Our esteemed Executive Board. Top (from left to right): Darcy Pierson, Tracey Robertson (cofounder and executive director), Lisa Taylor*, Tim Franz and Joe Wiedenmeier*. Bottom (from left to right): Angie Lee, Kadihjia Kelly, Crystal Soderman and Karen Bowen*. Center front: Chris Washington *: Board officers.
Fit Oshkosh is committed to an ethnically- diverse Executive Board to provide governance and oversight.
Our current Board consists of professionals with a variety of expertise that includes background in education, community organizing, change management and finance, to name a few.
The Board meets on the Third Thursday of each month at 36 Broad Street. Questions regarding Board activity should be directed to the current Chair, Joe Wiedenmeier at email@example.com
BOARD CHAIR Joe Wiedenmeier is a long-time resident of Oshkosh. He is married to Mary and has 2 adult sons, Brian & Ross. For 12 years he owned and operated a graphic arts and audio-visual production company. After selling the business, he worked 7 years as a computer technician for the Oshkosh Area School District and then 14 years as the IT Director for Lourdes Academy Schools in Oshkosh. He retired in 2016. He has a Bachelors Degree in Speech - Radio-TV-Film from UW-Oshkosh and is also the President of the Friends of Oshkosh Community Media. Joe has been active in social justice organizations and was one of the founding members of PFLAG of the Greater Oshkosh Area, working with Gay, Lesbian, Bi-sexual, and Transgender citizens and their Allies for equal rights and freedoms. He is a member of First Congregational Church in Oshkosh.
BOARD TREASURER Lisa Taylor grew up in a small city in Louisiana and at an early age became aware of segregation and racism while her community’s public schools were being integrated. She later joined the U.S. Air Force, which led her to experience many cultures in a very diverse environment and gave her an opportunity to educate others about the African American culture. Lisa earned her BS in Business Management from the University of Maryland at College Park and an MBA from Indiana Wesleyan University. She has worked for several organizations through the years whose main purpose remains to aid the underprivileged population, including African Americans. She is currently a Payroll Manager at Oshkosh Corporation, and although she has resided in nine states, she says her move to Oshkosh was a culture shock. “Feeling black” for the first time in her life has been a critical experience for her, and has motivated her to follow the path to change mindsets in the Oshkosh Community.
BOARD SECRETARY Karen Bowen, PhD has been involved with civil rights and diversity issues since high school. Here in Oshkosh, she was one of the founding members of the Human Relations Council, and has been working on the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. celebration for over 15 years. Karen was on the Oshkosh Area School District school board for 12 years and has also served on the United Way board and a variety of other boards. She has volunteered for the public schools, First Congregational Church, and served on many committees and other activities during 34 years of employment at UW Oshkosh. There she taught for the Reading Study Center and the Department of Human Services, served as executive assistant to the chancellor, affirmative action officer, academic advisor, and assistant dean in the College of Letters and Science. "Fit Oshkosh has the power to revolutionize Oshkosh and the Fox Valley, and I want to be part of that revolution. "
BOARD MEMBER Angie Lee grew up in the north suburbs of Chicago, then lived in Urbana-Champaign, Illinois for seventeen years where she attended college, graduate school, and started her first teaching position as a special educator. She has since taught grades kindergarten to eighth in various schools, both as a cross categorical teacher and as a bilingual literacy interventionist. It was in these teaching experiences where she began to truly understand the impact of racism, white privilege, and inequity in education. She moved to Oshkosh, Wisconsin in the summer of 2015 when her husband, Jeremiah, was offered a position at the university as a sociology professor. Angie experienced somewhat of a culture shock upon moving here, having lived in very diverse communities for almost the entirety of her life. She also experienced interactions of both explicit and implicit racism from people in the community and her colleagues. She decided to get involved with Fit Oshkosh in the fall of 2017 because her beliefs strongly align with the organization's mission and she feels passionate about improving the racial climate of her community, especially for her biracial children. Angie hopes her background and unique experiences as a person of color will serve as a bridge in conversations and events in the community.
BOARD MEMBER Kadihjia Kelly, PhD, LPC is currently working at Fox Valley Technical College in the Counseling and Advising Services as a Licensed Mental Health Therapist. Her expertise when working with self-identified Black/African American clients focuses on critical race theory and racial battle fatigue. She currently facilitates the Black Girls Healing Group in the Fox Valley area as well the Young Women of Colour Group in the Winnebago area. She has a her bachelors in Social Work, masters in Community Mental Health counseling, and her doctorate in Philosophy of Education in Leadership and Administration. Her dissertation focus was on: African American Freshmen Students and their experiences with curriculum and environment at Predominantly White Institutions.
BOARD MEMBER Christopher Washington is an Appleton resident and became intrigued with what Fit has to offer when he first met Tracey. He saw Fit as a way to reconnect with the community. “Fit Oshkosh is a good organization for me,” he said. “It appeals to the broader community, not just one group.” Originally from Phoenix, Arizona, he has lived and worked in the Fox Valley for more than seven years. For the past four years, he has been a consultant for small and medium-sized business in Northeast Wisconsin. He coaches and consults with the executive leaders of companies that are going through changes. His role is to help implement software or policy changes and help people during the disruption of corporate adjustments and the uncertainty of change. He enjoys working with executives and coaching a company’s leadership on how information technology works. He works with the people side of change and helps them work together to help them adopt and use change for business growth, profitability and success. He is an independent consultant and has his own company, CL Washington Organizational Change Management Solutions, LLC. He is also a member of a larger organization that does this work in the Madison and Milwaukee areas. His career takes him all over the Fox Valley. Most recently, he has worked with Johnson Controls, Milwaukee County Department of Health and Human Services, Spectrum Brands and Ameriprise Financial in Minneapolis.
BOARD MEMBER Crystal Soderman is a graduate student in the Masters of Public Administration Program at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh. She decided to get involved after learning about Fit from a fellow classmate. She is excited to be working with a local organization that provides her an opportunity to contribute to social change and racial justice within her community.
BOARD MEMBER Darcy Pierson joined Oshkosh Corporation in May 2018 as the Director of Diversity and Inclusion. Prior to her role at Oshkosh, she served in a similar role at Associated Bank for the last five years. She is a board member at FitOshkosh and dedicated to expanding racial literacy in our workplaces and communities.
BOARD MEMBER Tim Franz joined the Fit Oshkosh Board of Directors in August 2018. “I believe the work of Fit Oshkosh is important because I see how, in society, we still are judging each other by race and not by our character,” Franz said. “There is work to be done to get us past this by having conversations that lead to understanding and appreciating each other.” Tim recently retired after 32 years with the Oshkosh Fire Department, including 18 years as chief. During his career, he served as a firefighter, paramedic and equipment operator. During his tenure with the department, he expanded training programs. Firefighters in Oshkosh now go through an eight-week training program and a year-long probationary period that includes further training. Franz has an associate degree from FVTC in the fire protection program and completed paramedic training there. He was named Fox Valley Technical College Alumnus of the Year in 2017. He has a bachelor’s degree in fire safety and engineering from the University of Cincinnati. He earned executive fire officer status from the National Fire Academy — the highest level of professional certification in firefighting. He served on FVTC’s fire protection program’s advisory committee for 15 years and was an adjunct instructor at FVTC.
FIT Oshkosh thanks its Media Sponsor Wisconsin Public Radio for its continued support