Thrive Allen County is pleased to announce the appointment of Ben Alexander as Thrive’s Deputy Director, effective June 1, 2016.
Mr. Alexander is the founder and former Executive Director of FreeWheels for Kids, a nonprofit organization in Kansas City, Kansas that empowers kids with bikes, giving them leadership opportunities, mobility and healthy habit to combat obesity. Mr. Alexander was the Director of FreeWheels for Kids from 2011 through 2015, when he left FreeWheels to finish a Masters of Public Administration degree from the University of Missouri-Kansas City, which he completed this year. In addition to his work with FreeWheels for Kids, Mr. Alexander has served on a number of community initiatives, including the Jersey Creek Trail Project, Healthy Communities Wyandotte, and Latino Health for All in Wyandotte County, Kansas. Along with his MPA, Mr. Alexander has an Environmental Studies BS, and a BA in Geography, Spanish, and International Studies from the University of Kansas.
As Deputy Director, Mr. Alexander will be responsible for overseeing day-to-day operations of Thrive, under the direction of Executive Director David Toland. His duties will include grant writing and development, program development, performance management, and providing guidance to Thrive staff. Deputy Director is a new position following the death of John K. Robertson, Thrive’s longtime grant writer, in November 2015.
Thrive Allen County is a non-profit organization based in Iola, Kansas that works to improve health, wellness, recreation, education and economic conditions in Allen County, Kansas, a rural county of 13,000 in Southeast Kansas. In 2014, Thrive Allen County was awarded the state’s top honor, being designated the Kansas Organizational Health Champion by the Governor’s Council on Fitness, as an organization that puts forth an exceptional effort to model, encourage, and promote fitness in Kansas.
The addition of Mr. Alexander will enable Thrive to continue to promote healthy lifestyles, promote active transportation and recreation, and work toward Thrive’s vision of Allen County as the healthiest rural county in Kansas.
Mr. Alexander and his wife, Sofie, are relocating from Kansas City to Allen County this summer. Sofie has worked training early childhood educators, supporting foster families and helping the Kansas City nonprofits KidsTLC and The Family Conservancy better serve their communities, and is looking forward to using her skills to serve Allen County. The couple enjoys gardening, camping and riding their tandem bike on country roads.
See also: Press Release