Staff

Staff

Brittani Barnett

Program Manager
bbarnett@jaky.org
(502) 569-9220

Barbara Byrd

Director of Programs
bbyrd@jaky.org
502- 569-9215

Jillian Cantu

Executive Vice President
jcantu@jaky.org
(502) 569-9202

Rhonda Cook

Development Coordinator
rcook@jaky.org
(502) 561- 5437

Bailey Hanks

Director of Special Events and Fund Development
bhanks@jaky.org
(502) 569-9213

Jennifer Helgeson

President
jhelgeson@jaky.org
502-569-9210

Sharon Kitchin

Director of Education and Grant Sourcing
skitchin@jaky.org
502-569-9203

Ashley Mack

Senior Director of Education
amack@jaky.org

Sharon Peacock

Senior VP of Operations
sepeacock@jaky.org
502-569-9214

Anna Sawyer

Director of Experiential Learning
asawyer@jaky.org
502-569-9205

Brittani Barnett

Program Manager
bbarnett@jaky.org
(502) 569-9220

Brittani joined Junior Achievement in 2022 after working in Logan and Oldham counties as a teacher for 7 years. She taught elementary and middle school music in Logan County, and was an ESL teacher in Oldham County. She has also worked as a program leader for an international non-profit called Inspiring Teachers, where she trained teachers who were unable to attain higher education, and worked in under-resourced schools in rural Uganda.

Brittani attended Western Kentucky University where she earned her Bachelor’s in Music Education and led educational research regarding the efficacy of teacher preparation programs. She went on to receive a Master’s in Teacher Leadership and ESL endorsement from the University of Louisville.

In her free time, Brittani enjoys hiking, camping, and being outdoors with her son and husband.

Barbara Byrd

Director of Programs
bbyrd@jaky.org
502- 569-9215

Prior to joining Junior Achievement in November 2015, Barbara played a significant role in the educational process through extensive volunteer commitments and her employment with Oldham County Schools as both a Substitute and Preschool Teacher. Barbara is excited to be a part of JA’s team and to join forces with educators, volunteers, parents and local businesses to educate children and prepare them for the bright future that lies ahead.

An Ohio native and Buckeye fan, Barbara earned a BS in Education from Kent State University prior to relocating to Louisville.  In addition to spending time with her sons, Barbara enjoys traveling, exercising, live music and summers on the water.

Jillian Cantu

Executive Vice President
jcantu@jaky.org
(502) 569-9202

 

Jillian Cantu joined the JA team in 2018, as Director of Development, to help increase donations to JA to help serve even more students in Kentuckiana.  She is thrilled to have been promoted to Vice President of Development and continue the work of those before her.   A passion for education, Jillian has held executive positions with Greater Clark County Schools Foundation and Ivy Tech Community College Foundation and has more than 15 years’ experience in non-profit development and donor relations.

We are excited to have her back at JA, where she started her non-profit career as an intern from Indiana University Southeast graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Business and holding a Master of Business Administration from Bellarmine University.

Rhonda Cook

Development Coordinator
rcook@jaky.org
(502) 561- 5437

Rhonda joined JAKY as the Administrative Assistant in 2018 and was recently promoted to Development Coordinator. Before coming to JA, She enjoyed teaching, inspiring and encouraging youth for their future. She has been able to accomplish this through her nieces & nephews, volunteering in church youth groups and most recently as a JA Intern, presenting programs in the classroom.

Rhonda and her husband, Russ have been married for 40 years.  Rhonda enjoys spending time with family and her dogs, drinking coffee, camping and traveling.

Bailey Hanks

Director of Special Events and Fund Development
bhanks@jaky.org
(502) 569-9213

Bailey Hanks is our newest JA team member and is bringing her event expertise to help elevate our special events.  Bailey is a born and raised Louisvillian – graduating from the University Louisville College of Business in 2019 with a degree in Business Administration. She most recently, spent the past four years at the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Kentucky/West Virginia Chapter where she worked in fundraising and operational event support. In her free time, she loves cooking and traveling! Over the past year, she has visited Charleston, Lake Tahoe, Chicago, the Smoky Mountains, Seattle, Destin, and more!

Jennifer Helgeson

President
jhelgeson@jaky.org
502-569-9210

Jennifer joined Junior Achievement in December of 2021 after working with the Boys & Girls Clubs of Kentuckiana as the President & CEO.  Throughout her professional career of over 25 years, Jennifer has devoted herself to serving children and families in our community. 

Jennifer has a Master’s of Science in Social Work Degree from the University of Louisville and is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker. She is married to her husband, Dr. Rodney Helgeson, and has three wonderful children.

Sharon Kitchin

Director of Education and Grant Sourcing
skitchin@jaky.org
502-569-9203

Before joining JAKY in 2011, Sharon worked in property management before taking a hiatus from the workforce to raise her two children. She most enjoys visiting classrooms and working with students and volunteers to enrich the lives of children.

Sharon holds a B.A. in Journalism and Communications from University of North Carolina – Greensboro and enjoys traveling with her family and watching her children participate in swim meets.

Ashley Mack

Senior Director of Education
amack@jaky.org

Ashley Mack joins Junior Achievement Kentuckiana as the new Senior Director of Education. Before coming to JA, Ashley served as Curriculum Specialist and Assistant Professor within Sullivan University’s General Education Department, Natural Sciences and Mathematics division. For the past seven years, Ashley has taught Anatomy & Physiology, Biology, and Medical Microbiology courses. Ashley is a subject-matter expert and has wrote multiple courses for the university.

Ashley earned her B.S. in Biology from Kentucky State University. She also has earned two M.S. degrees from the University of Louisville’s School of Medicine, one in Anatomical Science and Neurobiology and the other in Physiology and Biophysics.

Outside of the workforce, Ashley has an extensive background in the non-profit sector and has served on the board of various organizations. Ashley is a proud member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc., as well as an active member in several other community organizations. 

The proud mother of one son, Clevon Pickett Jr., Ashley is dedicated to her family, creating lifelong learners, and helping others become the best version of themselves.

 

Sharon Peacock

Senior VP of Operations
sepeacock@jaky.org
502-569-9214

Sharon has enjoyed a long tenure contributing to the success of Junior Achievement and was promoted to Senior VP of Operations in 2015.

Anna Sawyer

Director of Experiential Learning
asawyer@jaky.org
502-569-9205

Anna joined JAKY in 2007, bringing nearly a decade of experience in instructional coordinating, instruction management, and experiential learning management. During her time with JAKY, she has worked to incorporate more up-to-date technology into the JAKY learning labs.

Anna has a Bachelor of Science degree in Political Science from the University of Louisville. She enjoys travelling with her family and has been a volunteer for Girls Scouts of Kentuckiana for many years.

Part Time Staff

Rick Dant, Instructional Coordinator

Gale Jones, Instructional Coordinator

Willia Jordan, Instructional Manager

Barrie Price-Kerr, Instructional Coordinator

Sudha Kukkala, Instructional Manager

Denise Mitchell, Instructional Manager

Talia Mitchell, Administrative Assistant

Scott Shouse, Instructiona Coordinator

Jeannette Stratton, Instructional Coordinator

Lataziah Wade, Instructional Coordinator

Erica Whitlock, Instructional Coordinator

Ready to get involved?