Derek effle, Co-Chair
Derek Effle a native to Lincoln, Nebraska, has extensive training in community planning, community organizing, strength-based approaches to addressing community problems and strategic planning facilitation with diverse community stakeholders using the Federal Strategic Prevention Framework. He also has a wealth of training and knowledge in the areas of youth training and development. Derek is adept at building and leading teams from diverse areas, leading them to move through conflict to adoption and working towards a shared mission. He has worked with a wide array of individuals from government officials, volunteers, and with business leaders. He brings strong skills in communication, interpersonal relationships, and team development that can help any organization move through the seemingly complex process of putting a plan together and achieving company goals. Derek is a graduate of the University of Nebraska.
Amy pfingsten, Secretary
Amy grew up on a farm near a small town just south of Lincoln, and has live in or near Lincoln her whole life. Amy is a natural people person with a head for real estate and a heart for community development. Amy is married to Ross, a local home builder. She and Ross are proud parents to a daughter, Mila and a son, Ryker. At age 5, their son Ryker was diagnosed with a terminal genetic disorder, Batten Disease. This experience has opened her eyes even wider to the power united communities can generate and deepened roots in her faith. It has fueled her passion to give back and help others in difficult times, letting them know they are never alone.
Dennis coudriet, board member
Raised in Michigan and Tennessee, Dennis’s military service brought him to Nebraska. Married for over 30 years, Dennis and wife have raised a family in Lincoln and love their city. He has been an architect practicing in Nebraska and the surrounding region for over 20 years. Believing in the power of mentorship and the wisdom of outside council, Dennis joined the Atlas board because of their strong faith based relationship approach to helping others in the community.
Ian shada, Co-chair
Ian is a Nebraska native, born and raised in Fairbury. He is the director of sales for an employee benefits firm in Lincoln and is working towards his doctorate in business. Ian joined the Atlas board because growing up, he experienced a variety of difficult circumstances and knows what it's like to feel like there is nowhere else to go. He was fortunate enough to have some mentors relationally engage with him and help him turn his life around. Now, he aims to help others do the same.
Jamie Peer, Treasurer
Jamie is a 23-year US Army Veteran and Retiree who brought her family here to Lincoln, NE for her final military assignment as the Professor of Military Science for the UNL ARMY ROTC program. She is a native of Owosso, Michigan, and received her undergraduate in History and her graduate degree in Adult and Continuing Education from Kansas State University. Jamie believes in the power of every human's potential, and that each one of us is given unique talents and gifts by God that most of us need at least a little encouragement to explore. She is passionate about the mission of Atlas, and helping those who need encouragement most, when they need it most!
gabriel tufts, board member
Gabriel Tufts is the Founder of Hueman Impact LLC whose mission is to inspire and unite others. He spends his time uplifting, motivating and mentoring. He is also a mentor and advocate for single and separated fathers and helps them build strong, healthy, and consistent relationships with their children. He joined Atlas to help show others that there is hope in the midst of feeling hopeless. That no matter who you are, no matter where you are, today you can make a positive impact.
Brody Van Roekel, Director
Brody grew up in Sioux Center, IA where ATLAS was founded. He attended school at Northwestern College in Orange City. After graduating, Brody moved to Michigan for additional education, continuing his study of history at Western Michigan University. The call to ministry has long been a driving force in his life and moving to Lincoln offered phenomenal opportunities to live out that call. In addition to working as a director for Atlas, Brody also serves on the Board of Directors for Transformations Thrift Store and volunteers often around F-Street Neighborhood Church. Living relationally has always been a prominent part of Brody’s story. Beautifully diverse and significant connections with people give him life and purpose. As someone who has always felt the struggle of not being able to fit a mould, he’s passionate about reaching marginalized populations. Empowering people with hope and the tools to make positive life changes provides one of the most meaningful ways to live.
Savannah clapper, Community Engagement coordinator
Through prayer and mentor guidance, Savannah left her job as a youth pastor in California and came back to her homeland of Nebraska to partner with F-Street Neighborhood Church in the Kingdom work they are doing in Lincoln. Savannah's focus will be on community development. In addition to working at F-Street Neighborhood Church, Savannah will be serving as the Mentor Coordinator for Atlas: Lincoln, is attending seminary at Western Theological Seminary, and is living in community with some other families in the local area. Some other passions include: dressember, running, reading, and playing her ukulele.
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That we would provide a space for people to come in their time of need
That people would find Atlas as a place of truth and love, acceptance and direction, grace and mercy
That all of us would pursue vibrant and growing relationships with the community, each other, and Christ most importantly