Board Members

The LAEF is an all-volunteer, private 501(c)3 organization, that provides Grants in the arts, technology, science and health to the students of the South Hunterdon Regional School District. Most programs are awarded based on Grant requests submitted by teachers of the district.


Johnelle Whipple

Full Bio

Johnelle Whipple is the mother of two children that currently attend West Amwell Elementary school. She has lived locally in the Lambertville and Bucks County area for over 15 years.

She is currently the Director of Insulin Strategy at Novo Nordisk US and has worked in the U.S. healthcare system for over 25 years, previously at two Fortune 500 companies.

She spends much of her free time serving as a Board member to local non-profit organizations such as the Lambertville Area Education Foundation (LAEF), the Junior League of Greater Princeton, the Roxey Ballet Company and the local Boy Scouts of America chapter.

Erin McManus-Keyes

Vice President
Full Bio

Erin McManus-Keyes, a Realtor specializing in the Lambertville/New Hope area, was raised in Lambertville, where she continues to reside with her husband and their three children. Erin, whose roots run deep in Lambertville, has served on the Lambertville Chamber of Commerce as well as the Lambertville Planning Board. She is currently the Lambertville Fire Commissioner. Erin joined the Board in 2016.

Wendy Komjathy

Full Bio

Wendy, a native of Cincinnati, OH and has lived in Lambertville since 2005. She has an extensive background in broadcast media and sports marketing. Her volunteer and charity work started back when she was in high school volunteering at the Drop Inn Center and Shriners Burn Hospital. She has continued with her volunteer and charity work since then with such organizations as Dress for Success, JDRF, and the Arts Council (Cincinnati). Most recently she served on the board of the Junior League of Greater Princeton. She joined the board of the LAEF in 2017. She lives in Lambertville with her husband and two dogs.

Doug Nice

Full Bio

Doug and his wife and twins have resided in West Amwell since 2003. When Doug is not working his day job at Johnson & Johnson, he can be found leading his son’s boy scout pack or helping out with youth baseball teams. At work, he is actively involved with college recruiting, and in his free time, he mentors high school students, most notably during the region’s first robotics competition. Doug is also a member of the J&J team for the TriRock triathlon in Philadelphia, where we fundraise for CHOP in a huge corporate-wide event just to be on the team. Doug joined the Board in 2016.


Kim Brezina

Kim Brezina has lived in the Lambertville and Bucks County areas since 2005. She now resides in West Amwell with her husband Eric and their three children. Kim has a background in Finance, but transitioned into an Information Technology role to provide strategic solutions to her business partners within the financial services space. She currently works full time within the Investments IT organization at MetLife as a Program Manager, overseeing strategic Trade Origination System implementations. In addition to her full time job, Kim volunteers regularly within the community. She is heavily involved with two of her daughter’s girl scout troops, has coached basketball for several years, and volunteers regularly for room parent positions as well as other volunteer opportunities available at the schools. Kim joined the Board in 2020.

Gina Davio

Gina Davio is the Sales and Marketing Manager at Fulper Family Farmstead, a 5th-generation dairy farm in Lambertville, where, in addition to her corporate duties, she organizes visits to the dairy farm to educate the young and old! Prior to landing this dream job on a local dairy farm, Gina was the Program Director of Fisherman’s Mark, a Social Services organization in Lambertville. Passionate about food, Gina established a farmers market food pantry program utilizing excess produce and also runs cooking demos from talented local chefs which benefit food-insecure individuals. Gina lives in Lambertville with her daughter. Gina joined the Board in 2010.

Thomas Dickey

Bio coming soon.

Audrey Frankowski

Audrey Frankowski worked in many theatre productions, in New York City and on the road, before settling in Lambertville with her husband and their two children. Audrey, a familiar face behind the curtains of our schools stages, has directed many performances at Lambertville Public School and South Hunterdon Regional High School. Though her main reason for joining LAEF was to help fund “wish list” experiences for our students, she focuses on Art and Cultural enrichment programs because of her strong belief that the Arts are a critical component of every child’s education. Audrey joined the LAEF Board in 1996, serving as Treasurer during the Foundation’s formative years.

Samantha Iraca

Sam, a native of Lawrenceville, has lived in West Amwell since 2007 with her husband and two children. She worked as a mutual fund marketing specialist for Merrill Lynch and is currently employed as a Disney Vacation Travel Specialist for Foxmoor Travel, Hamilton NJ. Samantha has been an active volunteer in the community and LAEF for many years. She joined the Board in 2014 and began serving as President in April, 2015.

Tina Koban

Tina Koban currently works in the Pharmaceutical industry and is also a very passionate supporter of wildlife conservation. Her background includes studying Primate Behavior and supporting non-profits such as The Wildlife Conservation Society and The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust. Originally from Monroe, NY, she and her husband moved to Lambertville in 2008. They now live here with their 2 lovely daughters and 2 crazy dogs. Providing and exposing our children to as many opportunities as we can is so important for their growth. That’s why Tina joined the LAEF in 2017.

Matt Larkin

Matt Larkin is a chemical engineer who worked for many years developing catalytic converters for vehicles. He is currently working for a small firm which runs two companies. One performs engine and vehicle testing for emissions compliance, and the other is a startup which is developing a soil amendment with active fungus to improve root development of new plants. Matt grew up in Trenton and moved to Lambertville in 1996. He lives with his husband, their two sons and two dogs in Lambertville. Both sons are currently in the SHRSD. Matt is currently serving on the Lambertville Library Board of Trustees.

Kate Lyons

Kate Lyons is an attorney with NJM Insurance Group where she manages the General Claims Legal Department. She joined NJM after more than a decade in private practice as a litigator. Prior to law school, Kate worked for the New Jersey Office of the Governor, Office of the Attorney General, and the Division of Gaming Enforcement. Kate lives in West Amwell with her husband and their two sons, who attend West Amwell Elementary School. In addition to the recreational activities and cultural events offered in West Amwell and Lambertville, the family enjoys spending time with friends and neighbors, including Kate’s parents, who are Lambertville residents.

Tim Nemeth

Tim is the current Mayor of Stockton Borough, where he lives with his family. Tim has been a police officer in Raritan Township for 17 years, dedicating much of his time to school initiatives like DARE and being a School Resource Officer at the Hunterdon Central Regional High School. He is also an instructor of Firearms, Use of Force, Pursuit Driving, First Aid and CPR. Tim joined the Board in 2016.

Shelly Paventi

After graduating from college in NJ, Shelly launched her banking career in Northern California, where she worked as an accounting specialist, cost accountant and financial analyst. She later moved back to New York and worked as a financial controller for a non-profit, which provided housing for the homeless. Shelly has volunteered tirelessly in our schools and community, and served on the PTO Board of the West Amwell Elementary School. Shelly joined the Board in 2012, later served as Secretary, and is currently the Treasurer. She has lived in West Amwell with her husband and their two children since 2006.

Donnie Pheor

Donnie is a Realtor with a local real estate firm. She and her husband lives in Lambertville with their four lively children. Originally from Ewing, she moved to this wonderful town in 2010. She has been a volunteer for LAEF functions and officially joined in 2017. She is also a member of the Hunterdon County Council for Young Children-Lambertville Chapter.

Melissa Ruby

Melissa Ruby is a Fragrance Development Director at Firmenich, Inc., a Global Flavor and Fragrance company, based in Geneva, Switzerland, where she has worked for more than 20 years managing multinational product development projects. Melissa has lived in Lambertville since 2001 and has two children in the South Hunterdon School District. She joined the Board in 2012.

Megan Ruf
Rich Tettemer

Rich Tettemer was raised in Lambertville and attended both Lambertville Public School and SHRHS. He and his wife moved to West Amwell in 1989, where they raised their two sons. Rich works as an Operations Manager at Dendrite International in Bedminster, NJ, where he administers client relationships for all functional areas, services and projects for select corporate clients. Rich joined the Board in 2004 and served as Treasurer for many years.

Christine Peluso, Member At Large

Christine is an attorney with a national tax credits incentives firm where she structures large state tax credit purchase deals for Fortune 500 companies. Prior to that, she worked with several public companies, and was a Financial Consultant with Salomon Smith Barney. When her two children were young, Christine started volunteer work in the community, for her church and at her children’s school, chairing many fundraisers, and eventually serving as the V.P. of the P.T.A. She has been an active volunteer with LAEF for over a decade and officially joined the Board in 2013. Christine moved to West Amwell with her family a few years ago, after living in downtown Lambertville for 15 years.