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Board of Directors

Governed by a volunteer Board of Directors, the Challenger Learning Center of Northwest Indiana consists of an amazing and generous group of people who support the organization with their time, knowledge, talent, experience, and philanthropy.


  • CHAIRMAN – MARTY WIELGOS

    Chief of Staff, Sanitary District of Hammond

  • VICE CHAIRWOMAN – DODY RUSSELL

    President, Bellsom Electric

  • TREASURER – KRIS SAKELARIS

    Director, Hammond Legal Aid Clinic

  • SECRETARY - ADAM BARON

    Director of Facilities, Horseshoe Casino

  • ALEXIUS BARBER

    Director, Community Relations, Peoples Bank

  • ELAINE CAREY

    Dean of the College of Humanities, Education, and Social Science, Purdue University Northwest

  • MICHAEL DYE

    Root Brothers Manufacturing & Supply Co

  • KEVIN KEOUGH

    President, Keough Mechanical Corp.

  • MARY BETH NICKOLAOU

    Assistant Principal, Irving Elementary School, School City Of Hammond

  • KATHY O'DONNELL

    Franciscan Alliance

  • DEWEY PEARMAN

    Executive Director, Construction Advancement Foundation

  • TOM PLOSKI

    Manager, Pepsi Co., retired

  • BRIAN P. POPP

    Attorney, Laszlo & Popp, P.C.

  • JUSTIN STOWE

    Deputy Director, Hammond Sanitary District

  • JENNIFER VAVREK

    Educator, School City Of Hammond, retired

  • KELLIE TAILON

    Banking Center Manager, Peoples Bank

  • PHIL TAILLON

    Chief of Staff, City of Hammond

Emeritus Members

  • RANDY PALMATEER

    Business Manager, Northwestern Indiana Building & Construction Trades Council

  • JAN RATAZZI

    Educator, Crown Point Community Schools, retired

  • HONORABLE ED SOLIDAY

    Indiana State Representative, District 4