Sue Shear Institute for Women in Public Life

2009 Faculty


Melanie Adams
St. Louis Public Schools Special Administrative Board
In 2007, Melanie Adams was appointed by Mayor Slay as 1 of 3 members on the St. Louis Public Schools Special Administrative Board charged with overseeing the administration of the school district until 2011.  Ms Adams is the Managing Director of Community Education and Events for the Missouri History Museum and Historical Society, and also has her own consulting firm which helps non-profit organizations build better connections to the broader community.  She was the first executive director of Teach For America, St. Louis, was a founding member and President of Metropolis St. Louis, and has served on a variety of boards in the region including Americorps St. Louis and The St. Louis Public Schools Foundation.  She currently serves on of the Black Leadership Roundtable, and the St. Louis Community College Foundation.  Adams earned her undergraduate degree in English/African American studies from the University of Virginia and her M.Ed. from the University of Vermont.

Judge Patricia Breckenridge
Missouri Supreme Court Judge
Judge Patricia Breckenridge was appointed to the Missouri Supreme Court in September, 2007.  She began her judicial career at the age of 25, when she was appointed Associate Circuit Judge of Vernon County.  Breckenridge was a member of the Missouri Court of Appeals, Western District, before becoming the third woman on the current Supreme Court, setting a new record.  She earned a B.S. degree and a law degree from the University of Missouri-Columbia. She is a Fellow of the American Bar Association, and has been the recipient of several awards including The University of Missouri–Columbia School of Law’s Citation of Merit in 1996, and The Missouri Bar President’s Award in 1994. 

Kathleen Sullivan Brown
Associate Professor, College of Education, UM-St. Louis
 Kathleen Sullivan Brown, Ph.D., is Associate Professor of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies in the UM St. Louis College of Education.  She holds the Ph.D. in Education with an emphasis in teaching and learning from the Graduate School of Arts & Sciences of Washington University in St. Louis.  She teaches graduate courses in K-12 educational administration and doctoral courses in educational research and policy. Her main research interest is collaborative partnerships between schools, universities and communities.  From 1999-2006, Dr. Brown served on the Board of Directors of the Holmes Partnership, a national consortium of universities, schools, and professional associations committed to reform in schools and in teacher education. In Spring 2008 she took on a new role as a Visiting Professor and Executive Director of the Illinois Education Research Council, a state agency which conducts policy research for the state of Illinois.

Rashda “Sonny” Buttar
Clayton School Board
Rashda (Sonny) Buttar is a graduate of the Institute’s “Pipeline to Local Office” program.  She was the mother of three young children when she decided to seek election to the Clayton School Board in 2005. As one of four candidates for three spots, she campaigned hard, taking advantage of her maternity leave from her work as a corporate attorney.  Now in her second term, she is Vice president of the Board.  Professionally, she is Assistant General Council with Patriot Coal Corp. and volunteers as a member of the Clayton Sports and Wellness Commission.

Maria Chappelle-Nadal
State Representative
(D-District 72, St. Louis County)
Maria Chappelle-Nadal is serving her second term in the Missouri House where she serves on the Ways and Means Committee, and Special Committees for Immigration and Senior Citizen Advocacy.  In addition to her legislative duties, Rep. Chappelle-Nadal is a member of Young Democrats of Missouri, Women in the Neighborhood, the Olive Business Association, and the Democratic National Committee.  Rep. Chappelle-Nadal began her political career as the public information officer for Lt. Governor Joe Maxwell and later served as Missouri's Senior Advocate.  In 2002, she was one of 20 national fellows chosen by the National Organization for Black Elected Legislative/Women (NOBEL/Women) and the Center for American Women in Politics (CAWP) at Rutgers University for to attend a national program for women in public policy and politics.  Rep. Chappelle-Nadal is a graduate of Georgia State University in Atlanta, GA.

Leann Chilton
Governmental Affairs Director
BJC Healthcare
Leann Chilton is the face and voice of BJC HealthCare in Washington, DC, Jefferson  City, Mo., and Springfield., Il.  She is director of governmental relations for BJC, the largest hospital operator and employer in St. Louis.  Chilton spent over 17 years working for MCI/WorldCom in Denver, DC and St. Louis, and urges people interested in political occupations to do a "DC tour."  Chilton previously served as chair of the United Way of Greater St. Louis’ governmental relations committee and is currently on the board of trustees of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society’s Gateway Area Chapter and the Missouri State Chamber Board.  She attended Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Il., for three years and transferred to Northeastern Illinois University in Chicago, where she graduated with an undergraduate pre-law degree in sociology and criminal justice.  She also has an MBA from Washington University.

Wray Clay, VP of Community Investment Initiatives,
United Way of Greater St. Louis
Wray Clay has worked with the United Way of Greater St. Louis since 1984. In 1990, she was appointed Vice President of Allocations/Agency Relations, managing a department team and over 400 volunteers, annually facilitating the distribution of over $42 million to support health and human services.  Ms Clay is currently Vice President for Community Investment, responsible for developing impact initiatives and community partnerships in line with the United Way’s strategic vision. From 1997-2004, Ms Clay was elected to serve on the Edwardsville (IL) School Board.  She volunteers with Parents As Teachers St. Louis City Advisory Board, Boys & Girls Town of Missouri Board of Trustees (St. Louis), Southwestern Illinois Educational Association and Foundation, and St. Louis Children’s Hospital Foundation’s Community Advisory Board.  She is a member of St. Peter A. M. E. Church, the NAACP and Delta Sigma Theta Sorority. Ms Clay attended Southern Illinois University in Edwardsville, obtaining a B. S. in Human Services and a M. S. in Public Administration.  She is a blessed mother of two - a son, 25, and a daughter 23.

Monica Combest
Legal and Legislative Affairs Dept.
Enterprise Rent-A-Car

Kathy Conley-Jones
President, The Conley Financial Group
Kathy Conley-Jones is president of The Conley Financial Group, a multi-line insurance and financial services brokerage firm. She began her financial services career in 1982 with General American Life.  Kathy is a licensed insurance broker in life, health, property, casualty and allied lines in Illinois and Missouri. She is also licensed to provide investment services.  Her areas of expertise are corporate benefits, insurance and financial services strategies with a special focus on women and their unique planning needs. Kathy is a member of the U.S. Bank Women in Leadership organization, the National Organization of Women in Business, and the St. Louis Chamber of Commerce.  She received her B.A. degree in interdisciplinary Social Studies and a minor in education from Saint Louis University.

Kathianne Crane
MO Court of Appeals, Eastern District
Judge Kathianne Knaup Crane was appointed to the Missouri Court of Appeals in July 1990 and served as Chief Judge from 1995-96.  Prior to joining the bench, Judge Crane was an assistant U.S. Attorney in St. Louis and practiced law with a St. Louis law firm.  She earned her undergraduate degree at Washington University and graduated cum laude from St. Louis University School of Law.  She also attended the University of Strasbourg and served in the Peace Corps.  Judge Crane has served on the boards of Legal Services of Eastern Missouri, the Family Support Network and Nerinx Hall High School, is currently on the Dean's Council of St. Louis University School of Law and is beginning a term on the board of the Scholarship Foundation.  She has received the Robert Walston Chubb Award from Legal Services; the Alumni Merit Award from St. Louis University School of Law; the Chief Justice's Award; the Nerinx Hall Woman of Excellence Award; and the Women Lawyers' Association President's Award.

Margaret Donnelly
Director, Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services

Margaret Donnelly is the Director of the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services.  Prior to her appointment, she served three terms in the Missouri House (D-73), focusing much of her work on issues relating to families, seniors and health care. She started her public service career as a member of the Ferguson-Florissant School Board, and was a member of the
METRO Board of Commissioners from 1999-2002.  She currently serves on the board of directors of the Family Support Network.  In 2008, she was a candidate for Missouri Attorney General.  In addition to her public service career, Director Donnelly has been an attorney in private practice for 20 years.  Donnelly earned her JD and bachelor’s and master’s degrees in social work from Saint Louis University.

Margaret Eaton
Missouri Alliance on the Status of Women
Margaret Eaton began her professional life in Cleveland as a community organizer with Ohio Public Interest Campaign, a church-labor coalition promoting fair solutions to job loss caused by factories chasing cheap labor overseas.  Later she ran the country’s first door-to-door organizing drive for pay equity for 9to5 Working Women in Boston. Margaret was an organizer and regional field manager for NARAL Pro-Choice America, during her five years with NARAL she was part of a national learning team that studied the practices of effective organizations. She then helped run one of the largest union election campaigns in the last 30 years for the Service Employees International Union, managed a Seattle City Council campaign (her candidate won), worked as a consumer rights lobbyist in Washington State, then spent five years as a Senior Program Officer for the Ms. Foundation for Women. Today, Margaret is a consultant, she helps social change organizations with strategy development and communications.  She lives in St. Louis with her husband and son.

Sally Faith
State Representative
(R-District 15, St. Charles County)

Elected to the House in November 2004, Rep. Sally Faith started her political career as a member of the St. Charles County Council, serving as Chair and Vice-Chair.  She is a not for profit fundraiser in the St. Charles area and has worked as Director of Development for the St. Charles Community College Foundation and Director of Marketing for Whitmoor Country Club.  In addition to her legislative duties, Rep. Faith is a member of the St. Charles Transit Authority, and is active in a number of community organizations. She also serves on the Board of Directors of Bridgeway, Focus St. Louis, New Frontier Bank and the Foundry Art Centre. She is a graduate of the Sue Shear Institute’s Pipeline to Public Office program, and has participated in Leadership St. Louis and Leadership Missouri.

Laurie Feldman,
St. Charles City Council

After more than 30 years in special education, I felt a new journey for my life was in order and with little more than enthusiasm and strong organizational skills, I challenged an incumbent for the City Council in St. Charles, Mo. in 2007.  What a journey it was!  My background as an educator, administrator, community volunteer, and parent, gave me all the skills I needed to run this hard-fought campaign, and win!  I have spent my life in service to children, community and those who are challenged in anyway.  What better way to continue to do this than to serve as an elected official.  My vision is to grow, green and gather, my community through good decision making and an undaunting spirit.

Mayra Flesner
Shear Fellow, 2004

Mayra Flesner just completed her second year of law school at Saint Louis University School of Law where she is President of the Hispanic Law Student Association and a member of the Women Law Student Association and the International Law Student Association. She received her undergraduate degrees in Spanish and Political Science from the University of Missouri- St. Louis (UMSL). Mayra interned for State Rep Barbara Fraser where she developed an interest for the law and working for the public. During her senior year at UMSL Mayra held three internships while attending school full-time: the Sue Shear Institute, the United States District Court- Eastern District of Missouri, and the Multicultural Office on campus. This past year Mayra was selected as teaching assistant to her Legal Research and Writing professor and to represent SLU at the Immigration and Refugee Asylum Moot Court Competition at University of California-Davis.  Last summer, she studied abroad at the Saint Louis University School of Law Madrid Campus in Spain.  Mayra’s interests continue to be in issues involving women in public policy, immigration and criminal law.  Currently she works as a Rule 13 intern at the Missouri Public Defender’s Office in Troy, Missouri and has been selected to work in the Family Law and Immigration Clinic at SLU in the Fall 2009.

Ellie Glenn
Legislative Assistant for Sen. Joan Bray

Ellie Glenn is a 2007 Sue Shear fellow and a Truman State University graduate.  After graduation, Ellie spent a year as the Northeast Missouri field organizer for the Jay Nixon for Governor campaign, recruiting and organizing volunteers in 18 counties.  Beginning in 2009, Ellie began working as the legislative aide to state Senator Joan Bray.  She plans to begin a Masters in Public Administration program at Mizzou in the fall.

Alexandra So-Yun Haar
Law Student - Washington University School of Law
Alex graduated with College Honors in Arts and Sciences from Washington University in 2008 with a B.A. in Philosophy-Neuroscience-Psychology.  She recently completed her first year at Washington University School of Law where she received a Scholar in Law Award.  This summer she is interning for Judge Crane for one month, and then will work at the law firm of Haar & Woods.

Anna Jinkerson
Outreach Coordinator, Congressman Russ Carnahan
Anna Jinkerson is the outreach coordinator for Congressman Russ Carnahan’s office in St. Louis.  Her outreach work focuses on constituency groups in the policy areas of community development, education, science, environment and innovation, women's and LGBT health and advocacy.  During the 2008 election cycle she served as an advisor to the Women for Obama program and Field Director for the Congressman’s political efforts.  Prior to working in the Carnahan organization, she was the statewide volunteer coordinator for Claire McCaskill’s 2004 campaign for Governor.  Ms Jinkerson holds an Associate of Arts degree from Jefferson College and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from the University of Missouri-St. Louis.  During her under graduate career, she worked as a policy intern for Gloria Steinem's organization, Choice USA.  She is currently pursuing a Master’s in Political Science from the University of Missouri-St. Louis and resides in the Benton Park area.   

Professor of Nursing
Susan M. Kendig is a clinical associate professor at the College of Nursing at the University of Missouri-St. Louis, and a faculty member of the STD/HIV Prevention Project at Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, Missouri. Active in policy and advocacy, she was appointed to the Missouri Patient Safety Commission by Governor Holden. She has served on the Missouri Department of Health’s Managed Care Task Force, the Missouri State Board of Nursing’s Advanced Practice Nursing Task Force, and was an inaugural member of the Missouri Women’s Health Council, Office on Women’s Health.  Nationally, Ms. Kendig is Chair-elect of the Board of Directors of the National Association for Nurse Practitioners in Women’s Health, and chairs their policy committee.  The author of numerous publications related to women’s health, advanced practice nursing, and health policy, Ms. Kendig has telecast nursing continuing education programs to 1,000 hospitals nationwide. In 2005 she was named a Fellow of the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners.  She completed her law degree at the University of Missouri-Columbia School of Law in December 2007 and focuses her practice in the areas of health care professional regulation, patient safety and risk management.

Ann Kittlaus
Senior Vice President, Fleishman-Hillard
Ann Kittlaus is a seasoned public affairs specialist with 20 years experience in strategic planning, media relations, grassroots outreach, public education, branding and legislative affairs. Her Fleishman-Hillard client list has included a wide range of corporate, non-profit, and government interests. Among them are Missouri’s largest electric utility, an international non-profit organization focused on fire prevention, a major telecommunications company, Missouri’s 529 college savings plan, and a national manufacturer expanding operations in southern Illinois. Ms. Kittlaus also oversees the FH St. Louis internship program. Previously, in Washington, D.C., Ms. Kittlaus oversaw media relations, and legislative and communications strategies for a federal agency as a White House appointee. Prior to that, she directed communications and grassroots public education campaigns for two national 501(c)3 non-profit organizations, and served as a legislative aide in the U.S. House of Representatives. Ms. Kittlaus holds a bachelor of science degree in journalism from Boston University.

Lane Koch
U.S. Senator Christopher S. Bond’s Office
Lane Koch is the Office Manager for U.S. Senator Christopher “Kit” Bond’s St. Louis District Office. She interned for Senator Bond in his St. Louis District Office summer of 2007 and again in the D.C. Press Office Fall 2007. She took a leave of absence from Senator Bond’s Office to work on the John McCain campaign as the Field Director for St. Louis City and County and returned to Senator Bond’s office following Election Day.  A St. Louis native, Lane received a Bachelors of Arts degree in Political Science from Taylor University in January 2008. 

Mary Delach Leonard
St. Louis Beacon
Mary Delach Leonard is a veteran journalist with the St. Louis Beacon, an online-only regional news source established by former editors of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.  Leonard joined the Beacon staff in April 2008 after a 17-year career at the Post-Dispatch, where she was a reporter and editor in the features section. Her work for the Post-Dispatch was cited for awards by such organizations as the Missouri Associated Press Managing Editors, the Missouri Press Association and the Illinois Press Association. Leonard began her newspaper career at the Belleville (Ill.) News-Democrat after earning a degree in mass communications from Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville, where she now serves as an adjunct faculty member.

Rachel Lockhart-Korris
Coordinator of St. Louis Social
Venture Partners (SVP)
Rachel Lockhart-Korris is the coordinator of St. Louis Social Venture Partners, a program of the Regional Business Council that applies the principles of venture capital to build capacity in non-profit organizations in the St. Louis area. Before coming to the Regional Business Council, Rachel was a 2005 Teach for America – St. Louis Corps Member.  She designed and implemented a high school Spanish curriculum at both Sumner and Roosevelt High Schools in the St. Louis Public School District. Rachel is also active in the community serving as Chair of the Advisory Board to the Alpha Delta Pi chapter at St. Louis University. She is a Founding Board member of St. Louis Collegiate, a proposed charter school in north St. Louis, and volunteers with the Sue Shear Institute for Women in Public Life, the Ronald McDonald House and Teach for America – St. Louis. Rachel has an undergraduate degree in political science from Boston University.

Beth Low
State Representative
(D-District 39, Jackson County)
Rep. Beth Low was elected to the House in 2004.  In addition to her legislative duties, Rep. Low works at a domestic violence shelter as a non-case load social worker. Prior to that, she worked as Community Organizer and Program Director for the Missouri Progressive Vote Coalition.  Rep. Low is a member of the Greater Kansas City Women’s Political Caucus, Co-founder of the Kansas City Progressive Roundtable and a member of the Committee for County Progress. She was the 2003 recipient of the Greater Kansas City Women’s Political Caucus Torch Award.  Rep. Low received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Women’s Studies from the University of Missouri-Columbia in 1999. During her studies at the University of Missouri, Rep. Low spent a year studying at the University of Manchester in Manchester, England. She is pursuing a Masters Degree in Social Welfare at the University of Kansas, but put her studies on hold to hold public office.
Alison Marischen
Attorney, Polsinelli Shugart PC
Alison Marischen is a 2000 Shear Fellow and graduate of Truman State University.  She is an attorney with Polsinelli Shugart PC in St. Louis where she handles real estate transactions and public law issues.  Prior to attending law school at Washington University, Alison spent a year in Washington DC as an intern for Sen. Christopher Bond.  She was a law clerk for the Honorable Jean Hamilton, U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Missouri, and the Honorable Stephen Limbaugh, Jr., Supreme Court of Missouri.  Alison is a member of the Missouri Bar and Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW), and serves as Chair of the St. Louis District Young Leaders Group for the Urban Land Institute (ULI).  She is married with a son Will, and baby #2 on the way.

Cynthia McCafferty
Senior Vice President and Partner,

Cynthia McCafferty joined Fleishman-Hillard in 1998. She currently leads the St. Louis Healthcare group, managing a diverse base of client in areas such as health policy and disease education.  Cynthia is one of the agency’s resident experts on emergency and pandemic flu preparedness, including leading the agency’s work for the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services for five years. Before joining Fleishman-Hillard, Cynthia worked as a consultant on a variety of political campaigns. Her background also includes serving as voter file director for the Missouri Democratic Party. Additionally, she was electoral director for one of Missouri’s largest political-action committees focused on women’s health issues.  Cynthia has a degree in American studies from Saint Louis University. She began her career as grassroots organizer for a statewide environmental organization.  Cynthia is currently a member of the Board of Directors for Maternal, Child, and Family Health Coalition, SSDN, Arts & Education Council, FOCUS St. Louis, and a member of the St. Louis Social Venture Partners. 

Emmy McClelland
Director of Governmental Relations, St. Louis Children’s Hospital
Emmy McClelland is an active leader in government, politics and her community.  She is a graduate of the University of Missouri at Columbia with a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and a Missouri Life Teaching Certificate.  She is a graduate of Leadership St. Louis.  Ms McClelland currently serves as Director of Government Relations for St. Louis Children’s Hospital.  Previously, she served as Governor Bob Holden’s Assistant Director of Legislative Affairs for two years concentrating on education issues.  She served in the Missouri House of Representatives for ten years, and holds the distinction of succeeding a woman and being succeeded by a woman.  Ms McClelland was also the Director of Secretary of State Roy Blunt’s Corporation Division Field Office in St. Louis. As an advocate on behalf of the developmentally disabled, McClelland has worked on the local, state and national level. She and her husband Alan have lived in Webster Groves for more than 30 years.  They have two adult children, Mike and Karen.

Michelle Miller
Health Policy Associate
Missouri Foundation for Health
Michelle is a Health Policy Associate at the Missouri Foundation for Health (MFH), the largest nongovernmental funder of health services in the state.   MFH serves to empower Missourians to achieve equal access to quality, affordable health services that promote prevention and encourage health behaviors.  Prior to working at MFH, Michelle served as a consultant to the Healthy Youth Partnership (HYP), a cross-sector coalition of over 80 organizations combating youth obesity in the St. Louis Metropolitan area.  She is actively engaged in the St. Louis community, serving on the Board of Directors for the Coro Leadership Center-St. Louis, as Vice Chair for the Washington University St. Louis Young Alumni Association, and volunteering time to support regional agencies, such as the Metro Homeless Center/Shalom House and the Newman Center at Washington University.  A native Texan, Michelle moved to St. Louis in August 2000 to attend Washington University in St. Louis, where she earned her B.A. (History, Biology) and B.F.A. (Painting).  She is a former Sue Shear Institute intern, and participated in the Coro Fellows Program in Public Affairs in 2005-2006.

Mary Hoemann Newell
Law Clerk for Judge Mary R. Russell
Missouri Supreme Court
Mary Hoemann Newell is a law clerk to the Honorable Mary Russell at the Supreme Court of Missouri. She is a 2000 honors graduate, Phi Beta Kappa, of the University of Missouri–Columbia with a Degree in Political Science, and a 2003 graduate of the University of Missouri–Columbia School of Law. As an undergraduate, Mary completed internships with the joint constituent services office of Senators Bond and Ashcroft and with the Missouri House of Representatives.  During law school, she served as president of the Women Lawyers’ Association and was a member and Associate Managing Editor of the Missouri Law Review.  Mary is the proud mother of two daughters--Elizabeth 2.5 years and Madeline
11 months.

Mary Phillips
Treece Phillips LLC
Mary Phillips is the managing partner and 50% owner of TreecePhillips, a government and public relations firm that lobbies at the state and federal levels.  She is one of very few women in Missouri who manages such a firm: Most female lobbyists work alone or are non-management employees of a male-owned firm. From 1997-2000 Phillips was the executive director of a large healthcare agency.  Prior to that, she was president of Phillips Consulting, an administrative and organizational consulting firm. Phillips also served as Springfield, Missouri’s cultural ambassador to its sister city of Isesaki, Japan. She earned a Master’s degree in Public Administration from MU, and has a B.A. in International Relations.  Phillips has served on the Boards of Directors of many for-profit and not-for-profit organizations and has also served as an officer for several local associations.  In 2000 she was served on the Jefferson City/Cole County 20 Year Strategic Planning Task Force. She has also served on the executive committee for several statewide and local campaigns for public office and ballot initiatives.

Megan Phillips
Law Clerk, Missouri Court of Appeals
Megan Phillips is a law clerk for the Missouri Court of Appeals.  She began her career in large law firms in Paris, France, and St. Louis, Missouri, and has also worked in non-profit women’s advocacy, the family court system, and academia.  Megan is a past president of the Women Lawyers’ Association of Greater St. Louis and former board member of the National Conference of Women’s Bar Associations.  Currently she serves as president of the Missouri CASA Association and a member of the boards of the Missouri Bar, the Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis, and the Forest Park Southeast Development Corporation.  She is also a volunteer faculty member for Missouri Girls State.  Ms Phillips earned her J.D., a B.A. in Sociology, and a B.E.S. in Educational and Counseling Psychology from the University of Missouri–Columbia.

Angela Turner Quigless
Circuit Judge, 22nd Judicial Circuit
St. Louis City
Angela Turner Quigless was appointed Circuit Judge in the City of St. Louis in March, 2003, after over eight years as an associate circuit judge in the court.  She received her Undergraduate Degree from the University of Missouri–Columbia and her Law Degree from Saint Louis University.  Before becoming a judge, she was an Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Missouri, an Assistant City Counselor and an Assistant Circuit Attorney for the City of St. Louis. Her other public service includes working for the Missouri Public Service Commission as Assistant General Counsel, as well as working for the Missouri Department of Revenue.  She is married and the mother of a son, Charles, who was born in 2001.  She is a member of many professional associations and is involved in the community.

Rebecca Rausch
Managing Supervisor, Fleishman-Hillard
Ms. Rausch joined Fleishman-Hillard in June, 2008, and leads public affairs teams for clients including University Town Center Development/Holland Construction and the Illinois State Chamber of Commerce. She also manages national media strategy and message development on behalf of AT&T’s citizenship and sustainability initiatives.  Before joining Fleishman-Hillard, Ms. Rausch served as Illinois Governor Rod R. Blagojevich’s Deputy Director of Communications. She served as one of two chief spokespersons for the Administration, crafted both proactive and reactive messages and media strategies, developed policies and legislative initiatives, and directed communications managers from more than 20 state agencies. Before joining Governor Blagojevich’s team, Ms. Rausch was chief political reporter for WICS TV in Springfield, Ill.  She covered congressional, state, and local political races as well as day-to-day legislative action in the Illinois State Capitol. Ms. Rausch received her Bachelor’s of Journalism - Broadcast from the University of Missouri-Columbia.

Terri F. Reilly
Executive Director, St. Louis Earth Day Festival
Terri F. Reilly joined St. Louis Earth Day as Executive Director in December 2005 and began transforming the one-event-a-year, non-profit organization into a year-round, environmental powerhouse. St. Louis Earth Day’s programs include the annual Earth Day Festival – now in its 20th year, which is the oldest and largest environmental event in the Midwest, drawing 25,000 people, as well as the annual Earth Day Symposium, which focuses on environmental quality issues facing the St. Louis region. In 2006, Terri developed and launched Recycling On the Go, the region’s first large-scale event recycling program, which addresses the negative environmental impact of large festivals and events by diverting waste that would have ended up in area landfills. Recycling On the Go provides an array of strategies to green all event aspects.  Terri was recently featured in an Alive Magazine cover story titled “The Buzz List: 25 People Putting St. Louis on the Map,” and she was the subject of another cover story, titled “Saving Planet Earth” in the April edition of St. Louis Woman Magazine.

Linda Riekes
Development Officer, St. Louis Public Schools
Linda Riekes has over 35 years of service in the St. Louis Public School system.  She began her career as a 7th & 8th grade social studies teacher at Hamilton Middle School in 1970.  Since then, she has directed a variety of projects including the Law and Education Project, the Safe and Drug-Free Schools and Communities Program, the St. Louis Consortium for Dropout Prevention, the Law and Citizenship Education Project and the St. Louis Internship Program.  She currently serves as the Development Officer, and Liaison to the St. Louis Public Schools Foundation. Riekes has also served as adjunct professor at Washington University and Webster University.  She is the chairperson of the Youth Committee for Crusade Against Crime, and was recognized earlier this year with the Women’s Justice Award, presented by the Missouri Lawyers Weekly and the St. Louis Daily Record.  Riekes earned a Bachelor’s degree at Mills College in Oakland, Ca., and a MA in History from UCLA.  She also holds a MA in History/Education from Washington University.

 Debbi Salberg
Webster Groves City Council
A graduate of the Pipeline to Local Office Program, Debi Salberg served two-terms on the Webster Groves Plan Commission (including 2 years as chair) and ran for the City Council in 2008 while serving her second term on the Board of Adjustment.  She was one of three women (Anne Tolan was another) elected in a four-candidate contest for three at-large seats.  After her election, Debi was one of five women on the six-member City Council in Webster Groves, which also has a woman mayor, Gerry Welch.

Jill Schupp
State Representative
(D-District 82, St. Louis County)
Jill Schupp was elected to the Missouri House in 2008.  A Democrat, she represents the 82nd district which includes parts of Creve Coeur, St. Louis County, Town and Country and a very small amount of Chesterfield.  In addition to her legislative duties, Rep. Schupp continues to serve as a community volunteer. Previously, she worked as an advertising executive for 20 years and worked for several years as an elementary school teacher.  Rep. Schupp was a member of the Creve Coeur City Council and served two terms as president of the Ladue School Board. She was named the 2008 Creve Coeur Citizen of the Year. She received a bachelor’s degree from the University of Missouri – Columbia, and also completed graduate course work and received her teaching certification from the University of Missouri – St. Louis.

Kacie Starr Triplett
6th Ward Alderman, City of St. Louis
Kacie Starr Triplett was elected to the St. Louis Board of Aldermen in April 2007 at the age of 26.  She is the youngest person on the board, and is one of eight women among the 28 members (a record).  During the presidential primary, she served as the local spokesperson for the Barack Obama campaign – playing an important role in his historic victory, and later serving as a delegate to the 2008 Democratic National Convention.  She’s been featured in ALIVE Magazine’s as one of St. Louis’ local residents with the most “buzz” and in Ebony Magazine as a Young Leader Under 30. Alderman Triplett has also represented the United States during a bi-partisan delegation to East Asia where she studied the government and history of Vietnam. In 2008, the Riverfront Times named Triplett the Best Local Politician in the region.  In 2005, she was appointed to the Affordable Housing Commission by Mayor Slay, making her the youngest Commissioner in the history of the Affordable Housing Trust Fund.  Prior to running for office, Alderman Triplett served as the District Affairs Coordinator for Congressman Russ Carnahan and as the Community Outreach Coordinator for former Minority Leader, Dick Gephardt. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from Hampton University and a Master’s Degree in International Relations from Webster University. 

Anne Tolan
Webster Groves City Council
Anne was one of three women elected in a four-candidate race for the Webster Groves City Council in 2008 (Debi Salberg was another).  A graduate of the 2008 Pipeline to Local Office program, Anne has over 15 years of experience as a community volunteer.  She served a member of the Green Space Advisory Commission in Webster Groves, and represented the city on the Special School District Parent Advisory Council for two years.  She was the organizer of the Northwestern Tuxedo Park Neighborhood Association and served on the Shady Creek Citizens Advisory Committee.  She is currently President of the Board of the Miriam Foundation in St. Louis. Anne also volunteered for the Institute’s annual “Women Walk Before they Run” event in 2008.

Cheryl D.S. Walker
Past President, University of Missouri Board of Curators
Cheryl Walker of St. Louis was appointed to the University of Missouri Board of Curators by Gov. Bob Holden in 2003.  She is the immediate past Chair of the Board. Curator Walker is President and General Counsel of Obasi Enterprises, LLC. She formerly served as a counsel in the St. Louis office of Bryan Cave LLP, and she remains Of Counsel for the firm. Curator Walker is a member of the Tower Grove Park Board of Commissioners and of the boards of The Newberry Group, St. Louis Social Venture Partners and The United Way of Greater St. Louis. She received a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering from the University of Missouri-Rolla in 1986 and a Juris Doctor degree from Washington University in 1990.

Gerry Welch
Mayor, Webster Groves, Mo. &
Sue Shear Institute Advisory Board
An economist by training, Gerry Welch began her political career in 1994 as a member of the Webster Groves’ City Council.  She was elected Mayor in 1998 and was re-elected in 2004 and 2006.  Mayor Welch is a past president of the St. Louis county Municipal League, and represented the League on the East West Gateway Board of Directors.  She is a founder of Metro Mayors, an organization for mayors of large cities on both sides of the Mississippi River, and serves on the Sue Shear Institute Advisory Board.

Hope Whitehead
Attorney at Law
Hope Whitehead is a practicing attorney with almost twenty years of legal experience in a variety of practice areas.  Originally, from New York, Hope moved to Missouri to attend Washington University School of Law.  She graduated in 1990 and immediately became a prosecutor for the St. Louis City Circuit Attorney’s Office.  She became an outstanding trial attorney and when she left the office, Hope was the head of a trial team supervising other prosecutors.
Three different Governors appointed Hope to leadership positions in their administration.   In 1997 she was appointed by Governor Mel Carnahan to be the State Supervisor for the Division of Liquor Control.  In 2000, Governor Roger Wilson appointed Hope to a position as Associate Administrative Law Judge for the Division of Workers’ Compensation and in 2001 Governor Bob Holden appointed Hope to the statewide board of Legal Services.  Hope is a former member of the Missouri Bar Board of Governors and former president of the Mound City Bar Association.  In addition to her thriving solo practice, Hope coordinates “Ask the Lawyer” programs with neighborhood organizations and mentors new lawyers and paralegals.  In 2010, Hope and her husband, Jon, will be celebrating their 25th wedding anniversary.  They have two boys. 

Eileen Wolfington, Community Development Specialist
Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis

Eileen Wolfington is a Community Development Specialist working in the St. Louis Branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.  She is responsible for promoting community and economic development and fair and equal access to credit.  Before coming to the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, Wolfington worked for national, regional and state financial institutions with a focus on consumer banking.  Personally, Eileen is a financial literacy educator, a diversity facilitator and a presenter of Mexican folklore.  She received her Bachelor’s degree from the University of Wisconsin – Whitewater.