Board of Trustees
Our success has been dependent on the contributions of many – volunteers, individual donors, campus sorority communities, alumnae organizations, families, friends, and the list goes on. We depend on the circle of influence of sorority women to accomplish this important work. When every sorority woman, and those with whom she is connected, contributes to the Circle of Sisterhood Foundation in a meaningful way, our efforts will be transforming for generations to come. And the world will know the wide-reaching power of women.
Michelle Shimberg, Board of Trustees
“I have seen first-hand the outcomes access to quality education provides. I had the opportunity to attend high-quality public schools and believe every young person deserves this same opportunity.”
Michelle Shimberg is passionate about equity in education for kids and teens in the U.S., and beyond, a calling that led her to join the Circle of Sisterhood Foundation Board of Trustees and share the CofS mission with the interfraternal world. Prior to volunteering for CofS, Michelle has served as a volunteer in public schools local to her hometown of Tampa, FL, for more than 25 years working directly alongside students and their families. She currently serves as Board Chairman of East Tampa Academy, a public charter school focused on providing high-quality educational opportunities for disadvantaged students.
Within her community, Michelle is involved in a number of education-related organizations that serve disadvantaged, at-risk, and homeless individuals. She is a board member for Starting Right, Now, Men of Vision, Inc., and is a mentor for several at-risk teenagers. She has also been a leader for Hillsborough County Public Schools for more than 20 years serving on the Citizen Advisory Committee.
Her experience as a dedicated member of and volunteer for Delta Delta Delta since her initiation into the Alpha Psi Chapter at The University of Florida has given Michelle the tools she needs to engage with collegiate women as a CofS volunteer. She graduated from UF with a degree in Business Administration and a specialization in computer science and served Tri Delta as a Field Consultant before starting her career in the banking industry. In 2000 Michelle brought her experience and committed fraternal service to the highest level when she was elected Collegiate Vice President for Tri Delta. She remained in this position until Tri Delta’s 2004 Convention in Orlando where she was elected Fraternity President. In 2008 after finishing her presidential term, Michelle became chairman of Tri Delta’s Leadership Development Committee, a role in which she served until 2012.
Michelle’s impact as a Circle of Sisterhood volunteer has helped mold and shape CofS into the successful organization we see today. In addition to serving as Chair of the Circle of Sisterhood Board of Trustees since 2019, Michelle regularly speaks about the CofS mission at campuses in the Central Florida area to engage more collegiate women. Michelle and her husband Robert have three grown children, Taylor, Connor, and Jilan─and, when she’s not serving Circle of Sisterhood, Tri Delta, or public education, Michelle enjoys exercise, reading, travel, and paddle-boarding.
Christi Flynn, Board of Trustees
“I didn’t have any barriers to education─not a single one. I had everything I needed to not only access education but to excel at it. ‘To whom much is given, much is expected.’”
Christi Flynn harnessed her boundless energy, creativity, and positive outlook to make an enormous difference in others’ lives when she became a Circle of Sisterhood Foundation volunteer. She retired from a successful career in marketing and event management for high-tech clients like Microsoft and turned her focus to the most important things in her life: being the world’s best wife and mother and contributing her professional strengths as a volunteer. Her experience as a member of Delta Delta Delta at the University of Washington made seeking volunteer roles within the interfraternal community, especially helping young women find similar positive educational experiences, a no-brainer.
As a great visualizer and dreamer, Christi has been a CofS trustee with the invaluable ability to “go to 30,000 ft. and survey the horizon,” and capture a broad view of opportunities and challenges which served her well as she chaired the CofS’ board of trustees from 2014-19. Once those challenges are in sight, she seeks help from and leverages connections within the interfraternal community to educate and fundraise for the Circle’s important work. Embracing those connections, she says, typifies the very reason Circle of Sisterhood was founded in 2010. Sorority women and our common bond through the sorority experience─and other opportunities the collegiate experience provides─makes breaking down barriers to education for girls and women across the globe a more tangible, powerful mission.
Christi has also held key roles as a Tri Delta volunteer on both the local and national levels. While serving as her local chapter Housing Corporation Board President from 2000-05, Christi managed significant renovations to the chapter facility and spearheaded a successful capital improvement campaign that raised more than $450,000. It’s no surprise she was soon tapped to serve as Tri Delta’s National Housing Corporation Board President. Her business acumen, understanding of today’s collegiate women’s needs, and capacity to tackle any issue with enthusiasm made Christi the perfect fit for this position.
Christi’s knack for inspiring and motivating others has led to the start of an exciting new career as a Certified Life Coach. “I work with motivated women who are looking to live life with passion and purpose. Life has so much to offer, and I believe women are change agents.” Based upon her undeniable ambition, Christi’s favorite hobby is also the perfect fit─she is a resident of Washington state and swims in the Salish Sea (Puget Sound) year-round. At its coldest, the water is around 46 degrees, and is 60 degrees at its “warmest.”
Beth Stathos, Board of Trustees
Throughout Beth’s family history, her female ancestors are remembered for pursuing and achieving college degrees in specific time periods when it was not common and even frowned upon for women to be in higher education.
“They served as role models for me and my desire to assist other women in accessing the same opportunity,” Beth said of how those women inspired her volunteerism with the Circle of Sisterhood Foundation. “Collectively, there is no group [sorority women] better situated to help to remove educational barriers for girls and women and advocate for their right to go to school.”
Beth earned a degree in journalism from the University of Oklahoma where she joined Chi Omega’s Epsilon Alpha Chapter. She later earned her Juris Doctorate from the University of Oklahoma College of Law and now serves as General Counsel for Chi Omega. Beth’s varied work with Chi Omega Fraternity as a traveling national consultant to college campuses, former full-time chapter services staff member, and national volunteer spans over 30 years.
Beth’s passion for providing students with the tools for a safe and rewarding college experience has contributed to her career path and time spent as a volunteer across fraternities and sororities. She often presents legal and risk management workshops on college campuses across the United States.
“This [general counsel] position allows me to combine my fraternal knowledge with my legal background to promote and preserve the fraternal experience for future generations.” Beth’s unique ability to educate and empower college students to take control of their own experience and safety has been part of her career passion from the very start. Her previous work experience includes serving as the Associate Director for Fraternity and Sorority Life and Panhellenic Advisor for 10 years at the University of Oklahoma.
One knows that Beth’s love for and commitment to Chi Omega runs deep as she is a supporter of rescuing animals and has named her own rescue cats and dogs after Chi Omega founders or symbols.
Jane Sutton, Board of Trustees
“My experiences professionally, personally, and through domestic and international travel have highlighted the importance women have in the health of their families, mentally and physically, and in their workplace. Women everywhere face barriers to the achievement of their personal goals and dreams, and those of their families. Those experiences have driven me to be an advocate for access to education for ALL women.”
Jane Sutton’s steadfast belief that educated women are responsible for championing and mentoring other women has fueled her volunteerism within Alpha Xi Delta Fraternity and the Circle of Sisterhood Foundation. A native of North Carolina, Jane earned her bachelor’s degree from Western Carolina University where she was initiated into Alpha Xi Delta’s Epsilon Gamma Chapter. She later earned a Master of Public Health degree from the University of Tennessee and worked with hospitals, universities, HMOs, and life insurance companies throughout an expansive public health career. Her previous experience includes serving as an instructor in the Department of Family Medicine at the University of Alabama, Director of Professional Relations at Humana Hospital Audubon in Louisville, KY, and Director of Health Services for Healthwin/HMO-Florida. Most recently, she was the Southeast Regional Manager for Professional Relations at Metropolitan Life Insurance Company before her retirement.
Immediately after graduation Jane remained active within Alpha Xi Delta, serving first as a chapter advisor while in graduate school. Her lifetime service to Alpha Xi Delta includes the roles of National President, National Panhellenic Conference (NPC) Delegate, National Extension Vice President, and numerous regional and local positions. She has been a member of Alpha Xi Delta’s NPC delegation since 1993, with the exception of 2001-05 during her term as National President. Her service to NPC includes work on various committees and in leadership positions as an Area Advisor Coordinator, liaison to the former Southeastern Panhellenic Conference (now the Coalition for Collegiate Women’s Leadership), NPC Treasurer, NPC Vice Chairman, and the 2011-13 NPC Chairman.
Jane lives in Mount Dora, FL, with Bob, her husband of 41 years. They have one daughter, Mary Leah, a graduate of the University of Miami currently living in West Hollywood, CA, working as a television writer.
Angela King Taylor, Board of Trustees
“My girls. It is just that simple,” Angela King Taylor said when asked why she remains a Circle of Sisterhood Foundation supporter. “I want girls and women to have the opportunities they deserve. And, I would want someone to fight for and/or advocate for my girls the way that CofS does for girls and women. Their future is at the core of the CofS mission.”
Angela is a longtime CofS volunteer who hails from East Chicago, Indiana. She received a B.S. in Business Management from Hampton University, which she affectionately refers to as her “Home by the Sea.” Angela obtained her M.S.Ed. in Higher Education with a concentration in Student Affairs from Old Dominion University and is currently a doctoral candidate at Vanderbilt University studying Higher Education Leadership and Policy.
Angela’s love for and commitment to the sorority experience began upon her initiation into the Gamma Theta Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. She believes her experiences as a sorority woman and a mom personalize the CofS mission and are the reason for her passion. She has been involved with CofS in some way since its founding in 2010 and brings 19 years of student affairs, human resources, and faculty affairs experience to her leadership as a trustee. Her previous professional roles include various positions in human resources, fraternity and sorority life, academic advising, and student activities at a diverse range of institutions, including Loyola University Chicago, the University of Kansas, Tennessee State University, and Middle Tennessee State University. She currently works in faculty affairs at Syracuse University, where she is passionate about advocating for students in spaces where they may be absent. Her position also enables the cultivation of a positive academic environment for the university community through interpretation of and influencing university policies and procedures that impact students and faculty.
Overall, Angela has been advising and supporting interfraternal communities for over a decade, including many roles as a volunteer. She served as Membership Workgroup Chair and Region II Director for the Association of Fraternity/Sorority Advisors (AFA). Additionally, she has served as a graduate advisor for Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., and previously served CofS as a Campus Relationship Manager and on the Grants Review Team.
Angela lives in Syracuse, NY, with her husband Harry and daughters Aeriana and Asa.
Nicki Meneley, Board of Trustees
“I was fortunate to be given opportunities for education and advancement. I had teachers, coaches, mentors, and family members cheering me on and supporting me in my efforts. Not everyone has that, but I believe they should!”
Nicki Meneley’s 21-year history of professional and volunteer work for nonprofits has been primarily for organizations specifically supporting girls and women. She enjoys building organizations and teams to further organizational missions, demonstrated not only by her passion for the Circle of Sisterhood Foundation but also by the undeniable impact she’s made on the interfraternal community throughout her career.
Nicki spent her undergraduate years at Purdue University, where she was initiated into the Alpha Beta Chapter of Alpha Chi Omega. She earned a bachelor of liberal arts, majoring in industrial-organizational psychology and minoring in supervision and sociology. After graduating from college and being on the road as a consultant for Alpha Chi Omega for two years, Nicki accepted a full-time staff position in Indianapolis and returned to school at Indiana University–Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) for a certificate in event management. She also received a master’s of public affairs with a concentration in nonprofit management from IUPUI while later working for the Purdue Alumni Association.
In 2010 Nicki became the first Executive Director for the National Panhellenic Conference (NPC) and served in this role for five years before becoming the first Chief Executive Officer of the Fraternity Executives Association (FEA). She credits her interfraternal experiences and the member organizations she has served during her career as a driving force behind her passion as a Circle of Sisterhood Foundation volunteer as well. “FEA member organizations inspire me to do my best work to support them. They are leading amazing fraternal organizations that impact their members and communities in positive ways every day.”
Nicki lives in Indianapolis with her husband, MJ, and twin sons PJ and Reas.
Beth Searcy, Board of Trustees
Elizabeth (Beth) Bell Searcy cites a 1997 trip to Kenya as what sparked her passion for removing barriers to education for girls and women. It was there she visited a school and met a young girl she’ll never forget.
“The conditions, by American standards, were poor, but her energy and enthusiasm for learning were inspirational. When Circle of Sisterhood founder Ginny Carroll shared the book Half the Sky, I was reminded of that girl,” Beth said of her decision to answer the call for Circle of Sisterhood support. “I wanted to help create opportunities for her and others to be their best selves in their own contexts.”
Beth became a first-generation college graduate upon earning a B.A. in Rhetoric and Communication Studies from the University of Virginia. While at UVA she joined the Epsilon Gamma Chapter of Delta Gamma. Beth continued her education to earn an M.Ed. in Student Personnel Services from the University of South Carolina and complete doctoral coursework in Educational Leadership at the University of Nebraska. By leveraging the privilege of belonging to the 7 percent of college-educated people in the world, Beth believes partnering to improve communities, systems, and outcomes through education is the long-term solution to many critical global issues.
Beth has been a CofS volunteer since its founding in 2010 and previously served as Chair of the Grants Committee and on the first Nominating Committee. Being a sorority alumna means belonging to one of the world’s largest networks of college-educated women leaders, and engaging that network for the CofS mission has also been a meaningful way for Beth to live her three life tenets: have faith, be kind, and do good. Beth has three decades of leadership experience with the interfraternal community as a campus-based educator, as well as a volunteer at the local, regional, and (inter)national level for Delta Gamma and the National Panhellenic Conference (NPC). She served on the International Council of Delta Gamma for eight years, including a term as International President for four years, and has also been a member of Delta Gamma’s NPC delegation.
Currently at Barton College, Beth has worked in student development, teaching, and enrollment management at six different colleges. “I am inspired by the diverse students we serve, particularly the high percentage from rural and underserved areas. As our students develop, they often return to their communities and amplify the impact of their education with their families being part of local economies. I am humbled to watch the transformative power of education every day.”
In addition to sorority-related volunteerism, Beth is active locally by promoting personal development and inclusion through the arts, communities in schools, and civic engagement. She lives in Wilson, NC, with her husband Doug and Italian Greyhound Bella in their sometimes-empty nest as son Carter and daughter Caroline follow their own educational dreams. An avid traveler, she has visited 47 of the 50 states and six of seven continents, with a bucket list that embraces new people, places, and ideas.
Amber Garrison Duncan, Board of Trustees
“Why be involved? I’ve had the privilege to travel the world as a woman. To see the disparities that exist for women when they are denied education and opportunity. Women suffer, children suffer, communities suffer. The world needs women to lead, love, and lift communities, and education is the number one equalizer to unlock a better future. Many sorority women have helped lead the way on women’s education and issues at home. And, while women in the U.S. still have a way to go, we owe it to our sisters around the world to lift as we climb. To create ladders out of poverty and violence through education.”
Amber Garrison Duncan’s connection to the Circle of Sisterhood Foundation goes back to its earliest days, assisting with creating assessment protocols to document the learning and impact of CofS Trek participants. She has been an invaluable resource for support and guidance ever since. Amber joined Alpha Gamma Delta Fraternity’s Epsilon Chi Chapter at Texas Woman’s University (TWU), where she first experienced the bond all sorority women have through education and empowering one another. After graduating with a bachelor’s degree from TWU, Amber later earned a master’s degree from Texas A&M University and a doctorate from the University of Oregon.
As a current Strategy Director for Lumina Foundation, Amber’s career focuses on philanthropy in education. She also has 15 years of experience as a student affairs campus-based professional and has a wealth of valuable knowledge that directly supports the Cofs mission. Before joining the Lumina team in 2013, Amber served as Director of Student Affairs Assessment and Research at the University of Oregon; Director of Family Programs and Commencement at the University of Oregon; a First-Year Experience Instructor at Florida State University; an Intake and Investigations Coordinator at the University of Michigan; and as Assistant Director of Housing and Greek life at Hope College.
A commitment to service has driven Amber to share her time volunteering with a variety of organizations. Previously, Amber served in a variety of volunteer roles for Alpha Gamma Delta and ultimately served three years on International Council as the International Vice President- Collegians. She has also served as Board Chair of Oregon Women in Higher Education and currently serves on the Diversity Committee for Indianapolis School on Wheels and Board of Directors for Texas Woman’s University Foundation.
Amber brings to the CofS Board of Trustees a fantastic ability to set strategic vision and goals that translate into meaningful grantmaking and impact. The Lumina Foundation’s mission aligns closely with CofS, and Amber’s work focuses on making learning opportunities beyond high school available to all. Amber describes both her career and CofS Trustee role as work to “create the most good, for the most people, in the largest way possible.”
The CofS cause is especially poignant for Amber as a small-town girl from Texas who knows firsthand how education has transformed her life and created opportunity. Amber and her partner John live in Indianapolis and have three cats moonlighting as gladiators─Leonidas (Leo), Spartacus (Sparty), and Perseus (Percy), who are “Instagram hogs” to follow at @leospartyperceus.
Hannah Seoh, Board of Trustees
“Being a strong proponent of equity, I know only too well how women are still not treated the same as their male counterparts. I also benefit greatly from the privilege I have had of continuing education and want the same for as many people out there as possible. I love the founding story of Circle of Sisterhood and how we can all play a part in making a difference in this world both domestically and abroad.”
Hannah Seoh’s passion for pursuing equity in all areas of socioeconomic well-being drives her commitment to the Circle of Sisterhood Foundation and her career. She worked at the New York City Department of Health from 2008-20 in various roles doing groundbreaking research, running large-scale programs for the 8 million residents of NYC and conducting strategic planning for the Center for Health Equity. She ultimately served as an Acting Assistant Commissioner and chief of staff to one of the largest Divisions in the agency overseeing chronic disease, primary care connections, neighborhood health, and equity efforts. Hannah recently started a new chapter of her career with the American Medical Association (AMA) team as Director of Health Equity Performance and Operations serving as chief of staff to the Chief Health Equity Officer. She has already worked to expand a Center for Health Equity team of five staff members to a team of 24 and oversees organizational transformation, communications, administrative, and operational functions of the Center.
Hannah is a founding member of the Beta Chapter of Delta Phi Lambda Sorority, Inc., at the University of Cincinnati. She served the chapter as president andupon graduation joined the National Board where she was eventually elected President for 3 terms. While National President, she helped create the 501(c)(3) Delta Phi Lambda Foundation of which now has a scholarship established in her name. Hannah went on to attend The Ohio State University for an MPH in epidemiology and MS in biostatistics and is currently enrolled in the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business, working on her Executive MBA. She planned to move from NYC to Chicago where the AMA headquarters is located, but COVID-19 had other plans and she’s currently living in the nation’s capital.
Before joining the CofS Board of Trustees, Hannah served as a volunteer on the development team in addition to various impactful volunteer positions for other interfraternal organizations. She served on the National Board of Delta Phi Lambda Sorority, Inc. including seven years as president, and served as chair of the National Asian Pacific Islander Desi American Panhellenic Association (NAPA). She has also held numerous volunteer roles in the Association of Fraternity/Sorority Advisors (AFA), Northeast Greek Leadership Association (NGLA), Association of Fraternal Leadership and Values (AFLV), and the National Association for Student Personnel Administrators (NASPA).
Susan Markham, Board of Trustees
“Girls’ education is essential for gender equality and women’s empowerment. Its value is clear: keeping girls in school and helping them transition to secondary school delays marriage and the age of first birth and improves their long-term health, quality of life, and economic opportunity. Moreover, literacy and education provide benefits beyond individuals and help fight poverty, improve health, mitigate climate change and create prosperous futures for families, communities, and nations. I love that Circle of Sisterhood educates sorority members about the importance of girls’ education and the barriers that exist around the world, and provides them with a way they can help. It connects them with a very concrete solution where they can make a difference.”
Working with women FOR women to provide equal opportunities has been the fabric of Susan Markham’s life and career. She attended THE Ohio State University (OSU), where she joined the Rho Chapter of Alpha Phi International Fraternity and served as Panhellenic President. She considered sororities as collectively the largest women’s organization on campus with the most significant potential to successfully advocate for women’s issues on campus. Since then, her continued education and career have only grown her passion for women’s advocacy. After graduating with a bachelor of arts in political science and international studies from OSU, she earned a master of arts from George Washington University in Washington, D.C., where her passion for turning the essential role of women in politics and development into an impactful career began.
Susan is now partner and co-founder of Smash Strategies, a strategic advisory firm that helps businesses, non-profit organizations, and philanthropists leverage their commitment to empowering girls and women. Before founding Smash, Susan served at the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) as the Senior Coordinator for Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment, where, among other work, she lead USAID’s efforts on Michelle Obama’s ‘Let Girls Learn’ initiative. Her experience also includes leading the efforts of the National Democratic Institute (NDI) in supporting women’s civil society organizations and movements around the world; and running the EMILY’s List Political Opportunity Program (POP) that recruited, trained, and supported women running for office at the state and local level; and
Susan has spent more than 20 years in Washington, DC, where she currently lives with her family and two dogs. Throughout her career, Susan has collaborated with many of the biggest actors and stakeholders in elevating girls’ education and development initiatives throughout DC and New York.