Board of Directors

View a map of our regional representation here.

President: Michelle Raymer, MPA, CVA (she/her)
Des Moines, Iowa - Midwest Region
Senior Program Officer for Volunteer Engagement and Infrastructure, Volunteer Iowa

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Michelle Raymer is the Senior Program Officer for Volunteer Engagement and Infrastructure at Volunteer Iowa, where she supports communities in utilizing volunteerism to meet local needs. She also serves as a trainer and coach for the Service Enterprise Initiative. With 15 years of national service, nonprofit program development, and volunteer management experience, she provides training and technical assistance to Iowa nonprofits and government agencies on volunteer management best practices. Michelle is dedicated to ensuring organizations have the capacity to develop quality volunteer opportunities, advancing the field of volunteer engagement, and creating a culture of service where everyone volunteers.  She is a graduate of Central College and holds her Master of Public Administration from Drake University.

President-Elect:  Kayla Paulson, CVA 
Cedar Rapids, IA - Midwest Region   
RSVP Director & Service Enterprise Trainer  United Way of East Central Iowa

Kayla has spent the last six years fighting for more strategic and impactful volunteer engagement in her community, state, and nationally. During her tenure with United Way of East Central Iowa she has worked with over 75 local agencies, more than 500 senior volunteers, Iowa Commission on Volunteering & Service, Points of Light, and United Way Worldwide to help improve volunteer engagement practices.  Kayla Paulson has spent her professional career in marketing, training, community relations, and volunteer management both in the senior healthcare and nonprofit industries. She is an experienced trainer at state, regional, and national levels, delivering interactive and empowering workshops. She has taken 25 organizations in eastern Iowa through Service Enterprise, an organization change management program to effectively and efficiently leverage volunteers to deliver its social mission. She has served as President and Marketing & Communications Chair for Leaders in Volunteerism, Vice-Chair for RSVP Directors of Iowa Association, Walk to End Alzheimers Chair, Echo Hill PTO Hospitality Chair, Linn County Triad Board Member, Alburnett Community School District Foundation Board Member, United Way Worldwide Boomer Engagement, Service Enterprise Curriculum Design Team Member, LAP-AID Emergency Volunteer Center Core Team, and as a pro-bono volunteer for various nonprofits sharing her skills in volunteer management, strategic planning, training, marketing and communications.

Christi Brown, MHA, CVA, CDVS, CAVS (She/Her)

York, Pennsylvania - Atlantic Region
Senior Director, WellSpan Health

Christi Brown is the Senior Director of Volunteer Engagement for WellSpan  Health. She is responsible for over 4,500 Volunteers and Interns, in addition to other departments,  including hospital gift shops, Guest Services, Internship Services and Auxiliaries within the  health system.   Christi earned her Master’s in Healthcare Administration from Drexel University and her B.S. in  Business Administration from Elizabethtown College. She is very active in the York County community, currently serving in several leadership roles, such as Treasurer of the  Pennsylvania Association of Healthcare Volunteers Resources Professionals (PAHVRP), Treasurer of the Council for Certification in Volunteer Administration (CCVA), KPETS board member and a committee member of the Health Administration Department Advisory Council for Drexel University.  Christi was recently recognized by two organizations for her passion and dedication in the volunteer  management field and her community service. PAHVRP awarded her the 2018 Evelyn Burston award.  She was also recognized by the United Way of York County as the 2018 Volunteer of the Year.

Secretary:  Vacant 

Vice President of Marketing: 
Michael Mulhern, CVA (He/Him)

San Jose, CA - Pacific Region
Volunteer Director, Ironman

Michael Mulhern has been working to forge connections between individuals and organizations for  close to 20 years. Michael fell into his volunteer management career upon being hired as a customer service manager at a Silicon Valley nonprofit. The job included management responsibilities for the organization's volunteers, and in a system akin to paint by numbers, Michael taught himself the ins and  outs of volunteer management over the course of several years. During this time, Michael's focus on  being an operations professional that helped with volunteers reversed and his chosen career path  became focused primarily on volunteer management. Since that time Michael has directed volunteer  programs in multiple cities within the United States. In addition to working with volunteers in his  career, Michael is also an active volunteer himself donating his time to support youth shelters and food  pantries. Michael takes great pride finding opportunities to serve on boards in order to provide  sustained and strategic support for organizations that create positive impact. When not working or volunteering Michael regularly seeks out new restaurants and attractions to do "market research" and keeps himself knowledgeable of the region's latest offerings. Travel tops his list of self-indulgent  activities whether it be international excursions or a weekend road trip. Michael is a keen appreciator of food trends which he frequently worries will be evidenced by his waistline. Always ready for an outdoor adventure, Michael camps, hikes and above all else, loves fishing. 

Vice President of Membership:  Vacant

Vice President of Programs and Advocacy: Cathy Thoma, CVA (She/Her)
Wayzata, MN - Great Lakes Region

Director of Volunteer Resources, Hammer Residences

Cathy Thoma, CVA, is the Director of Volunteer Resources at Hammer Residences, Inc. This non-profit in Minnesota supports individuals with developmental disabilities in homes and apartments, helping them to live their lives to the fullest. Cathy has spent the last seven years leading volunteer engagement at Hammer, with a volunteer base of 500 combined individuals and organizations. This spring Cathy sat for and received her CVA - Certified in Volunteer Administration, an international certification that recognizes education, experience, core competencies and ethical standards. Cathy is a member of the Program and Advocacy Committee for AL!VE, and  is the facilitator for AL!VE's Transportation Community of Practice. She is also a member of MAVA - Minnesota Alliance for Volunteer Advancement where she received her Certification in Volunteer Leadership. Cathy is a member of the Program Committee for the Corporate Volunteer Council - Twin Cities. This year she worked with other corporate and nonprofit members to address, counsel and offer programming for volunteering concerns during COVID. Prior to working in volunteer engagement, Cathy was a Human Resources manager at AT&T Bell Laboratories, AT&T Microelectronics, and Lucent Technologies. Cathy received her BA in English/Elementary Education from Moravian College and her MA in Human Resources Management from Rollins College. Not only does Cathy lead volunteers, but she cannot help but be one herself!  

Past President:  
Megan Vixie, MPA, CVA, PHR, SHRM-CP (She/Her)

Redondo Beach, California - Pacific Region
Beach Cities Health District

Megan is the Chief Engagement Officer for Beach Cities Health District (BCHD), one of the largest preventive health agencies in the nation. Megan is responsible for all human resources management which includes designing and implementing the infrastructure to manage BCHD’s network of more than 1,000 community volunteers, providing more than 34,000 hours of service. She completed her Certification in Volunteer Administration (CVA) and served on the board of directors for Directors of Volunteers in Agencies- Los Angeles (DOVIA-LA). Prior to BCHD, Megan performed a year of service as a Volunteer Development Specialist for AmeriCorps where she directed afterschool volunteer programs in conjunction with a variety of national organizations, including YMCA, Boys & Girls Club and Campfire USA. Megan’s purpose in both life and career is to ignite the flames for others to achieve what they thought may not be possible. By eliminating barriers between the traditional roles of employees and volunteers, she gets to live her purpose each day. And… have fun too!

Alicia Morris Campbell, CVA
Romeoville, IL - Great Lakes Region
Director, Volunteer Expertise Hub for Habitat for Humanity

Alicia is a nonprofit professional with over 10 years of experience in volunteer management. She has developed and led volunteer programs and services for both locally-focused and nationally based organizations. She has specialized in engaging youth and young adult volunteers and has extensive knowledge around volunteer event planning and management. She has presented at conferences such as Points of Light and the Illinois Conference of Volunteer Administrators. She also served as the VP of Marketing and Communications for the Association of Volunteer Administrators of Metro Chicago. Alicia has served on employee resource committees where she's led the charge in her local area around DEI initiatives. Alicia has a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from La Salle University, a Master’s degree in Public Administration-Nonprofit Management, and a graduate certificate in Human Resource Management both from Keller Graduate School of Management. She currently resides in the Chicago area.

Darlene Laird, CVA  
Americus, GA - South East Region
Skilled Volunteer Strategy & Engagement Manager, Habitat for Humanity

Darlene is Habitat for Humanity International's Skilled Volunteer Strategy and Engagement Manager and specializes in creating resources, trainings, and promising practices for the Habitat affiliated network to engage skilled volunteers. She brings 15 years of experience as a leader of volunteers and in her most recent work, she has served as part of Habitat for Humanity International’s Volunteer Resource Center, Global Village, and the Habitat AmeriCorps program.. Darlene has her certificate in Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in the Workplace from the University of South Florida. and holds a CVA from the Council for Certification in Volunteer Administration.  She has served as a governing board member for a local charter school for 5 years.

Alana Knoppow, MSW (She/Her)
Ann Arbor, MI - Great Lakes Region
Volunteer Program Manager, Hospice of Michigan and Arbor Hospice

Alana earned her BA from the University of Michigan in psychology with a minor in biological  anthropology, as well as a MSW from the U of M, with concentrations in Aging and  Management, and a minor in interpersonal practice. She has served in the Volunteer Services department at Hospice of Michigan and Arbor Hospice for nearly 8 years. Prior to this role, she was the Volunteer Coordinator and Marketing Associate at the Habitat for Humanity of Huron Valley ReStore. Alana has also assisted with volunteer management during her social work internships at Jewish Family Services of Washtenaw  County and Michigan Community VNA. She has volunteered with many organizations as well: Hospice  of Michigan/Arbor Hospice as a pet therapy volunteer (6 years), Michigan Pug Rescue (2 years), and  Jewish Family Services of Washtenaw County as a friendly visitor (6 years). Alana is a founding member  and community moderator at Tobi Johnson's VolunteerPro.

Jordanya Reeves
El Paso, TX - South Central Region
Volunteer Engagement Coordinator, El Pasoans Fighting Hunger Food Bank

Volunteerism is Jordanya's passion. She has seen and believes the world can change if its people answer the call to make it better. She has built volunteer programs from the ground up and has seen them thrive. She actively seeks opportunities to advance volunteer management on a global scale. She uses her proven expertise in the field to train and mentor other volunteer engagement professionals.

Allison Schwartz
Baltimore, MD - Atlantic Region
Volunteer Manager, Maryland Zoo

Allison has been working for the Maryland Zoo for ten years. During this time she has been a catalyst for change, organization, and strengthening the ties within the organization itself and also the local community. Additionally, she has spent five years as a volunteer manager in the animal sheltering world where she was able to find her confidence and start the journey of becoming a leader and teammate to those around her. Currently Allison is the president of the Maryland Council for Directors of Volunteer Services. The organization has been through a lot in the past few years and she is proud to say they are starting to get their feet under them once more and offer the support volunteer administrators in the state of MD have not had recently.

Nicole Smith (She/Her)
Miami, FL - South East Region
Director of Volunteer Services, Back on my Feet

Nicole is a Panamanian-American, workforce development specialist, published author of Game On! Relentlessly Pursue Your Dreams and the 101 Note-taking Affirmation Journal Series, dancer and motivational speaker. In 2019, she was listed as one of WLRN’s “Local Women Who Inspire You” and was selected as one of Legacy Miami’s MOST PROMINENT AND INFLUENTIAL BLACK WOMEN IN BUSINESS AND INDUSTRY OF 2019.  She is the Director of Volunteer Services the Back on My Feet, an organization that combats homelessness through physical activity and mentorship and career coaching. 

Karen Stolt, CVA
Fairport, NY - Atlantic Region
Volunteer Manager, Lollypop Farm

Karen has been a volunteer at numerous non-profits since she was a young girl. As an adult she began working in the non-profit sector running large scale event fundraisers for non-profits. Through that work she developed a love for working with volunteers and has been working directly with them for 17 years in the field of volunteer management. Her skills as a manager come from a deep appreciation of her volunteers and providing them with the best program possible through constant communication and team building. She earned a place at the table for strategic planning, and keeps her volunteers at the forefront of conversations when changes are happening, always striving to show their importance to the survival of the mission and vision of our shelter.

Jennifer Thompson, CVA (She/Her)
Tulsa, Oklahoma - South Central Region
Volunteer Coordinator, LIFE Senior Services Tulsa OK

Jennifer is a native Tulsan but has also lived in Colorado and San Francisco CA. She attended both Tulsa University School of Business and Tulsa Community College where she earned associates degrees in Applied Science/Physical Therapy and Human Services – Gerontology. IShe is a lifelong volunteer in addition to working in the Volunteer Administration Field for more than 20 years, most managing in hospice programs. Jennifer earned the designation of a Certified Volunteer Administrator in 2007.  She has been an adjunct faculty member with Tulsa Community College, teaching volunteer management, as well as a faculty member for the former organization Volunteer Tulsa presenting the Volunteer Management Series in Northeastern Oklahoma. She has been an active advocate for the CVA designation and as a mentor for those perusing this designation. She serves on many boards:  VP of membership of TulsALIVE, president of Silver Hair Legislators, secretary of Broken Arrow Youth Baseball Organization, Broken Arrow Chamber of Commerce. Tri-Country Area Agency on Aging (legislative committee).  

Gretchen Jordan, CVA (She/Her)
Davenport, Florida - South East Region
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Gretchen Jordan, CVA is the Association Manager who works with the Executive Committee and Board of Directors to prepare and deliver support to member services, the board of directors, and special projects.  Previous work experience includes management in the corporate, non-profit sector and as a small business owner in addition to over twenty five years experience managing volunteer programs.   She is an active member of local and national volunteer manager associations and has presented on volunteer management issues on the local, state, and national level.  Gretchen earned her Certification in Volunteer Administration designation in 2000 and has a Bachelors degree in Community and Human Service from Empire State College.  Her skills are public speaking, management, customer service, leadership, and organization.  Gretchen and her husband have a home base but travel often in a 41' motor coach around the United States & Canada.

Mailing Address for AL!VE:
AL!VE Association Manager Gretchen Jordan
2791 St George Drive
Davenport, FL 33837
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