development. Leadership Lackawanna consists of a 10-month core program, a 5-week executive program, a 7-month youth program and several fundraisers, events and workshops. Established in 1982, Leadership Lackawanna has graduated more than 2,000 community leaders.
Nikki comes to Leadership Lackawanna from the local Girl Scout organization where she served in a number of positions over the years. She is a 1998 graduate of Tunkhannock Area High School, Tunkhannock, PA and a 2002 graduate of Elizabethtown College, Elizabethtown, PA.
Nikki is actively involved with The Nature Conservancy, Countryside Conservancy, Association of Leadership Programs, Supporters of Camp Archbald, and Haiti Partnership.
Executive Director, Leadership Institute of Acadiana, LA - A South Louisiana native, Ashley earned her Bachelor of Arts in Sociology from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. As a student, Ashleys passion for developing leaders inspired her to develop and launch UL Lafayettes interdisciplinary minor in leadership studies. Upon graduation, Ashley joined the team at Girl Scouts of LouisianaPines to the Gulf leading their recruitment and retention efforts to build girls of courage, confidence, and character who make the world a better place. She currently serves as the Executive Director of the Leadership Institute of Acadiana, a non-profit designed to convene, build, and activate leaders in the Acadiana community. Under her Leadership, LIA has grown its programming, launched a new brand, and implemented its first strategic commitment to diversity and inclusion.
Training language instructors from multiple cultures while studying applied psycholinguistics at Compania Linguistica in Mexico City sparked Mike's ongoing field research in what has become his lifelong interest -- human behavior and communication.
Over the past 20 years Mike served as a Tri-lingual interrogator in the United States Army, established his first corporation by the age of 25, motivated people to excel at his fitness Boot Camps in Boston and Philadelphia, and served as the New England Regional Manager for an international healthcare company based in the United Arab Emirates. A former on-call analyst for CNN, Mike has been interviewed hundreds of times for TV, radio, newspapers, and magazines. He has participated in nine documentaries in the past 11 years; "Songs of War" won an International Emmy.
Mike just completed his eighth year as the Executive Director of Leadership Rhode Island. Under his leadership, LRI has received many accolades to include the Excellence in Public Service Award by Common Cause RI, the National Innovation Award by the Association of Leadership Programs (twice), two Community Outreach Awards by the RI Press Association in partnership with The Providence Journal and Rhode Island College, and this past year was recognized by Gallup as an inspiration for the "15 million and growing" global strengths movement.
Andre Santiago, Vice President for Programs, oversees the development, implementation and evaluation of all programs at Leadership Greater Hartford as well as the organizations extensive consulting and training services. Having joined the staff at LGH in 2007 as a program assistant, he has risen through the ranks serving as Program Director overseeing youth programs and then as Senior Program Director. In the course of his tenure, he has had involvement with and/or provided leadership to most of the core programs offered by LGH. He has served as the LGH lead in numerous consulting and training contracts including Hartford Decide$ (the city-wide community engagement project in which the citizens identify and select capital projects throughout the city) and the Community Policing Leadership Institute now serving the fourth cohort of Hartford police officers. He is a certified Enneagram trainer and frequently is a facilitator in LGHs Consulting & Training services.
Andre has served on numerous boards and currently serves on the Board of InterCommunity, which provides physical, mental health and addiction services. Andre is a member of the 2016 class of Hartford Business Journals 40 under Forty, which recognizes outstanding young leaders in the region. He was recently elected to the national Board of Directors of the Association of Leadership Programs.
Executive Director, Ottumwa Leadership Academy, IA.
Hollie was hired to launch Ottumwa Leadership Academy as its Executive Director in 2012. Hollie holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication from Central College and has a wealth of experience in leadership, strategic planning & marketing, public relations, and public speaking. She is also a Gallup Certified Strengths Coach and a certified Speaker, Trainer, Coach with the John Maxwell Team.
Prior to joining Ottumwa Leadership Academy, Hollie was the Program Director for the Wound Healing & Hyperbaric Center at Ottumwa Regional Health Center. Additional roles held earlier in her career include Communication Coordinator at Ottumwa Regional Health Center, Public Relations Coordinator at William Penn University, and Chamber Director for the Albia Area Chamber of Commerce. Hollie and her husband Dan have two children: Jessica and Carson.
President/CEO, Leadership Howard County, MD. Stacie Hunt became President and CEO of Leadership Howard County in 2002. Together with staff, board and alumni, Stacie leads an organization dedicated to developing community leadership and positive impact through its signature Premier program and an active organization of alumni. She has an extensive background in the nonprofit sector, and a deep knowledge of community affairs and civic engagement. Stacie completed the Leadership Premier program in 2002 as a manager for United Way, before becoming CEO later that year. A graduate of Auburn University, she received a Bachelor of Science in Marketing and Business Administration.
Stacie is board member of the national Association of Leadership Programs, the Howard County Library Board of Trustees, The Horizon Foundation and chairs the University of Baltimores Certified Public Manager Program Advisory Board. She is a founding partner of the Board Bank, and belongs to numerous advisory groups that serve our community. In 2015 she was named to the Maryland Daily Records list of Top 100 Women and in 2016 she was awarded the SmartCEO Brava Award. In 2017 she was named to Howard County's Women's Hall of Fame for her longstanding service to mentoring women in their roles of community service.