Meet Our Board

Winnie Barron – Founder and previous director of Makindu Children’s Centre (MCC). Winnie is a Physician’s Assistant and Paramedic, specializing in emergency medicine.  She currently serves on the Executive Committee as Vice-Chair of the Board of Directors.  She has a special role as a consultant to MCC, providing guidance and technical assistance.  Winnie conducts field evaluations and monitoring several times annually.  She has played a central role since the inception of MCC in 1998, and helped to establish Makindu Children’s Program (MCP) as a 501(c)(3) in 2001.

Steve Randolph – Joined the board in January of 2005.  He currently serves on the Executive Committee as Chairman of the Board of Directors.  Steve’s financial expertise benefits both MCC & MCP.  Steve has been on Proper Walks in ’04, ’06 and ’12.  Educated at Oregon State University and Cornell, he recently retired from Oregon Food Bank after 28 years in the field.  Steve also served in the Peace Corps in Kenya (’77-80) with Michael Farley.

Catherine DeLong – Catherine has been involved with MCC since its inception in 1998, and was on the Proper Walk in 2006 and the Proper Safari in 2016. Cathy is Chief Operations Officer at The Catalyst Foundation, a New York-based non-for-profit which supports programming to promote and provide access to education, with a focus on displaced and marginalized populations.  She spent 15 years with New York University, and was the Chief Financial Officer for its School of Law and NYU Abu Dhabi.  Prior to working for NYU, Cathy was the Controller for the Financial Insurance Group of CNA Insurance, and held various other positions in the insurance and banking industries.  She serves on the board of Astoria Visual Arts, a not-for-profit in Astoria Oregon.  Cathy is a graduate of Marquette University, where she received a B.A. in Accounting, and of NYU’s Steinhardt School, where she received her M.A. in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages.

Kathie O’Brien – Kathie O’Brien spent most of her professional life as a community college educator integrated with forays into the world of grant writing and project management. She has been involved in many educational and arts nonprofits. Kathie’s work has always involved helping provide the hope of a better life to those in need. Her visit to Makindu in October 2017 sparked a renewed passion for this work.

Lois Day – Rejoined the board in April 2016. She currently serves on the Executive Committee as Secretary. Lois was an early volunteer in Makindu, spending three months there in 1999. After returning to life in the United States, Lois served on the board for a number of years, including serving one year as Chair of the Board. Lois retired in 2016 from a 27 year career in Child Welfare.

Michael Farley – Michael is Chief Executive Officer of a nonprofit advocating for mental and behavioral health for children and teens.  He served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Makindu Kenya in the late 1970s, an experience that had a significant, positive impact on his life.  He has served on the MCP Board since 2004 as is part of his on-going efforts to give back to that community.

Dennis Wininger – Dennis joined the board in 2008 after participating in two Proper Walks (‘06 and ’08).  He published a book, “Proper Walk- My Journey to Help the Children of Makindu,” which continues for raise funds for MCP.  Dennis helped to develop the websites for MCP, MCC and the Proper Walk.  He presents information about MCP to many service organizations and has organized additional fundraising events, including a domestic fundraiser called the “Golden Gate Bridge Proper Walk.”

Nancy Woolfson – Nancy has served as MCP Board member since 2011, and currently serves as Board Secretary.  Nancy is a retired teacher with a PhD in Education, specializing in special education research.  She has played a vital role in planning and organizing the MCP annual fundraiser and organizes smaller fundraising efforts throughout the year, by using her extraordinary cooking abilities to raise funds for MCP.

Marcia Moore – Marcia is a long time supporter of MCP.  As a retired Dental Hygienist she volunteers in Africa and Asia in the field of dental health.  Marcia has been a Proper Walk participant and has served on the Board of Directors since 2014.  She currently serves on the grant writing committee and promotes MCP by presenting information in many venues.  Her vision is that all children deserve an opportunity for hope.

Joshua Dowell – Joshua is new to the board, joining in February 2017. He currently works as a counselor at a private school in Goochland VA. He attended Virginia Commonwealth University and received a degree in Psychology. Joshua is also the frontman and band leader of the multi-award winning reggae band, Mighty Joshua & The Zion #5. He has helped raise funds for Makindu Children’s Program for many years and has been on Proper Walks 2010 and 2016.

John Morley – John joined the Board in November 2017. He is a retired business-person with a background in cooperative work structures. Initially trained as a behavioral economist, he ended up helping with his in-laws business and then was a stay-at-home dad to his three children. He participated in the 2017 Proper Safari.

Cheri Villa – Cheri is the Chief Operating Officer of the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) and an adjunct professor at George Mason University where she teaches courses on Nonprofit Management and Fundraising. She has a number of graduate degrees in Public Administration, Political Science and Nonprofit Management.  Cheri learned about the Makindu Children’s Program from Michael Farley and participated in the Proper Safari in 2016 and 2017. Cheri has a passion to care for others that leads her to human serving organizations and nonprofit executive management. Children and animals are her absolute life passion and she is excited to be a part of helping Makindu thrive.

Taylor Simmons – Taylor Simmons first experienced Makindu on Proper Safari 2016. She returned for Proper Safari 2018 and has been committed to the kids of Makindu ever since. Stateside, she is a Pilates Instructor, personal trainer and nutrition coach. Tay recently started her own business after working as a physical therapy assistant for 5 years and is enjoying every moment. Tay lives in Seattle with her two dogs and in her free time enjoys travel, cooking, reading, hiking and supporting the kids of Makindu.