UWCK Staff Members
Megan Stith, President & CEO
Megan has had the privilege of serving our community as UWCK's President & CEO since December 2014 and joined our organization in 2011. Stith brings to this position multiple levels of United Way management experience, serving as a Resource Development Coordinator, AmeriCorps VISTA program director, and most recently Director of Community Impact. Previous to working for United Way, she gained relevant nonprofit leadership experience as the Head of Programming and Children’s Services with the Meade County Library. In addition to her extensive community involvement, Megan was honored as the Meade County Business Woman of the Year in 2013, nominated for the award again in 2015, completed Sygenta’s Leadership at Its Best program, and was a 2014 Fellow in the New Leaders Council Institute. She holds a Bachelor’s of Science from Michigan State University, conducted graduate research on behalf of the University of Kentucky, and completed a Master’s Degree from San Jose State University. She resides in Payneville, KY with her husband and two sons on their third generation family farm. Connect with Megan on LinkedIn.
Dana Taylor-Garrett, Director of Community Engagement
Contact Dana about: campaign, making donations, LE support, volunteer opportunities, Young Professionals Network, Bank On program
I’m a life-long resident of Hardin County so I’ve always known how wonderful of a community we live in but by serving as the Director of Community Engagement for the United Way of Central Kentucky, I have the privilege of seeing first hand every single day all of the good that goes on in our community. I feel so blessed and honored to be able to work with so many self-less people who give their time, talent, and treasure to help us achieve the United Way goal of reducing childhood poverty.
I am a recent graduate of Western Kentucky University. I received my Bachelor’s degree in History and Social Studies. I currently serve as a Board Member for the Young Professionals Network, and am the Founder of the non-profit, Hands Filled With Heart. I am also an Ambassador for the Hardin County Chamber of Commerce, a graduate of the 2015 HCCC Leadership Hardin County, a member of First Christian Church in Elizabethtown, and I serve on the Heartland Homecoming Parade Planning Committee. When I’m not at work, I’m spending my time with my family, husband, and 9 year old son, and we are getting ready to welcome our daughter into the world in March.
Christa Shouse, Office Manager
Contact Christa about: financial or payment questions, campaign meeting logistics, event RSVPs, meeting space at UWCK
I joined the team at UWCK in the Spring of 2012 after working in the legal profession for 11 years. I have always enjoyed working with the public, and have made career choices that provide opportunities to make a difference in people’s lives. There is a quote of Sally Koch that reflects how I look at our work, “Great opportunities to help others seldom come, but small ones surround us every day.” We get many calls for assistance at the office, and I may not always know the answers, but I make sure to take the time to hopefully find an answer, or at least help map a path to one. Every day there is an opportunity for me to learn how we can better serve the community; sometimes the voice on the end of the line just needs to be heard by someone, it’s my job to listen. Much like the ripple effect that a stone in a pond makes, we can never know the extent to which our lives and works touch others.
When I am not at United Way, I make a home with my husband Mark, in Western Hardin County, where we are remodeling 165 year old home. In the time that is left outside of those activities, I am an active photographer and sometimes painter.
Stephanie Hester, Director of Community Impact
Contact Stephanie about: support for AmeriCorps VISTA supervisors and members, how to become a VISTA
Stephanie is the Project Director for United Way of Central Kentucky’s VISTA program. VISTAs (Volunteers in Service to America) serve to build the capacity of local organizations to eradicate poverty. During the 2014-2015 grant year, VISTAs leveraged $1.1 million in cash and in-kind donations in support of their organizations’ efforts. The Community Impact team, under Stephanie’s supervision, supports the efforts of funded partners as they adopt Results-Based Accountability methods of reporting and also supports several Community Impact initiatives such as the Housing and Homelessness Coalition, Born Learning Academy and poverty simulations.
Before joining UWCK, Stephanie enjoyed a 15 year career in Human Resources, providing support to employees in manufacturing, medical, and engineering industries. She also worked at United Way of Central Minnesota as the Campaign & Marketing Manager, before moving to Kentucky in 2002. This position instilled an appreciation for non-profit work that let her to UWCK. She says, “Human Resources and non-profit work are very similar – in both fields, you are serving people.”
Katie Kurtz, Director of Development and Communications
Contact Katie about: campaign, marketing, press releases, business development
Katie is the newest member of our UWCK team, joining our staff in September of 2015 after working almost nine years in the banking industry. Originally from Nelson County, she now lives in Hardin County with her husband and two small children. She comes to UWCK with many years of customer service, sales and finance experience, and holds a Bachelor degree in Business Marketing from Sullivan University. Prior to her employment at UWCK, Katie also served as a Junior Achievement of Kentuckiana and Bank On Program volunteer.
United Way of Central Kentucky is proud to be the managing partner of our region's AmeriCorps VISTA, Volunteer in Service to America, program through The Corporation for National and Community Service. AmeriCorps VISTA is dedicated to creating long-term, sustainable solutions to poverty. VISTA provides full-time members to nonprofit, faith based, and other community organziations to create and expand programs that bring low-income individuals and communities out of poverty. VISTA members leverage human, financial, and material resources to increase the capacity of thousands of organizations across the country. VISTAs leave behind lasting solutions to some of our country’s toughest problems.
Resource Development, AmeriCorps VISTA
Kristen serves as the Resource Development VISTA at UWCK and is responsible for identifying new volunteers who can help increase our revenue, creating new relationships with businesses and nonprofits, and deepening existing partnerships in order to create long-term sustainability. Kristen attended Lynchburg College in VA where she obtained her bachelor’s degree in Psychology in 2015.
Community Engagement, AmeriCorps VISTA
Ashley serves as the Community Engagement VISTA at United Way of Central Kentucky and is responsible for engaging and recruiting volunteers for United Way initiatives such as, Give a Day for Hunger and Bank On workshops. Ashley attended Berea College and graduated with her bachelor’s degree in Agriculture and Natural Resources in 2014.
2-1-1 Expansion, AmeriCorps VISTA
Annie serves as the 2-1-1 Expansion VISTA at UWCK and will be helping to implement the 2-1-1 system in UWCK’s five county area. She enjoyed the role as Senior Reporter at The Meade County Messenger previous to joining AmeriCorps. Annie is currently attending Midway University and majoring in Marketing with a concentration in Graphic Design.
Financial Stability, AmeriCorps VISTA
Alyssa Milliner serves as United Way's Financial Stability VISTA, working closely with our Bank On Central Kentucky and VITA programs. She is a recent graduate of Western Kentucky University where she received her bachelor’s degree in Hospitality Management. Alyssa is also Grayson County native, but says she feels right at home here in the Heartland.