Meet Our Staff & Board

Our staff and board members’ have extensive experience in advocacy and health & human services across Wisconsin. This means that our members have immediate, 1:1 access to help developing relationships with policymakers, workforce training, and—above all—a community that supports them and the work they do to ensure Wisconsin’s children and families reach their full potential.


Our Staff

Kathy Markeland, Executive Director

Kathy joined the WAFCA staff in 2007 and was selected to serve as Executive Director in 2019 to guide the continued growth of the Association.  

Prior to joining WAFCA, Kathy served for eight years as an associate director for the Wisconsin Catholic Conference—the public policy voice for Wisconsin’s Roman Catholic bishops. She also served for seven years at the Wisconsin Counties Association, where she provided both member support and public policy advocacy services to elected representatives on Wisconsin’s 72 county boards. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and Behavioral Science and Law in 1992 from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. More about Kathy...

 

Emily Coddington, Associate Director

Emily joined WAFCA in 2019 following nearly 20 years of child welfare experience, including direct service, supervisory, and management roles. Emily’s career has focused on supporting and advocating for children, youth, caregivers and parents, as well as those connected to the county, tribe, state and non-profit workforce.

Emily served for five years as a section chief with the Department of Children and Families – first, with the Child Welfare Licensing Section and most recently with the Bureau of Youth Services. Emily also spent several years working on behalf of the non-profit sector and a county human services agency.

Emily obtained her Bachelor’s in Social Work from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater and her Master’s in Social Work from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. More about Emily...

 

Allyson Forseth, Behavioral Health Initiatives Manager

Prior to joining the WAFCA staff in 2020, Allyson dedicated her career to working with students. She worked for four years as a public high school Spanish teacher, followed by a year serving as the Assistant Director of a Madison-based education company. 

Throughout her life, she has worked and volunteered at various K-12 schools in the Madison area and has extensive experience in trauma-informed practices, facilitating groups, developing curriculum, presenting at regional and state education conferences, and providing academic and social-emotional support. . As a mentor and tutor, Allyson continues her dedication to serving others both in and out of her work at WAFCA. She is also bilingual (Spanish/English). 

Allyson is a proud first-generation college graduate. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Education from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2015. More about Allyson...

  

Johanna Nelson, Operations Manager

Johanna joined WAFCA in early 2022. Her experience includes working with children of various ages and their families in after-school, preschool, and childcare programs, as well as administrative coordination at a travel company. Johanna enjoys studying the impact of trauma and chronic stress on brain development as well as how to foster resilience and build executive functioning skills. She is passionate about the importance of early experiences and supporting children, families and the professionals that serve them to ensure a strong foundation for healthy relationships and lifelong learning.

Johanna received her Master of Science in Child Development from Erikson Institute in Chicago in 2021 and Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education from Minot State University in 2015.

 


Board of Directors 2022

Chairperson:
Scott Strong, Executive Director, RISE Wisconsin

Vice-Chairperson:
Mechele Pitt Shipman, CEO, Anu Family Services

Treasurer:
Joe Arzbecker, Chief Operating Officer, Lutheran Social Services of Wisconsin and Upper Michigan

Secretary:
Clarence Johnson, Executive Director, Wisconsin Community Services

Members-at-Large:

Rosangela Berbert, Executive Director, The Samaritan Counseling Center of the Fox Valley
Derek Cortez, CEO, Chileda
Mark Elliott, Executive Director, Northwest Passage
Ann Leinfelder Grove, President/CEO, Wellpoint Care Network (formerly SaintA)
Alan Loux, President and CEO, Rawhide Youth Services
Crystal McClain, Executive Director, Revive Youth & Family Services
Vicky Raml-Glider, Executive Director, Genesee Lake School
Rachel Roloff, Executive Director, Tomorrow's Children
Jennifer Schmeichel, Executive Branch Manager, Bethany Christian Services
David Whelan, Vice-President - Child Wellbeing, Children's Wisconsin