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. FRUA is always looking for volunteers at all levels - we would love to have the advantage of your energy, skills and expertise. Please contact the Chair at firstname.lastname@example.org
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: Ann McCrystal
Education: Terry Mandeville
Membership Chair: OPEN
Publications Editor:Mara Kamen
Development Chair: OPEN
Advocacy and Outreach: OPEN
Regional Liaison: OPEN
Orphan Support: OPEN
Technology Chair: Jennie Segal
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 has been a member of FRUA since 2000. She is a single mother living in Central Ohio with her two children from Russia: a 15-year-old adopted as an infant, and a 13-year-old adopted at 36 months. She has a BS from Ohio State University and runs her own financial business. Recently, Karen was the Executive Director for 3 non-profit organizations: focusing on reducing costs and building memberships. Her career also includes sales management at Wells Fargo Financial.
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: Ann McCrystal
Ann has been a member of FRUA since 2004 and actively managed the Info email since 2011, She retired from corporate in April 2012. Since retirement, she is actively involved in volunteering including being a board member of United Way of Hunterdon County, PTO board at JP Case, Meals on Wheels and volunteer tax preparation at the United Way.
Prior to that Ann was employed by Verizon Wireless, and had a diverse career including positions in finance, customer service, establishing a call center in Greece, marketing operations, oversight for the retail stores in Philadelphia Tri-State and Illinois and sales operations.
Ann earned her degree from the Rutgers University and has lived in Flemington, New Jersey for 11 years with her husband, 15 year old biological son and 10 year old daughter adopted from Bryansk, Russia in 2005.
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: Open
Development Chair: Open
Advocacy and Outreach Chair: Open
Regional Liaison: Open
Orphan Support Chair: Open
Technology: Jennie Segal
Jennie is a single mom 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 grandchildren, ages 3 and 1, 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.