FRUA functions under the governance of a volunteer National Board of Directors, which includes four elected officer positions (Chair, Vice Chair, Secretary and Treasurer) and several board-level chair appointees.  All serve two-year terms.


The Board of Directors is supported by regional chapter leaders, whose leadership is also elected/affirmed by term. In some larger or more dispersed regions, organized FRUA groups may operate as localized "Parent Organized Districts" (PODs) within a region.


FRUA's fiscal year runs from July 1 through June 30. Individual FRUA regions are independently incorporated, and may have varying fiscal reporting years.

While FRUA's national incorporation is in Washington, DC, our National Board members live across the United States. The Board meets ten to eleven times per year via phone conference. Each summer, it meets over a long weekend in Washington, DC for FRUA's Annual Meeting and Planning Sessions.



National Board of Directors

The following volunteers are currently serving board roles for fiscal years 2018 - 2020: 


National Chair: Jan Wondra


Vice Chair: Mara Kamen


Treasurer: Ann McCrystal



Secretary: Diane Abshire


Education Chair: Terry Mandeville


Membership Chair: Jennie Segal



Family Focus Editor: Mara Kamen


Development Chair: Eileen Bradner 



Outreach Chair: Amy Engstrom




Director Bios


Chair: Jan Wondra


FRUA 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 serving as the FRUA National Regional Liaison from 2005-2008.  Jan 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 2011 FRUA website redesign and new media project.

Jan was honored for her volunteer work with FRUA in 2012 by the United States Congress, receiving  the Angel in Adoption Award from the Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute. She and her husband, Mel, reside near Salida, Colorado, and are parents of two children: a bio son and a daughter, adopted from Russia in 1994.



Vice Chair and Editor of The Family FocusMara Kamen


Mara brings a wealth of experience to FRUA INC through her role as editor of FRUA's quarterly publication entitled The Family Focus.  She has been a member of FRUA INC since 1994, and volunteered with FRUA since adopting two children from Russia. 


Mara 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. 



Treasurer: Ann McCrystal


Ann has been a member of FRUA since 2004 and actively managed the Info email since 2011. She retired from corporate life in April 2012. Since retirement, she has been actively involved in volunteering including serving as a board member of United Way of Hunterdon County, serving on the PTO board at JP Case, volunteering for Meals on Wheels and serving as a volunteer tax preparer at the United Way.


Prior to her retirement, Ann was employed by Verizon Wireless where she had a diverse career including positions in finance, customer service, establishing a call center in Greece, marketing, operations, oversight of retail stores in the Philadelphia Tri-State and Illinois sales operations.


Ann earned her college degree from the Rutgers University and has lived in Flemington, New Jersey for 11 years with her husband, 22 year old biological son and 17 year old daughter adopted from Bryansk, Russia in 2005.



Secretary: Diane Abshire


Diane joined the FRUA Board of Directors in 2018.  Prior to raising her children, she served in strategic planning, corporate finance, and management consulting positions for several Fortune 100 companies.  She also brings a wealth of experience serving on the Boards of several not for profits, and has volunteered in ministries that support those living in homelessness for over 20 years.


Diane received her BS in math from The College of William and Mary, and her MBA from The Kellogg Graduate School of Management. She and her husband Lupton, an Episcopal Priest, have four teenagers including their daughter, Anastasia, adopted from Moscow in 2002 at 20 months of age.  They reside in Fort Collins, Colorado.



Education Chair: Terry Mandeville 


A long-time leader in the Washington State Chapter/Pacific Northwest Region, 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.


In the Washington State chapter, Terry has served as a board member, assistant director for the summer Heritage Camps, and manager of the chapter website. At the National level, she has been Focus on Culture & Heritage editor of The Family Focus since 2008. She also founded and manages FaCAB (Families with Children Adopted from Bulgaria), a family-to-family support network since 1995.


Terry has two sons who are now young adults in their 20s, Velizar and Anton, both adopted as preschoolers from Bulgaria. They live in the Cascade foothills near Seattle.


Membership Chair:  Jennie Segal


Jennie is the single mother of two daughters in their twenties, each adopted at the age of 4 from Biysk and Borovichi, respectively, in 1993 and 1997. She has two young grandchildren, all living with her in Fairfax, Virginia. She has been a member of FRUA since 1994, and has been the long-time Mail Coordinator for the organization, picking up mail from the FRUA PO Box and sending to appropriate FRUA members.


A graduate of George Washington University with a BA and an MBA, Jennie has spent her non-child-rearing time working in the information technology field, as a developer, analyst, project manager, and now a technical writer. She is having fun learning the FRUA systems, and hopes to contribute to the organization by helping make the systems more user friendly.




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