Ignite Afterschool is governed by a Board of Directors which oversees the organization's finances and operations. In addition, Ignite's programmatic work and vision is guided by the Strategic Leadership Team, which includes representatives from leading afterschool and youth-serving organizations in Minnesota (See list of SLT Partner Organizations here).

Meet the current members of Ignite Afterschool's Board:

Ann Marie DeGroot

Ann Marie DeGroot has been the Executive Director of the Minneapolis Youth Coordinating Board since October 2008.  She comes into her current position after serving 21 years as the founding Executive Director of OutFront Minnesota. Ann serves as the Chair of the Board of Athlos Leadership Academy, a Minnesota Charter School.  Ann has presented at numerous conferences on topics as diverse as board development, fundraising, the role of the Executive Director, tax issues for non-profit organizations, how to set up a fiscal sponsorship program, class and age issues in community organizing and electoral strategies for non-profit organizations.

Carol Thomas

Carol is retired having worked about 20 years for the MN Dept of Education as a project manager, supervisor and director in areas related to health, safety, and engagement. Prior to that she was an Executive Director at a local nonprofit focused on preventing youth alcohol/drug use.  In addition, she has volunteered on nonprofit boards, PTAs, and other youth-focused initiatives.  She has an MBA with an emphasis on public/nonprofit management from the University of St. Thomas.

Jack Tamble

Jack is a Progressive Community Educator who has for over 30 years created strategic alliances with organization and governmental leaders to impact low income youth.  One program area of the department serves over 18,000 youth participants annually. To ensure effective programs, a nationally recognized quality tool called Youth Program Quality Assessment has been used with impressive results for the past six years. In addition, he has also been part of an 18 year Beacons partnership with YMCA, YWCA and the Boys and Girls Club which provides enrichment programs for youth in lower income Minneapolis communities.  

Kathy Lentz

Kathy’s professional career in strategic planning, community building, program creation, youth development and grants management spanned over 25 years, including top leadership positions with the Girl Scout Council of Greater Minneapolis and Greater Twin Cities United Way. In addition to her board membership on Ignite Afterschool, Kathy serves on the board of Family Pathways.  For the past two years, she has been a consultant to Greater Twin Cities United Way during their Education and Safety Net grants review processes. Kathy graduated summa cum laude from the University of Minnesota with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Communication and received her Masters of Arts Degree in Organizational Leadership from the College of St. Catherine.  In addition, she received a degree in Radio-Television Broadcasting and Broadcast Journalism from Brown Institute. Kathy retired from Greater Twin Cities United Way in 2013.