President / Special Events
Jill Ashby brings a real passion for avocation for children and community involvement to the Northland Early Education Center, where she serves on the Fund Development and Hangar Party Planning Committees. She has worked for Deloitte for the past 16 years and is the Business Program Manager for the CFO. Jill has spent many years volunteering with organizations like Children’s Mercy, Easter Seals and March of Dimes.
Jill and her husband, Denys, reside in Kansas City North with their son, Chase who is in elementary school and has benefited from early intervention services like those that NEEC provides. Jill is a Northlander through and through and is very proud to be a part of NEEC, supporting their mission to provide quality early education and therapy services for children who have special needs and typical needs. Jill wanted to serve on the Board of Directors to continue advocating for all children.
Vice President / Quality Improvement Committee
Elizabeth (Lisa) Hurley is an attorney practicing with the law firm of Fox, Partee and Nigro. She graduated from the University of Missouri with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and from The University of Missouri at Kansas City School of Law. After graduation, Lisa worked for Legal Aid of Western Missouri representing poor and indigent clients. Currently her focus is in the areas of municipal, traffic and criminal defense.
Lisa and her husband, Jeff, reside in Kansas City North with their two daughters, Kristen and Kaitlin. She also has a son, Nathan who is married with two children. Lisa spends her free time being involved in her girls’ school activities and watching her children’s sporting activities. She also is active in the Northland Race for Life, which does fundraising for cancer research and treatment.
Treasurer / Finance Committee
Matt Lyons is a Senior Analyst in Investor Relations and Business Development at Cerner Corporation in North Kansas City. He is a graduate of the University of Missouri with a Bachelor’s degree and dual emphasis in Finance & Banking and Real Estate. Employed at Cerner since college, Matt has held roles in consulting, early in his career, and now in Finance for over ten years. Matt currently serves on the Finance committee for the Northland Early Education Center and supports the school’s mission any way he can. A lifelong Northlander, Matt and his wife, Beth, currently reside in Platte City with their son, Miles, and two dogs, Auggie and Roxy.
Secretary/Quality Improvement Committee
Tammy is native of the Kansas City northland and has taught Elementary school in the North Kansas City School District for 23 years. Tammy’s love of children and her desire to help them reach their full potential inspired her career. Tammy graduated from UMKC with a BS in Elementary Education and completed her Masters in Education at Webster University. Tammy retired in 2013 with 27 years of teaching and loving hundreds of children.
Michelle Lyons Marriott
Fund Development /Steering Committee Chair
Michelle litigates patent, trademark, copyright, licensing, and trade secret issues for ERISE IP, P.A. She has handled cases at trial and on appeal, in state and federal courts and through \arbitration, representing both plaintiffs and defendants.
Michelle graduated summa cum laude with undergraduate degrees in Journalism and Business Administration from the University of Missouri. Michelle attended Vanderbilt University Law School, where she was the managing editor of the Vanderbilt Journal of Transnational Law, and was a justice on Vanderbilt’s Moot Court Board. After law school, Michelle served as a law clerk to the Honorable Duane Benton on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit and on the Supreme Court of Missouri. She began her career in private practice as a litigator at Baker Botts LLP in Dallas, Texas.
Michelle’s recognition includes earning the designation of Rising Star from KC Business magazine in 2014. Michelle is active in the community, and has served on NEEC’s board of directors since 2012.
Stephanie brings a real passion for financial literacy and community involvement to the Northland Early Education Center, where she serves on the Finance Committee. She has worked for CommunityAmerica Credit Union for the past eight years and is currently the Regional Market Director for Wyandotte and Johnson county Kansas. Stephanie attended Missouri Western University earning her Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology and in 2008 completed her MBA. She also completed the prestigious Leadership Northland through the Northland Chamber in 2010 and Shawnee Leadership through the Shawnee Chamber of Commerce in 2014. Stephanie is an avid volunteer for Wayside Waifs and Great Plains SPCA as a foster parent for dogs and cats. Having lived in the Northland her whole life, Stephanie is a Northlander through and through. NEEC’s mission to provide quality early education and therapy services for children who have special needs and typical needs is the reason she wanted to serve on the Board of Directors; Stephanie has a special bond with her younger brother who has special needs.
Quality Improvement Committee
Sandy Walker, PHR, SHRM-CP is the Vice President Human Resources for Railcrew Xpress in Lenexa, KS. Her education includes a Bachelor’s degree in Management and Marketing from the University of Nebraska at Kearney. In addition to a Master’s Degree in Human Resource Management. Sandy has volunteered on the Board for NEEC since 2003, where she served two terms as Board President. In addition, Sandy and her husband Chuck have two children, Sierra and Forrest.
Fund Development Committee
Steve Shead is currently an Insurance Agent with Missouri Farm Bureau. He received his Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Pittsburg State University. He is a Missouri transfer that grew up on the Kansas side of Kansas City. Steve has been and is still involved with many organizations that benefit individuals with special needs. These include: Special Olympics coach and volunteer, Big Brothers Big Sisters team captain, Autism Speaks team captain, Autism Society of the Heartland project coordinator and his latest role as Vice President of Heartland Helpers. Steve, Andrea Behrman and Jill Gromer began Heartland Helpers to assist individuals and community needs with an emphasis on helping people with developmental disabilities. He is also a member of NEEC’s Fund Development Board.
Steve and his wife Nicole have a son, with special needs, enrolled at NEEC. Steve and Nicole are both actively involved in NEEC activities and feel blessed to have found NEEC as a community resource when they needed them most.
Fund Development Committee
Jill Monaghan is a Project Architect at Generator Studio, a full service firm located in the Crossroads of Kansas City. She received her Masters of Architecture from Kansas State University. In her professional capacity, Jill is interested in the impact the built environment has on all people, and the opportunities a supportive and inclusive environment can provide for special needs and typical children.
Jill was interested in joining the board to help raise awareness for NEEC and the center’s dedication to providing inclusive early education services to the North land and broader KC metro area. She has many years of experience volunteering with organizations like the American Cancer Society and Habitat for Humanity. She is excited to continue her engagement with the Kansas City community by serving on the Board of Directors and the Fund Development Committee at NEEC.
Quality Improvement Committee
Jamie became a board member at Northland Early Education Center after witnessing first hand the amazing support that NEEC provides for children of all needs. Jamie’s children, Hayden and Jake, both currently attend NEEC, and after seeing her own children flourish in NEEC’s caring and professional environment, Jamie knew that she needed to get more involved. Jamie and her husband Tyler are both local high school teachers, so she feels that she has personal knowledge of how a supportive environment early in life can have a huge impact on a child when they reach adolescence. Jamie hopes that her passion for individualized and responsive education can help NEEC continue it’s tradition of excellence for many years to come.
Fund Development Committee
Amie Francois currently owns and operates Pediatric Smiles Dentistry alongside her husband, Dr. Ryan Francois. They are thrilled to be serving children’s health needs in the Northland. A native of Kansas City, Amie graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia and then attended graduate school at the University of California-Davis. After graduating, she spent many years in both non-profit and higher education doing community outreach and fundraising for organizations such as the Crocker Art Museum and the University of California-San Francisco. She is excited to bring these skills to the Fund Development Committee.
Amie and her husband live in Liberty with their two young sons, Evan and Ethan. Seeing the positive effect of early childhood education on both of her children has made Amie a passionate advocate for such programs and she is excited to contribute her energy and expertise to the Northland Early Education Center.