Mayor James announces appointments to his Challenge Cabinet

April 10, 2013 - KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI

Young professional’s creative advisory panel will help further a culture of innovation in city government

Mayor James announced today the appointment of 30 young professionals to his Challenge Cabinet, a new board tasked with developing innovative, forward-thinking civic policies that reflect the evolving needs of our City.  The Mayor recognized the group at his State of the City Address on March 19 at the Gem Theater.

The four-week-long application period opened at the end of January and 160 young professionals applied for a Cabinet position. The appointed members represent a cross-sector of various industries in the public and private sectors, and bring a diverse set of experiences and perspectives to the Cabinet. The group will work closely with Ashley Z. Hand, the City’s Chief Innovation Officer, the Mayor’s staff, and various entrepreneurial institutions in Kansas City, including the University of Missouri-Kansas City’s Bloch School of Management and the Kauffman Foundation.

“I’m blown away by the talent sitting on the Challenge Cabinet,” said Mayor Sly James. “The breadth of their expertise and experience will have a lasting impact on the daily operations of the City.  I’m excited to see the results of their work.”

Members of the Mayor’s Challenge Cabinet are:

Brooke Beason – Digital Consultant

Leanne Breiby – Director of Communications, Greater Kansas City Community Foundation

Erika Brice – Self Employed, Real Estate

Scott Chrostek – Lead Pastor, Resurrection Downtown

Sarah Darmitzel – Structural Engineer, Burns & McDonnell

Tom Demetriou – Executive Creative Director at Barkley

Tim Duggan – Director of Make It Right: Innovations & Owner of Phronesis

Chris Evans – Owner T-Shirt King, Inc.

John Gordon, Jr. – Founder, BoysGrow

Amanda Graor – Air Quality Program Manager, Mid-America Regional Council

Tami Greenberg – Vice President of Strategy Development, United Way of Greater Kansas City

Kirk Hasenzahl – CEO, RareWire

Nicole D. Higgins – Lecturer, University of Missouri-Kansas City

Troy Lillebo – Assistant Vice Chancellor for External Relations, UMKC

Kristin Littrell – Freelance marketing and communications for nonprofits

David R. Lloyd – Co-owner Method KC Haberdashery, Attorney, Part-Time Professor

UMKC Bloch School of Business

Marshall Lockton – Management, Lockton Companies

Gnani Mahalingam – Transportation Engineer, City of Kansas City, MO

Jared Miller – Engineer, HNTB

Luke D. Norris – Director, Business Development/Code for America

Alejandro Ogata – Senior Designer, HNTB Architecture

Kate O’Neill Rauber – Founder and CEO, Sink Cycle and KORPR

Jeff Phillips – SVP, Missouri Bank & Trust

Kyle Rogers – Digital Engagement Strategist, Associated Wholesale Grocers

Rachel Scott – Public Relations and Marketing Director, SWC

Shane Spencer – Founder & CEO of Green REIT

Luke Wade – Interactive Web Developer at VML, Owner/Manager of and Co-Creator/President of

Alissa Wehmueller – Interior Designer, 360 Architecture

Jase Wilson – CEO,

Bill Ye – Digital Services Director/Global Prairie

The Challenge Cabinet’s first meeting is May 11th and is expected to have a finalized work plan and calendar submitted to the Mayor in June.

Contact: Joni Wickham: 816-513-3500 or cell: 816-513-6582