Board of Directors 2018-01-24T14:29:38+00:00

Board of Directors

Board President

Kristin Williams resides in Omaha and joined The Sherwood Foundation in September 2006. As the Director of Community Initiatives she is responsible for managing the grant making activities in the areas of poverty alleviation, foster care, social, and racial justice for state and national initiatives.  Kristin has spent the last 14 years of her career as a public servant and nonprofit manager. Her experience includes Public Relations Officer for former Governor Ben Nelson, Legislative Aide to Senator Elaine Stuhr, Public Information Officer for the Nebraska Health and Human Services System, and Communications/Marketing Director for the Nebraska Hospital Association. After receiving a Master’s of Public Administration and Social Work at University of Nebraska-Omaha, Kristin spent four years as Development and Marketing Director for a local nonprofit before transitioning to philanthropy.

President elect

David Spinar resides in Lincoln where he has been a financial adviser for RBC Wealth Management since 2009. Previous to his work at RBC, David was Senior Vice President and Chief Compliance Officer at Securities America, Inc., and Security American Advisors Inc.; and a financial adviser at A.G. Edwards and Sons. He is well-regarded for his combination of expertise in law, regulatory compliance and investment management. In 2004, he was named to the Midlands Business Journal “40 under 40” list, which honors 40 high-achieving Omaha professionals who are younger than 40. David earned a bachelor’s of arts degree with distinction from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and his law degree with distinction from the University of Nebraska College of Law.

Board Secretary

Douglas German resides in Eustis where he manages agricultural properties in Nebraska and Costa Rica, and consults for the Legal Service Corporation.  He has more than 35 years experience in law, business management, organizing, planning, and teaching while serving as the Executive Director for Legal Aid of Nebraska, Managing Partner for Costa Rica’s Santa Lucia Coffee Company; a Partner in the Bacon, German, and Vinton Law Firm, Chief Bar Counsel for the Supreme Court of Arizona, Associate Professor at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Community Organizer for Great Plains Organizing Project, Staff Attorney for the Lincoln-Lancaster Legal Aid Office, and a Volunteer in the Peace Corps.

Board Treasurer

Tulani Grundy Meadows resides in Omaha where she is a Political Science and Human Relations Skills faculty member at Metropolitan Community College. She holds a law degree from the University of Pennsylvania Law School and a bachelor’s degree from Spelman College. Before moving to Omaha, Tulani practiced as a litigation attorney for an Atlanta-based labor and employment firm. Recently, Tulani served as Program Administrator at the Women’s Center for Advancement in Omaha. She also is on the board of directors for Gesu Housing and Love’s Jazz and Art Center and she serves on the Omaha Public Library Young Professionals Steering Committee, as well.

Jerry Bexten resides in Omaha where he has been the Director of Education Initiatives for The Sherwood Foundation since October, 2006. Prior to joining The Sherwood Foundation, Jerry worked for Omaha Public Schools for 33 years where he taught middle school history and language arts for 12 years, was as an assistant principal at the middle school and high school levels for 10 years and was a principal at the middle and high school levels for 11 years. Jerry has a bachelor’s degree in history from Creighton University and master’s degrees in history and educational administration from the University of Nebraska at Omaha.

Mary Bills-Strand resides in Lincoln and has more than three decades of experience in real estate sales and management, including having served as Executive Vice-President for Woods Bros. Realty.  Mary retired from real estate sales in 2015. Prior to entering real estate, Mary taught in the Lincoln Public Schools.  Mary served as Lincoln/Lancaster County Planning Commissioner from 2001-2007, and as a member of the Realtors Association of Lincoln Board of Directors, she served as Chair of the Governmental Affairs Committee and the Affordable Housing Committee (President in 2006).  Mary has been recognized as Volunteer of the Year in 2003 for the Child Advocacy Center, Realtor’s Association of Lincoln’s Realtor of the Year in 2003 and Volunteer of the Year 2001 and Member of the Year 2001 for the Lincoln Chapter of Women’s Council of Realtors.  Mary is a graduate of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

Kathy Campbell resides in Lincoln where she represented District 25 in Nebraska Legislature from 2009 to 2017. While in the Unicameral, Kathy was chair of the Health and Human Services Committee and she also served on several other committees including the Executive Board and the Transportation and Telecommunications Committee. In 2011, Kathy led the HHS Committee review of child welfare reform. Prior to serving in the Legislature, Kathy worked for her family business, Campbell’s Nurseries; served as executive vice president of the CEDARS Home for Children Foundation; and was a teacher in the Lincoln Public Schools and Sierra Vista (Arizona) Public School districts. She also served on the Lancaster County Board of Commissioners and Lincoln Electrical System Administrative Board as well as several other board and service positions for organizations in Lincoln and beyond. Kathy holds bachelors and masters’ degrees from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

Maja Viklands Harris lives in Lincoln, where she is a director of the Hormel Harris Foundation, a private family foundation focusing on culture, education and social justice. With over 10 years of leadership experience serving on City boards, Maja is currently a Lincoln-Lancaster County Planning Commissioner and is a past president of the Lincoln City Libraries Board of Trustees. Other current board engagements include serving as vice-president of the Lincoln Children’s Zoo Board of Directors. Maja has a background in journalism and spent several years working as a business reporter. Upon moving to Nebraska she worked for then State Senator Chris Beutler during his last term. A native Swede, Maja holds a bachelor’s degree in linguistics from Lund University, Sweden, and a master’s degree in journalism and mass communications from Gothenburg University, Sweden.

Dr. Joel Johnson resides in Kearney and is an active community volunteer. Dr. Johnson received his MD from the University of Nebraska Medical Center, and practiced General Surgery from 1969-2000.  He established the first out of state helicopter service in Nebraska at Good Samaritan Hospital and taught the very first EMT class in the nation.  From 2002-2008, Dr. Johnson served as a Senator in the Nebraska Legislature, and held the position of Chairman of the Health and Human Services Committee during his tenure.  Dr. Johnson is the recipient of the J.G. Elliot Award from UNMC for Improving the Health of Nebraskans.

Chuck Karpf lives in Omaha after having spent almost 30 years living in rural Scottsbluff County and Mitchell, Nebraska. Chuck has dedicated much of his career to working in economic development in rural Nebraska, most recently serving as the Executive Director at Panhandle Area Development District in Gering.  He also was involved in the management of several small businesses in the Nebraska Panhandle including; the weekly newspaper The Index, the Nebraska Rural Community Federal Credit Union, and CK Construction, Incorporated.  Chuck received his BA in History from Grinnell College and completed numerous professional schools during his career, including Leadership Scottsbluff.  Chuck has served as President of the Morrill Rotary Club and the Mitchell Area Chamber of Commerce, and Vice President of the Morrill Board of Education.  He has also served as a Trustee for the Nebraska Public Agency Investment Trust, the Nebraska Bankers Association Educational Foundation and a Member and Vice President of the Nebraska Rural Development Commission. Chuck is currently a Board Member and Treasurer of the Center for Rural Affairs.

Eric Reznicek resides in Lincoln where he has been a data analyst lead with Hudl since 2014. Eric also serves on the Leadership Council of the Lincoln Chamber of Commerce’s Young Professionals Group, which aims to empower members of Lincoln’s young professional community. Prior to his work at Hudl, Eric was active in student government at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL) where he served on the student senate and also was the student body president from March 2012 to March 2013. As president of the student body, Eric held a student seat on the University of Nebraska Board of Regents. In his time in student government, Eric also traveled to Washington on multiple occasions to lobby on behalf of UNL, The Association of Big Ten Students and other organizations. Eric holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from UNL.

Dr. John Harms resides in Scottsbluff. After earning bachelor’s and master’s degrees in secondary education from Chadron State College and an Ed.D. in higher educational administration from Montana State University, he entered a career that began as a high school teacher in Gering and culminated with a 30-year term as president of Western Nebraska Community College in Scottsbluff. Dr. Harms retired as president in 2006 ahead of an 8-year term in the Nebraska Legislature. As the representative for District 48, Dr. Harms served on the Appropriations Committee, the Developmental Disabilities Special Investigative Committee, the Education Commission of the States, and the Legislative Performance Audit Committee. As chairman of the Legislative Performance Audit Committee, he led the initiation of a regular review process of Nebraska’s business subsidies to help ensure these programs provide good return on investment for the state.

Annette Smith resides in Omaha where she is an active fundraiser and community volunteer and works with Alley, Poyner, Macchietto Architecture. Annette has given her time assisting with the service and fundraising efforts of several Omaha non-profit organizations which include:  The Boys and Girls Clubs of the Midlands, Film Streams, Omaha Conservatory of Music and The Bemis Center for Contemporary Art.  Annette currently serves on the board of directors for  The Boys and Girls Clubs of the Midlands, College of Saint Mary, Kent Bellows Studio and Nebraska Academic Decathlon Foundation. Annette has been a member of the Boys and Girls Clubs Family Guild Board since 2006 and currently serves as president of this board. Annette is an alumnus  of Dana College, where she obtained a bachelor’s degree in psychology and business administration. She also holds a degree in architecture from the University of Nebraska.