Board Members

Photos coming soon

 

Lisa Austin
President

Lisa is President of the National Association of Asian American Professionals of Greater Kansas City (NAAAP-GKC). Since 2012, she has worked for Argus Health Systems, which is a subsidiary of DST Systems, Inc., as a Sr. Project Leader. She received her undergraduate degree from Friends University and started her career in the utility industry, then managed air navigational aid programs for the FAA and airports around the world. And if you live in Kansas City, you must at least work for Sprint, which she did in their Marketing departments.

Lisa grew up in Wichita, KS and moved to Kansas City in 1997 with her husband and two daughters and currently enjoys her three grandchildren. She also enjoys volunteering for non-profit organizations centered on the fight against children’s cancer. She is also passionate about creating different wonton recipes and offers party platters for anyone who wants to bring something unique to an event.

 

Parth Sheth
Past President

Parth works is a Finance Manager at Sprint and spends significant time in understanding consumer behavior and its impact on company’s long term growth. He holds a Bachelor of Science Degree from Bradley University, where he double majored in Economics and Finance, with a focus on Behavioral Economics and Financial Analysis. Besides NAAAP-GKC, he is on executive boards of Asian Focused groups in the KC region such as GSKC, an Indian organization and OASIS, Sprint’s Asian focused employee group.

Parth joined NAAAP to acquire career development skills and network with likeminded professionals in the Kansas City region.

 
David Moore
VP of Strategic Development

David is a Senior Production Artist at Hallmark Cards and has been with the company for over 15 years. He has held various positions at the Kansas City based greeting card company including Production Designer, Process Artist, and Multimedia Designer. David is very involved with several Employee Resource Groups at Hallmark including the Military Interest Group and Hallmark Employees Reaching Equality. He has served on the Asian American ERG Steering Council for 3 years and was the 2015 Chair of AARCH, Asian American Resource Community at Hallmark. Prior to Hallmark, he was Operations Manager for Vanguard Airlines Reservations Center and served in the US Army during Desert Storm.

David was born in Saigon, Vietnam but has lived in various countries including Spain and Germany. He loves to travel is obsessed with live theatre and attends at least one local production a week. David travels to New York at least once a year and has seen 72 Broadway and Off Broadway shows to date. He lives in Shawnee, KS with his partner of 19 years.

 

Jenny Copeland
VP of Operations

Jenny is the VP of Operations for NAAAP-GKC for the year 2016. She works as a Retail Senior Technology Specialist at Hallmark Cards. Jenny graduated from Kansas State University with bachelor’s degree in Marketing and a minor in Spanish. She studied abroad in Salamanca, Spain between her junior and senior year.

Jenny enjoys international travel, high adventure, and photography.

 
Junann Lopez
Secretary

Junann is Secretary of the National Association of Asian American Professionals of Greater Kansas City (NAAAP-GKC). She has worked at Hallmark Cards for 19 years, currently in the role of Sr. Credit Representative. She is the Vice Chair of the Asian American Resource Community at Hallmark, (AARCH). Through Hallmark’s volunteer program she has contributed to the community in a variety of organizations. She was lead for the Finance Division United Way Campaign, Special Olympics committee member, Organized the first Disc Golf Fundraiser for Heartland MS Society, and judges debate and forensics tournaments for Basehor Linwood High School.

A volunteer for the Japanese Festival, Harvesters, Salvation Army, Headquarters Counseling Center, Friends of the Zoo, Christmas in October, Karios, Guadalupe Center and multiple church gatherings.

Junann has two children, Nicole a University of Kansas graduate working at Bert Nash Community Mental Health Center, Lawrence, Kansas and Nick a Marine currently stationed at Ft Lee, Virginia for training. She crochets, reads and loves travelling to new places.

 
Brett Scherer
Treasurer

A Kansas City native, Brett is well connected among many professional and philanthropic organizations in the area. Among these organizations are NAAAP, Bacchus Foundation, Social Heart, Kansas City Young Professionals and Big Brothers Big Sisters. Brett enjoys “partying for a cause” and regularly participates in young professional fundraisers such as the Social Heart Date Auctions and the Bacchus Foundation Balls. Brett is well traveled, having visited many countries across the world and maintains a collection of artifacts sourced from the regions he has visited.

Fitness is a priority in Brett’s life evidenced by his seven day workout schedule at Woodside Health and Tennis Club and the healthy diet that he maintains. His most notable hobby is working on his vehicles, keeping up with their maintenance schedules and upgrading performance parts. On evenings and weekends, you can find Brett hanging out on the Country Club Plaza at places like Zocalo and Kona Grill, a couple of his favorites spots for happy hours.

 

Cynthia Fung
Director of Leadership Development

Cynthia is one of the founding members and past president of NAAAP-GKC. Cynthia was born and raised in Malaysia. She graduated from University of Missouri – Kansas City with a B.B.A. degree in Business Management and a M.B.A degree in Finance and International Business. Prior professional experiences include international pharmaceutical sales with Glaxo Malaysia, PLC in Malaysia and Brunei and Decision Support and Pricing roles at Sprint Corporation. Since 2014, she has been with Pinsight Media+, a wholly owned subsidiary of Sprint as a Recruiter and Operations Manager.

Cynthia is an active member of the Asian community in Kansas City. In the past decade, she was the President of Sprint’s Asian focused Employee Resource group, President of the Malaysian Association of GKC, Board member of the Chinese Club of GKC and others. In addition, she also led a coalition of Asian Employee Resource Groups within the greater Kansas City area companies in the effort to exchange ideas and share best practices. She lives in Waldo with her husband and two sons. In her spare time, Cynthia enjoys cooking, baking and travelling.

 

Maiko Uhlich
Director of Cultural Awareness

Maiko is the Director of Cultural Awareness and Special Events for the National Association of Asian American Professionals of Greater Kansas City (NAAAP-GKC). Since 2009, she has worked for McDonald’s USA, LLC, Heartland Region, as a part of the administrative team supporting
multiple departments such as Human Resouces, Regional IT, Communication (Regional Website) and Development. She received her Master’s Degree in Mass Communication at the University of Central Missouri State – UCM (former CMSU) as well as a Bachelor’s Degree in Broadcasting and Film with a Minor in Photography. Maiko started her professional career at the International Center of the University of Central Missouri and worked very closely with many internaional students. She has recently joined the NAAAP-GKC and is very excited to be a part of the growing, diverse professional organization.

Maiko was born and raised in Tokyo, Japan and moved to the United States in 1997. She has been residing in Kansas City since 2006 with her husband. They enjoy their German Shepherd rescue dog (furry kid) and stay actively involved with MOGS (Missouri German
Shepard Rescue Group). Her and her husband are currently working as foster parents and learning dog training skills from a master trainer. Since Maiko’s family is still living in Japan, she visits Japan once a year. On her free time she enjoys playing piano, singing, podcasting with her best friend, finding a good spot to listen to live Jazz music, watching musicals and going to her favorite Café to just relax. Recently she started to also learn hula dance.

 

Jason Carney
Director of Marketing and Public Relations

Jason has served on the NAAAP-GKC board since 2012 and is no stranger to this role as his first board position with NAAAP-GKC. He is very excited and motivated to return in this position. Jason also held posts on the board as the VP of Strategic Development, President and Past-President.Jason is currently a Manager, Marketing Operations with Intouch Solutions. Jason has worked in the advertising industry for 6 years and 1 year of corporate marketing experience.

Jason is a graduate from the University of Central Missouri with a BS in Business Administration in Marketing. His board experience prior to NAAAP-GKC was during college, serving as the VP of Advertising for two terms for the university’s chapter of the American Marketing Association. He was also the founder of the university’s student chapter of the American Advertising Federation (AAF) and served as their first president.
Outside of NAAAP-GKC, Jason is an avid runner, plays in a recreational hockey league, and remains active as a member of the AAF-Kansas City chapter to stay connected with his trade. He also enjoys life in Kansas City (and the cozy suburb life of Lee’s Summit) with his wife Megan and they seek out many happenings that Kansas City has to offer.

Jason joined NAAAP-GKC to develop professionally, network, connect with the Kansas City community, as well as utilizing the nationwide NAAAP network to meet other passionate professionals, collaborate and continue growing as an individual.

 

Ted Austin
Director of Technology

Ted graduated from Emporia State University with a B.S.B.A degree in Information Systems and a M.B.A. from Baker University. His initial professional assignments were in systems design and development. He later moved into regulatory affairs, pricing and decision support roles in the energy and telecommunications industries. He is currently a senior analyst with ONE Gas, Inc.

Ted and his wife, Lisa (Also the NAAAP-GKC President in case you were wondering) live in Shawnee, KS. Ted and Lisa have two adult children and 3 grandchildren.

 

Shawn Stevens
Director of Membership

Shawn is the Director of Membership for NAAAP-GKC. She has been a Realtor since 2014 and currently works for Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Kansas City Homes. She received her undergraduate degree from the University of Kansas with a B.S. in Journalism and a minor in Business. She moved to Texas shortly after graduation and worked in the automobile finance industry. She returned to Kansas City in 2013 and has been apart of NAAAP-GKC ever since.

She grew up in Overland Park, Kansas, but has lived in four countries and five states. In her free time, she enjoys volunteering, cooking and exploring Kansas City.

 

Shivani Bhandari
Director of Instutional Sponsorship

Shivani is an Account Manager at SmartSCM, a software company that delivers global supply chain solutions. She provides training for new users, give software demos and manage client relations. Shivani is a graduate of the University of Kansas in 2010 with a BA in psychology and interest in pre-med. Due to personal reasons, she decided to forgo med school and join her dad in his software company where she have been working for the past two years. She plans on pursuing an MBA in the next few years.
In her free time she enjoys reading, working out and being involved in the community. Currently, she is a Big for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Kansas City, on the BBBS Match Activity Committee, a volunteer with Kids TLC in Olathe, a local organization that provides a variety of resources to kids in need, and on the Kids TLC Gala Committee and Wine Tasting Event Committee. Shivani joined NAAAP for the opportunity to network with a group of professionals from diverse backgrounds and as Director of Cultural Awareness and Special Events develop greater recognition for NAAAP.

 
Aviva Ajmera
Senior Advisor

Aviva is a business executive with consumer product and retail experience. She has 22+ years of success in strategy development & implementation, new product development, brand management, consumer marketing, and organization re-design. She has strong communication, collaboration and leadership skills used to build, develop and motivate teams that deliver results with excellence. Aviva is solution oriented with an eye towards growth.

Aviva has unique blend of Consulting and hands-on practioner experience. She is currently the Owner and President of SoLVE. A Kansas City based
consulting firm focused on helping businesses grow. Previously, Aviva was a partner with The Partnering Group for 6 years and worked for Accenture for 3 years. She has consulted for blue chip companies across diverse CPG & non-CPG industries including: Nestle USA,
Post Foods, Sara Lee, Kimberly Clark, LG Electronics, Bauer Hockey, Creative Converting, 3M, Northwest Airlines and Fingerhut.

In Kansas City, Aviva worked for Hallmark Cards, Inc. for 14 years. She was a senior leader in many areas including Product Development, Retail, Corporate and Customer Strategy, and Business Transformation. Aviva launched, grew and re-invented iconic marketplace programs partnering with many brands and retailers including: Disney Consumer Products, Starbucks, The Komen Foundation, Hallmark Gold Crown, Walmart, Walgreens, Kohl’s, Publix, and Longs Drugs.

Aviva recieved a BA in Economics and Policy Studies from Rice University; MBA in Marketing, Management & Strategy and Non-profit Management from Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University. Aviva is an accredited angle investor and the Vice Chair with the Women’s Capital Connection. She is a member of the Central Exchange and on the Upper School Council for the Pembroke Hill School. Aviva is also in her second year as a senior advisor to the Greater Kansas City chapter of the National Association of Asian Professionals

Born and raised in Upstate New York, Aviva has made Kansas City her home for 20 years. She is married with 1 daughter and 3 “bonus” children,
and a granddaughter. Aviva enjoys running, yoga, entertaining and traveling.

 
Anita Ranhotra
Senior Advisor

Anita is a Product Integrity Process Improvement Manager with Hallmark Cards, Inc. In this role, she manages a team focused on processes and systems to protect the Hallmark brand and social license to operate. She is also a past Chair of AARCH (Asian American Resource Community at Hallmark).

Anita received her bachelor’s degree in Industrial and Manufacturing Systems Engineering and master’s degree in Engineering Management, both from Kansas State University. Prior to Hallmark, Anita worked for Payless ShoeSource, Distribution, Inc. and The Limited – Logistics Services, Inc. Anita is also actively involved with engineering advisory councils at KState. In her spare time, Anita enjoys watching KState football games, working out (with a recent interest in running!), and spending time with friends.
She joined NAAAP to help Asian Americans in Kansas City develop and network, both personally and professionally.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

© 2017 National Association of Asian American Professionals