Chris Chambers, MEd, OTR/L, Board Presidentchrischambers@connectingforkids.org
My passion is working with children. I have been a Pediatric Occupational Therapist for the past 25 years. I treat from a Sensory Integrative, play-based approach which means my "work day" is all about being creative and having fun. The children that I work are exciting and energetic; they keep me hopping and teach me something new every day. I am never bored! I am also blessed to have a wonderful husband and 2 amazing teenagers. We like to be outdoors as much as possible: taking walks, bike rides, hiking, swimming, camping, having campfires and just enjoying our life together. I am so excited to be a part of Connecting for Kids. They do such a wonderful job of helping families meet new friends and find fun community activities, as well as connect with much needed therapy/medical services.
Tish Henry, MEd, Vice President
Tish has been in education for 26 years. She received her bachelors degree from Kent State University in Elementary Education. She then went on to get her special education license and her Masters Degree in School Counseling from Cleveland State. Tish has taught at all grade levels in both regular and special education. Currently, she works as a school counselor at Lincoln West High School in Cleveland. Tish lives in Westlake with her husband and two children.
Katy Bryan, PhD, Secretary
Katy Bryan is a financial planner working with Skylight Financial Group. She received her BS in psychology and Neuroscience from Baldwin-Wallace and received her PhD from Kent State University where she studied Psychoneuroimmunology. During her studies, Katy worked with autistic children providing ABA therapy and also conducted basic science research examining the influence of stress on the immune system, learning and PTSD. Katy now works with families who have children or adult loved ones with disabilities to build strategies and lifecare planning for their families. Katy continues to work with non-profits to help children find residential housing as they transition into adulthood. She also mentors and serves as the chair for fundraising to help victims of human trafficking in Northeast Ohio. In her free time, she and her husband enjoy spending time with their two boys.
Alaka Chandurkar, MD
Dr. Chandurkar has been a general pediatrician on the west side of Cleveland since 1986 and is interested in parent education as well as teaching children importance of healthy body and healthy mind. She and her husband of 45 years, Dr. Sudhakar Chandurkar, have one son, Dr. Rohit Chandurkar, one daughter, Menaka Chandurkar, and three grandchildren.
Ryan A. Codner, MS, APRN, CPNP-PC
Ryan is a pediatric nurse practitioner who has practiced in northeast Ohio for the past 7 years. He is interested in increasing patient and family agency over their own wellbeing. He lives locally with his wife, Catherine, and 3 dogs.
Heather Dukes-Murray, PhD
Heather is a licensed clinical psychologist who specializes in the assessment and treatment of autism spectrum disorder, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder and learning disorders. She has been working in the mental health field with children and families for 14 years. She received her doctorate in Counseling Psychology from the University of Georgia. She completed an internship and post-doctoral training in childhood depression, community mental health, psychological assessment and autism spectrum disorders. Heather adores her job as she gets to meet amazing children and families, as well as generally have fun on a daily basis! Outside of work, Heather spends time with her husband and four children doing parenting things. Heather believes in the mission and goals of Connecting for Kids and is proud to be a board member and support this organization.
Carolyn Khouri-Elias, MEd
My name is Carolyn Khouri-Elias and I'm the College and Career Success Manager at Lincoln-West School of Global Studies in Cleveland Metropolitan School District. I'm excited to be joining the board of Connecting for Kids because I believe the work being done is truly transformational. Connecting For Kids transcends the love of learning from the classroom into real life and provides tools for parents to allow them to connect with their children. I'm a lifelong learner and just recently finished my masters degree in Educational Leadership from Cleveland State University. Recently married and living in Rocky River with my husband and puppy Jefe.
Ryan Kilbane is a commercial banker at KeyBank. He works with middle market businesses in Northeastern Ohio, including manufacturing, distribution, service and non-profit companies. A native Clevelander, Ryan and his family live on the west side. In his free time, Ryan is an avid runner, golfer and reader.
Lois Leonard, MEd
Lois is a retired educator who taught in the elementary grades for 33 years, most of them at Hilliard Elementary in Westlake. She received her BA from Allegheny College and MEd from Cleveland State University. Additionally she is certified in gifted education. Lois’s favorite pastime is traveling with her husband Mark, and spending time with family and friends. She loves being outdoors either hiking, biking, or practicing her newest hobby disc golf. She is thrilled to have more time to read since her retirement in 2018. Lois and Mark live in Westlake and have two sons.
Andrew Mangels has been the Director of Westlake Porter Public Library for the past ten years. Andrew, his wife Christine and three children – Alex, Emma and Sarah - moved to Westlake in 2007 from Kansas City, Missouri. After arriving in Westlake, Andrew has become involved and engaged in many community activities and organizations such as Celebrate Westlake, Kiwanis, Rotary, Citizen’s Advisory Committee to the School Board to name a few. Andrew is the immediate past president of Connecting for Kids and was instrumental in bringing CFK programs to Cleveland's east side through library partnerships. As a librarian, one of his proudest professional accomplishments is Porter Public Library's partnership with Connecting for Kids.
Stephanie McNamara, Esq.
Stephanie McNamara has a BA in International Relations from Boston University and a JD from Case Western Reserve University School of Law. She is a Guardian Ad Litem with Voices for Children, Lorain County’s CASA program. Stephanie serves on the Board of Directors of Game On and is active at Westlake United Methodist Church. She lives in Bay Village with her husband, Mickey, and her two children. She is also a parent match for Connecting for Kids.
Kristi is an Associate Vice President at Falls & Co., a Marketing, Communications and Digital firm located in downtown Cleveland. She received her bachelor's degree in Speech Communication and Marketing Promotion from Miami University. Kristi lives in Avon with her husband Patrick and sons, Ryan and Aidan. During the winter months, you'll find Kristi and her family either playing or watching sports; while summers their time is spent at Catawba boating on Lake Erie. "Being a parent is overwhelming - especially navigating the pressures and influences of today's society. I was so excited to find Connecting for Kids to help unite with other parents to learn and share experiences and resources to do what's best for our kids and our families."