Sarah Perkins is the President of the Board of Directors and is the New Freshman Testing Coordinator at the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Biology from Eastern New Mexico University and worked in the healthcare industry for 8 years before earning her Master of Education in College Student Personnel Administration from Marquette University. Sarah is an alumna of the WILS program and has been a volunteer with the organization for over 20 years. She has served as a member of the junior and adult seminar staffs, the Director of Programs for the seminar, Alumni Association Adviser and member of Corporate Board of Directors. Meeting amazing young leaders through WILS year after year keeps her inspired and motivates her to keep her energy levels up to keep up with their drive and enthusiasm!
Shannon Clark West is the current Vice President of the Board of Directors. She is an alumna of Thomas More High School in Milwaukee, and she received a Bachelor of Science in Education and a Masters in Educational Leadership from Cardinal Stritch University. Currently, Shannon is the Dean of Students and a district coordinator of RtI/PBIS systems for the School District of Cudahy. Since the beginning of her involvement in WILS in 2003, Shannon has demonstrated a desire and passion for supporting the organization that has made such a significant impact on Wisconsin teens. Shannon continues to volunteer to ensure that student leaders develop their understanding and application of inclusive leadership, service, and responsible decision making in their everyday lives.
Amy Skupien is the Treasurer of the Board of Directors and a Senior Financial Analyst at Snap-on Tools in Kenosha. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Business Administration – Concentration in Accounting from Saint Louis University, and then went on to earn her Master of Science in Accounting from Marquette University. She also holds her CPA. A recent career move allowed Amy to further pursue her passion for working with young people by allowing her more time to devote to volunteering with the youth and young adult ministries at her church. Amy is a 2005 alumna of the seminar and has returned every year to assist in various capacities with the seminar, including junior staff, adult office staff, Director of Transportation, and volunteer tour chaperone. WILS has been an incredibly valuable experience in all parts of her life, from teaching leadership skills to meeting lifelong friends, and even choosing a career.
Cassie Kriefall is the Secretary of the Board of Directors and is a 8th grade teacher at St. John Vianney School in Janesville, Wisconsin. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Education from the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh. She continued her education at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater, earning a Master of Education in Reading and a Reading Specialist license. Cassie has been a volunteer with the WILS organization for 10 years. She has served as a member of the adult seminar staff, the Director of Transportation and the Director of Facilitators for the seminar. She returns to WILS year after year because of the great friends, energy, and fantastic young leaders.
Benjamin Michael Cassel is an Alumni Co-Advisor on the Board of Directors and is the Auto Care Center Manager at Wal-Mart in Monona, Wisconsin. Ben is a WILS alumnus and attended seminar in 2010. Ben likes to spend his free time being with friends and other WILSers. This is Ben’s third year on the Board and is looking forward to a new and exciting year.
Hannah Erdman is an Alumni Co-Advisor and Director of Facilitators. She works for the American Red Cross Blood Services as an Donor Recruitment Account Manager. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Politics and Government from Ripon College. She attended WILS in 2008. WILS has given so much that she wants to help give back to the organization who shaped her life.
Ashley Koon is the Director of Fundraising and Greater Federation Women’s Club Lead. She has been participating in WILS since 2006. She has attended seminar many years as a facilitator and is looking forward to contributing to future WILS Seminars as a member of the Board. Currently Ashley is an Account Services/Deposit Operations Supervisor for National Exchange Bank and Trust and the proud mom of three amazing little boys.
Star Simmons in the PR Director on the Board of Directors. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Spanish and Politics from Cornell College. She currently works at Go Daddy as Tier 3- Server Chat Support in addition to owning a film production and web design company that she started in 2010. Star attended WILS in 2006 and has been involved ever since. Although now living in Iowa, Star finds it important to make time for an organization that has given so much to her as an alumna. She hopes to build awareness about the organization so that more schools across the state of Wisconsin will nominate students to have the opportunity to attend WILS seminar and develop their leadership skills.
Sonja Weiskircher is the Seminar Chair on the Board of Directors and is a cardiac sonographer at St Luke’s Medical Center in Milwaukee, WI. She is an alumna of WILS and has volunteered with the organization for over 10 years as a Junior Staff member, Facilitator, Board of Directors Member at Large, and helping with fundraising events. WILS has been a very important part of Sonja’s life and she is excited to continue with an organization that that inspires younger generations to become future leaders.
Hanna Wienke is an Alumni Co-Advisor on the Board of Directors, and works as an actuarial analyst at Milliman in Brookfield, WI. Hanna attend WILS in 2010, and has been a heavily involved member ever since. She had served two terms as the Alumni Association Treasurer and one term as the Alumni Association President. She is excited to be on the Board of Directors, and cannot wait to continue to inspire young leaders!
Stephanie Zellner is an Alumni Co-Advisor on the Board of Directors. She currently works as a Clinical Research Coordinator at the Medical College of Wisconsin. She is a graduate of the masters program for Clinical and Translational Science at the Medical College of Wisconsin. She completed her undergraduate degree in Biomedical Science and Clinical and Developmental Psychology at St. Norbert College. Stephanie joined the WILS family in 2009 when she volunteered for the weekend as a facilitator. Since then she has served as the Director of Recruitment and the Greater Federation of Women’s Clubs Fundraising Lead. Stephanie’s favorite part of seminar weekend is the ice cream game and reflections.
Members At Large:
Amy Bastian is a Member at Large on the Board of Directors and is currently a student in the Occupational Therapy Graduate Program at UW-Milwaukee. She works for the UW-Milwaukee Alumni Association as an Event Coordinator. Amy is an alumna of the WILS Program and has been involved in the organization for 6 years, serving as an active member, junior staff, facilitator, and Alumni Board PR Director. Amy believes having a role on the Board of Directors is of utmost importance as WILS has provided her with the necessary skills and tools needed to be an innovative leader within her community, to have a voice of positivity among her peers, and to have the drive to continue to serve individuals in new ways. She believes the future is in the hands of the next generation and volunteers to foster growth and spirit within the youth of Wisconsin.
Hailey Erdman is a Member at Large of the Board of Directors for WILS and is currently a Human Resource Generalist for Mead and Hunt. She recently graduated from the University of Wisconsin- Whitewater with a Bachelor of Business Administration in Human Resource Management. Since attending her WILS seminar in 2010, Hailey has served as a junior staff member, facilitator, and Alumni Association Media Coordinator. Every year Hailey loves to see the students grow in their leadership styles and as people after attending WILS.
Samantha Glaser is a Member at Large and the Optimist Club Lead on the Board of Directors and currently works as Revenue Controller at Rockwell Automation in Milwaukee. She attended Marquette University and graduated with her Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (Accounting major) in 2009. Some past positions she has held with WILS are Treasurer and PR Director for the Board of Directors and VP, PR Director, and Treasurer for the Alumni Association. WILS and the Alumni Association had a major impact on Sam’s self-confidence and leadership ability after she attended during high school. She enjoys continuing to give back to WILS since it has done so much for her over the years. She also love spending time with the zany, fun people who put in so much time to plan the seminar to keep bringing this life-changing experience to more and more student leaders.
Maxwell Herbert is a Member at Large of the Board of Directors for WILS and is currently the Operations Coordinator for JB Training Solutions. After moving to Chicago, Maxwell earned a bachelor’s in Hospitality Management from Kendall College. Since attending his WILS seminar in 2010, Maxwell has served as a junior staff member, facilitator, planning committee member, Alumni Association Media Coordinator, and Alumni Association President. Year after year, WILS continues to be a place where Maxwell gets to recharge his leadership skills and has the opportunity to meet some of the best leaders of Wisconsin.
Erik Holzhuter is Member at Large for the Board of Directors and is a Testing Engineer for John Deere Construction and Forestry. In 2006, he attended WILS as a student leader and continued to volunteer for the last eight years. Erik received a Bachelor’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering degree from the University of Wisconsin Platteville. He grew up in Stoughton Wisconsin and currently resides in Dubuque Iowa. WILS has helped Erik immensely in his journey through high school and college and hopes to provide a similar experience to future generations to come.
Sarah Hawkins-Podboy is a Member-At-Large on the Board of Directors and Director of Volunteer Tours and Transportation for Seminar. She graduated from Edgewood College with a degree in psychology focused on human services and substance abuse in 2015. She is currently working as an office manager at Blackhawk Church in Madison, WI. Sarah is an alumna of WILS and has volunteered with the organization since 2008 as a Junior Staff member, Alumni Board member for three years, Office Staff member, event fundraiser, and a member of the Planning Committee. WILS is a huge part of Sarah’s life and she is excited to continue giving back to an organization that inspired her to become a leader in her community and an advocate for diversity.
Beth Huesca is a Member at Large on the Board of Directors. She attended the WILS Seminar in 2002 and has served on the Seminar Planning Committee as well as the Alumni Board and the Board of Directors. She graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2008 with degrees in Political Science and Philosophy. She is thrilled to have WILS be such a large part of her life and she loves to give back to make sure that others have the great student experience she had. She works at Target and in her spare time she plays on a co-ed soccer team and volunteers in the church nursery.
Rachel Jeske is a Member at Large for the Board of Directors and a WILS 2008 alumna. She currently works as a Talent Acquisition Coordinator in southeast Wisconsin. She graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2014 with dual-Bachelor degrees in Consumer Science and Communications, with certificates in Entrepreneurship and Leadership. In her free time, Rachel likes to play volleyball, complete crossword and Sudoku puzzles, and watch the Badgers. In regard to WILS, she has been a Junior Staff member and Facilitator; she serves on the seminar planning committee and supports and participates in countless fundraisers. Rachel wants to ensure future student leaders are provided the same opportunity she was given, as WILS changed her for the better.
Derek Johnson is a Member at Large for the Board of Directors. He is a recent graduate from the University of Wisconsin – Madison, where he earned his Bachelor of Science in Economics and marched in the Badger Band. He first attended WILS in 2009, and has volunteered at every single seminar since as a Junior Staff member and now a Facilitator. He can usually be found nervously watching the Badgers or Packers. WILS was a life-changing experience in Derek’s life, and he wants to continue to see the organization provide that same experience to new Student Leaders.
Josh Koon is a Member at Large and Kiwanis Club Lead. He originally attended seminar as a student leader in 2001. He has held a variety of roles throughout the years such as a member of the Alumni Board, a previous stint on the Board of Directors, a Facilitator and many more. Josh is currently an Advertising Consultant for AutoTrader and dedicates his spare time to having adventures with his 3 boys.
Chris Lisser is a Member at Large and is the Manager of Production Services Engineering for Virtual Care Provider Inc. He holds an Associates Degree as a Network Specialist from Milwaukee Area Technical College. Chris has been an active volunteer with WILS for 20+ years and has volunteered as junior or adult staff at over 20 WILS seminars. He has been a Director for more than 10 years and has previously served as Seminar Chair, Vice President and Alumni Advisor as well as having served in various roles on the Seminar Planning Committee. WILS has had a tremendous impact on Chris’ life since attending the seminar as a student leader in 1992. WILS has become like a family to him. He volunteers to ensure young leaders are exposed to new ideas and to interact, learn and bond with fellow seminar attendees from different backgrounds across our state.
Nathan Schumacher is a Member at Large for the Board of Directors. He currently works for Farmers Insurance in their Property Department as a Special Claims Representative. He received a Master of Business Administration with a focus in Managerial Leadership from Northern Illinois University. He loves watching all UW sports, especially UW Volleyball. When he is not rooting on UW to a win, he is cooking in the kitchen. He attended Illinois Leadership Seminar in 2005 as a student leader; his first WILS event was seminar 2009 as Junior Staff. In WILS, he has been a Junior Staff member, Facilitator; and Office Staff. WILS is a great organization that helps young adults become better leaders.
Stefanie Sladky is a Member at Large on the Board of Directors. She is an alumna of Catholic Memorial High School in Waukesha. She received dual Bachelor of Arts degrees in Psychology and Spanish at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, a Masters of Arts in Multicultural and Bilingual Education from the Universidad de Alcala in Madrid, Spain, and a Masters of Science in Clinical Psychology from Saint Louis University. Currently, Stefanie is the Director of Behavioral Health and Spanish Services at Astia Health and a Youth Behavioral Specialist for Innovative Services in Wausau, Wisconsin. Since she attended seminar in 2001, Stef has continued to support WILS through group facilitation, fundraising and involvement with the alumni association. She continues to volunteer because of the amazing leadership skills, opportunities, and lifelong support WILS brings to leaders throughout the state of Wisconsin.
Riya Talwar is a Member at Large on the Board of Directors. She attended the WILS Seminar in 2008, and has continued to stay involved with the organization through volunteering, fundraising, planning, attending reunions, and serving as staff at seminars. Riya is an alumna of the University of Minnesota, where she studied both Marketing and Management Information Systems. She now works for Kohl’s Department Stores as a Technology Strategy Analyst. In her free time, Riya enjoys watching, analyzing, and vlogging about NFL football.
Will Villavicencio is a Member at Large on the Board of Directors. He graduated from the University of Wisconsin – Madison in May of 2014 with a degree in Global Security and Spanish and currently works as a Sales Operations CRM Analyst at Exact Sciences Corporation. He has been involved with WILS since he went through the program as a high-school student in 2007, and has served as Junior Staff, Facilitator, and Member at Large on the Board of Directors. He is thrilled that WILS continues to play such an active role in his life and hopes to inspire that same appreciation in others.
Christopher Westphal is a Member at Large on the Board of Directors and is a Mechanical Design Engineer at Marvel Medtech, LLC in Middleton, WI. He earned his B.S. in Biomedical Engineering, his M.S. in Mechanical Engineering, and his Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering, all at the University of Wisconsin – Madison. Christopher is an alumnus of the WILS program and has been a volunteer with the organization for over 15 years. He has served as the Vice President of the Alumni Association and a member of the Corporate Board of Directors. He enjoys working with young adults whom aspire to become better versions of themselves and delights in the moment when they realize the potential they have to do great things.
Samantha Zellner is a Member at Large and currently works as a Clinic Supervisor at the Wisconsin Early Autism Project INC out of DePere, WI. She attended the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point and graduated with a degree in Psychology. After being involved at numerous fundraising events in years past she was excited to join the Board of Director to further pass on the fun and exciting events and ideas behind the WILS organization.