During the March 1 PeaceWorks-Kansas City Annual Meeting, members held elections, and the Board of Directors now has the following officers and members.

Co-Chairpersons Sunny Hamrick, Cris Mann, Henry Stoever

Vice Chair Mary Hladky

Treasurer Dave Pack

Secretary Spencer Graves

Continuing Board Members Jim Hannah, Jenny Semet, Mark Semet, Ann Suellentrop, Leigh Woody

And (drum roll!) here’s an introduction to the newly elected Board members.

Charles Carney

Charles Carney has been a life-long peace activist and war tax resister. For the last 13 years, he has worked in the KC area as a front-lines, direct-service social worker, mostly in homeless outreach and homelessness prevention. Carney has served as a staff member at the Eighth Day Center for Justice in Chicago, a coalition of Catholic congregations working for peace and human rights. He also worked for the Peace and Social Justice Center in Wichita and the Chicago Emergency Shelter Organization. He has served on the Board of Directors for the Illinois Coalition for Alternatives to the Death Penalty. Carney and his spouse, Donna Constantineau, have taken in homeless persons for the last 15 years at their home, the St. Lawrence Catholic Worker House, in KC, KS. He is currently active in the Kansas Poor People’s campaign, especially the movement to expand Kansas Medicaid.

Christopher Overfelt

Christopher Overfelt was a mechanic in the U.S. Air Force from 2002 to 2011. He is now a member of Veterans for Peace and is active in the Kansas Poor People’s Campaign. In the summers, he works at Boys Grow, a non-profit vegetable farm that mentors 8th– and 9th-grade boys through agriculture, and in the school year, he substitute teaches in the KC, MO, school district.

Kristin Scheer

Kristin Scheer, an environmental activist, has been interested in social justice issues for a long time. She says, “I am looking for new opportunities to get involved in moving the needle” on environmental and social justice issues. Most recently Scheer has been involved with Extinction Rebellion (XR—trying to save living beings and the Earth from extinction). She was in an XR action outside the new Kansas City Star building to demand real reporting of the climate crisis; participants in a die-in read science-based news headlines and then fell to the ground. She has also worked with Greenpeace, Planned Parenthood, and the Human Rights Campaign. She organized an action at Barney Allis Plaza in downtown KC for Rainforest Alliance, brandishing a huge inflatable chainsaw with Mitsubishi’s name on it since that company was involved in rainforest deforestation.

Notes: Mary Hladky and Cris Mann serve on the PeaceWorks Nominating Committee. Bennette Dibben assists with office work and chairs the PeaceWorks Action Committee. And Joseph Wun, a Board member, is leaving the PeaceWorks Board and the Kansas City area for a future in medicine. During the Annual Meeting, Dave Pack gave Joseph Wun a certificate for his service as a director for 3 years.  Farewell, good friend Joseph!

Video by Mark and Jenny Semet.