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Newest Board Members

By June 30, 2023No Comments

Parent Network of WNY has announced their newest board members and have reassigned positions throughout the board as well.

Following the resignation of Bradford Watts and Janice McKinnie from the board, Kristin Dudek is now Chairperson and Michael Cardus is Co-Chairperson. Jill Johnson is Treasurer and Julie Barber is Secretary.

Parent Network of WNY’s newest additions are Jill Johnson, Amanda Newton, Charise Cobbs, Kim Klima, Michelle Hartley-McAndrew, and Letitia Thomas. Below are each of their bios.

Jill Johnson is a partner for Lumsden & McCormick, LLP and has been with the company since 2002. She primarily works in the healthcare and human services area as well as employee benefits and real estate. Jill is involved with a few different organizations such as Healthcare Financial Management Association, Better Business Bureau of Upstate New York, Lord of Life Adult and Child Services, and the UB Accounting Advisory Committee. Jill loves working with different organizations to help reach their organizational and funding goals to ensure they can further their mission.

Amanda Newton is an Assistant District Attorney in Allegany County NY. She has been an ADA with Allegany County for about 20 years. She graduated with her bachelor’s degree in political science with a minor in commerce from Niagara University. She went to University at Buffalo Law School and got admitted to the bar of New York State in 2004. She is extremely active with the YMCA to help foster inclusive programming. She is also involved with Daemen CAUSE and Summit Parent Member Group and has graduated from Parent Network’s Family Empowerment Series Leadership Program. Amanda is a Buffalo native and a huge Buffalo Bills and Bisons fan! Amanda has 2 children and is a mom of a child with special needs.

Charise Cobbs currently is the Program Manager at Saving Grace Ministries Inc. and has been with the agency since 2009. Charise graduated from Buffalo State College and has previously worked at The Arc and OLV Charities. She loves working with people and working in the human service field. Her goal is to help at least 1 person a day and make a difference in their lives. Charise is a mom of a child with a disability and has a passion for helping like-minded parents who also have children with special needs.

Kim Klima is the Bank Security Officer at Evans Bank. Kim has 18 years of various banking experience such as branch management experience and physical security and fraud experience. She has her bachelor’s degree from D’Youville College in business management. Kim loves being able to help others in any way she can. Kim has a huge passion for camping and spending quality time with her family. She is a Buffalo native and is a die-hard Buffalo Bills and Sabres fan! Kim is a mom of a child with special needs.

Michelle Hartley-McAndrew is the Medical Director and Interim Division Chief at Oishei’s Children Hospital Outpatient Center at the Robert Warner Center for Developmental Pediatrics and Rehabilitation. She also works at the Children’s Guild Foundation Autism Spectrum Disorders Center as the Medical Director. Michelle is board certified in pediatrics and child neurology and has several years experience in evaluating and diagnosing children with autism spectrum disorders and other developmental disabilities. Michelle is passionate about supporting parents, families, and patients to help them thrive in the community and in their daily lives since “parenting is a journey.”

Letitia Thomas serves as Assistant Dean for Diversity in the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) at the University at Buffalo (UB).  Dr. Thomas is a member of various professional organizations including the American Society of Engineering Education (ASEE), American Association of University Women (AAUW), Western New York STEM HUB, and the National Association of Multicultural Engineering Program Advocates (NAMEPA). Dr. Thomas has been honored with several awards, including: the 2016 Mentoring Award from the UB Institute for Research & Education on Women & Gender; 2012 Outstanding Advising Award Winner in the Academic Advising Administrator category from the National Association of Academic Advising (NACADA); and the Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Professional Service, from the State University of New York (SUNY).

We are proud and excited to have these newest additions to our Board!

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