Mayor James announces appointments to second Challenge Cabinet

September 15, 2014 - KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI
Second round of young professional’s creative advisory panel will help further a culture of innovation in city government

Mayor James announced today the appointment of 29 young professionals to the second installment of his Challenge Cabinet. The group will be organized into teams and task forces around specific innovative initiatives to improve city policy and governance including:

Innovation Policy Task Force
The Innovation Policy Task Force will research and identify best practice policies for the City of Kansas City, Missouri in a variety of areas, including, but limited to, income inequality, early childhood education, and broadband access

Open Data Project Team
The Open Data Project Team will develop visuals for the KCMO open data catalog ( to enhance the presentation of the online data resource.

Technology Roadmap Task Force
The Chief Innovation Officer, Ashley Hand, is currently developing the first Technology Roadmap for the City of Kansas City.The Technology Roadmap Task Force will provide an advisory review of the draft of the City of Kansas City, Missouri roadmap which is addressing issues ranging from investment in technology, integration into the workplace, standardization and data sharing, open government and community engagement.

Community Engagement Project Team
The Community Engagement Project Team will develop a proposal for public education and outreach around the City’s budget and long-term strategic planning processes.

Ideas Fair Project Team
The Ideas Fair Task Force will plan and assist in producing the second annual KCMO Ideas Fair. In October 2013, the Chief Innovation Officer and the Mayor’s Challenge Cabinet hosted the first Ideas Fair, where community and neighborhood leaders were connected to resources available across Kansas City.

“We are fortunate to have a dynamic group of civic-minded young professionals in our City,” said Mayor Sly James.  “Their energy, coupled with their motivation to make Kansas City an even better place to live, work, and play will certainly impact and enhance our City for many years to come.”

Members of the Mayor’s Challenge Cabinet are:

  • Adam Arredondo: Co-leader, Kansas City Startup Village

  • Joshua Boehm: Planner, BNIM Architects

  • Tyler Caby: Convention Services Intern, Visit KC

  • Erin Canty: Writer, Hallmark Cards, Inc.

  • Chris Christensen: Software Engineer, Limelight Networks

  • John Coler: Quality Assurance Engineer, Pinsight Media+

  • Sherry D. Gibbs: Director of Marketing and Communications, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City

  • Laura Gilchrist: Teacher, North Kansas City Schools

  • Danielle Kathrein: Teacher, Ewing Marion Kauffman School

  • Shanna Keller: Director of Media and Administration, The Hope Center

  • Gnani Mahalingam: Transportation Engineer, City of Kansas City, MO

  • Mark Mattison: Executive Director, Reach Out and Read Kansas City

  • Ajia Mignon: Director of Operations, Ewing Marion Kauffman School

  • Jared R. Miller: Transportation Planning Engineer, HNTB

  • Brent Never: Assistant Professor of Public Affairs, UMKC Bloch School of Management

  • Luke D. Norris:  Director of Government Relations, Code for America

  • Yantezia Patrick: Family Literacy Project Instructor, Literacy Kansas City

  • Matthew Peterworth: Technology Specialist, Henderson Engineers, Inc.

  • Eze Redwood: Restaurateur/President, Twenty30CEO

  • Quentin Michael Darthel Savwoir: Analyst, Cerner Corporation

  • Rachel Scott: PR and Marketing Director, Single Wing Creative

  • Rachel Sexton: COO, VPR Companies

  • Bob Specht: Project Manager/Developer, Think Big Partners

  • Chrys Sullivan: Founder & CEO, Useagility

  • Henry Thomas: Associate, Husch Blackwell

  • Allison Trimble: Corporate Counsel, Netsmart Technologies, Inc.

  • David Valdiviezo: Consultant

  • Stuart Joseph Wiley Washington: Delivery Consultant, Cerner Corporation

  • Nicole Collier White: Repurposing Initiative Program Coordinator, Kansas City Public Schools

The Innovation Policy Task Force members each have one year terms.  Other members’ terms are project specific.



Contact: Joni Wickham: 816-513-6582 or cell: 816-572-2152