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Advancement Board

Welcome to the Advancement Board
Class of 2023!

Kirsten Flory
Foundations Commercial Real Estate

Foundations Commercial Real Estate is a full-service brokerage headquartered in Lawrence, KS. Serving as a market specialist for office, retail, industrial, land development and investment properties in Northeast Kansas, Foundations Commercial has a focus on business owners and their real estate goals. From start-up entrepreneurs, to creating exit strategies for larger corporations, Kirsten Flory, President / Broker, has experience in working with businesses in all stages of their business growth. Kirsten is a native of Omaha, NE, and a graduate of the University of Kansas. With a background in marketing and banking, Kirsten has been in commercial real estate brokerage since 2013. Kirsten serves on several local and state Boards including: The Chamber of Lawrence, KS, EDC of Douglas County, Cottonwood, Inc., Community Children’s Center, Kansas Department of Credit Unions Advisory Board, Peaslee Technical College, KU Innovation Park.

Tami Greenberg
Ronald McDonald House Charities of Kansas City

Tami joined Ronald McDonald House Charities of Kansas City in 2015 where she oversees the operation of all facilities including three houses on Hospital Hill and a family room at Children’s Mercy Hospital. In her role, she brings together families in need and people who care. In 2019, the nonprofit, which has $23 million in total assets and an annual budget of $5 million, served more than 8,000 families with a staff of 52 and a volunteer army of 17,000. During the pandemic, they remained open and served families despite having no volunteers and a jump in expenses. Prior to joining RMHC, Greenberg was president of the Mid America Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society and, before that, Senior Vice President of Strategy Development & Human Capital at United Way of Greater Kansas City, Inc. She has also worked at other nonprofits, including the Good Samaritan Project, The Children’s Place and CASA. With her BA in Psychology from Wheaton College in Illinois, a master’s in social work from the University of Kansas, and an executive MBA from UMKC, Greenberg currently sits on the Board of Directors for the KCMO Downtown Council as well as the KU Advancement Board. She was named a Class of 2020 Women Who Mean Business by the Kansas City Business Journal. She and her wife, Mary Chris Blickhan, have been together for 25 years, and are the proud (and busy) moms of two teenage boys.

Tim McKee
Olathe Chamber of Commerce

A lifelong resident of the Kansas City area, Tim McKee is the CEO of the Olathe Chamber of Commerce. Before assuming that position, he was the chamber’s executive vice president for economic development. In his 14 years at the chamber, he has helped position Olathe as one of the fastest-growing cities in the United States, bringing to fruition major projects like the Kansas Bioscience Park, which includes Kansas State University Olathe and the Kansas Bioscience Authority’s Venture Accelerator. He also assisted with the expansion of the Farmers Insurance and Garmin International headquarters and has helped generate explosive growth in office, retail, and industrial space in Olathe. McKee began his professional career working first as a residential mortgage loan officer in the Kansas City area. He was then hired as the first business and retention manager for the Overland Park Chamber of Commerce, a position he held for four years before coming to Olathe in 1998. McKee has shared his leadership skills with many community organizations, including: 2006 chair of the Johnson County United Way, Executive Committee of the Greater Kansas City Foreign Trade Zone, Kansas Chamber of Commerce Executives, Kansas Economic Developers Association. On the national level, he is on the Board of Directors for the Institute of Organizational Management of the United States Chamber of Commerce and is a graduate of the U.S. Chamber’s Institute of Organizational Management. He holds a B.S. in Marketing Management from Southwest Missouri State University.

Clyde McQueen
Full Employment Council

Clyde serves as President and Chief Executive Officer of the Full Employment Council (FEC), Inc. Since 1987, FEC has been the strategic workforce entity and fiscal agent for two Workforce Development Boards serving five counties, including two of the largest cities in Missouri – Kansas City and Independence. Clyde previously worked as the Division Director of Training and Employment Development for the Texas Department of Community Affairs, the administrative agency for the Workforce Development system throughout the State of Texas. Clyde also served as Chairman of the Technical Review Committee for Economic Development, which oversaw the disbursement of an economic development fund for non-entitlement cities, as well as an Assistant Instructor at Texas State University, and as a Field Supervisor for the City of San Antonio Nutrition Program. He holds a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree in Speech Communications and Political Science from Texas State University. He completed the Top State Manager’s Executive Education Program at Duke University.

Clyde currently serves as an executive committee member of the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce, Board member of the United Services Community Action Agency, Board member of the Clay County Economic Development Corporation, member of the Personnel Committee of the Economic Development Corporation of Kansas City, and a Board member of the Construction Workforce Development Board of the City of Kansas City, MO. Clyde has been recognized as “Professional of the Year” by the Missouri Association of Workforce Development, “Local Hero” and “100 Most Influential Kansas Citians” by Ingram’s Magazine, “Job Training Professional of the Year” by the National Alliance of Business, “Distinguished Service Award” by the Texas Association of SDA Administrators, and “Top State Manager” by the State of Texas. Clyde has also been awarded resolutions, sponsored by the Missouri House of Representatives and the Missouri Senate, on his accomplishments in workforce development. Clyde has testified before the U.S. Senate Health, Education, Labor, & Pensions Committee regarding the reauthorization of workforce development programs in the United States. Clyde also was recognized in the Congressional Record of the U.S. House of Representatives and inducted into the Missouri Walk of Fame to honor the achievements of African Americans who made significant contributions to the state of Missouri. He received a Distinguished Service Award from the Kansas City chapter of the NAACP and was recognized as Citizen of the Year by the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity. His work has been cited in Nations Business Magazine and the New York Times.

Teesha Miller
Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City

Teesha is vice president and director of the Office of Minority and Women Inclusion at the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City. She also serves as an advisor to the Bank’s Management Committee. Previously, she served as assistant vice president and community affairs officer (CAO). In this role, she led the Tenth District’s Community Affairs Department with responsibility for developing strategic direction and leading the execution of the Bank’s community and economic development initiatives that address challenging issues affecting underserved communities and small businesses. She also represented the Bank on the System’s CAO Subcommittee and managed the Community Development Advisory Council. She was promoted to her current position in March 2023. Miller has over 20 years of experience developing and executing outcomes-based programs for underserved and underrepresented communities. Before joining the Bank in 2021, she served as Executive Director of Youth Ambassadors, Inc., a Kansas City workforce and life skills development nonprofit that prepares underserved youth and young adults for careers and life. In this role, she was responsible for board cultivation, staff development, program management, community engagement, public and private sector partnerships, social justice advocacy, and overall strategic direction. Before joining Youth Ambassadors, Miller held leadership positions in both the public and private sectors including serving as Director of the Prescription Drug Monitoring Program for Jackson County, Missouri, and leading departments at Children’s Mercy Hospital and St. Luke’s Health System. Miller has a bachelor’s degree in management and a master’s degree in business administration and healthcare administration from Park University.

Laurie Minard

Laurie earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Kansas and has more than 25 years of experience in Human Resources. She began her career at Garmin in 1996, when she was hired to cultivate the Human Resources department at its inception. She is currently the Vice President, Human Resources and is responsible for providing leadership and strategic direction for Garmin’s HR policies and programs. Since 1999, Laurie has served on the Executive Board for Employment Practices Network of Kansas City. In 2015 she joined the KANSASWORKS State Board. Laurie is currently serving the community in a variety of board roles including the Olathe Health System Board of Trustees, Boys & Girls Club of Olathe Advisory Board, Olathe Salvation Army Advisory Council, and Braden’s Hope Advisory Board. She collaborates with JCCC, KU and K-State through her work on the KU Edwards Campus Board of Advisors and Workforce Development Advisory Board, the KSU Olathe Advisory Board and is a JCCC Foundation Board Ambassador. Laurie was honored to be recognized by the Olathe Chamber of Commerce as Volunteer of the Year in 2007 and as Citizen of the Year in 2012. She was also selected to the Kansas City Business Journal’s Class of 2008 Women Who Mean Business and graduated from the Leadership Olathe program in 2010. She was recognized as an Established Leader by Techweek Kansas City.

Jason Parson
Parson + Associates

As President/CEO of P+A, Jason’s extensive citywide, statewide, and nationwide relationships, combined with his keen understanding of stakeholder expectations and project needs, uniquely position him to establish connections, build consensus and ensure projects stay on time and on budget. Whether serving his country in Operation Iraqi Freedom or studying the success of the Sustainable South Bronx green job training programs in New York, Jason’s roots are firmly planted in Missouri. Ford Motor Company recognized him as a Ford Freedom Unsung Hero for his work supporting veterans. Jason has led regional and national initiatives related to green collar jobs, youth development of job and life skills, education, energy, and water quality.

Debra Romberger, MD
University of Nebraska Medical Center

Dr. Debra Romberger is a professor in the Pulmonary, Critical Care & Sleep Medicine Division at the University of Nebraska Medical Center and chair of the Department of Internal Medicine. She completed her medical degree (’83) and residency (’86) at the University of Kansas, followed by a Pulmonary and Critical Care Fellowship (’88), also at KU. She completed a research fellowship in pulmonology at the University of Nebraska in 1990. Dr. Romberger’s research is focused on airway inflammation related to agriculture-related exposures, especially organic dust. She has been funded by the VA and NIOSH. She is also director of Outreach for the Central States Center for Agriculture Safety and Health, funded by NIOSH.

Bruce Toby, MD
Retired Chair, KU Department of Orthopedic Surgery & Sports Medicine

Dr. E. Bruce Toby is a certified orthopedic surgeon by the American Board of Orthopedic Surgery with a certificate of added qualification in hand surgery. He received an undergraduate degree in engineering from Purdue University and earned his medical degree from Indiana University College of Medicine. He completed his residency at Wake Forest University followed by a fellowship at Duke University in hand surgery and microvascular surgery. In 1991, he joined the Kansas University orthopedic department and served as Chair of the Department of Orthopedic Surgery and Sports Medicine from 1999-2021. Dr. Toby has performed a large variety of surgical procedures for upper extremity and hand conditions. His areas of expertise include microsurgery, peripheral nerve injuries, and complex wrist, elbow, and shoulder surgeries, as well as nerve compression conditions such as carpal tunnel syndrome and cubital tunnel syndrome. Dr. Toby has authored numerous scientific papers and book chapters. He has served as a consultant for the Kansas City Royals, Kansas City Chiefs, and Kansas University Athletics.

Ricardo Torres
KC Billboards

Born in Obregon, Mexico, Ricardo grew up partially in Kansas City – always as a second home and a proud northlander. In Mexico, he attended private Catholic school at De La Salle Instituto. After graduating and a sabbatical year, he graduated again from North Kansas City High School. Ricardo pursued baseball in college, accepting a full athletic scholarship at Longview Community College. He met his future wife, Carissa Nicole, and was married in 2012. During his baseball and academic years, Ricardo and his teammates won the Baseball Junior College National Championship. After Longview, Ricardo accepted a full athletic scholarship to Metropolitan State College of Denver, where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration. After college, Ricardo came back home to Kansas City where he worked at an oil recycling company. In 2013, Ricardo’s life partnership with Carissa led to the launch of a regional advertising firm, KC Billboards. KC Billboards is now a nationwide company. Ricardo continues to be a serial entrepreneur with ventures in Mexico where, in 2014, he founded and co-owns RACC, an oil recycling plant and distribution center with headquarters in Hermosillo, Sonora. In 2020, he completed the Stanford Latino Entrepreneurship Initiative Education-Scaling Program, a powerful network of Latino entrepreneurs who are committed to growing their businesses. Among the many charities that Ricardo champions is PAL – the Police Athletic League, which offers youth opportunities to interact with police officers in a positive setting while participating in cultural, mentoring and sports programs. He also serves on the boards of the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum and The First Tee of Greater Kansas City.

Abby Wendel

Abby is the president of consumer banking at UMB. In her role, she is responsible for the consumer banking division, which includes mortgage, real estate, and private banking. She takes a collaborative approach to designing and executing strategy for the business. Fundamentally, her focus is on customer acquisition and customer experience. Abby’s volunteer work has centered around the arts community in Kansas City. Most recently, she served as vice chair of the Kansas City Repertory Theatre Board. As co-chairs of the Kansas City Art Institute’s Art and Design Auction in 2017, Abby and her husband helped realize the highest grossing fundraiser for the school, with more than $500,000 in donations. Currently, Abby serves on the Board of Directors for the Kansas City Symphony, in addition to being named in 2023 to the Advancement Board for the University of Kansas Health System and Medical Center. Abby was named to the 2021 Class of Women Who Mean Business by the Kansas City Business Journal.

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