Board of Directors

Meg Fitzpatrick

Meg Fitzpatrick graduated from the University of Notre Dame, and worked as a Business Consultant at Arthur Andersen in Chicago. While living in Chicago, she served on the Board of Directors for Rainbow House, a domestic abuse shelter.  Meg moved to Ann Arbor four years ago, and is very active at the St. Francis of Assisi Parish School and Church. Meg also serves on the Planning Committee for The Event on Main, a fundraiser benefiting C.S Mott Children’s Hospital.

LaSonia Forté

LaSonia Forté is Administrative Manager for the University of Michigan’s Office of the President and holds an Associate degree in Computer Information Systems​, a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology, and a Masters of Public Administration degree. LaSonia has been involved with Girls Group in a variety of capacities for several years, as a parent, mentor, facilitator, and Advisory Board member. LaSonia is the creator and sponsor of the annual Frank J. Forté Laptop Scholarship. LaSonia lives in Ann Arbor with her husband, Michael.

Caroline Giordano

Caroline Giordano is an attorney in the Ann Arbor office of Miller, Canfield, Paddock and Stone, P.L.C., where her practice involves a variety of areas of litigation in both state and federal courts. Before graduating from Wayne State University Law School in 2012, she received a Ph.D. in English Language and Literature from the University of Michigan, where she also taught literature and writing courses, and a B.A. in English from Columbia University. Caroline has lived in Ann Arbor for twelve years.

Larry Hastie

Larry Hastie holds a B.A. in Economics from DePauw University and a M.B.A. and Ph.D. in Managerial Economics from Cornell University.  Larry moved to Ann Arbor in 1974 and later became Treasurer of Bendix Corporation and Vice Presidents of Human Resources and Corporate Development.  Currently, he is Managing Director of Retirement Income Solutions, a fee based investment advisory firm he co-founded more than 20 years ago, now providing advice to more than 1,000 families.  Larry has been interested in the promotion of women in leadership positions for many years.  Women succeeded him as the first female President of the Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum and Barton Hills Country Club Boards.

Joyce Hunter

Joyce Hunter holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Western Michigan University, a Master of Arts from Michigan State University, an Administrative Endorsement from the University of Michigan and a Computer Science Endorsement from Madonna University. She has been a Teacher, Department Chair, Class Principal and Assistant Superintendent for Secondary Schools in Ann Arbor. In addition to serving on the Girls Groups Board of Directors, Joyce is President of the African American Cultural & Historical Museum, and is currently a member of the Ann Arbor Rotary Club and has been involved in various other community organizations.

Stephanie Jones

Stephanie Jones is honored to be a member of the Girls Group Board of Directors. She has volunteered in the community for many years, serving on multiple boards including the SOS Crisis Center, the Washtenaw Community College Women's Council and President of the Daycroft Montessori Board for several years. Stephanie earned a BA in Economics from Tougaloo College and a MBA from the University of Michigan. She worked for many years in the Information Technology Industry. She is currently a stay at home mom.

Kris Maly (Secretary)

Kris Maly is a corporate communications consultant, and most recently served as the Vice President, Corporate Communication at Synthetic Biologics for six years. Prior to joining Synthetic, she spent 10 years at Vericel Corporation, and 15 years in the public accounting field with a tax practice focus. Kris has served in leadership and volunteer roles with several organizations, including the Junior League of Ann Arbor, United Way, Girls Scouts, C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital and the Ann Arbor Public Schools. Girls Group blends well with her commitment to education, mentorship, leadership, developing character and building community.

Bill Mathewson

Bill Mathewson is General Counsel of the Michigan Municipal League, a non-profit, non-partisan organization providing numerous services for Michigan’s cities and villages. As General Counsel, Bill is responsible for corporate legal matters, and represents the MML regarding legal and policy issues relevant to municipalities statewide. He is also the Fund Administrator of the MML Legal Defense Fund, providing appellate level amicus assistance to municipalities involved in litigation of statewide importance. Bill serves as Secretary/Treasurer of the Michigan Association of Municipal Attorneys, and is active in the International Municipal Lawyers Association, including as past Chair of the State League Counsel Section and past member of the Board of Directors.

Courtney McCreadie (Board Chair)

Courtney McCreadie earned a BS (Magna Cum Laude) and MS in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Michigan. After completing her undergraduate degree, Courtney worked for Ford Motor Company in Product Engineering and Safety Testing. Her last two years with Ford were spent working in the UK. Courtney is currently a stay-at-home mom with three middle and high school age children. She has been an active volunteer in her children’s schools serving as PTO President and Volunteer Coordinator at Burns Park Elementary. Courtney is currently the co-chair of the Ann Arbor Social Capital Fund, a philanthropic giving circle at the Ann Arbor Area Community Foundation.

Diana Mercer-Pryor (Treasurer)

Diana Mercer-Pryor is a product of the Detroit public school system, a graduate of the University of Michigan (Bachelor of Business Administration) and the University of Detroit (MBA-Finance). She is an executive retiree of the Chrysler Corporation where she worked for 34 years in numerous positions in both Procurement and Supply and Finance. One of Diana’s passions is serving the community. She serves as a reading tutor for two organizations; Communities United for Children located in Pontiac and the Mercy Education Project located in Detroit. In addition to serving as Board Chair for Girls Group, Diana also serves on several other non-profit charitable boards, including Mercy High School, Oakland Woods of the Presbyterian Villages and Communities United for Children.

Jan Barney Newman (Board Vice Chair)

Girls Group Board Member, Jan Barney Newman, earned a BA from the University of Oklahoma, and an MA from the University of Michigan. She has been a resident of Ann Arbor for over 40 years. She taught in the Ann Arbor Public Schools, was a Director of the Bank of Ann Arbor and the founder of two businesses: Aristoplay, Ltd., an educational game company and Learning Express, Michigan, an educational toy store. Jan’s community commitments include having served on the Board of the Ann Arbor Chamber of Commerce and many non-profit organizations. She is also currently serving a second term as a Trustee of the Ann Arbor District Library.

Tim Petersen

Tim Petersen has been a Managing Director of Arboretum Ventures since 2002.  Prior to that, Tim was a manager in the investment banking practice at Plante Moran Corporate Finance and served as a management consultant at Industrial Economics, Inc. Tim is involved in a number of community efforts focused on venture capital and entrepreneurship. He holds a BA in Economics from Williams College, an MS in Economics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and an MBA from the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan.

Sue Schooner (Executive Director)

Sue Schooner is the founder of Girls Group, and has served as the Executive Director for the last thirteen years.  She holds a BS in Accounting from Ithaca College and an MBA from Harvard Business School.  Sue is a retired automotive executive, and developed mentoring programming at both the Chrysler Corporation and Textron Automotive.  Sue’s experience in networking, strategy, business development, management, finance, and budgeting has helped Girls Group to grow into a well-respected, low-overhead organization with enviable success.  Sue is proud of the excellent staff and Board of Directors at Girls Group.

Jean Tennyson

Jean Tennyson has worked in Human Resources at the University of Michigan for more than 45 years. Her broad and diverse background at the U-M has included effectively working with various levels of leadership, staff and faculty, and with an array of internal and external community partners. In addition to her current responsibilities as the staff-focused diversity recruitment program manager, she demonstrates an ongoing commitment to diversity, fairness and equal opportunity in support of staff recruitment and retention.

Eileen Thacker

Over the course of her 25 year career in counseling, teaching and field supervision, Eileen Thacker has worked across a wide range of settings, including universities, hospitals, community agencies, health care facilities and private practice. She holds a Masters Degree in Education, with a specialization in counseling & guidance from Indiana University, a Masters Degree in Social Work from Loyola University and a postgraduate certificate in Family Therapy & Healthcare from the University of Chicago, Center for Family Health. Eileen has served on various Boards and chaired major fundraising events. As a proud mother of a daughter and five fabulous granddaughters, Eileen understands the importance of raising confident and self-reliant women.

Julie Lawson Timmer

Julie Lawson Timmer earned a bachelor’s degree from McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario and a law degree from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas. After beginning her legal career in Texas, she moved to Ann Arbor, where she worked for the Bodman law firm before working in-house at Maxion Wheels, an automotive wheel supplier. She has four children, is a crisis line volunteer at Ozone House, and a devotee of hot yoga and spinning. She also is an author of four novels.

Rob VanRenterghem

Rob VanRenterghem has helped fuel the growth and success of dynamic companies ranging from Domino’s Pizza and Kraft Foods to Gordon Food Service.  His experience spans marketing, supply chain and finance and he has a passion for driving insights into strategic planning and vision setting as well as staffing and the leadership of growing organizations.  Rob is involved with a number of community organizations and also serves on the UMS Board of Directors.  He holds a BA from Hope College and an MBA from Georgetown University.  He his wife and four children are proud to call Ann Arbor home.

Lynly Williams

Lynly Williams was raised in Indiana and graduated, with honors, from the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University with a degree in Broadcasting.  After school, Lynly worked in sales at radio stations in Houston and Chicago before transitioning into online media at Google's Ann Arbor office.   Lynly is currently a stay at home mom, raising three young children with her husband, Brent.  She also volunteers with other non-profits in the Ann Arbor area including North Star Reach, Delta Gamma, and the Delonis Center kitchen.

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