Leadership Kitsap’s 20 Under 40: Class of 2022

·18 min read
The 2022 Leadership Kitsap 20 Under 40 class of honorees.
The 2022 Leadership Kitsap 20 Under 40 class of honorees.

The following 20 individuals were selected as the 20 Under 40 Class of 2022, presented by Leadership Kitsap, the continuation of an annual program to recognize emerging civic and business leaders under the age of 40 in Kitsap County. The honorees were recognized at a ceremony held January 27 at the Kitsap Conference Center Bremerton Harborside.

For more information, visit leadershipkitsap.org/20-under-40.

Lauren Beck

Lauren Beck
Lauren Beck

Executive Assistant, Full Swing Public Relations

Lauren connects with female business owners, entrepreneurs, and even female senators to help them reach their goals to make an impact in the world. Daughter of two Navy veterans, she is a digital nomad. Although her home base is in Poulsbo, she has spent time in Los Angeles, New York, and all over the world. She is developing a podcast, “Finding Foreign Lauren,” aimed at all women who want to feel confident traveling alone abroad. Her greatest social impact was made locally during COVID through her work with Fishline Food Bank & Comprehensive Services. October 2020, she worked with Fishline, Kitsap Rescue Mission, Clear Creek RV, Integrity Roofing, Faith Episcopal Church, and the City of Poulsbo to create and implement a mobile shower program available to all residents of Kitsap County in need of a shower. The successful program evolved into a mobile shower trailer which was delivered to Fishline in November 2021 and continues to provide essential hygiene services to our most vulnerable people in Kitsap County.

I earned my first dollar working the ticket booth at an amusement park.

Lindsey Camarena

Lindsey Camerena
Lindsey Camerena

ICU Nurse, Kitsap Public Health District

Lindsey has courageously stepped up to a life of service. In her roles as a public health nurse on the COVID Vaccine Response team and as a COVID ICU nurse, Lindsey has been on the front lines of Kitsap’s pandemic response. She implemented innovative ways to collaborate addressing access to healthcare and vaccine hesitancy. She offers compassionate care to every patient and began “Project Illuminate” on the COVID floor of St. Michael Medical Center. For each patient who passes away, nurses are encouraged to light a luminary and hang it in the break room to provide a moment of remembrance for the life that was lost. Outside work, Lindsey has coached multiple sports teams in collaboration with the Boys & Girls Club of North Kitsap and North Kitsap Soccer Club, and has served as Treasurer for the Kingston Cooperative Preschool Board. This past summer, she also helped raise funds for the North Kitsap Scholarship Fund and The Coffee Oasis.

I earned my first dollar working for my dad’s painting company and donning my first N95 mask!

Priya Charry

Priya Charry
Priya Charry

Adult Services Librarian, Kitsap Regional Library (Downtown Bremerton Branch)

As a librarian and career public servant, Priya is dedicated to serving Downtown Bremerton and its residents by participating in community-led organizations and government initiatives, providing free educational and recreational opportunities, and facilitating difficult conversations on timely topics through the library. On behalf of Kitsap Regional Library, she serves on the Downtown Bremerton Association, Kitsap Historical Society and Museum Board (Trustee), Kitsap Housing and Homeless Coalition (Secretary), Kitsap Moves Coalition, Kitsap Public Health District Vaccine Equity Collaborative, Music Discovery Center at Quincy Square Community Outreach and Education Committee, and Kitsap Showing Up for Racial Justice (SURJ) and Kitsap Equity, Race, and Community Engagement Coalition (ERACE) racial justice groups. She has been recognized locally and nationally for her work creating and leading the “Anti-Racism Learning Circle” conversation program. Outside her work, she has volunteered at the Wayzgoose Festival, her local co-op, and Kitsap County vaccine clinics. You may find her biking around Bremerton on her vintage Raleigh.

I earned my first dollar at age 13 helping young children learn to read Hebrew at my local synagogue.

Cody Clark

Cody Clark
Cody Clark

Community Development Lead, The Coffee Oasis

Cody is a passionate advocate for youth in need in our community. In his role with The Coffee Oasis, he is building business partnerships and corporate sponsorships to help raise awareness and funding to directly support youth escape homelessness. He worked with local realtors to develop The Coffee Oasis’ Homes for Hope program. Real estate agents participating in Homes for Hope donate a portion of their commission to The Coffee Oasis. The funds raised go to “Hope Homes,” which offers safe, supportive housing and emergency shelter for youth and young adults. “So, as the sale closes, not only do the new buyers get keys to their new home, but it gives youth experiencing homelessness a chance to have a home through The Coffee Oasis.”

I earned my first dollar working with K-2nd graders at the Boys & Girls Club of South Puget Sound.

Elizabeth Davis

Elizabeth Davis
Elizabeth Davis

Nurse Supervisor COVID Vaccine Response, Kitsap Public Health District

Elizabeth, “Liz,” was responsible for setting up Kitsap Public Health District’s community vaccine clinics and served as a COVID vaccine distributor and resource for Kitsap County COVID vaccine providers. Her colleagues credit her with saving countless lives as the “de-facto lead of any new pandemic response … whether it was leading the effort to administer monoclonal antibodies, to rolling out pediatric vaccines, to setting up more testing sites – Liz could be counted on to become the expert and rally the rest of us.” Liz helped increased vaccine access by removing barriers for community members seeking vaccination and for providers needing extra support to offer COVID vaccination in their facilities. Liz engages with small business owners, community leaders, and Kitsap residents to better understand the impacts of the pandemic on our county. The core principle in her work as a public health nurse is caring for the community and working toward ensuring the health of every Kitsap resident.

I earned my first dollar babysitting for several families in my New Jersey neighborhood.

Tiffany DeSaveur

Tiffany Desaveur
Tiffany Desaveur

Business Banking Relationship Manager, Kitsap Bank

Tiffany works every day to help make our community a place that is business and family friendly. Her passion is small business. She believes a strong business community makes a healthier, better place for all of us to live. The pandemic forced all of us to change the way we do business and go about our lives. As an “Economic First Responder,” Tiffany was part of a Kitsap Bank team that worked around the clock to ensure commercial clients and local businesses received access to the Small Business Association’s Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) funds that inevitably saved their businesses. Kitsap Bank issued over 900 PPP loans, totaling over $107 million, helping save 10,000 local jobs. In addition, as Treasurer of the Bremerton Chamber of Commerce, Tiffany found ways to reach out, disseminate information, and support local businesses and families in navigating the pandemic. Tiffany is also an active member of the Silverdale, South Kitsap, and North Mason Chambers, and enjoys volunteering her time for local food banks, the Salvation Army, and Habitat for Humanity.

I earned my first dollar cleaning houses for elderly church ladies.

Jennifer Fleming

Jennifer Fleming
Jennifer Fleming

Interior Design Principal/Owner, Rice Fergus Miller Architecture

Jennifer is committed to performing meaningful work that builds and strengthens community. In an industry that is male dominated, Jennifer is one of the few woman owners of an architectural and interior design practice in our region. She is a role model for other women in her industry. Since becoming a Principal with Rice Fergus Miller (RFM) in 2011, Jennifer has successfully recruited the vast majority of RFM’s current team which has been awarded Top Interior Design Firm four times by National Executive Women in Hospitality (NEWH), Inc. for their design leadership and contributions to the industry and students studying in their field. In addition, she helped RFM become one of only 25 architectural firms in the country, and only architect in Washington, certified as a B Corporation, meeting rigorous standards of social and environmental performance, accountability, and transparency. With her contributions and dedication, RFM has been continuously ranked in the Puget Sound Business Journal’s Top 30 Architectural Firms list for the past decade. Jennifer has made the intentional choice to dedicate her time outside of work to causes that help children, teens, and young adults. She mentors high school students through the AVID program at Bremerton High School, she is on the Advisory Board for the Washington State University School of Design + Construction, and sits on the Scholarship Committee for the National Executive Women in Hospitality (NEWH) non-profit organization. She is also working with the NEWH to host a student career symposium during the upcoming NEWH Leadership Conference this February in Seattle.

I earned my first dollar cleaning homes under the strict guidance of my German grandmother.

Dr. Michele Fujii

Michele Fujii
Michele Fujii

Doctor of Acupuncture and Herbal Medicine/Owner, Fujii Acupuncture & Herbal Medicine

As a healthcare practitioner, Michele’s goal is to bring quality, affordable, and convenient healthcare services to her community. She co-owns Poulsbo Day Spa, LLC in downtown Poulsbo which houses both her acupuncture practice and esthetician and massage therapy services. In the past year she has expanded her business to bring on two more acupuncturists and started a medical billing service. Her goal is to make an impact in her profession by helping other acupuncturists succeed. She continually works to educate the community about East Asian Medicine through networking, educational workshops, and social media. Prior to COVID, she provided weekly community acupuncture treatments at the Kingston Village Green Community Center. Michele is also trained as a birth doula, and hopes to resume acupressure training to midwives, nurses, and other birth professionals in the near future. Michele is also an active member of the Kingston North Kitsap Rotary Club.

I earned my first dollar pulling weeds for 5 cents a bucket.

Jana Goyenechea

Jana Goyenechea
Jana Goyenechea

Co-founder and Director of Aftercare, Scarlet Road

Seeing a gap in the community she loved, people being oppressed and abused with no safe place for them to turn, Jana co-founded Scarlet Road. What began as a 5K run to create awareness evolved into a passion for serving local victims leaving the commercial sex industry and supporting their transition. Through holistic care, Scarlet Road offers the hope of freedom to those who have been sexually exploited and opens the doors to healing, meeting women where they are; be it on the street, in their work place or incarcerated. Jana leads a team of case managers, teaches classes to survivors, plans community building opportunities, and interacts with various task forces and community groups. She is a mentor, a servant leader who compassionately walks alongside others to help them work through the barriers that prevent a life of freedom.

I earned my first dollar doing yardwork and babysitting.

Elsa Krier

Elsa Krier
Elsa Krier

Director of Outreach and Welcome Center, Olympic College

Elsa is a passionate advocate for equity in higher education. She believes in the power of education to transform people’s lives, particularly low-income, first-generation, and other under-represented students in higher education. Her work is helping build equitable structures of access and remove barriers to higher education. When COVID began in March 2020, Elsa immediately stood up the Student Services Virtual Office for Olympic College, bringing together departments from across the campus to serve students more effectively and efficiently. She also created a communications group, “Teamwork Dreamwork” for staff to share and collaborate between departments. The space became critical for information sharing and community building and continues to be an important resource. Elsa is a Saint-A Trauma-Informed Care certified trainer co-leading training at Olympic College for staff and faculty to build resilience and a safe, trauma-sensitive community. Elsa also serves on the Graduate Strong steering committee, is a post-high school credential advocate, OC Promise Coach, and was a member of the Leadership Kitsap Class of 2020.

I earned my first dollar as a Subway Sandwich Artist.

Cody Morgan

Cody Morgan
Cody Morgan

CEO and Owner, Peninsula BevCo

An entrepreneur with a heart for his hometown of Port Orchard, Cody had a goal to “brew a community” by bringing local people together to share their love of great beer and great food and to create a local hang out. He persisted through many challenges from what began as a tiny beer-to-go bottle shop to a thriving 200 occupancy tap house and restaurant. During the COVID shut down, Cody participated in the Full Circle Meals Program providing meals to those in need and put on free concerts in his parking lot where the entire community could gather in their cars for some much-needed fun. He also co-founded the media experience company “Inspire Tomorrow,” focused on providing podcast platforms and experiences for local residents, artists, business owners, causes, and organizations. As our community grows, he strongly believes we need to look out for our small business owners and maintain Kitsap’s local charm.

I earned my first dollar by selling a growler.

Taylor Neal

Taylor Neal
Taylor Neal

Owner and Personal Trainer, RAWW Athletics

Taylor has dedicated himself to the health and the success of all people in and around his community. This past year he opened RAWW Athletics & Community Center in partnership with Kitsap Physical Therapy and other local professionals to provide the community a full-service health and wellness center. They have held college bound seminars, continue to host a weekly SK YoungLife group, and provide training for over 150 athletes. He also coaches and has held player development workshops for student athletes at Klahowya Secondary School, and mentored at-risk youth at South Kitsap High School. When the pandemic began, Taylor hosted a weekly webinar, “Move, Think, Grow,” that featured influential athletes and coaches from around the world including Seattle Mariners, the Nigerian International Basketball Team, and the current goal-keeper from New Zealand’s Olympic Soccer Team. Kitsap Daily News named him The Reader’s Choice Best Physical Trainer of South Kitsap 2020 and All Kitsap County 2021. He was recently asked to be a key member of the South Kitsap Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition.

I earned my first dollar painting houses in middle school with my dad.

Joey Riggle

Joey Riggle
Joey Riggle

Owner, Rising Sun Detail

A lifelong resident of Kitsap County, Joey was a homeless teen from ages 14 to 17. He joined the Army National Guard as a Field Artilleryman to improve his circumstances. After working several years at PSNS & IMF, Joey left the shipyard to pursue owning his own business. In 2019 he and his wife opened Rising Sun Detail, donating a portion of their revenue to The Coffee Oasis, to give hope to troubled teens so they will not be alone and without resources as he once was. He is passionate about lifting up his industry and other business owners by focusing on community over competition. It is these connections with other local businesses that helped his business survive during COVID. Through his faith in God, he has overcome homelessness, addiction, and depression to build his business from the ground up and to strive forward. His resilience and grit will fuel his future dream to expand his business and provide jobs to the community.

I earned my first dollar working for my family’s landscaping business.

Caroline Rivers

Caroline Rivers
Caroline Rivers

Telecommunications Technician, Convergence Technologies Inc.

Often the only woman on a construction site, Carrie has worked in the telecommunications field for 24 years and is a nationally certified fiber optics technician. When not estimating and bidding a build, Carrie is a flower designer for Paul’s Flowers. She also lends her many talents to the Bremerton Rotary Club. As a third generation Rotarian, Carrie grew up serving our community and began giving back long before she was an official Rotarian herself. For over a decade Carrie helped run the Bremerton Blackberry Festival. She coordinates the club’s holiday giving program and silent auction at the annual Wild Game Dinner fundraiser. Her efforts have helped raise thousands of dollars which the club re-invests in the community. Through her work and volunteer efforts, Carrie exemplifies a life of service above self.

I earned my first dollar selling lemonade.

Allison Ryan

Allison Ryan
Allison Ryan

Board Certified Behavior Analyst, Easterseals Washington-Olympic Peninsula Autism Center

Allison has served children with disabilities her entire career. As a Board-Certified Applied Behavior Analyst, she is passionate about helping children with autism and their families. Working with children diagnosed with autism is physically, mentally, and emotionally challenging. What sometimes deters others from this field inspires and motivates Allison. Applied Behavior Analysis therapy is the only scientifically validated treatment for autism. It is a highly sought-after service that is severely underserved. In 2020, 1 in every 54 children were diagnosed with autism; as of June 2020, there were only 37,859 Board-Certified Behavior Analysts globally. Allison has supervised over 30 staff members, and trained and supervised five behavior analysts in training – all of whom have gone on to obtain their BCBA certification. She led, supervised, and ran the Easterseals Autism Center throughout the pandemic, required to close for only one week in the last two years. When not at work, Allison serves as the Assistant District Administer for our local Little League and assists in running summer Little League All-Star baseball tournaments throughout the county.

I earned my first dollar babysitting the neighbor kids as a pre-teen.

Karen Sawyer-Meehan

Karen Sawyer-Meehan
Karen Sawyer-Meehan

Owner, Pier Six Press

Through her stationery and graphic design studio, and volunteer efforts, Karen helps lead the movement to make Bremerton a creative hub. She is a member of Bremerton’s First Friday Art Commission and founded both the Kitsap League of Artistic Women networking group and the public art program Heavy Jeens. Once a month, in partnership with Bremerton First Friday, Karen letterpress prints an edition of posters and distributes them throughout art walk locations. Each poster is hand-printed, numbered, and signed. This accessible fine-art experience encourages patrons to hunt for free posters meanwhile exploring Bremerton and building community. Karen is also an active member of Downtown Rotary and a past board member for the Manette Business Association. She has been an artistic contributor to the Bremerton Roxy, Blackberry Festival, Bridging Bremerton, Bremerton Bridge Blast, and Manette Fest. She puts her heart and creativity into Bremerton, knowing she’ll leave it a better place.

I earned my first dollar at the age of 10 running my own garage sale.

Marlaina Simmons

Marlaina Simmons
Marlaina Simmons

Networks Coordinator, Kitsap Strong

Marlaina lives a life of servant leadership, listening, learning, and supporting the work of Kitsap Strong to improve the health and well-being of all children, families, and adults in Kitsap. Marlaina has been described as the “glue” of the Kitsap Strong initiative, collaborating with community partners and facilitating the process for coming together and learning. Each year, Marlaina organizes Kitsap Strong’s Resiliency Summit serving 200+ people, as well as the Community Leaders Luncheon, a brave space for elected officials and community leaders to engage in deep discussions. Marlaina is passionate about early learning, parenting, and advocating locally through her role as the Peninsulas Early Childhood Coalition Co-Lead. She is a former PTSA board member and advocates for equity and inclusion within our schools and creating a welcoming environment for LGBTQ students and families. In 2020, Marlaina served as the Census Coordinator for Kitsap County. She is also a 2019 Leadership Kitsap graduate.

I earned my first dollar babysitting within my neighborhood.

Aljolynn Sperber

Aljolynn Sperber
Aljolynn Sperber

CEO and Founder, Lady Box

Aljolynn is fearless and shameless in promoting self-acceptance, self-love, and self-empowerment. Her vision for Lady Box is not to just establish a successful subscription box company, but also help women and menstruators feel empowered, loved, and included in the agency of their bodies through all cycles of life. Aljolynn co-founded and co-hosts the podcast, “Shed the Shame,” a space to talk about periods, giving women and menstruators a place to take back, or gain power from, sharing their stories. Through Lady Box’s marketing, strategic partnerships, and community, she has generated more awareness for social issues surrounding hormonal health and period equity. Lady Box donates hygiene products to Fishline to provide basic period products so local menstruators in need do not have to miss school or work and can feel protected and dignified. Aljolynn also serves on the Kitsap Economic Development Alliance’s Committees for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion and Entrepreneurship and Innovation. She makes a point to contract work to local women. She believes, “When you support the local workforce, especially women re-entering the workforce, you help the local economy thrive.”

I earned my first dollar as a receptionist at a Bainbridge Island physical therapy center.

Nicole Taylor

Nicole Taylor
Nicole Taylor

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Program Manager, PSNS & IMF

Nicole has used her exceptional leadership, change management, and strategic planning skills to create sustainable cultural change at PSNS & IMF. Her efforts have led to improvements that impact all shipyards. Nicole graduated from the Apprentice Program and went on to lead the command in significant workforce development and Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) initiatives. She developed the first Career Path Program for a combined trade shop by identifying the skills and training necessary for employee advancement, and employing career counselors to help employees understand and plan their career path. Currently, she develops awareness and buy-in for DEI as a business imperative, integrating DEI into performance reviews, command competencies, hiring practices, and training curriculum. As a key employer in Kitsap County, Nicole recognizes that every change that positively impacts the lives of the PSNS & IMF workforce, has an equally positive impact in the greater community. “When organizations take care of their people and create an environment where they can thrive, the result is increased innovation, productivity, and the retention of valuable talent.” Outside of work, Nicole co-leads a local, bilingual Girl Scout Troop made up of girls from immigrant families, helping remove barriers for them to participate in meaningful growth opportunities.

I earned my first dollar stocking shelves for my family’s business, the Sheridan Mini-Mart, at the intersection of Sheridan and Pine Road in Bremerton.

Bryan Wichert

Bryan Wichert
Bryan Wichert

Attorney/Partner, Sanchez, Mitchell, Eastman, and Cure, PSC

Bryan enjoys the challenge of untangling complex legal issues and setting clients on a path to resolution, whether that be through litigation or settlement. He is inspired by the little victories of his professional impact. He has leveraged his skills to give back to those who serve our community. Since 2015, he has been part of the King County First Responders Wills Clinic providing free estate planning services to local first responders. Through the pandemic, Bryan has worked with other attorneys to offer free and discounted estate planning services to front line workers. He is also a member of the Kitsap County Estate Planning Council, serves on the Holly Ridge Center Executive Board, The Roxy Foundation Board, and is a 2018 graduate of Leadership Kitsap. He volunteers his time as a Bremerton High School AVID mentor and is an active member of the Bremerton Rotary.

I earned my first dollar as a lifeguard in Vancouver, Washington.

This article originally appeared on Kitsap Sun: Leadership Kitsap’s 20 Under 40: Class of 2022

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