Christine Fessler, President/CEO
Christine has guided Easter Seals Wisconsin as Chief Executive Officer and President of the Board of Directors since 1994. She is responsible for carrying out the policies established by the Board and delegating authority to management staff for accomplishing agency and department objectives. She coordinates Board and staff efforts, defines staffing needs, administers personnel policies and is responsible for hiring and supervision of management staff. She develops the budget and coordinates and implements budget development, oversees and refines grant proposals, negotiates contracts, seeks new funding sources, guides strategic planning, represents Easter Seals Wisconsin in Easter Seals, Inc. activities, and works with stewardship of major donors and volunteers. She has 40 years of experience in disability services and nonprofit program and fiscal management.
Sandee Horn, Executive Assistant
Email Sandee, 608.237.1449
As Executive Assistant, Sandee provides administrative support for the CEO, Board of Directors, and Development Director. She assists with database management, agency events, and provides support for our Friends programs, Development events, Community Health Charities, and national corporate sponsor initiatives. Sandee, a Wisconsin native who has lived most of her life in Madison and south-central Wisconsin, joined Easter Seals in 2015.
James Ruehle, Administrative Office Assistant
Email James, 608.237.1551
James joined Easter Seals in April 2019 and serves as the Administrative Office Assistant. In this role, James provides support in the day-to-day operations for our Madison office, as well as welcomes campers during check-in at our camp location throughout the summer. James, a native of Iowa, earned his M.A. in Business Communications from the University of Dubuque in 2012. Since then, he has worked in the behavioral healthcare field and also in management and training development in the retail sector, most recently in Denver. James is excited to be a part of Easter Seals as he is passionate about empowering and advocating for all individuals we serve through Easter Seals.
Lorrie Greene, Technology Support Specialist
Email Lorrie, 608.237.1567
Lorrie joined Easter Seals staff in 2016, she supports agency technology needs, and is responsible for help desk and agency network, server, hardware and software support. Including making purchases, seeking in-kind donations of software, and planning for IT needs in conjunction with management staff. She has twenty years experience in small-medium business IT software/hardware installation, troubleshooting, training, and support.
Camp and Respite Programs
Our experienced camp staff is dedicated to making our camps safe, fun and exciting places to be and is essential to making Camp Wawbeek and Respite Camp the best choice for children and adults with disabilities.
Carissa Peterson, CTRS, Vice President, Camp & Respite Services
Email Carissa, 608.237.1575
Carissa is responsible for the enhancement and expansion of Easter Seals Wisconsin Camps and facilities, long-term revitalization including capital projects and campaigns, and the development of statewide service club support. She explores new revenue sources for camp programs and facilities and works to secure state funding. She develops policies and procedures to ensure quality and cost effective camp programs, provides oversight of on-site camp management and supervises the Wawbeek and Respite Camp Directors and the Volunteer and Nursing Coordinators. Carissa also oversees Veterans Family Camp, rentals, and year-round facility use, and develops new program initiatives. She joined Easter Seals Wisconsin in 2009.
Joshua Boettcher, Respite Camp Director
Email Joshua, 608.254.2502
Joshua joined Easter Seals Wisconsin as Respite Camp Director in August 2018. He first started working at Easter Seals Wisconsin’s summer camps in 2010 and continued to work numerous summers at camp as his schedule allowed. Joshua’s most recent professional experience has been as a Special Education Teacher in Minnesota and serving four years in the Navy, attached to USS Germantown (LSD-42), stationed in Sasebo, Japan. He is excited to be a more permanent fixture at camp, and to see a great organization continue to grow and evolve. Joshua grew up in the St. Paul area, and received his B.A. in Sociology with Religion and Psychology in 2006 from Luther College in Decorah, IA. He has always been drawn to camps serving people of all ability levels and is ready to take on his new role as Respite Camp Director. Joshua’s favorite part about camp is campfire cooking, but he also loves to see how the campers grow throughout the years, forming their own amazing social networks, often times exclusive to camp.
Alex Peters, Camp Wawbeek Director
Email Alex, 608.254.8319
Alex joined Easter Seals in December 2016. He first volunteered at camp in 2010, served as an AmeriCorps member in 2012, and has been the Ropes Course Director since 2013. He has also arranged camper trips, worked with Transitions sessions, and served as the dietary aide for campers with special dietary needs. Alex grew up in Menasha and attended UW-Milwaukee. He is excited to be back at Camp Wawbeek, working with people he has come to care so much for over the last few years. Alex says that being at camp is magical and the connections campers make with each other and with staff is his favorite thing to see when he’s there.
Stevie Thomas, Camp Wawbeek Summer Program Co-Director
Email Stevie, 608.254.8319
Stevie has been working at Camp Wawbeek during the summer sessions since 2010 and, in 2015, was hired to serve as the on-site co-director of the summer program at Camp Wawbeek. She implements policies and procedures to ensure a safe, high-quality program. She assists with the training and supervision of seasonal staff, Wawbeek AmeriCorps members, and volunteers. When she’s not at Camp Wawbeek, Stevie lives in Australia where she works for Rocky Bay – an organization that serves individuals with disabilities assisting them to achieve their goals, support learning, develop life skills, make friends, and experience personal growth in the years after school.
Anna Korb, CTRS, AmeriCorps Program Manager
Email Anna, 608.237.1397
Anna joined the Easter Seals Wisconsin team in August 2017 as the AmeriCorps Program Manager. She first volunteered at camp in 2013, served as an AmeriCorps member in 2015, and served a second term of AmeriCorps in 2016 as the Volunteer Coordinator. In 2015, she graduated from the University of Wisconsin- La Crosse with a Bachelors in Therapeutic Recreation. In this role, she is responsible for program compliance with the AmeriCorps grant, including preparation of progress and final reports, AmeriCorps member documentation, and overall member experience. She manages record-keeping and monitoring, citizenship training, AmeriCorps supervisor communication and coordination, program evaluation, and billing, according to the AmeriCorps program budget and plan.
Emma Hansen, RN, Camp Nurse Coordinator
Email Emma, 608.254.2502
Emma first joined the Easter Seals Camp in May 2018 when she worked as the nurse at Respite Camp. She started her new role as nursing coordinator in August 2018. As the nursing coordinator, she recruits nurses, collaborates on policies with the nurse practitioner, and ensures the safety of all of our campers. Emma worked as a camp counselor back in 2011, and her work with Easter Seals Wisconsin Camps inspired her to become a nurse. She is originally from Michigan and received her degree in nursing at Henry Ford College.
Darrel Marusek, Camp Accounting and Program Assistant
Email Darrel, 608.237.1979
Darrel provides administrative support to Easter Seals Wisconsin Camps including registration, accounts receivable and collections, maintaining the camp database, and is the main communication for camp inquiries. He also assists the accounting department. Darrel officially joined Easter Seals Wisconsin in the fall of 2018.
Toussaint Placca, Camp Admin. and Accounting Assistant
Email Toussaint, 608.237.1576
Toussaint provides assistance to the Camp Accounting and Program Assistant and assists the accounting department. He officially joined Easter Seals Wisconsin in the fall of 2018.
Jill Gretzinger, Coordinator, Outagamie County Disability HelpLine
Email Jill, 920.832.0344
Jill has managed the Outagamie County Disability HelpLine since its inception in 1995, maintaining a data bank of resources and providing information and referral services to Outagamie County residents with disabilities and their families. She administers grants to individuals for disability-related equipment, serves on several local committees, helps organize the Human Race event and facilitates Parent-to-Parent, Autism Family Network and TUFFs support groups. Jill has formed a number of effective collaborations with other organizations and works with them and the community to identify needs. She then pursues opportunities to secure funding to meet those needs.
Rachel Reichhoff, Director of Development
Email Rachel, 608.237.1370
Rachel joined Easter Seals Wisconsin in 2018. She is a highly experienced fundraiser with a proven track record, who worked for over 10 years as a Senior Corporate Philanthropy Officer and a Major Giving Officer, conducting major events including many golf outings and galas. Rachel will manage the development budget, coordinate, develop and execute all special events, and work with major donors to promote the viability of Easter Seals Wisconsin programs and offerings.
Cally Ehle, Director, Grants Management
Email Cally, 608.237.1484
Cally coordinates overall grants management and development, including preparing federal, state and private grant proposals, researching new prospects, and stewardship of grant makers. She investigates new public and private funding sources and is responsible for compliance with all grant requirements including data collection, reporting, billing, evaluation, reports, and general oversight of grant activities. Cally is also responsible for the overall implementation of the AmeriCorps program and serves as AmeriCorps Program Director. Before joining Easter Seals in 2013, Cally worked as the Outreach Specialist for AgrAbility of Wisconsin, a partner of Easter Seals.
FARM & Vocational Services
Knowledgeable and caring, and almost all with a life-long personal experience in farming, our staff can help make a lasting difference in the lives of farmers and others with disabilities seeking independence in farming and self-employment.
Paul Leverenz, Vice President, FARM & Vocational Services
Email Paul, 608.225.2394
Known for his deep commitment to farmers and their way of life, Paul joined Easter Seals in 1992 and has headed up our nationally-honored FARM Program since its inception. As the Vice President for FARM & Vocational Services, he administers the FARM and Self-Employment Services (SES) programs for Easter Seals Wisconsin and oversees the Outagamie County Disability HelpLine. He hires, trains and supervises the Technical and Program Assistants, Rural Rehabilitation and SES Specialists, and HelpLine Coordinator. He oversees outreach activities and on-site assessments and business plans for FARM and SES, and serves as liaison to the Wisconsin Division of Vocational Rehabilitation and AgrAbility of Wisconsin. Paul, who grew up on a farm in the Green Bay area, offers training, presentations, and mentoring on vocational rehabilitation for farmers to FARM staff, state agencies, and AgrAbility groups nationwide.
Jeff Kratochwill, ATP, Lead Rural Rehabilitation Specialist
Email Jeff, 608.279.9436
Jeff travels to farms in Wisconsin, meeting with farmers with disabilities, and working with them to find ways to help them stay in farming and maintain their independence. He conducts on-site work assessments, determines work-site modifications and adaptive equipment needs, develops a plan to implement recommendations, and coordinates funding and support services. As the Lead Rural Rehabilitation Specialist, Jeff co-supervises and provides training for other Rural Rehabilitation Specialists and reviews all FARM reports. He is a certified Assistive Technology Professional (ATP) and serves as liaison to Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR) field supervisors and to Client Assistance Program (CAP), to resolve DVR service issues with clients. Jeff, who was raised on a Wisconsin dairy farm, joined the Easter Seals staff in 2008.
Ami Cooper, Rural Rehabilitation Specialist
Email Ami, 608.225.1867
Ami joined Easter Seals in 2012 as an AmeriCorps inter for the FARM Program and, in 2015 was hired as a Rural Rehabilitation Specialist. She works with farmers with disabilities and their families by providing services that help them continue farming and maintain independence. She conducts on-site work assessments, determines work site modifications and adaptive equipment needs, develops a plan to implement recommendations, and coordinates funding and support services. She also maintains the Ag Equipment Reutilization website. Ami grew up on her family’s Registered Holstein dairy farm in Wisconsin, where she worked actively with the herd.
T Ellenbecker, Rural Rehabilitation Specialist
Email T, 715.842.3411
T brings to the FARM Program 26 years of counseling and case management skills, her knowledge of farming, and her awareness of how disabilities might affect farmers. She works with farmers with disabilities and their families by providing services that help them continue farming and maintain independence. She provides case management for clients, identifies immediate needs, and provides information and referral to funding and support services. T joined Easter Seals in 2000.
Julie Jensen, Self-Employment Services Specialist
Email Julie, 920.431.0843
Julie developed and launched the Easter Seals Wisconsin Self-Employment Services program in 2004. She works with individuals with disabilities who are pursuing self-employment as their vocational goal, helping them to choose an enterprise which they are able to operate and that will accommodate their disability. She provides assessments and feasibility studies, works with entrepreneurs to develop business plans, helps to research potential markets, and assists them in developing the structure and funding necessary to operate a business.
Paul Untiet, Rural Rehabilitation Specialist
Email Paul, 715.347.4093
During his 30 years at the Wisconsin Division of Vocational Rehabilitation, Paul was a knowledgeable advocate for farmers and he continues in this role since joining the FARM staff. He works with farmers with disabilities and their families by providing services that help them continue farming and maintain their independence. He provides case management for clients, identifies immediate needs, and provides information and referral to funding and support services. Paul, who grew up on a farm, started working for Easter Seals in 2008.
Melba Brown, Administrative Program Assistant
Email Melba, 608.237.1446
Melba provides technical assistance to the FARM and Self-Employment Services programs. She edits FARM reports, is in charge of FARM billing and spreadsheets, and keeps client files updated. She also serves as client first contact by phone, is point of contact for AgrAbility, updates the client databases and handles all mailings.
Pam Ivers, Chief Financial Officer
Email Pam, 608.237.1387
Coming to Easter Seals with 21 years of experience, Pam joined the staff in 2008. She oversees both financial operations of the agency and human resource functions. She is responsible for fiscal analysis, the preparation and distribution of monthly financial statements, and coordination of the budget process. Pam also prepares audit schedules and tax returns, monitors compliance with regulatory agencies, administers employee benefit plans, monitors investment activities, and performs bi-weekly payroll processing.
Linda Eby, Accounting & Human Resources Coordinator
Email Linda, 608.237.1380
A Madison native with extensive nonprofit and human resources experience, Linda joined Easter Seals Wisconsin in 2008 as the HR Coordinator and Accounting Assistant. She is responsible for depositing cash receipts, cash disbursements to vendors, and vendor relations. She works with the Camp department to track and account for billing and receipts for camp fees. She is also responsible for carrying out human resource functions for the agency, maintains personnel files, records timesheets and leave, and handles workers compensation and unemployment claims.
Marketing & Communications
Stacey Murnighan, Director, Marketing & Communications
Email Stacey, 608.237.1479
As the Director of Marketing and Communications, Stacey is responsible for the development, implementation, and management of a strategic and comprehensive communications plan, both externally and internally, promoting and marketing Easter Seals Wisconsin in conjunction with its programs, services, and events. After moving to Madison from Lexington, Kentucky, Stacey joined Easter Seals Wisconsin in November 2016, bringing with her over nine years of marketing and graphic design experience.
Mary Statz, Marketing & Development Specialist
Email Mary, 608.237.1520
As the Marketing and Development Specialist, Mary helps with major fundraisers such as the Golf Outing for Kids and works closely with VIPs during the southern Wisconsin Annual Campaign. She coordinates the statewide direct mail program, plays a lead role in planning the Recognition Dinner, designs various marketing materials, and writes and edits the Independence Newsletter. In 2006, Mary conceptualized, researched and wrote the curriculum for Avenues to Understanding, Easter Seals Wisconsin’s disability awareness program aimed at children and teens. She has been with Easter Seals since 1994.