Literally hundreds of volunteers move the work of FRUA INC forward. As an all-volunteer organization, FRUA has no paid staff and functions under the governance of a National Board of Directors.
That national board includes four elected officer positions (Chair, Vice Chair, Secretary and Treasurer) serving for two-year terms of office, and board-level chair appointees who are nominated and approved by the board of directors, also for two-year terms.
These national officers and board-level committee chairs are supported by regional chapter leaders, whose leadership is also elected/affirmed for specific leadership terms. All members in the USA are affliiated with a region. In some regions organized FRUA groups may operate as "parent organized development" areas (PODs).
As a 501(c)(3) national non-profit organization, FRUA's fiscal year runs from July 1 through June 30. Individual FRUA regions may have varying fiscal reporting years.
While our national incorporation is in Washington, DC, our National Board is spread across the United States from the east coast to the west coast, with stops in between. The Board meets ten to eleven times per year, only once in person for the FRUA Annual Meeting, typically in July or early August, and via conference call for other meetings.
Board of Directors
The following volunteers fill national board roles for fiscal 2014-16; this term our Board includes FRUA members with children from Russia, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, and Bulgaria :
National Chair: Jan Wondra
Vice Chair: Karen Holt
Treasurer: Kate O'Neil
Secretary: Elizabeth Field
Education: Terry Mandeville
Membership Chair: Amy Donovan
Publications Editor:Mara Kamen
Development Chair: Tracy Kolian
Advocacy and Outreach: open
Regional Liaison: open
Orphan Support: open
Chair: Jan Wondra
FRUA Acting National Chair, Jan is a marketing expert, brand strategist and writer. As a VP of Marketing, Chief Marketing Officer in Fortune 500 global companies, her background includes strategic communications work on financial services, telecom, energy, consumer goods, transportation and with Silicon Valley technology start-ups, and entreprenuer assignments as her own marketing firm.
Jan has been a FRUA member since 1994, helping to found the second national FRUA chapter, FRUA Wisconsin. She and her husband founded the FRUA Colorado chapter in 1997 when they returned to the Denver area. She served as its Chair before seving as the FRUA National Regional Liaison from 2005-2008. She has led several FRUA national initiatives, including serving on the national media task force, chairing the FRUA Love Letters campaign, starting the FRUA Coffee & Tea for Orphan Support Program, and spearheading the FRUA website redesign and new media project.
Jan was honored for her volunteer work with FRUA in 2012 with the United States Congress, receiving the Angel in Adoption Award from the Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute. She and her husband, Mel, reside in Denver, Colorado, and are parents of two children: a bio son and a daughter, adopted from Russia in 1994.
Vice Chair: Karen Holt
Karen is a single mother living in Central Ohio with her two children from Russia: a 13-year-old adopted as an infant, and a 11-year-old adopted at 36 months. She has a BS from Ohio State University and runs her own financial business.
Karen has contributed to several adoption books and magazines and is the owner of www.karensadoptionlinks.com. She has a special interest in open international adoptions. She is a former Board member for Parents for Ethical Adoption Reform and a former Board Chair for FRUA-Ohio.
Treasurer: Kate ONeil
Kate has been a member of FRUA since 1994. Her first position in FRUA was Cultural Chair on the national board many years ago. Kate has since been the Election Committee Chair, MiraMed Institute Salary Grant Liaison, worked on special projects and writes correspondence acknowledging donations to FRUA.
Currently Kate works as a Financial Tech in her local school system. Previous employment positions have included sales and marketing for an international shipping company and a start up division of GTE. She also has experience in travel and tourism. Her favorite job however is as “domestic engineer,” managing her vibrant household.
An alumna of Boston College School of Management, Kate lives in a suburb of Washington, DC and is part of the FRUA Mid-Atlantic Region. Other numerous volunteer positions have included leadership roles in various PTA organizations as well as Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts.
Kate is the mom of three young adults, a son, Rostik, from St. Petersburg and two daughters, Katusha and Lilya, from the outskirts of Smolensk.
Secretary: Elizabeth Field
FRUA Secretary, Beth is a strategic communications professional with 30 years of experience. Beth has worked for public and private biotechnology companies, international public relations agencies, and non-profit organizations - in the areas of investor relations, corporate communications, marketing communications, media relations, and integrated communications management.
Beth joined FRUA Oregon in 2007 for parent support after learning about FRUA from her adoption counselor. She soon joined their chapter board in various positions including chapter chair. She has also served to help the FRUA INC National Board as Membership Database Manager.
Beth holds a Master of Science in Communications Management from the executive program at the S.I. Newhouse School in Public Communications at Syracuse University.
An Air Force brat who has lived around the U.S. and abroad for work, Beth now lives in Texas with husband, David, her rock of support, and resilient, happy daughter, Natasha, 13 years old. Natasha was adopted in 2002 from Almaty, Kazakhstan at 14 months old.
Education Chair: Terry Mandeville
A long-time leader in the Washington State chapter, Terry joined the Board as Advocacy and Outreach Chair in 2013. She is a retired Pediatric Psychiatric Registered Nurse who has managed care for children with mental health issues, including ADHD, depression and bi-polar, eating disorders, attachment disorders, school issues, schizophrenia, aggression and maladaptive coping behaviors, oppositional-defiance, O/C, PDD and autism, as well as a variety of medical disabilities. She now provides in-home nursing care and is working toward being an author.
Editor, The Family Focus: Mara Kamen
MJ Kamen brings a walth of experience within FRUA INC to her interim role as Education Chair, completing the term of former Education Chair, Dr. Felicia Fago. She has been a member of FRUA INC since 1994, and has volunteered with FRUA since just after adopting two children from Russia.
Ms. Kamen has gained a breath and depth of knowledge by serving in a variety of board capacities, including as Editor of The Family Focus. Her most satisfying roles have been sharing information with parents and professionals working with our kids. In 2003, she was honored with a United States Congressional Angel in Adoption Award.
Membership Chair: Amy Donvan
Development Chair: Tracy Kolian
Tracy Kolian is interim director of the center for public health policy at the American Public Health Association. In this role, she oversees and develops the associations’ policy portfolio in areas such as, health reform, health disparities, environmental health and healthy communities, and the promotion of health in all sectors. As a 100% grant funded center, Tracy is responsible for managing and sustaining the policy center budget – seeking grants, drafting proposals and managing grant deliverables and reporting. Tracy is in her 11th year at APHA and has also served as the deputy director of the center and as a senior policy analyst.
Prior to APHA, Tracy was a program director at the Center for the Advancement of Health, a small nonprofit focused on the translation of health behavior research into practice. Before entering the non-profit arena, Tracy spent more than 10 years in environmental health consulting doing human health risk assessment across the US.
Tracy has been a FRUA member since 2010, when she and her husband, Mike, adopted their now 6 year old son, Nash, from Krasnodar, Russia.
As a family, Tracy, Mike and Nash enjoy outdoor activities, traveling - especially to visit family and friends and the national parks - and hanging around their restored row-house in Washington DC.
Advocacy and Outreach Chair: open
Regional Liaison: Open
Orphan Support Chair: Open