Melinda Higgs, CNDC President & CEO

Melida Higgs

President & CEO

Melinda joined CNDC in September 1999 as the first president of the organization. With over 20 years of experience in the nonprofit sector, she has served on a number of boards and committees across the state, including the Denver Office of Strategic Partnerships, the Governor’s Commission on Community Service and the National Network of Fiscal Sponsors Steering Committee. Prior to leading CNDC, Melinda served as the executive director of Partners, Inc., an association of Colorado mentoring programs for at-risk youth. She has also served as the coordinator of the Center for Service Learning at Regis University. Melinda is a 2001 graduate of Leadership Denver and El Pomar Foundation’s Nonprofit Executive Leadership Program. She is also a 2006 recipient of a Johnston R. Livingston Fellowship, an initiative of the Bonfils-Stanton Foundation. Melinda received her master’s degree in Public Administration from the University of Colorado at Denver. Away from CNDC, Melinda enjoys spending time with her daughters, friends and family, yoga and hiking.

Kevin Van Vleet, CNDC Chief Financial Officer

Kevin Van Fleet

Chief Financial Officer

Kevin brings 15 years of experience in banking, finance and accounting to his role as CNDC’s Chief Financial Officer. He is a licensed CPA and CGMA with a background in auditing and consulting in both the for-profit and nonprofit sectors. Additionally, Kevin has an extensive background volunteering with and serving on boards and committees for non-profit organizations, including serving most recently as the President of the Board of Trustees for Holy Names Music Center, a non-profit community music school in Spokane, Wash. Kevin considers himself a lifelong Kiwanian and has held various leadership positions within the broader K-Family since his initial involvement in the Key Club at his high school in Montana. His affiliation with Kiwanis has allowed him to touch a number of nonprofit organizations and helps to fulfill his desire to give back to the community. A graduate of Gonzaga University, Kevin has also completed Comer & Associates’ ADVANCE management and leadership effectiveness program.

Angela Schreffler

Vice President

Angela has worked in the nonprofit sector for over 10 years, most recently as the executive director of the Denver Regional Mobility and Access Council (DRMAC), a Project of CNDC. During her four years at DRMAC, Angela helped grow the organization from one to five employees, created new programs, and more than doubled the Project’s budget. Prior to DRMAC, Angela was the Heartland Tree Alliance Manager at Bridging the Gap in Kansas City, Mo. She has served on a number of board and committees throughout her career, and now volunteers with several local organizations, including the Whittier Neighborhood Association, where she resides. Angela has also completed the Mountain States Employers Council Executive Leadership program, and has a master’s in Public Administration with an emphasis in Nonprofit Management. Away from work, Angela enjoys gardening, hiking and traveling.

Rachel Bock

Staff Accountant

Since 2006, Rachel has worked in various accounting and finance related roles in the nonprofit sector in and around the Denver metro area. Beginning with a neighborhood youth organization, Rachel’s work has supported missions including bird conservation research, educational system development and specific health concerns. She joined CNDC in 2018 as a Staff Accountant. In addition to her interest in accounting and finance, she spends her free time with family and friends.

Sandi Bostwick, CNDC Accounts Payable / Cash Receipts Manager

Sandi Bostwick

Accounts Payable / Cash Receipts Payroll Manager

Sandi joined CNDC in March of 2018, and is excited to work with nonprofit communities in Colorado. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Accounting and most recently worked as compensation analyst for Comcast Business. Sandi has a diverse background including human resources, payroll, and management. She recently served as President on the Board of Directors for a local community band, and enjoys playing French horn and trombone. In her free time, Sandi also enjoys golfing and spending time with family and friends.

Regan Byrd

Office Manager

Regan brings over 12 years of experience in nonprofit operations, administration, and IT to her role with CNDC, formerly working for the Bell Policy Center, Hunger Free Colorado, and The Arc of Jefferson County. She has served on the board of directors for several nonprofits, including as the current co-chair of 9to5 Colorado and treasurer of the Colorado People’s Alliance. Regan has a deep commitment to justice, systems change, and liberation politics, which has driven her nonprofit work as well as her work as a recognized anti-oppression activist, speaker, and trainer. She is an alumni of the University of Denver with dual B.A. degrees in Public Policy and Sociology, and minors in English and Gender and Women’s Studies. In her free time, she enjoys making fun of bad movies, exploring the Denver dining scene, competitive video gaming, and fawning over new technology.

Debbie Dexter, CNDC Human Resources Manager

Debbie Dexter

Human Resources Manager

Debbie started working for CNDC in July 2017. Debbie brings over 20 years of broad HR experience, starting her career with Mobil Oil, working for engineering services companies (ENGlobal and Willbros Upstream Engineering), a Defense Contractor that supported IT services for the Air Force and a PEO in their benefits department. She received her Bachelor’s Degree from Metropolitan State University. Debbie is looking forward to working in the nonprofit sector to meet purpose driven individuals and be to be a part of what they do. Outside of the office she enjoys spending time with her daughter, friends and family, the outdoors, and traveling.

Stef Flores

Program Coordinator

Prior to joining CNDC in May 2019, Stef provided grant support for the Colorado Health Access Fund at The Denver Foundation. Her work experience also includes planning leadership programs at the Wichita Regional Chamber of Commerce and teaching 6-8th grade reading for charter schools in the Denver area. Particularly passionate about education, equity, and female empowerment, Stef is excited to support CNDC Projects and the great work they do in their communities. Stef holds a Bachelor’s in English and French from the University of Colorado-Boulder and a Master’s in Education from the University of California-Santa Barbara. She enjoys spending time outdoors, boating, reading, and attempting to get her son, Mateo, to eat anything besides crackers.

Linda Hayashi, CNDC Accounts Receivable Clerk

Linda Hayashi

Cash Receipts Clerk

Linda comes to the CNDC team bringing significant accounting experience working with both for profit and nonprofit organizations. Since joining CNDC in 2014, Linda has enjoyed using her talents to help CNDC and its Projects contribute to Colorado communities. Her passions outside of work include bicycling (she has participated in a number of bicycle tours, both international and domestic), travel and theater. Linda is a native of Washington and a graduate of the University of Washington.

Will Lewis, CNDC Office Assistant

Will Lewis

Office Assistant

Will joined CNDC as an Office Assistant to help ensure everyday operations run smoothly for our staff and partnering Projects. Prior to working for CNDC, Will was a substitute teacher with Denver Public Schools and an expedition leader for an adventure travel company. Originally from Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, Will graduated from the University of Colorado Boulder with a B.A. in Communication. Away from the office, he enjoys snowboarding, honing his golf game and following the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Sean McCoy

Accounts Payable Clerk

Sean started with CNDC in May 2019. He has 20 years of Accounts Payable experience, including nearly 14 years with Metropolitan State University of Denver. Helping people is central to who Sean is, and he enjoys finding like-minded people at CNDC. Outside of work, Sean enjoys drawing and watching documentaries and movies.

Elizabeth Orare, CNDC Senior Staff Accountant

Elizabeth Orare

Grants Accounting Manager

Liz began as a staff accountant at CNDC in 2014 and was named senior staff accountant in 2016. She holds a degree in Accounting from Strathmore College in Nairobi, Kenya, and has nearly a decade of experience in the nonprofit sector. Liz was previously the Business Manager at Royal Pal Academy in Naples, FL. In addition to her business background, Liz brings a passion for volunteering to her role at CNDC, including mentoring with the Boys and Girls Club as well as time spent volunteering with Rural Community Development Program where she worked with disadvantaged children in Southeast Asia. Aside from keeping in touch with her large family in the United States, Kenya, and Europe, Liz also enjoys reading, watching sports, and enjoying the outdoors. She was drawn to work at CNDC because of her interest in making a positive change in the community by providing Projects with the support they need to develop their individual communities.

Amy Ramirez

Staff Accountant

Amy has worked in accounting and finance roles for well over 15 years, including over a decade with the University of Texas at Austin. In her role with CNDC, Amy works with a number of our Projects to provide feedback and guidance on questions surrounding Project financials and grants. She is excited to be working in the nonprofit sector and the opportunity to support and contribute to our local communities. Originally from Texas, Amy enjoys playing easy video games, watching cooking shows but not cooking, and taking every opportunity to drive west to marvel at the mountain view.

Tammy Schairer, CNDC Staff Accountant

Tammy Schairer

Grants Coordinator

Tammy has enjoyed a long career in Finance. Prior to joining CNDC, she served as a financial analyst at companies including Fluor and Kiewit Corporations, Level3 Communications, and American Truck Business Services. Tammy deeply values her role in the nonprofit sector and particularly appreciates CNDC’s role in positively impacting children, schools and communities here in Colorado. Outside the office, she enjoys walking and hiking with her dogs, going hunting and fly fishing, and is an avid Steelers fan.

Rebekah Schuster

Accounts Payable Clerk

Rebekah joined CNDC in 2018 and is thrilled to be working for a nonprofit and being able to help communities throughout Colorado. Prior to working at CNDC, Rebekah worked for a travel company where she discovered her interest and passion for accounts payable. Rebekah recently relocated from Wisconsin where she graduated from the University Wisconsin – Milwaukee. Outside of the office Rebekah enjoys exploring Denver and the nearby mountains with her husband and dog.

Emma Simpkins

Program Manager

Emma joined CNDC in May 2017 as Program Coordinator. In her current role as Program Manager, she manages the AmeriCorps VISTA program, supports the grant submission and award process, and advises Projects on nonprofit best practices. Emma previously worked for an organization that promotes women’s leadership in professional services and a nonprofit advocating for the increased participation of women in politics. Emma holds a bachelor’s degree in International Affairs from James Madison University and is an alumna of the Elevate Denver leadership program. Outside of the office, she enjoys yoga, travel, and taking advantage of all the outdoor activities Colorado offers.

Mike Van Abel

Senior Program Manager

Mike joined CNDC in November 2018 as Senior Program Manager. He brings over 30 years of nonprofit experience to this role, most recently serving as the Executive Director of the International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA). Prior to IMBA, Mike implemented chapter and affiliate programs and capacity building efforts for both the National Multiple Sclerosis Society and the American Diabetes Association. Originally from Green Bay, Wisconsin, Mike has resided in Colorado since 1983 with his wife and three grown children. He received his Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Wisconsin at Stevens Point. An outdoor enthusiast, Mike enjoys much of what Colorado has to offer – cycling, camping, hiking, hunting, fishing, skiing, and most especially, mountain biking.

Nina Vore

Office/HR Assistant

Nina started with CNDC in 2018 Nina moved to Colorado this year from Washington DC and wanted to continue her career in the non-profit sector. As the Office/HR assistant Nina helps keep the office running smoothly and processes employee data. Outside of the office Nina enjoys spending time outdoors with her husband and dog, reading historical fiction, and finding fun places to eat.

Riley Welch

VISTA Leader

After finishing a year of service with the Colorado Reading Corps, Riley joined CNDC as a VISTA Leader in July 2018. She believes in the AmeriCorps pledge to keep “getting things done,” and is ready to support VISTA members as they complete their own terms of service. Riley is a poet and spends any available time writing, reading, or editing. She’s inspired by the weird, the hardworking, and anyone who can be on time when their alarm goes off half an hour late.

Dale Wright, CNDC Bookkeeper

Dale Wright

Bookkeeper

Dale works exclusively with CNDC’s Nonprofit Support Services clients. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Accounting from Iowa State University. Dale previously worked as a staff accountant in the skincare industry. As bookkeeper with CNDC, Dale’s role involves working with our Accounting clients to provide services including maintenance of accounts, payroll, and preparation of annual financial statements and tax documents. He says that his work, as well as the people and positive culture in the CNDC office, have him looking forward to coming to work each day. Outside the office, Dale is an active volunteer with Rocky Mountain Feline Rescue and is also a certified Massage Therapist.