The MDC Board of Directors is composed of leaders in business, social services, non-profit organizations, and government. Their expertise helps establish our direction, assess our impact, and drive our vision of human beings exiting poverty.
The MDC programs are supported by grants from federal, state, and local government, and by contributions from private foundations, businesses, and individuals.
Board of Directors
A financial advisor by profession, Elwis has been with MDC since January 2020. Throughout his career in banking, he was driven to make a positive impact on society, and MDC provided the perfect platform to do so. Elwis is constantly inspired by the community he serves, leading with empathy and an open heart no matter the task. When he’s not volunteering with MDC, Elwis can be found coaching youth sports or barbecuing for his family and friends.
A board member at MDC for four years, Dr. Banks is an associate professor of criminal justice and former Washington State Patrol officer. His experience of poverty as a child in Illinois has driven him to make an impact. Dr. Banks strives to inspire resilience and resourcefulness among families experiencing homelessness. When he’s away from his desk, Dr. Banks enjoys weightlifting, hiking and traveling, embracing all of life’s adventures.
Cynthia has been an integral part of the MDC family since October 2020. After a collaborative effort with the League of Women Voters and the University of Washington, Cynthia is an advocate for lifting the burden of poverty in our community and beyond. Now retired, Cynthia’s days are filled with volunteering, reading and traveling. She is honored to contribute to the impact MDC has in the community for those living with less.
Chanel Rhymes is the co-owner of Monarch Consulting LLC and the Director of Advocacy for the Northwest Community Bail Fund. Prior to joining the Northwest Community Bail fund, Chanel served as the Legislative Relations Manager for the Office of Corrections Ombuds during the 2020 legislative session. She was also the Court Program Analyst for the Washington Supreme Court Minority and Justice Commission (MJC), executing the mission of ensuring that all courts in the state of Washington remain free of bias so that justice might be adjudicated in a neutral and fair manner. Chanel was raised in Tacoma, Washington, and received her BA from Evergreen State College with a focus in Law and Government Policy.
As an instructor in the school of social work at Pacific Lutheran University, Connie has been with MDC for one year. Her experience as a Tacoma City Council Member, State Legislator and Pierce County Council Member strengthens her vision for MDC as a leader in human services. Connie is inspired by MDC’s commitment to those in need. When not volunteering, Connie loves spending time with her sprawling family, enjoying her cabin by Mayfield Lake and playing golf.
Since joining MDC a year and a half ago, Thais has been inspired by the organization’s commitment to end poverty and support those battling addiction. For her, the MDC is doing more than just providing aid – we’re fostering hope and independence for our neighbors in recovery. Beyond volunteering, Thais serves as the Director of Engineering for The Northwest Seaport Alliance. She cherishes every moment she spends with her family.
Jermelle became part of the MDC family six months ago. As a longtime friend of our community, Jermelle supports the growth of friends and neighbors through his work on the board. He is honored to be part of MDC’s mission. Outside of volunteering, Jermelle finds solace in long walks and chasing after his four sons at home.
Georgia has always worked in HealthCare to provide access to services that help improve patient outcomes and provide quality of care. She engaged with MDC to work with an organization that provides programs designed to help members of the community with resources and hope. Georgia is most proud of the expanded resources provided this year and MDC’s commitment to better serve the community.
Since December, Alexa has brought her experience as a Technology Pathway Specialist at Tacoma Community College to MDC. She was drawn to the organization for its reputation of unwavering service and dedication to the city of Tacoma. Alexa is proud to be part of MDC, serving alongside fellow community advocates. She’s proud to be part of a group of like-minded individuals who truly care about the community. She believes MDC talks the talk and walks the walk.”
Scott Schubert was previously the Executive Director of Housing and Homeless Services at the YMCA of Greater Seattle – the largest housing provider for young adults in Washington State. Scott joins MDC with strong ties to the Pierce and King County area with a diverse background in strategy, innovation, compliance and service delivery. Scott is a strong advocate for the LGBTQ and disabled communities and brings this lens into all aspects of his leadership.
Scott began his social services career as a Program Coordinator and has since held roles at all levels in medium to large direct service non-profits. When applying for the CEO position, Scott was drawn to the long history MDC has in Pierce County addressing poverty, from immediate relief to advocating for systems change. Scott believes in the power of collective action to improve the health and well-being of people experiencing poverty and is excited to lead MDC to greater impact.
Kelly Crithfield has served as a member of MDC’s Human Resources Department since 2018. A PLU graduate, he began his career as an ordained Lutheran pastor and served congregations in Sacramento and Tacoma. Prior to joining MDC Kelly served as the Human Resources Manager for 8 years at Tacoma Art Museum. He has also held management and director-level HR positions in assisted living communities and a medical clinic. His passion for serving individuals in life’s most monumental moments and the privilege of being present in those moments to make a difference motivates Kelly’s commitment to his work.
Ramona’s guiding philosophy centers around recognizing that each individual’s journey is unique. Her expertise lies in empowering teams to meet our guests exactly where they are at any given moment, aligning perfectly with MDC’s core values. Her personal mission statement, “To help people overcome obstacles and reignite their dreams,” underscores her dedication to our shared mission. Ramona is also a proud Air Force wife, devoted mama, and loving nana. We are truly fortunate to have her on board and eagerly anticipate the contributions she will make as we continue to advance MDC’s mission.
Bio Coming Soon
Care with compassion is my motto as the Director of Housing & Care Management. I have been with MDC since 2000. I started as an on-call Licensed Practical Nurse, while working in the Withdrawal Management Center (Tacoma Detoxification Center). I held this position for several years, moving from on-call to Lead nurse to Program Manager in 2013. In 2017 I accepted the position of Director of Care Management and later adding the Housing Division. I am a firm believer that Housing is Healthcare and you cannot have one without the other, if we hope to end homelessness. I am a Wife, a Mother, a Grandmother, a Veteran and Master in Taekwondo. My personal satisfaction comes when others succeed.
Kurt believes in the power of technology to better serve our community. He began his career at MDC in 2001, providing direct service to participants, and has since served in multiple management and leadership roles. He later transitioned to IT and has been in his current role for over 10 years. In addition to overseeing information and computer systems, Kurt contributes to project management, business analysis, process improvement, and organizational compliance. He enjoys continuous learning and growth, regularly taking online classes and in-progress on multiple books. To keep centered and balanced, he enjoys meditation and in 2023 became a certified Mindfulness Meditation teacher.
Denise Wells has served her community through MDC since 2014. She graduated from UW-Tacoma in 2005 with her Bachelor of Business Administration – Accounting and has worked in the Accounting and Finance field since 2005. Prior to this, Denise was a proud member of the United States Army for 8 years and was honorably discharged as a Sergeant who served in Desert Shield/Desert Storm before her exit in 1998. Denise transitioned to the Director of Compliance role mid-year 2023. Her lifelong objective has been and is to serve others and make their lives just a little bit better. MDC is a Community Action Agency and serves the community with Pride and Duty. This keeps Denise solidly committed to MDC’s goals and objectives to serve this community.