Our Board

Board of Directors

Chip Polston Kimberly Brennen
Board President Vice President
Luke Boyett K. Bryan Ernstberger Kerri Richardson
   Governance Chair      Operations Chair    Comm. Outreach Chair
Chad Carlton Robert E. Rich Amy Simpson
   Development Chair      Treasurer & Finance Chair      Secretary
Caroline Pitt Clark Steve Gold F. Ryan Keith
Jane Driskell Christopher V. Head Hilda Legg
Rep. Derrick Graham Allie Holtz Danny Murphy
Bryan Flachbart Tressie Hird Greg Palmer
Lori Hudson Flanery Ched Jennings David Perlow
Les Fugate
Student Members
Barton Christmas Malcomb Haming Chidum Okeke
Evan Hays Lydia Mason Spencer Stewart

Board Member Bios

Luke Boyett

Luke Boyett grew up in Henderson, KY and is an alumnus of nearly all of the Kentucky Y programs. He participated from 1991 to 1997, including KYA, KUNA, Go For It!, LTC, and CONA and formed many lifelong friendships in that time. Upon graduation from Henderson County High School, he attended the University of Kentucky, New York University, and Columbia University. After spending most of his twenties in the Northeast, Luke and his wife, Laura, returned to Kentucky in 2008. Professionally, Luke is a Director of Corporate Finance at Humana Inc. He and his wife have two young children and reside in Louisville.

 

Kimberly Turner Brennen

Kimberly is an active member of the non-profit community. During the summer of 2009, Kimberly and her family relocated from Washington, D.C. to Lexington, Kentucky. Since arriving in Kentucky, Kimberly has become actively involved with state and local non-profit organizations. She currently serves on four community advisory boards, the Lexington Public Library, Children’s Law Center, St. Joseph’s Women’s Hospital and UK Women & Philanthropy. These groups represent her interests in issues involving children, education, health and literacy. In her professional life, Kimberly has worked for LexisNexis for the past 16 years. She has held many positions within the company’s law school division. Her positions have ranged from representing LexisNexis at 3 law schools to becoming the National Sales Manager for law school publishing. Kimberly and David Brennen have two sons, Spenser and Andrew, who have attended Y camps in several states and participate in the KYA, KUNA, LTC, Go For It, CONA, and Y-Corps.

 

Chad Carlton

Chad is the President of C2 Strategic Communications, a regional public relations firm based in Louisville. His company focuses on work that makes a positive difference in communities — from education and transportation to health care and economic development. Chad, a native of Anderson County, helped two governors propel the long-promised Ohio River Bridges Project in Louisville from conversation to construction to completion in 2016. In nearly three decades as a communications professional, Chad has served as communications director and cabinet member for Louisville Mayor Jerry Abramson, a leader of Doe-Anderson’s public affairs team and government and political reporter for the Lexington Herald-Leader. Chad lives in Louisville with his wife, Carla, and two children, Harper and Clay.

 

Caroline Pitt Clark

Caroline Clark is director of Governmental Affairs for LG&E and KU. She joined LG&E and KU in 2013 as manager of Compliance, where she led several key compliance programs, including company programs to comply with FERC and NERC (non-CIP) requirements, as well as the Company’s corporate ethics and investigations program. Prior to joining the company, Clark was an administrative law judge with the Kentucky Department of Workers’ Claims and served as a commissioner with the Kentucky Public Service Commission.

Clark received her Juris Doctor in 2002 from the University of Kentucky College of Law and a bachelor’s degree from Centre College in 1999. She and her husband, Justin, live in Louisville, Kentucky with their daughters Charley and Georgia

 

Jane Driskell

Jane is a longtime budget and policy expert. She joined Governor Steve Beshear’s administration as State Budget Director in January. With 27 years of experience in government, Jane now manages the day-to-day activities of the budget office and oversees the formulation and execution of the Governor’s budget. She began her career in state government in 1985 as a policy and budget analyst in the Governor’s Office for Policy and Management. She has held numerous executive management positions in Louisville and Lexington governments, including deputy mayor, chief financial officer, budget director and commissioner of finance. Jane also served as an elected trustee for the Kentucky Retirement Systems. Jane previously served as Commissioner of Finance for Lexington Fayette Urban County Government, in the office of Mayor Jim Gray.

 

K. Bryan Ernstberger

Bryan is currently a partner at the Law Firm of Gregory, Easley & Ernstberger. Born and raised in Murray, KY, Bryan is a graduate of Calloway County high school, University of Kentucky, and Vanderbilt University Law School. He was admitted to practice law in 2005, began practice at Gregory & Easley in 2005, and became partner of Gregory, Easley & Ernstberger in 2007. He is a member of the Calloway County, Kentucky, and American Bar Associations along with the Kentucky Justice Association (formerly Kentucky Academy of Trial Attorneys).

“It is hard to list just one story from my days in the Y that illustrates the profound impact it had on my life. Coming from a small town, I had spent most of my life with the same group of friends and defined myself to a large extent by how I fit in with that group. We didn’t often talk about personal issues or hopes and dreams for the future, and so really discussing those things, at first quite reluctantly, and listening to the problems and hopes of the other members of my first LTC “family” (some of whom I am still very close to) was something of a shock to me, but it was also an amazing outlet that provided me with the opportunity to grow and re-invent myself into the person I wanted to be. Without the program, I doubt I would have gained the boost of self-confidence and ability to relate to my peers and friends that have been with me since. Looking back I can say without hesitation that I would not be the person I am today without the YMCA.”

Bryan Flachbart

Bryan Flachbart currently serves as the Assistant Principal of Lancaster Elementary School in Garrard County, Kentucky. He is a native of Ohio – where he participated as in Ohio’s youth-in-government programming as a student. Migrating to Kentucky after graduating from Kent State University – Bryan worked as an educator in Boyle County Schools where he began working as an advisor for “Y-Clubs” expanding and building programs. Since coming to Kentucky, he has earned Masters degrees in both Gifted and Talented Education and in Instructional Leadership from Eastern Kentucky University
 

Lori Hudson Flanery

Lori is passionate about youth leadership and development and is honored to have participated with KY YMCA as a board member for over fifteen years. She is educated as a lawyer from the University of Kentucky and has served in two private law firms as well as several state agencies as counsel or in executive positions since 1990. Lori joined New Directions Housing Corporation as its CEO in October of 2016.  New Directions specializes in the construction, maintenance and operation of over 1,000 affordable housing units in Louisville and the revitalization of the Russell, Portland, Shawnee, California, Parkland, Shelby Park and Smoketown neighborhoods, including the operation of multiple learning centers, community gardens and an early childhood education center.  Two thousand volunteers a year help elderly and disabled homeowners in our neighborhoods stay in their homes by making much-needed repairs.

Lori believes in working together to make sure we all have access to a safe and affordable living environment, good nutrition and clean drinking water, unlimited opportunities for education, growth and advancement, and that the stronger among us can excel best by partnering with and thereby strengthening those more challenged.  She knows that civic education and participation is needed now as much as ever in our country and that the mission and work of the KY YMCA is important in addressing that need.  She also believes there is nothing wrong in having fun and laughing together along the way.

 

Les Fugate

Les Fugate is originally from Prestonsburg, KY where he was a six time attendee of KYA, four time attendee of KUNA, and president of his local Y-club. He credits his experience with KYA for generating his initial interest in government service. After graduating from Centre College, he obtained a masters degree from Vanderbilt University while serving the Governor’s Scholars Program as the Director of Alumni and Annual Giving. In 2004, Les began his government service when he was appointed Director of Communications for the Office of the Secretary of State. Shortly thereafter, he was promoted to Deputy Asst. Secretary of State, where he lead the Secretary’s communications, government relations, and external affairs operations. Les has also served as Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of The Center for Rural Development.

Currently, he is serving as the Senior Vice President of RunSwitch Public Relations, Kentucky’s largest public relations and public affairs firm. He is a board member of Leadership Kentucky, the Jenny Wiley Theatre in Prestonsburg, a former board member of the KY Governor’s Scholars Program, Centre College Alumni Association, and Kentucky Theatre Association. He has served in numerous leadership positions with the Phi Kappa Tau Fraternity, Westport Road Church of Christ, 2012 U.S. Vice Presidential Debate Steering and Host Committee, and several professional organizations.

He is a graduate of Leadership Kentucky, Leadership East Kentucky, Leadership Louisville Center’s Bingham Fellows, Leadership Louisville Center’s Ignite Louisville, Leadership Louisville Center’s Focus Louisville, and Louisville Fund for the Arts’ NeXt Program.

 

Steve Gold 

Steve serves as the County Attorney in Henderson County, Kentucky. Prior to becoming County Attorney, Steve maintained a private law practice for ten years and served as First Assistant County Attorney for four of those years. Steve has served as a member of the Henderson Tourism Development Corporation, president of the Henderson Lion’s Club, co-chair of the professional division of United Way of Henderson County, Inc., a board member of Operation Community Pride, chairman of the Henderson Music Preservation Society, Inc., and has participated in the Delta Leadership Institute. He is also a graduate of the 2007-2008 class of the Henderson Leadership Initiative. Steve, his wife, Holly, and his children, Meredith and Nathaniel, attend First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Henderson, KY where he is a deacon and trustee.

 

Rep. Derrick Graham

Rep. Graham has been a dedicated public servant in the Kentucky House of Representatives since 2003. He recently retired as a social studies teacher at Frankfort High School of the Frankfort Independent School District. Derrick is an active member of the Saint John African Methodist Episcopal Church of Frankfort. He is also a proud graduate of Kentucky State University with a B.A. degree and earned his M.A. degree at Ohio State University. Derrick serves on many community and civic boards; including the Steward Board of the St. John A.M.E. Church, Kentucky YMCA Youth Association, Board of Directors of the South Frankfort Community Center Board, National Standards for Civics and Government, Frankfort Arts Foundation, Franklin County Abuse Incorporated Board, Frankfort Salvation Army Advisory Board, Frankfort Arts Foundation, and Big Brothers Big Sisters of America. He served as a Frankfort City Commissioner from 1992-2000 and as Mayor Pro Tem on the Frankfort Board of Commissioners. He is also a member of the National Education Association, Kentucky Education Association, Frankfort Education Association, and the Greenhill Cemetery Board.

 

Christopher Head

Christopher began his journey with the KY YMCA after going to his first conference sophomore year at St. Xavier High School. By the time he went to his first LTC he was hooked, and after jumping over several obstacles (lost advisor, school did not recognize our club), he convinced St. X to allow him to start an official Y-Club on the condition that they win an award while there. After attending our first KUNA as a recognized club, his delegation took home the Outstanding Delegation Award. By the the time he graduated in 2008, Christopher had attended eleven total conferences and two Y-Corps trips. Fast forward, Christopher is currently running a Louisville start-up called MobileServe (MobileServe.org), which is a company geared towards helping organizations track and communicate their impact through community volunteerism. Prior to starting starting MobileServe, Christopher started four other companies in industries ranging from urban development to entertainment. Before taking on the business work, Christopher has maintained a longstanding core relationship with volunteer work, and has been working with organizations like Wayside Christian Mission and the KY YMCA. Since graduating Saint Xavier High School in 2008, Christopher has volunteered at numerous debatable and non-debateable conferences, Metro Youth Advocates, and multiple Y-Corps trips. His primary goal in joining the board of the Kentucky YMCA is to help support the organization that shape him into the person he is today.

 

Tressie Hird

Proud alumna and faithful supporter of the Kentucky YMCA Youth Association, Tressie is passionate about developing opportunities for those in underserved populations and rural regions. A rural Kentucky native herself, the Y has allowed her to establish and maintain unique relationships with weirdly, great change-makers. She is a former Secretary of State of KYA; Trusteeship Council President of KUNA; inaugural Service to the South participant; and LTC, GFI, CONA, and Raggers attendee. Tressie holds an MPA with a concentration in Nonprofit Management from the University of Kentucky and works for Brown-Forman Corporation. She resides in Versailles with her husband, David and daughter, Hadley.

 

Allie Holtz

Allie Cowan Holtz is a proud alumna of many of the KY YMCA programs from 1996 to 2002, including: KUNA (where she was President of the Security Council in 2002), CONA, Y-Corps (then known as Service to the South), Go For It! and LTC.  She remembers authoring her first KUNA resolution in sixth grade, which concerned sanctions against Iraq for harboring weapons of mass destruction.  It failed in committee.

Raised in a “Y” household, Allie’s commitment to and passion for service and political participation runs deep.  She began her career in Washington D.C., working for the U.S. House of Representatives’ Committee on Natural Resources.  She has since transitioned to the private sector and today is the integrated marketing manager at online retailer CaféPress.

Allie earned her BA in political science from American University and her MBA from Vanderbilt University’s Owen Graduate School of Management.  She lives in Louisville with her husband, Michael Holtz, an attorney at Bingham Greenebaum Doll.

 

Ched Jennings

Ched is the founder of The Jennings Law Offices representing the injured and disabled since 1976. Ched earned his law degree in 1975 from the University of Louisville Brandies School of Law and was honored as a distinguished alumnae in 2000. He began his career serving as legal counsel to the Workers’ Compensation Board and has served on the Governor’s 1986 Workers’ Compensation Task Force as well as the Commissioner of the Department of Workers’ Claims in 2000-2001. Ched is also the founder and president of CompEd, Inc., a Kentucky non-profit corporation, which conducts annual educational seminars on workers’ compensation. As founder & officer of the Kentucky Workers’ Association, Ched has been dedicated to representing the injured and disabled in Kentucky. Since the 1980’s, has served as a Board Member of the Kentucky YMCA Youth Association. Ched served as President of the 1967 KUNA and attended as a program participant during his high school years.

 

F. Ryan Keith 

Ryan is Legal Counsel at Humana, where he is the principal in-house lawyer for Humana’s business in Medicaid managed care. He previously served as Deputy General Counsel to Governor Steven L. Beshear and in the Beshear Administration as General Counsel for the Public Protection Cabinet and Cabinet for Health and Family Services. Before entering government service in 2008, Ryan practiced law at Stoll Keenon Ogden PLLC in Louisville, where he was a partner in the firm, and Crowell & Moring LLP in Washington, D.C., representing clients principally in commercial and governmental litigation. He also was a judicial clerk for the Honorable Boyce F. Martin, Jr., on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. Ryan holds a bachelor’s degree from Centre College and a law degree from Washington and Lee University, and is pursuing an MBA from Indiana University. A Bowling Green native, as a teen Ryan was an active participant in numerous Kentucky YMCA programs, and is now the father of three children, who as students at Walden School are or will be carrying that mantle.

 

Hilda Legg

Hilda is a former Administrator of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Rural Utilities Service (RUS) and is a prominent broadband advocate and champion. She specializes in strategy development and deployment, with emphasis on economic development in rural communities. Hilda has assisted firm clients in obtaining approximately $450 million in broadband stimulus funding under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Hilda earned her M.A. at Western Kentucky University, her B.S. at Campbellsville College, and received further education participating with the Senior Executive Program, Harvard University, and John F. Kennedy School of Government.

 

Danny Murphy 

Danny is the Assistant Dean of Community Engagement & Diversity at the University of Kentucky College of Law.  Prior to joining the administration in 2010, he was Counsel at the law firm of Wyatt, Tarrant & Combs in its Lexington office, and was formerly a partner at the law firm of McMurry & Livingston in Paducah, Kentucky, where he focused primarily in the area of real estate law. As assistant dean, Danny oversees the day-to-day operations of all non-academic matters at the College of Law. Danny is also spearheading the College’s renewed efforts to enhance engagement with the university, the community, the commonwealth and across the nation.Danny obtained his Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from the University of Kentucky in 1993 making him the first college graduate in his family. He obtained a Juris Doctor from the University of Kentucky College of Law in 1998. In 2013, he was the Chair of the Commerce Lexington (Greater Lexington Chamber of Commerce) Board of Directors. Danny is a native of Lawrenceburg, KY. He and his wife, Melissa, currently reside in Lexington and are the proud parents of three children:  Terrance, Makari and Micah.

 

Greg Palmer

Greg is a husband to an amazing KYA and KUNA advisor, father to multiple Y program stars, entrepreneur, private pilot and sportsman.  He serves on the Board of Directors of the Florence Rotary Club, Florence Rotary Foundation, New Bethel Cemetery and the Verona Fire Protection District. He founded Palmer Capital Management, Inc. in 2001 after many years in the Trust and Asset Management department of a regional bank. Greg earned a BA from the University of Kentucky, a MBA from Northern Kentucky University, holds the Certified Financial Planner designation and the Certified Trust and Financial Advisor designation. He and his family reside in Verona, KY.

 

David Perlow

David is an alum of the program serving as a KUNA Officer and participating in KYA, Go For It!, LTC, Raggers, and CONA.  He is currently a practicing attorney in Murray, Kentucky as both a partner at the Law Firm of Gregory, Easley & Ernstberger and as an Assistant County Attorney for Calloway County.  He is a graduate of Murray State University and Michigan State University College of Law with a concentration in Corporate Law.  After practicing several years in Michigan, he and his wife Stephanie, who is also an attorney, moved closer to home.  David is a Board Member of the Murray Calloway Chamber of Commerce and an active member in the Murray Rotary Club, Young Professionals, County Attorney Association, and Calloway Bar Association, where he has served as President.  He has served as an adjunct professor at Murray State teaching American Government and Business Ethics.  He resides in Murray, Kentucky with his wife Stephanie and two children, Theodore and Penelope.

 

Chip Polston

Chip is the Kentucky Lottery Corporation’s Senior Vice President of Communications, Public Relations and Social Responsibility. In his heart though he’s still a Y kid from Pleasure Ridge Park High School. A child of the program, he served as KUNA Secretary General in 1985. Before joining the lottery in 2003, Chip spent 14 years as broadcast news services manager at the University of Louisville. He also freelanced extensively in the region as  producer/writer/talent for clients such as CNN, Outback Steak House and UPS. Originally hired as a host for the lottery’s nightly televised drawings in 1993, Chip spent a decade representing the corporation at many public appearances and functions throughout the state. He is the recipient of the highest individual award in the North American lottery industry (the Powers Award from the North American Association of State and Provincial Lotteries, or NASPL) for his work in communications and public relations. He serves on the board of directors of the National Council on Problem Gambling, and as a member of the World Lottery Association’s Responsible Gaming Workgroup, a six-member panel that works on responsible gambling practices for the global community.  Chip holds bachelor’s degrees in broadcasting and political science from Western Kentucky University, and a master’s degree in education from the University of Louisville.

 

Robert E. Rich

Robert Rich is a partner in Taft’s Private Client practice group.  Robert is a graduate of the University of Kentucky and the Harvard Law School.  He is admitted to practice law in Ohio, Kentucky and Michigan.  He served as a law clerk with Judge Bert T. Combs of the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit in 1969 and 1970.  Robert practices in the health care and manage care medical field, as well as in general tax planning and the defense of tax issues, exempt organization and private foundation matters, probate administration, estate tax planning and personal service contracting, and in the formation and operation of partnerships and limited liability companies of all kinds.  Robert is a past president of the Cincinnati Bar Foundation, Lighthouse Youth Services Inc., the Kentucky Historical Society and the Kentucky YMCA Youth Association.  Robert is listed in The Best Lawyers in America and named an Ohio Super Lawyer by Cincinnati Magazine.

 

Kerri Richardson

Kerri Richardson credits the YMCA’s youth in government programs with launching her twin career paths in communications and government policy. As executive vice president at C2 Strategic Communications, she leads clients in developing smart and strategic plans for reaching target audiences. Previously she served as the communications director and chief spokesperson for Governor Steve Beshear, leading the state’s communications on topics ranging from health care to economic development to public safety. Kerri also served as a spokeswoman for former Louisville Mayor Jerry Abramson, and won two Emmys during her nine-year television reporting career. Kerri is a native of Shelbyville and was an eager participant in Y programs, including two trips to CONA. She graduated summa cum laude from Western Kentucky University with degrees in government and broadcasting. As a member of WKU’s speech and debate team, she won two national titles and one international championship in debate. After graduation, she worked in newsrooms in Hopkinsville, Bowling Green, Evansville and Louisville. She received only one death threat in her television career, and it obviously didn’t pan out..

 

 

Amy Simpson

Amy Simpson is a Human Resource professional with fourteen years of HR experience for various private and public organizations.  She is currently the HR Business Partner with Discover Financial Services in their Louisville, KY office.  Her areas of expertise include employee relations, lean organizations, domestic and international recruiting, executive and mid-manager coaching, employee engagement and project management.

Amy hails from Union County (Morganfield) in the western region of the Commonwealth.  She earned her Masters of Organizational Communications and Bachelors of Science from Murray State University. Her first professional opportunity was with the Kentucky YMCA Youth Association as the West Regional Director.  Those two years of travel through the Commonwealth, interacting with the most awesome kids in the nation and organizing multiple conferences in short time spans provided an invaluable skill set for her future career opportunities.

In her spare time, Amy enjoys traveling, volunteering, hiking and spending time with her family and Labradoodle Charlie.