Class of 2018
Sunflower Foundation > What We Do > Advocacy > Advocacy Fellowship Program > Class of 2018
We are proud to announce the Advocacy Fellowship Class of 2018.
Over the coming year, this multi-sector class of 15 nonprofit leaders from across Kansas will further improve their advocacy skills, with a special emphasis on civil discourse and finding common ground to address issues of public concern.
The Advocacy Fellowship is part of the foundation’s non-partisan advocacy initiative and is designed to provide education and training opportunities for community leaders whose work can help shape public policy and ultimately improve the health of Kansans. A total of 89 leaders have graduated from the Fellowship’s first six, biennial classes.
Anthony T. Finlay
Executive Director, Hutchinson Recreation Commission, Hutchinson
Anthony leads a group of recreation professionals who are dedicated to providing healthy lifestyle opportunities to the residents of Hutchinson and Reno County. He is currently chair of Public Policy for the Kansas Recreation & Park Association. Anthony is also chair of the Hutchinson Housing Commission and Leadership Reno County, and is an active member of the Hutchinson Rotary Club. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Parks & Recreation Management from Fort Hays State University and is a Certified Parks & Recreation Professional. Anthony lives in Hutchinson with his wife Andrea, two teenage sons, Brant and Deven, and their family dog, Annabelle.
Pastor, Southwest Baptist Church, Topeka
Carl pastors a multicultural congregation at Southwest Baptist Church in Topeka. He serves in many community leadership capacities, including with Communities Creating Opportunity (CCO) in Kansas City, the State Kairos Prison Ministry and International Kairos Torch Prison Committee, Kansas Inter-Religion Roundtable, and Center for Peace and Justice in Topeka. Carl is bi-vocational and has worked for the US Department of Agriculture for over 32 years and currently serves as financial management analyst for the Risk Management Agency’s (RMA) chief financial officer. He previously worked for the Kansas City Health Department HIV Services Division in the Housing for People with HIV and AIDS (HOPWA ) program.
Director of Community Development and Housing, City of Pittsburg
Becky is director of Community Development and Housing for the City of Pittsburg. Previously, she served as director of Research, Planning and Grants Development for the Southeast Kansas Community Action Program (SEK-CAP) and as an advocate for low-income people throughout southeast Kansas, the state, and the nation. Becky earned a Master’s in Technical and Professional writing at Pittsburg State University, where she taught research and writing as a graduate assistant and continues to guest lecture on the topics of activism, advocacy, leadership, and civic engagement. Prior to her time in Kansas, Becky worked in Tulsa, Oklahoma, as an evaluation assistant for several research grants around homelessness and mental health issues, after a stint working in support of a rural homeless shelter in Alamosa, Colorado.
Lucia Jones Herrera
Project Manager, Community Health Council of Wyandotte County, Kansas City
Having spent 10 years as a clinical nurse, Lucia joined the Community Health Council team in 2013 to coordinate the Enroll Wyandotte Campaign, conducting outreach and education about the Affordable Care Act. Currently, she is the project director for the Community Health Worker Collaborative for Wyandotte County. Lucia also oversees programs related to hypertension management and diabetes prevention. She is part of the KC Regional Community Health Worker Collaborative Executive and Advocacy Committees. She is also on the Latino Health for All Care Access Committee. Lucia holds a Bachelor’s degree in Nursing and is working toward a Master’s degree in Education. She also has a certification in International Public Health. She lives in Merriam, with her husband, two kids, two dogs, and 6 chickens.
Director, Greeley County Community Development, Tribune
Christy Hopkins serves as the director of Greeley County Community Development, a nonprofit organization dedicated to ensuring stability and growth for Unified Greeley County. She is secretary for Growing the Vision: A Foundation for the Future of Greeley County and treasurer of The Star Theater of Tribune, a community-owned movie theater. Christy is a graduate of the Kansas Agriculture and Rural Leadership (KARL) program and a Kansas Health Foundation Fellow. She serves on the Kansas Sampler Foundation board and is a core-team member of the PowerUps, a Kansas Sampler initiative dedicated to the empowerment and connection of Kansans aged 21-39 who are rural by choice. She also serves on the board for western Kansas Regional Economic Development Alliance. Christy holds a Bachelor’s degree in Mass Communications and Film from Southwestern College in Winfield.
Executive Director, Communities Creating Opportunity, Kansas City
Seft is the executive director at Communities Creating Opportunity (CCO), where he oversees communications, staff leadership, fundraising, evaluation, and assessment. He brings more than 15 years professional experience in nonprofit management and leadership. Prior to joining CCO, Seft served as director of the Office of Sponsored and Assistant Professor of Family Medicine at Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences (KCUMB). Seft serves as chair of the Kansas City Health Commission and the Environmental Management Commission. Seft holds a Bachelor’s degree in Communication and Master’s degree in Management from West Virginia University. He also holds a PhD in Communication and Organizational Management from the University of South Florida.
Executive Director, Community Operations Recovery Empowerment Inc., Wichita
Brandon is a Wichita native, whose civic leadership spans more than 10 years in the areas of economic development, employment advocacy, social services, and community education. In 2011, Johnson created the nonprofit Community Operations Recovery Empowerment (CORE), which focuses on community engagement and leadership development. Through CORE, Brandon has helped foster dialog between law enforcement and residents as well as hosted community conversations focused on ending gang violence. He champions health and wellness through the development of community gardens. He serves on the advisory board of the Heartland Wichita Black Chamber of Commerce and participates as a liaison through Wichita Urban Professionals to the Entrepreneurship Task Force. Brandon is married to Danielle, who is the Assistant Director for Wichita State University’s Office of Diversity and Inclusion, and has two children, Khairi and Aria.
Director of Finance and Advocacy, Children’s Advocacy Centers of Kansas, Manhattan
Jayme is the director of finance and advocacy for Children’s Advocacy Centers of Kansas, a statewide membership organization for sixteen Children’s Advocacy Centers providing services to victims of child abuse. She is also the executive director of Thrive! Flinthills, a local poverty-reduction initiative whose mission is to build relationships and skills that strengthen families and individuals impacted by financial poverty in Riley, Geary, and Pottawatomie Counties. Jayme spent 18 years as executive director of Sunflower CASA Project and served four years on the Manhattan City Commission. Jayme is currently a volunteer Court Appointed Special Advocate and a mentor/tutor through Schools of Hope. She holds Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Biochemistry/Molecular Biology from Kansas State University. Jayme lives in Manhattan with her husband, Brian, and their two children, Trenton and Lily.
Tribal Council Vice-Chairman, Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation, Mayetta
Zach serves in the role of Tribal Council vice-chairman as part of the elected seven-member governing body of the Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation. Generally, the Tribal Council is tasked with the main duties of protecting the health, peace, morals, education, and welfare of the tribe, which is accomplished through the primary duties of authoring laws and policy and to serve as the decision-making authority on budgets and investments. Zach also serves as chair for the Board of Directors of Prairie Band, LLC, an economic development arm of the Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation. Zach’s previous work experience includes management in tribal gaming operations and administration in a tribally-run health care facility. He also is a member of the Executive Board for the Topeka Chamber of Commerce. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Art History from Stanford University and a Juris Doctor from the University of Kansas School of Law.
Callie C. Peace
Executive Director, Kansas Parents as Teachers Association, Paola
Callie has been with Parents as Teachers for 18 years – first as a parent, then as a parent educator, and currently as the executive director of Kansas Parents As Teachers Association (KPATA). KPATA is a statewide, nonprofit organization that supports early childhood education programs in Kansas with a parent education component. Callie is also a board member of the Paola Rotary Club, USD 368 District Site Council, Linn County Children’s Coalition, and Miami County Connect Kansas. She has previously served on the Johnson County Health Partnership Board, Miami County Local Inter-agency Coordinating Council, and the Miami County YMCA Board. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Family Life and Community Service from Kansas State University. Callie lives in Paola with her three teenage daughters, Emily, Rudy, and Clare.
CEO, Heartland Community Health Center, Lawrence
Jon has been CEO of Heartland Community Health Center in Lawrence since 2008 and led Heartland through the process of becoming a Federally-Qualified Health Center (FQHC). Originally a graduate of the KU architecture program, Jon previously directed construction activities for a nationally recognized architectural design and construction firm. It was his 10 years of volunteer work in a church-based health and recovery ministry that eventually led to his career change to health care. Jon is a Kansas Leadership Center alum and has served on the Oral Health Kansas/Dental Champions Advisory board, Success by 6 Coalition of Douglas County, and Douglas County Community Health Assessment Steering Team. He is currently a member of the Douglas County Health Leadership Council, working to expand access to mental health services. Jon is a former University of Kansas football player. He and his wife, Karen, live in a nineteenth-century home in the center of Lawrence with children Evan, Abby, and Andrea.
Becky P. Tuttle
Community Development Director, Greater Wichita YMCA, Wichita
Becky has over 20 years of experience engaging community partners through grassroots coalition efforts focusing on tobacco, physical activity, healthy eating, oral health, fetal infant mortality, and worksite wellness. Becky currently serves as the community development director for the Greater Wichita YMCA and facilitates the Health & Wellness Coalition of Wichita. Previously, she worked for Health ICT, an affiliate of the Medical Society of Sedgwick County, and at the Sedgwick County Health Department. Becky serves on the boards of the Kansas Public Health Association, Tobacco Free Kansas Coalition, Health Alliance, Tobacco Free Wichita Coalition, and WorkWell Kansas. She is a Kansas Public Health Leadership Institute Scholar, Advance Kansas graduate, Dental Champion, Kansas Leadership Center Champion, and Leadership Wichita alum. Becky holds a Master’s degree from Appalachian State University in Student Development Administration and Bachelor’s degree from the University of South Dakota in Psychology and Alcohol & Drug Abuse Studies.
Juston R. White
Executive Director, Boys & Girls Clubs of South Central Kansas, Wichita
Juston's passion for children and their success is displayed through his work serving as executive director of the Boys & Girls Clubs of South Central Kansas, where he is responsible for managing the strategic planning and operation of the Clubs in support of their mission. He previously served as Region-5 coordinator for Wichita State's Kansas Kids @ GEAR UP program, and prior to that served as the assistant campus director for Youthville's psychiatric residential treatment facility.
Juston is a Wichita native and a former member of the Wichita State Men's Basketball and Winston-Salem State Men’s Basketball Teams. Juston also proudly serves as the honorary commander for the 22nd Logistics Readiness Squad of McConnell AFB.
Executive Director, InterHab, Inc., Topeka
As executive director of InterHab, Tim leads members in strategic advocacy efforts with Kansas legislators and stakeholders to improve the lives of Kansans with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Tim joined InterHab from Johnson County Developmental Supports, where he worked as the CDDO director. Tim has a breadth of experience supporting and advocating for persons with disabilities including Disability Rights Tennessee and Disability Rights Center of Kansas. In total, he has more than 20 years of experience working in government relations and disability policy. Tim is an alumnus of Wichita State University with a Bachelor’s degree in Health Services Organization and Policy. A native of Nashville, Tennessee, Tim lives in Lawrence with his wife, Janene, and they have three daughters, Cheyenna, Claire, and Annabelle.
Fellow Emeritus, Topeka
Carolyn is retired since 2009 from a career in development work exclusively on behalf of not-for-profit organizations. Her positions included development director, Marian Clinic, Topeka; director of public relations and then director of planned giving, Development Office, Saint Mary College, Leavenworth; and promotion director, KTWU/11, Topeka. As Fellow Emeritus in the Class of 2018, Carolyn represents a growing number of life-long advocates whose commitment to causes continues well into retirement. Currently, Carolyn lends her passion for advocacy to the Kansas Coalition Against the Death Penalty and serves as a lay associate to the Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth (SCL), where she focuses on poverty issues and refugee work. Throughout her career, she enjoyed opportunities in public service, including serving on the Topeka Center for Peace and Justice Board, SCL Social Justice Executive Committee, and Kansas Governmental Ethics Commission. Carolyn holds a Bachelor’s degree from Saint Mary College, Leavenworth, with a major in English and minor in Drama. She and husband, Jon, live in Topeka. They have two children and two grandchildren.