FOUNDER

Sabine Medrano

Sabine is the Founder and President. She has extensive experience in working with adolescents across several agencies including Department of Child Protective Services, Settlement Home of Austin and Williamson County Juvenile Services. She received her B.A. in Psychology from St. Edward’s University and completed an internship at a therapeutic group home. She attained her MA in Counseling and is eligible to become a Licensed Professional Counselor Intern. She is an avid runner and always had a passion for assisting and guiding individuals through their unique circumstances in order for them to become successful functioning beings.

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Ivan Davila, Chair

Ivan has been a well-respected social entrepreneur for more than 15 years. His relentless hunger for solving complex social issues balanced with a strategic business mindset have been his guiding principles through the course of his career. In his most recent role as Director of Communications and Community Engagement at El Buen Samaritano, Ivan oversaw strategic functions like media relations, online communication, community engagement, key stakeholder engagement, event planning, client outreach and volunteer services while the organization grew from a $2-million to a $5-million nonprofit. Through his eight-year tenure at El Buen Samaritano, Ivan earned the respect of various communities in Austin. In 2012, he received the NotiHispano’s Hispanic of the Year Award for his unrelenting commitment to the health and wellness of Austin’s Latino community. Prior to joining El Buen Samaritano, Ivan worked in various communication roles and projects for The Sallie Mae Fund, the BP MS150 and Susan G. Komen, among others. He is currently pursuing an executive master’s in business administration from Baylor University and received his bachelor’s in communication and public relations from the University of Houston in 2005.


Ryan Jones

Ryan is a lifelong Texan and graduated from Texas A&M University with a degree in sports management. After graduation, Ryan moved to Austin where he was an intern for RBI Austin. After that, Ryan joined the Run Free Texas team as a Team Leader for the duration of three programs and is deeply passionate about using sports as a way to help others. Ryan has been running since he joined his middle school cross-country team and has been in love with it ever since. He loves being outdoors and is constantly looking for new places to hike and play outside with his wife, Kelly, and their dog, Indiana.


Heather Sullivan

Heather pursued her undergraduate degree at the University of Texas in Austin with a Corporate Communications degree, while working for herself as a stylist. She has been building ongoing relationships with her clientele for years. Heather made a career change last June moving into a Business Administrator role with Periscope Holdings, Inc., the leader in purpose-based procurement. In January she moved into the Executive Assistant position with Periscope supporting the executive team, as well as the employees, with communication and operations. A little over 2 years ago, after having her daughter, Heather began her running career with Rogue Running and has become an avid runner. Heather uses running as an outlet and is looking forward to helping create healthy habits and outlets for the youth in Run Free Texas.


Scott Merritt

Scott has a broad healthcare background including roles in sales, marketing, business development,management, and IT. Since childhood, athletics and fitness have been both his passion and outlet,which has led to many of his greatest accomplishments and amazing, lifelong friendships. Scott holds a BA in English from Binghamton University and an MA in Sport Management from the University of Connecticut. With any energy not expended chasing his two children, Scott can be found running the streets of Austin with his Rogue teammates. Run Free Texas is excited to welcome Scott to our development committee to help drive our mission forward.


Ray Chavez

Ray Chávez is the former Director of the Oklahoma Institute for Diversity in Journalism. He previously served as chairman of the Department of Contemporary Media and Journalism at the University of South Dakota. Chávez was city editor of the El Paso Herald-Post before joining the University of Colorado at Boulder faculty in 1991. His journalism experience spans more than 20 years in various positions. He is a founding member of the National Association for Hispanic Journalists and is a member of the Native American Journalists Association. He is a two-time winner of the National Teaching Award for Excellence from the Poynter Institute for Media Studies. He earned a B.A. in journalism at Texas Tech University, where he was a scholarship athlete on the varsity track team. He also holds an M.A. in communication from the University of Washington. He is an avid runner and competes in Austin area races.


Mason Wheeless

After fighting with alcoholism, including multiple arrests and even a stint in the penitentiary, Mason discovered running 4 years ago and credits that discovery entirely with the ability to live the life he enjoys today. He now spends his time traveling, running, and as a freelancer working for various running and health events as well as design work that facilitates extended travel all over the world. His primary goal now is to share the joys of sobriety, of health & fitness, and of second chances with those who may have not yet discovered them.


Chris Hartley

Chris is a Strategic Partner Manager for ebay Inc, the world’s largest online trading community. Chris is the co-chair for ebay Inc. Social Innovation Team in Austin committed to creating economic opportunity, enabling greener commerce, and powering charitable giving throughout the local community. Chris has a diversified background within the financial sector, specializing in project, product and account management. Prior to his role at ebay Inc, Chris spent nine years at Fiserv, a leading global provider of information management and electronic commerce systems for the financial services industry. Chris has a BA in Business Administration from Saint Leo University and an MBA from the University of Florida. Chris has been running for the past 15 years. He is a member of the Austin running club and founder of the ebay Inc. Austin running group. Chris enjoys challenging himself by continually setting new goals and putting in the work to achieve them.

PAST/HONORARY BOARD MEMBERS

Karen Swenson, M.D.

Dr. Swenson has provided gynecological and obstetrical care in private practice since 1985. Her philosophy of care emphasizes open communication and working with patients to achieve wellness, including attention to how thoughts and feelings affect health. She has been consistently rated a “Super Doctor” by Texas Monthly. Dr. Swenson earned a BS in Nutrition Science with highest honors from The University of California, Davis in 1976. She received her medical training at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, TX, graduating in 1981. In 1985, she completed her residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology at The University of California Medical Center at Irvine. She founded our practice with Dr. Diana Weihs in 1985. Dr. Swenson is active in the Seton Network medical community. She is a member of the St. Luke’s Society, which provides specialty care to the Seton Community Clinic patients. She is a founding member of the Austin Center For Sexual Medicine, which provides specialty care and consultation for sexual dysfunction. Dr. Swenson is also slated to become Chief of Staff in 2010 at Seton Medical Center-Austin. She has two children; Grace Katherine and Winston. Both of her children were delivered at Seton by Dr. Weihs.


Mae Coffman

Mae is the Secretary and has over ten years of experience as a teacher and administrator in Texas public schools. She has taught in special education resource and inclusion settings at both the middle school and high school levels and served as the special education department chair at a large suburban high school before moving to a position in a district central office. As a district administrator, Mae was responsible for supporting teachers and programs geared towards high incidence disabilities, specifically resource and inclusion supports. Through her work with academic interventions, Mae realized the need for improved behavior knowledge and training for teachers in these settings due to the reciprocal relationship between academics and behavior. After pursuing a graduate degree in Educational Psychology with a concentration in learning disabilities and emotional and behavioral disorders, Mae partnered with Stacy Morgan to establish Emergent Tree Education, Inc. The mission of ETE is to provide guidance, training, and materials to implement tiered systems of behavior support in the education setting.


Elizabeth Davis

Elizabeth is the COO of The Miracle Foundation a non-profit organization dedicated to empowering orphans and orphanages to reach their full potential. She is the architect of The NEST Method a metric driven methodology that incorporates due diligence, best practices and incremental funding to Nurture, Empower, Strengthen and Transform institutional orphanages into loving homes, where children thrive. Elizabeth brings more than 25 years of entrepreneurial expertise, along with her passion for driving growth through development and execution of innovative strategies, building strong teams, and effective utilization of resources. In 1998, Elizabeth co-founded QuickArrow, a pioneer in the Cloud software segment. The Company provided Internet based application for consulting and professional services companies. She led the company from self-funded start-up through Angel investment and three rounds of funding to profitability. The company was subsequently purchased by NetSuite. Prior to QuickArrow, she managed and grew professional services practices at Compucom and Paranet and hardware firm Ten X Technology. She holds a BBA in MIS from the University of Texas at Austin and is on the board of Entrepreneurs Foundation of Central Texas. She is an avid tennis player and serves on the Capital Area Tennis Association Board.


Roy Davis

Roy’s passion for fitness started as a kid and escalated while in the military. He served as an Enlisted Soldier, Platoon Sergeant, Platoon Leader, Company Commander, Operations Officer and Executive Officer where he led the development of fitness programs. He also competed in numerous power lifting events throughout his 22 year career in the Army and now works with the local community to positively impact the physical fitness and ultimately the lives of as many people as possible. He graduated from Armstrong Atlantic State University with a degree in Middle Grades Education and currently serves as a Camp Gladiator Regional Director in Austin and Houston. He is committed to helping others realize their fitness goals.