Ryan is a 34 year old Northeast Indiana native, born and raised in Decatur, Indiana. After college, Ryan traveled across the United States experiencing different communities, cities, and cultures before returning to Northeast Indiana where he settled in Fort Wayne. Since returning to Fort Wayne, Ryan has been involved in several organizations in a volunteer capacity. These include Cinema Center, Fort Wayne Dance Collective, Fort Wayne Free Art Collective, and Arts United. He has been actively involved in Young Leaders of Northeast Indiana (YLNI) since he graduated the YLNI Leadership Institute in 2013 and now serves as the organization's President. Ryan has worked at Lincoln Financial group since 2008 filling various roles in the Data Analytics and Business Analysis fields. Ryan is a 2015 recipient of 20 Millennials Making a Difference, a 2016 Honoree of 40 Under 40, the 2016 Indiana Tech Alumni of the Year, and a 2016 graduate of Leadership Fort Wayne. He is a science fiction reader, a fan of designer board games, a supporter of local live music, and a local arts enthusiast. Follow Ryan on Twitter at @rrkrueck.
Sarah Verpooten, Secretary
Savannah is active in the community and passionate about giving back. Prior to becoming Secretary of the YLNI Board, she served as VP of Membership and co-chair of the communications, marketing and membership taskforce. In addition to serving on the YLNI Board of Directors, she currently serves as President of the Board of Directors for the Fort Wayne Dance Collective; serves on the Fall Committee for SCAN, Inc. and serves on the Paralegal Committee for the Allen County Bar Association. Savannah was chosen as one of Greater Fort Wayne Business Weekly’s Twenty Millennials Making a Difference in Northeast Indiana and as one of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation’s Finest Young Professionals in Fort Wayne in 2014 for her hard work and dedication to the community and workforce in Allen County.
Sarah has lived in Fort Wayne since 2011 and is currently the Marketing Coordinator for Strahm Building Solutions. In 2011, she received her bachelor’s degree in Public Relations from Ball State University. Sarah grew up in Elwood, Indiana, and has embraced Northeast Indiana as her new home and loves being involved in the growth of our amazing community. Since becoming a member of YLNI in 2012, Sarah’s involvement includes serving as Co-chair for the 2014 My City Summit, Living Fort Wayne Film Series Chair, Social Chair, a number of YLNI committees, and now Director at Large for Fund Development. She is a graduate of the 2015 YLNI Leadership Institute Class and was named as one of Greater Fort Wayne Business Weekly’s “40 Under 40” award recipients for 2015. She is also involved with the Arts United Quality of Life Committee. In her spare time, Sarah enjoys spending time with her fiance, their dog and friends. During the summer, it is a must to make time for the lake in between all of the wonderful events happening throughout Fort Wayne!
David was born in Fort Wayne and has always lived in Northeast Indiana. He graduated from East Noble High School and attended Trine University, where he earned his bachelor's degree in Finance. David currently works at Lake City Bank as a Commercial Loan Administrator. He has been with Lake City Bank since graduating college in 2014. David is a 2017 graduate of the YLNI Leadership Institute and has been involved with YLNI since 2016. Outside of work. David likes to hang out with friends and family. He is an avid golfer and enjoys playing tennis and being outside.
Patrick, a life-long Fort Wayne Native, currently serves in the role Director of Account Management at JH Specialty, Inc. where he has found a home since 2007. This current position has him working directly with Medium to Large size businesses within the greater Fort Wayne area to enhance their online identity, brand awareness, and customer acquisitions. Patrick earned a Bachelor's degree in Psychology from Indiana University-Purdue University of Fort Wayne, where he played Division I golf all four years. After graduating from the YLNI Leadership Institute in 2013, he has served on the YLNI Membership Committee as the Ambassador Co-Chair for a year before taking on his currently role as Director at Large for Leadership Development. As his first year serving on the YLNI board, Patrick brings a multitude of different skill-sets, including Marketing, Digital Advertising, and overall Leadership through Community Engagement. In his downtime, Patrick enjoys activities with family and friends that include golfing, tennis, skiing, biking, hiking, and most other activities outdoors. Patrick also serves on the Board of Directors for the American Advertising Federation of Fort Wayne.
John is the Public Outreach Coordinator for the City of Fort Wayne. In his role, John coordinates and creates public outreach initiatives for Mayor Tom Henry and city departments. Previously, he worked at Visit Fort Wayne, serving as a Communications Manager. In addition to serving on the YLNI Board of Directors, John volunteers with Weather the Fort, Downtown Improvement District Clean & Green Corps, and Bishop Luers High School football team. He is graduate of the 2014 YLNI Leadership Institute and is a 2014 “20 Millennials Making a Difference” honoree. John graduated from Indiana University in 2008 with a bachelor's degree in Sports Communications and a minor degree in Telecommunications. He attended Bishop Luers High School. In his free time, John enjoys attending community events, playing the drums for Swimming Into View, spending time with family and friends, and cheering on the Indiana Hoosiers. Follow John on Twitter at @johnpfelts.
Kelly was born and raised right here in Fort Wayne, Indiana, where she works as a Right of Way Agent with EASi, an Aerotek Company. A graduate of Northrop High School, she attended Indiana University where she earned a bachelor’s degree in Tourism Management and then went on to attain her master’s degree from Ball State University in Urban Planning and Real Estate Development. Kelly was formerly the YLNI Social Chair and helped to oversee events such as the Living Fort Wayne Concert Series and YLNI Masquerade Ball. In addition to her involvement with YLNI, Kelly is also a Big Sister through Big Brothers Big Sisters of Northeast Indiana, and enjoys scuba diving, craft beers and traveling!
Chris is the Commercial Loan Officer for ProFed Federal Credit Union, where he has worked since 2012. Before that, he lived in North Carolina for seven years, while serving over three years in the United States Army. Chris was born in Bluffton and raised in Berne, Montpelier, and Columbia City. Chris returned to Northeast Indiana in 2009 to finish his bachelor’s degree with a double major in Finance & Economics and a Bank Management Certificate. He served in various roles on campus including Chair of Ways and Means Committee, Vice Chair of Allocations Committee, Finance Society, Delta Sigma Pi and Accounting Society. Since becoming a YLNI member in 2013, Chris graduated from the 2015 YLNI Leadership Institute and has co-chaired the Leadership Institute committee for two years before joining the board as the Director at Large of Fund Development. Chris continues to be involved with the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program since 2010 providing free tax preparation for low- to moderate-income residents.
Chris was born and raised in Fort Wayne, where he currently works as an Account Manager for JH Specialty. Chris earned his bachelor's degree in Marketing from Butler University. He uses his experiences from Butler in his role today at JH Specialty to help businesses, large and small, overcome obstacles and frustrations relating to sales and marketing ensuring that efforts are seen as an investment and not an expense. Chris graduated from the YLNI Leadership Institute in 2014 and has been a member of YLNI ever since. In his downtime, Chris enjoys spending time with his family as well as being a sports enthusiast and outdoorsman.
Born and raised in Northeast Indiana, John has been engaged within YLNI since returning to Fort Wayne in 2009, serving within various roles as chair of Community Engagement and Advocacy (CEA) and most recently chair of YLNI the VOTE. Currently, John works as a Graduate Architect for Viridian Architectural Design. He graduated from Ball State University with a bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in Architecture. John has been involved with Rotaract and served as a board member of Family and Children's Services dba Headwaters Counseling. He enjoys spending time with his wife and two daughters.
Tim has called northeast Indiana home for all, but nine months of his life. He grew up just outside of Leo-Cedarville in northern Allen County. Tim earned Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from Indiana University–Purdue University Fort Wayne (IPFW), where he was involved in a variety of activities like student government, student media, and AmeriCorps. Currently, Tim works for both IPFW and a local television station in Fort Wayne. In his free time, Tim enjoys biking, landscape photography, comedy, and community engagement.