OUR Staff

THE PEOPLE THAT MAKE IT HAPPEN

CEOEnvironmental ServicesEntrepreneurshipCommunity SustainabilityHealthy FoodsLendingProgram Support
Chief Executive Officer

Ines Polonius

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Chief Executive Officer

Ines Polonius

Ines Polonius, Chief Executive Officer of Communities Unlimited, joined the organization in 2014 and works out of the Fayetteville, Arkansas, office.

She has been active in national and international economic development for more than 30 years and has dedicated her career to accelerating community economic development in persistently poor, rural places in the South. She leads Communities Unlimited, a CDFI dedicated to moving rural and under-resource communities in Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Tennessee and Alabama toward prosperity.

She received a Master of Business Administration degree and a Master of Economics degree from Boston University in Boston, Massachusetts, along with a certificate in Public and Not-for-Profit Management. She earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Foreign Service from Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. 

Email:ines.polonius@communitiesu.org

Phone:479.443.2700

Director of Program Support Services/HR

Elaine Crutchfield

Elaine Crutchfield, Ed.D., SPHR, Director of Program Support Services/HR, joined Communities Unlimited in 2001, after working in the Office of Services to Business and Industry at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville, where she served as a performance improvement consultant.

Dr. Crutchfield specialized in evaluation, program development, training, curriculum design, human resource policy/program development and organizational assessment, with clients ranging from Fortune 500 companies to small family businesses in agriculture, transportation, financial services/banking, retail, manufacturing, education and various trades and services.

As part of the Communities Unlimited Senior Leadership Team, she is responsible for grant management, development, human resources, communications and information technology. She also periodically supports new program development.

Chief Financial Officer

Kim Griffey

Kim Griffey, Chief Financial Officer located in Fayetteville, Arkansas, joined Communities Unlimited in 1995.

She is responsible for the financial aspects of 54 federal, state and foundation grants totaling more than $16 million. She is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the Arkansas Society of Certified Public Accountants. She received a master of Business Administration from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville and a bachelor of science degree in Accounting from Arkansas State University in Jonesboro. She became a Certified Public Accountant in the state of Arkansas in 1992. 

Grants Coordinator

Joanna Moore

Joanna Moore, Grants Coordinator in Fayetteville, Arkansas, joined Communities Unlimited in June 2015.

She is responsible for grant billings and other duties. She graduated from the Sam M. Walton College of Business at the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville with a bachelor of science in Business Administration in the Walton Honors Program. She also received her master of accountancy degree from the same college. She also earned her certification as a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) in September 2019. 

Email:joanna.moore@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 105

HR Coordinator

Scott Wallace

Email:scott.wallace@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 136

Communications Coordinator

Metta Smith

Email:metta.smith@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 134

Director of Community Sustainability

Martha Claire Bullen

Martha Clare Bullen is the Director of Community Sustainability.

She has a strong history of working with communities. She is skilled in strategic planning, public speaking and research. Martha has a Master’s Degree that is focused in Educational Leadership and Administration from Mississippi College and is the previous Community Development Director for the Foundation for the Mid-South. 

Email:martha.claire@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 253

Director of Lending

Bryn Bagwell

Bryn Bagwell, Director of Lending based in Fayetteville, Arkansas, began at Communities Unlimited in January 2021.

She leads the lending team and manages Communities Unlimited CDFI assets in support of mission-based lending. The CDFI includes small business, consumer and commercial portfolios with assets in excess of $17 million. She is also in charge of Communities Unlimited PPP lending program in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. She has extensive experience in banking and lending. 

She has a bachelor of arts degree in Psychology-Religion and a master’s degree in Business Administration from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. She graduated from the Mid-South School of Banking in Memphis, Tennessee, in 1990 and the American Institute of Banking in Norman, Oklahoma, in Commercial Lending in 1992. 

Healthy Foods Coordinator

Brenda Williams

Brenda Williams is the Healthy Foods Coordinator for Communities Unlimited. 

Brenda is responsible for managing the Food LINC program, a value chain initiative focused on increasing access to and availability of healthy foods for residents of food deserts in the Memphis Mid-south region. This initiative also includes outreach to minority and small-scale farmers and entrepreneurs to encourage their participation in local food production. She also coordinated the Farm to Food Pantry Program, which purchased food from small-grow farmers through a grant from the Mary Reynolds Babcock Foundation and donated it to local food pantries. 

Previously, Brenda was the manager of graduate programs for The University of Memphis Fogelman College of Business of Economics. Brenda received her B.S. from Arkansas State University in Jonesboro, Arkansas, and her master of business administration degree from Webster University in St. Louis, Missouri.  

Email:brenda.williams@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 207

Director of Entrepreneurship

Cynthia Terry

Cynthia Terry, Director of Entrepreneurship, has been managing Tennessee entrepreneurship programs for Communities Unlimited since June 2004.

Her work includes management consulting with business clients and managing the entrepreneurship team. Together, they serve small business owners onsite and virtually in Arkansas, Mississippi, Tennessee and Texas.

She also leads the development of new partner relationships, programs responsive to entrepreneur and local community needs (e.g. MEMShops) and funding development. Cynthia is an entrepreneur herself, having started her own successful business.

She has a master’s in business administration and a Juris Doctorate from the University of Memphis in Tennessee.

Email:cynthia.terry@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 213

IT Support Specialist - SharePoint

Libby Harris

Libby Harris, IT Support Specialist based in Fayetteville, Arkansas, joined Communities Unlimited in August 2019. 

She provides laptops and phones for the Communities Unlimited staff, as well as training and troubleshooting for the hardware and software used by staff members. She assisted in installation, implementation and training of Office 365 for Communities Unlimited. She has a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering from Syracuse University’s College of Engineering and Computer Science.  

Email:libby.harris@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 110

IT Support Specialist - O365/SPO

Justin Soto

Email:justin.soto@communitiesu.oog

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 120

Office Assistant and Receptionist

Haley Reed

Haley Reed, Office Assistant and Receptionist, joined Communities Unlimited in September 2019.

She had previously worked in customer service positions before joining Communities Unlimited. Haley is responsible for providing support services such as data entry for water systems, answering and directing incoming calls, meeting space preparation, mail processing and recording and receiving checks for processing.

Haley graduated from Broken Arrow High School in Oklahoma in 2016.

Email:haley.reed@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 102

Digital Content Coordinator

Chris Baker

Chris Baker is the Digital Content Coordinator for Communities Unlimited.

Chris is responsible for developing, publishing, and managing all social media content. He provides creative insight into current trends and supports other communication team projects including website creation and annual report production.

Chris has a strong background in marketing and social media from his previous role as Operations Manager for Cumulus Broadcasting. Chris works out of the Fayetteville office. 

Email:chris.baker@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 260

Administrative Assistant - Finance and CEO

Carolyn Haley

Email:carolyn.haley@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 226

IT Special Projects

Bob Strickland

Email:bob.strickland@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 113

Staff Writer

Ben Smith

Email:ben.smith@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 116

Senior Economic Development Officer

Debra Williams

Debra Williams, Senior Economic Development Officer, joined Communities Unlimited in May 2021.

She is responsible for originating quality loans through internal and external referral sources. She also develops strategies to market the bank’s SBA and small business grant programs to entrepreneurs with financing needs. She came to Communities Unlimited with a strong financial background, from her previous roles as a Vice President/Loan Manager for Arvest Bank as well as Vice President of Commercial lending for RCB Bank.

Debra has a BS in Business Administration, Marketing Management Orientation from Southwest Baptist University in Bolivar, Mo. 

Email:debra.williams@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 212

Program Assistant - Lending

Jane Coffin

Jane Coffin, Lending Assistant Communities Unlimited.  With 16 years of nonprofit experience, Jane brings her office management skills to her role as Lending Assistant.  Her duties include post loan management, compliance and collections.  She has also increased the functionality of Communities Unlimited’s loan software.  Jane monitors and reports on our current SBA profiles and assists in grant reporting and data management. 

Email:jane.coffin@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 114

Consumer Loan Officer

Michael Rivera

Michael Rivera is a Consumer Loan Officer with a 15-year background in banking and finance.

He has an Associates of Arts Degree in Business Management and Marketing from Athens Technical College.

Small Business Lender

Kevin Tillman

Kevin Tillman is a Small Business Lender for Communities Unlimited.

Kevin has two years of lending experience with Communities Unlimited and their mission of serving underserved communities perfectly aligns with Kevin’s philanthropic spirit.

Kevin attended the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville and graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Financial Management and Investments and minor in Business Management in May 2015

Email:kevin.tillman@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 115

Senior Economic Development Loan Officer

Glenda Johnson

Email:glenda.johnson@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 236

Small Business Lender

Chris Ranniger

Chris Ranniger is a Small Business Lender for CU.

He has a background in retail management and has experience handling inventory and annual sales. Chris has a B.B.A. in Finance from Stephen F. Austin State University, in Nacogdoches, Texas.

Chris works out of CU’s East Texas office.

Email:chris.ranniger@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 258

Economic Development Loan Officer

Chris Tillman

Chris Tillman came to Communities Unlimited in October of 2021 as an Economic Development Loan Officer.

He has an Associate of Arts in Business Administration from Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College, as well as a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the University of Southern Mississippi. Chris has several years of experience working in the loan, financial and lending fields. Chris is also an active member (Coach) of the Jackson County Chamber of Commerce Youth Sports

Loan Assistant

Amber McClellan

Amber McClellan came to Communities Unlimited in July 2018 as a Receptionist and moved up to Program Assistant in April 2019. In 2020, Amber became the Executive Assistant to the CEO and assists with AHCC, Loan Closings and more. 

Amber attended Northwest Arkansas Community College in Bentonville, Arkansas, and is a graduate of Farmington High School. 

Email:amber.mclellan@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 135

Senior Community Facilitator

Michelle Viney

Michelle Viney, Senior Community Facilitator, joined Communities Unlimited in 2018 after previously working for the organization from 2003-2007 as a Community Education and Outreach Specialist responsible for the production of the Community Water Bulletin and CRG Small System Guides.

Today, Michelle works with rural communities in Arkansas to develop strategies for community and economic development. She is a certified NPDES Stormwater Inspector and is a licensed Class I Wastewater Treatment Operator and Class 1B Solid Waste Management Facility Operator in Arkansas.

She has a bachelor of arts degree from Hendrix College in Environmental Ethics and a master’s degree in Management and Leadership from Webster University. 

Community Facilitator

Mark Pearson

Mark Pearson, Community Facilitator, is based out of Austin, Texas, and joined Communities Unlimited in 2004.

Mark works in community outreach, and strategic planning in low-income and underserved communities, while collaborating with community leaders. He has worked with infrastructure finance community management for water and wastewater for more than 17 years. He currently supervises two staff members assisting more than 30 community water and wastewater systems throughout West Texas. He leveraged more than $4 million in community infrastructure financing last year. He regularly participates in the Texas Water Infrastructure Coordinating Committee (TWICC) with state and federal agency partners.

He received a bachelor of arts University Scholar/Liberal Arts degree from Baylor University in Waco, Texas, and a master of science degree in Economics from Baylor. 

Email:mark.pearson@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 229

Community Facilitator

William Thrasher

William Thrasher came to Communities Unlimited in October of 2021.

He works in Community Sustainability for the Environmental team. William works with low-income and underserved communities to assist them with outreach and planning. William has experience working as a leader and has a background in public speaking and building relationships.

William received his B.S. in Sociology & History – University of Arkansas at Little Rock

Email:william.thrasher@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 123

Area Director Broadband

Catherine Krantz

Community Facilitator

Kelle Menogan, Jr.

Email:kelle.menogan@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 111

Community Facilitator

Deanna O’Malley

Deanna O’Malley is a Community Facilitator for CU.

She has s strong background in building relationships and working with communities. Before coming to CU, Deanna worked for the Arkansas Department of Health where she provided assistance with community grants and provided guidance and technical assistance for the community. Deanna attended Kaplan University and Texarkana College. She resides in Texarkana, Arkansas.

Email:deanna.omalley@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 259

Community Facilitator

Russ Garner

Email:russ.garner@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 147

Community Facilitator

Chantel Poor

Chantel Poor joined Communities Unlimited in December of 2021 as a Communities Facilitator.

She lives in Almyra, Arkansas. Chantel works in community outreach, and strategic planning in low-income and underserved communities, while collaborating with community leaders. Chantel has several years of office experience, including all Microsoft programs. She is very skilled in Customer Service and working with the public. 

Email:chantel.poor@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 141

Senior Management Consultant

Brian Wells

Brian Wells, Senior Management Consultant, works with rural communities, small businesses and entrepreneurs to solve problems and grow their business with in-depth consulting and innovative lending programs.

He started his career as a command pilot in the United States Air Force. He then transitioned to being the Chief Financial Officer of a small firm with multiple business lines. Brian’s years of experience in different fields make him especially adept at finding solutions that fit his client’s needs.

He has earned a bachelor of arts degree in Mathematics from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville, a bachelor of business administration degree in Accounting from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock and a Master of Business Administration in Finance from Indiana University Bloomington. 

Email:brian.wells@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 208

Senior Management Consultant

Dale Rutherford

Dale Rutherford, Senior Management Consultant, based in Little Rock, Arkansas, started his Communities Unlimited position in March 2021.

Dale works with clients to develop financial models and budgets for their existing or conceptual business ideas. Dale conducts assessments with clients to scope the type of their needs and helps them identify problems and develop plans to achieve their goals and objectives.

Aside from being a published author, Dale also holds several certifications including Lean Six Sigma Black Belt and Dale also has an MBA and a BS in Management from Henderson State University. 

Email:dale.rutherford@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 245

Senior Management Consultant

Marnell Love

Marnell Love, Senior Management Consultant in Memphis, Tennessee, began working with Communities Unlimited in 2020.

He works daily to provide one-on-one assistance to small business owners and entrepreneurs to guide them in building, growing and sustaining their businesses. In addition to assisting small business owners and entrepreneurs,

Marnell serves as a chaplain for the Sardis Fire Department in Sardis, Mississippi, providing care and counseling to firefighters, their families and victims of fires or accidents. He is a member of The Federation of Fire Chaplains. He also serves as a chaplain for hospital patients and those in palliative care.

His education includes a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting and Business Management, a Master of Business Administration in Finance, a Master of Science in Industrial Management and a Doctor of Education in Management and Employee Training Practices internationally.

Email:marnell.love@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 242

Management Consultant

Rhett Douglas

Rhett Douglas, Management Consultant located in Memphis, Tennessee, joined Communities Unlimited in October 2020. 

He works with small businesses and entrepreneurs to prepare financial and operational plans for clients, conduct webinars on digital marketing and corporate structure and assess small businesses for loan readiness. He comes from a business background, having successfully launched and promoted two new franchise concepts in Collierville, Tennessee.

He has a bachelor of arts degree in Theatre Concentration with a minor in Business from Harding University in Searcy, Arkansas. He has a master of business administration in Sales-Marketing from Christian Brothers University in Memphis, Tennessee. 

Email:rhett.douglas@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 248

Management Consultant

Tracy Cook

Email:tracy.cook@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 262

Management Consultant

Trent Thomason

Email:trent.thomason@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 146

Management Consultant

Teresa Coleman

Management Consultant

Sergio Salazar

Sergio Salazar, Management Consultant, joined Communities Unlimited in 2015 in Raymondville, Texas.

He has worked with environmental management systems for more than six years. He currently assists three community water and wastewater systems in Texas and has leveraged more than $14 million in community infrastructure financing last year. He also assists aspiring and existing business owners in starting and growing their small businesses by conducting initial assessments with clients to determine their needs, identifying any problems and assessing the best course of action to address those issues.

He received a bachelor’s degree in Accounting from the University of Texas at Brownsville.

Email:sergio.salazar@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 237

Training Coordinator

LaToyia Morgan

Latoyia Morgan Training Coordinator joined Communities Unlimited in September of 2021.

Latoyia works alongside business management consultants to develop course content. She also coordinates and facilitates training and other events and assists in providing advice and services to business clients. Latoyia has a previous background in training. Latoyia received her MBA in Human Resources from the University of Phoenix-online.

Before coming to CU, she served as a Training Coordinator for Agape Child and Family Services in Memphis.

Email:latoyia.morgan@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 254

Management Consultant

LaKetter Cannon

Project Coordinator/Management Consultant

Katy Parrish

Katy Parrish, Project Coordinator for Entrepreneurship, located in Amarillo, Texas, joined Communities Unlimited in August 2020.

She comes from a background of marketing, management and community outreach. At Communities Unlimited, she provides technical assistance in the areas of business financials, bookkeeping, strategic management, growth management, turnaround and digital marketing.

She received a bachelor of Business Administration degree from Texas Tech University and a master of Business Administration concentrating in International Business from Louisiana State University in Shreveport. 

Email:katy.parrish@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 246

Management Consultant

Baretta Robinson

Senior Director

Thomas Ricks

Tommy Ricks, Senior Director of Environmental Services, based in Fayetteville, Arkansas, joined Communities Unlimited in 1997.

He has worked with community development and community environmental management services for more than 32 years. He directly supports and directs staff in seven southern states in assisting more than 500 communities each year. He has been licensed by Mississippi as a certified water operator since 1990. He earned a bachelor of fine arts degree from Delta State University in Cleveland, Mississippi, in 1993.

He served in the U.S. Army and the Mississippi Army National Guard, obtaining the rank of Sergeant with 10 years of service before being honorably discharged in 1992.

Environmental Services Area Director - West

Harold Hunter

Harold Hunter, the Texas Environmental Services Area Director located in Richmond, Texas, joined Communities Unlimited in 1994.

He has worked with community environmental management systems for more than 38 years. He assisted 11 community water and wastewater systems in Texas last year and leveraged more than $33 million in community infrastructure financing. He conducted three training workshops last year. He regularly participates in the Texas Water Infrastructure Coordinating Committee (TWICC) with state and federal agency partners. 

Harold received a Bachelor of Science degree in Political Science with a minor in Sociology/History from Ouachita Baptist University in 1973 and a master’s degree in Public Administration at Middle Tennessee State University in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. 

Email:harold.hunter@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 219

State:Texas

Environmental Services Area Director – Central

Karen Conrad

Karen Conrad, the Environmental Services Area Director, located in Miami, Oklahoma, began at Communities Unlimited in 2007 as an Operations Management Specialist. She was promoted to Oklahoma Coordinator in 2017 and Area Director – Central recently.

She has worked with community environmental management systems for more than 37 years. She has been a Certified Water and Wastewater Operator in Oklahoma and Missouri since 1980. She assists 10 community water and wastewater systems in Oklahoma and leveraged more than $3.9 million last year. She assisted in six water and wastewater operator training sessions. Karen received a master’s of business administration degree from Pittsburg State University in 1999 and a bachelor’s degree from Missouri Southern State University in 1993. She also attended the Water and Wastewater Technical School in Neosho, Missouri, and graduated with high honors in 1980. 

Email:karen.conrad@communititiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 224

Environmental Services Area Director – East

Alexander Brandon

Alexander BrandonArea Director for Environmental Services in Alabama, Mississippi and Tennessee, joined Communities Unlimited in 2010, and was the first to be promoted to an area director position. 

Alexander has worked with community environmental management systems for more than 15 years. He currently assists more than 12 community water and wastewater systems in Mississippi and has leveraged more than $1.1 million in community infrastructure financing last year alone. He conducted four training workshops last year.  He has been a Certified Water Operator licensed by the State of Mississippi since 2003.

He received a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Technology from Mississippi State in 2001. 

Email:alexander.brandon@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 201

Mailing Address:P.O. Box 241 Madison, MS 39130-0241

Special Projects Area Director

Griffin Todd

Griffin Todd, Special Projects Area Director for Environmental Services, joined Communities Unlimited in 2017 as a Source Water Coordinator before being promoted to his current position.

Griffin is a certified Water Operator licensed by the State of Arkansas and has worked in the Southern RCAP seven-state region for over 4 years, supporting technical assistance providers working with over 500 communities each year.

Griffin Todd graduated from the University of Massachusetts Lowell in May 2017 with a bachelor’s degree in public health.

Email:griffin.todd@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 125

State:Arkansas

East Texas Regional Coordinator

Tom Fulton

Tom Fulton, East Texas Regional Coordinator, based in Longview, Texas, joined Communities Unlimited in 2006. 

He has worked with community environmental management systems for more than 37 years. He currently assists nine community water and wastewater systems in Texas and has leveraged more than $7.6 million in community infrastructure financing last year alone. He conducted seven training workshops last year.

He has been a licensed water and wastewater operator in the state of Texas since 1983. He has had a Class A Water license for Texas since 1993 and a Class B Wastewater license since 2009.  

Email:tom.fulton@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 239

Louisiana State Coordinator

Chris Brunson

Chris Brunson, Louisiana State Coordinator of Environmental Services located in Dry Prong, joined Communities Unlimited in 2001 as an Operations Management Specialist before being promoted in 2019.

He has more than 37 years of experience in community environmental management systems. This past year. Chris works in community outreach, and strategic planning in low-income and underserved communities, while collaborating with community leaders. Chris worked with 22 projects and leveraged $9.4 million for community water and wastewater infrastructure development projects last year in Louisiana. He also presented six environmental training workshops. He holds Louisiana Class IV licenses in all five areas of water and wastewater. 

Email:chris.brunson@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 211

State:Louisiana

Arkansas State Coordinator

Brad Jarrett

Brad Jarrett, the Arkansas State Coordinator, is located in West Memphis, Arkansas, and joined Communities Unlimited in 2010. 

Brad conducted four Environmental Training Workshops to communities in Mississippi and in Arkansas last year and is currently assisting 14 community water and wastewater systems in Arkansas.  He leveraged more than $15 million in combined loan and grant funds to communities for infrastructure improvements last year alone.

Brad has received the Army Achievement Medal for his leadership to operations of the 212th Signal Battalion and was honorably discharged from the U.S. Air Force Reserve in 2016. He attended Vincennes University and is a graduate of the U.S. Army School of Petroleum and Water Supply. 

Email:brad.jarrett@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 206

Tennessee State Coordinator

Annie Chiodo

Annie Chiodo, is the Tennessee State Coordinator. She is located in Waynesboro, Tennessee. She joined Communities Unlimited in 2014.

Annie has worked with Community Environmental Management Systems for 20 years. She currently supervises and assists staff in Tennessee to ensure the development of critical, external, and professional relationships.  She is currently mentoring two new employees for Communities Unlimited. Annie holds a Class III Tennessee Water Treatment License and a Class II Tennessee Water Distribution License.

Email:annie.chiodo@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 203

Mailing Address:P.O. Box 396 Waynesboro, TN 38485-3038

Alabama State Coordinator

Dinah Foreman

Email:dinah.foreman@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 216

State:Alabama

Oklahoma State Coordinator

Gaylene Riley

Gaylene Riley, Oklahoma State Coordinator, based in Atoka, Oklahoma, joined Communities Unlimited in 2017.

Gaylene Supervises and supports the CU Environmental Program and staff in Oklahoma to ensure the development of critical external professional relationships / partnerships within the State of Oklahoma and to ensure that CU technical assistance and training grants and contract metrics are achieved within budgeted perimeters. Previously, she worked for 35 years as a Rural Development Specialist at USDA-Rural Development. This past year, Gaylene worked with 22 community projects and leveraged $12.6 million in funding for community water and wastewater infrastructure development projects in Oklahoma. She presented five NAWMA workshops addressing Asset Management Planning and Fiscal Sustainability, taking the training to an online platform after the first session.

She holds an Oklahoma Class D Operator license for both water and wastewater operations and a Class C Water Lab license for Oklahoma.

Email:gaylene.riley@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 218

State:Oklahoma

Mississippi State Coordinator

Traci McQuary

Traci McQuary, Mississippi State Coordinator based in Maben, Mississippi, joined Communities Unlimited in 2017.

She has worked with community environmental management systems for more than 16 years. She currently assists 15 community water and wastewater systems in Mississippi and has leveraged more than $3.3 million in the last year in community infrastructure financing.

She received a bachelor of science degree in Educational Psychology with a minor in Counselor Education in 1992 from Mississippi State University.  

Email:traci.mcquary@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 240

South Texas Regional Coordinator

Raul Gonzalez

Raul Gonzalez Jr., South Texas Regional Coordinator, based in Brownsville, Texas, joined Communities Unlimited in 2003.

He has worked with community environmental management systems for more than 26 years. He currently works with 10 community water and wastewater systems and leveraged more than $4.9 million in community infrastructure financing in the last year. He assisted with two workshops last year and participated in two funding meetings. He responded to many USDA and Congressional direct technical assistance referrals. He has leveraged $500,000 so far this year.

He has been a certified Water Operator licensed by Texas since 1996.

Email:raul.gonzalez@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 233

West Texas Regional Coordinator

Kurt Grant

Kurt Grant is the West Texas Regional Coordinator. He supervises and supports over CU Environmental Program staff in West Texas and supports the CU Environmental State Director. He joined Communities Unlimited in May 2020 as a Community Environmental Management Specialist based out of Amarillo, Texas, where he assists community water and wastewater systems in Texas.

Kurt previously worked with the Panhandle Regional Planning Commission as a Local Government Services Specialist, where he served as contract City Manager for Timbercreek Canyon and as part of the Texas Revenue Recovery Association. He also administered and managed Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) for various Panhandle region projects and trained for Grant Administration through the Texas Department of Agriculture. Kurt is working with 12 communities and conducted three training workshops in the last year.

Kurt has a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas, and an associate’s degree in Business Administration from South Plains College in Levelland, Texas. 

Email:kurt.grant@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 224

State:Texas

Regionalization Project Manager

Lupita Ortega

Lupita Ortega, Regionalization Project Manager located in Brownsville, Texas, joined Communities Unlimited in 2018. She previously worked for the organization as a contract disaster assistance technician in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey in Texas.

She worked with 12 projects and leveraged more than $2.2 million for community water and wastewater infrastructure development projects last year. She completed four training modules at the Utility Management Institute-North American Development Bank in San Antonio, Texas. The modules were Planning, Designing and Implementing a Successful Utility; Financial Administration; Financial Planning and Leadership in the Utility.  

Email:lupita.ortega@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 228

State:Texas

GIS Coordinator

Don Becker

Don Becker is our GIS Coordinator based in Fayetteville, Arkansas.

He joined Communities Unlimited in April 2020. He assists with the implementation, collection, validation, training, presentation and publication of GIS data. Don has 20 years of experience in GIS mapping. He has collected data and created maps for the US Census Bureau, voter registration, county road inventory management and road maintenance documentation. 

He has a bachelor of arts degree in Humanities with an emphasis in Anthropology from Stephen F. Austin State University in Texas.  

Email:don.becker@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 138

State:Arkansas

Source Water Project Manager

William Hood

William Hood, Source Water Project Manager located in Fayetteville, Arkansas, joined Communities Unlimited in 2018. 

William worked with 21 communities and leveraged $1.1 million in the last year for community water and wastewater infrastructure development projects in Arkansas. He also presented two workshops. He holds a Class I Water Treatment license in Arkansas and a Class II Wastewater Collection and Treatment license.

He has completed an Associate of Science degree and is currently completing a bachelor’s degree in Biology.  

Email:william.hood@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 127

Community Environmental Services Program Assistant

William Morrison

Email:william.morrison@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 148

Senior Environmental Management Consultant

Oliver de la Garza

Oliver De La Garza, Senior Environmental Management Consultant in Texas, began at Communities Unlimited in September 2018 as Assistant Director of Community Sustainability, where he coordinated recovery efforts in four communities affected by Hurricane Harvey. Oliver provides onsite technical assistance and training to rural community environmental management systems. 

Last year, Oliver worked with seven projects and leveraged $11.9 million in funds for community water and wastewater infrastructure development projects in Texas. He presented two environmental training workshops. He is the go-to technical assistance provider (TAP) in Texas for resolving issues with SAMS ID for rural utilities. 

Oliver previously served as Ombudsperson in the Texas Secretary of State’s office and served as a Child Support Officer II in the Texas Attorney General’s office. Oliver has a bachelor’s degree in Psychology with a minor in Spanish from Our Lady of the Lake University in San Antonio, Texas. 

Email:oliver.delagarza@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 230

State:Texas

Senior Environmental Management Consultant

Julie Hudgins

Julie Hudgins, Senior Environmental Management Consultant based in Westville, Oklahoma, joined Communities Unlimited in 2018.

She has worked with community environmental management systems for more than 24 years. She currently assists 13 community water and wastewater systems in Oklahoma and leveraged nearly $20 million in community infrastructure financing in the last year. She has been a certified Water and Wastewater Operator licensed by Oklahoma since 2019.

She received a bachelor of science degree in Business Administration and Finance Management from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville.  

Email:julie.hudgins@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 223

State:Oklahoma

Senior Environmental Management Consultant

Richard King

Richard King, a Senior Environmental Management Consultant based in Bastrop, Louisiana, joined Communities Unlimited in 2001.

He has worked with community environmental management systems for more than 20 years. He is currently assisting eight community water systems in Arkansas and Louisiana and has leveraged more than $2 million in the last year. He holds a Class IV Louisiana Professional Water Operators license in the fields of Water Production, Treatment and Distribution.

He received an honorable discharge form the U.S. Marine Corps in 1973 after serving a tour of duty in Vietnam.

Email:richard.king@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 234

Environmental Management GIS Specialist

Trent Neathery

Trent Neathery joined Communities Unlimited in May 2020 as a GIS Technician as part of the GIS Mapping program.

Trent works in rural communities collecting map points and creating maps and presentations for community water and wastewater systems. He also provides environmental and GIS solutions and technical training for rural communities. He previously worked in Customer Experience positions with J.B. Hunt Transport in Lowell, Arkansas.

Trent has a bachelor of science degree in Agriculture – Environmental, Soil and Water Science from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville. 

Email:trent.neathery@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 108

Community Environmental Management Advisor

Tony Manriquez

Email:tony.manriquez@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 235

State:Texas

Community Environmental Management Advisor

Alexander Eaves

Email:alexander.eaves@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 144

Community Environmental Management Specialist

Tonya Kendrix

Email:tonya.kendrix@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 145

Environmental Services Administrative Assistant

Teresa Vite

Teresa Vite, Environmental Services Administrative Assistant, joined Communities Unlimited in March 2021. She works directly for the Director of Environmental Services and Program Coordinator. Teresa is responsible for reviewing, analyzing and reporting data.

Before coming to Communities Unlimited, Teresa worked for the Rogers School District as a Secretary. Teresa holds a Bachelor of English Arts from the University of Arkansas – Fulbright College of Arts and Science Program as well as an Associates of Science in General Studies from Northwest Arkansas Community College. 

Email:teresa.vite@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 124

Community Environmental Management Specialist

Tami McKeon

Community Environmental Management Technician

Tabatha Smith

Tabatha is a Community Environmental Management Technician for the Environmental team. Tabatha lives in Belton, Texas, and has spent the last several years as a Certified Medical Assistant.

Email:tabatha.smith@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 222

State:Texas

Area Director of Rural Housing

Audra Butler

Email:audra.butler@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 Ext. 269

Community Environmental Management Specialist

Stacey Scarce

Email:stacey.scarce@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 281

Address:PPO Box 81006

City, St:Lafayette, LA

Zip Code:70598-1006

Community Environmental Management Specialist

Shannon McCranie

Shannon McCranie, Community Environmental Management Specialist, is located in Southaven, Mississippi, and joined Communities Unlimited in 2019. 

She has worked with community development for more than two years. She is working with eight community water and wastewater systems and is working to leverage funding in four communitiesShe previously worked as an Environmental Chemist for a power company, where she acquired knowledge of wastewater procedures, treatment systems and analyses.

She received a bachelor of science degree in Chemistry from Alabama Agricultural and Mechanical University in 2015. 

Email:shannon.mccranie@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 238

Community Environmental Management Specialist

Robert Kelley

Robert Kelley, a Community Environmental Management Specialist based in Greenfield, Tennessee, joined Communities Unlimited in October 2020. 

Robert provides technical, managerial and financial assistance to rural water and wastewater systems in Tennessee. His previous work experience included serving as a Senior Wellsite Geologist for an oil and gas firm, where he provided clients with a detailed geochemical rock analysis and hydrocarbon gas analysis. He is PEC and H2S certified and is also trained as an Emergency First Responder. 

He has a bachelor’s degree in Geology from the University of Tennessee at Martin.  

Email:robert.kelley@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 250

Community Environmental Management Advisor

Ramon Rosales

Ramon Rosales joined Communities Unlimited in January 2022 as a Community Environmental Management Advisor.

Ramon has several years of experience working with the Military Highway Water Supply Corporation in Progresso, Texas. He has a background in managing financial plans and developing strategies as well as a list of other skills and experience. 

Email:ramon.rosales@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 225

State:Texas

Community Environmental Management Specialist

Payden Donahoe

Payden Donahoe is a Community Environmental Management Specialist for Mississippi. Payden has a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry from Austin Peay State University in Clarksville, Tennessee.

Before coming to CU, Payden worked as a Wastewater Operations Specialist for Infrastructure Alternatives in Rockford, Michigan. He has a strong work history of performing laboratory analysis and research

Email:payden.donahoe@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 267

State:Mississippi

Community Environmental Management Advisor

Lucas Guinn

Lucas Guinn is a Community Environmental Management Advisor for Communities Unlimited, Environmental Team. He has around 21 years of experience working with water and wastewater.

Email:lucas.guinn@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 143

State:Oklahoma

Training Project Manager

Lorraine Magee

Lorraine Magee, Training Project Manager, is based in Monticello, Mississippi, and joined Communities Unlimited in 2018.

She is responsible for planning, developing and delivering training for the Environmental team, for the seven-state regions. She has worked with community environmental management systems for more than eight years. She currently assists 16 community water and wastewater systems in Mississippi and has leveraged more than $1.2 million in community infrastructure financing last year.

Lorraine earned a bachelor of science degree in Business Administration from Jackson State University in Jackson, Mississippi. She obtained her MSDH Class C Water Operator’s Certification in 2019. 

Email:lorraine.magee@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 227

Community Environmental Management Technician

Kayley Westbrook

Email:kayley.westbrook@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 280

State:Texas

Community Environmental Management Specialist

Jorge Negrete

Email:jorge.negrete@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 266

State:Texas

Community Environmental Management Technician

Janelle Saucedo

Email:janelle.saucedo@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 270

State:Texas

Community Environmental Management Technician

Irma Schultz

Irma Schultz, Community Environmental Management Technician located in Tyler, Texas, began with Communities Unlimited in February 2021.

She assists in providing basic onsite technical assistance services to 15-20 small communities and small water/wastewater systems serving rural areas.

Irma graduated from Columbia Southern University with a bachelor of science degree in Occupational Safety and Health Administration in December 2018.

Email:irma.schultz@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 221

State:Texas

Community Environmental Specialist

Cherub Alford

Cherub Alford is a Community Environmental Specialist for CU. She has a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from the University of Louisiana, Monroe.

Cherub has a strong background in grant writing and project planning. She lives in Crossett, Arkansas, and volunteers for the Crossett Rodeo, where she has served as the Miss Crossett PRCA Pageant Coordinator since 2017. She also serves on the Board of Directors for Crossett Public School Education Alliance

Email:cherub.alford@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 265

State:Arkansas

Community Environmental Management Specialist

Chad Brown

Chad Brown, a Community Environmental Management Specialist based in Tyler, Texas, joined Communities Unlimited in February 2021. 

He provides technical, managerial and financial assistance to rural water and wastewater systems. He spent four years working with the City of Raleigh (NC) Public Utilities.

He is a veteran of the U.S. Army, having served with the 2-13th Aviation Regiment in Operation New Dawn and Operation Enduring Freedom, the 82nd Airborne Division, the 173rd Airborne Brigade and in the 2nd Infantry Division as part of the United Nations Command Security Battalion-Joint Security Area in South Korea. He was honorably discharged in 2013. 

Email:chad.brown@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 220

State:Texas

Community Environmental Management Specialist

Caroline Miles

Caroline Miles started Communities Unlimited in October 2021, as a Community Environmental Management Specialist.

She has a strong background in planning and Development and Wastewater treatment. Caroline graduated from the University of Southern Mississippi in May of 2020 with a Master of Science, Geography.  

Email:caroline.miles@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 121

State:Mississippi

Community Environmental Management Specialist

Bria Hines

Community Environmental Management Specialist

Brett Capps

Brett Capps, Community Environmental Management Specialist, joined Communities Unlimited in January of 2022. 

He assists rural communities and organizations with water and waste water system compliance. He has strong technical skills.

Brett graduated from the University of Tennessee at Martin with a Bachelor of Science in May of 2021.  

Email:brett.capps@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 119

State:Tennessee

Community Environmental Management Advisor

Bradley Pittman

Bradley Pittman, Community Environmental Management Advisor came to Communities Unlimited in November of 2021. Bradley graduated from Louisiana State University with a BS in Construction Engineering Technology.

He brings to CU several years of experience in problem-solving and planning. He also has experience working with water and sewer issues.  

Email:bradley.pittman@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 255

Community Environmental Management Technician

Ashley McAfee

Ashley McAfee is a Community Environmental Management Technician for CU in Texas. Ashley is a recent graduate from the University of Texas at El Paso, UTEP. She has a background in Environmental Science and Sociology, as well as GIS. Ashley has a passion for environmental justice for vulnerable communities.

Email:ashley.mcafee@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 142

Community Environmental Technician

Andrew Brooks

Andrew Brooks is a CU Community Environmental Technician. Andrew is a retired Air Force Veteran from San Angelo, Texas, where he lives with his three sons. Andrew spent six years in the Air Force as a Bioenvironmental Engineering Technician, focusing on Drinking Water, Wastewater, Hazardous Waste, and Air Quality. Andrew has an Associate Degree in Applied Science in Criminal Justice, has completed coursework in Technical Theatre through the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and is currently working on his Bachelors of Science in Environmental Science with an emphasis in Environmental Management and Technology.

Email:andrew.brooks@communitiesu.org

Phone:(479) 443-2700 ext. 264

Community Environmental Management Specialist

Alex Goodyear

Email:alex.goodyear@communitiesu.org

Phone:479.443.270 ext. 282

Address:PO Box 81006

City, St:Lafayette, LA

Zip Code:70598-1006