Who We Are
Easter Seals Dixon Center is a clearinghouse for ideas, strategies and innovation that facilitate understanding, alignment, action and advocacy to more efficiently and effectively enlist and organize needed services, supports and opportunities. A myriad of interests, stakeholders and decision-makers identified for engagement include: employers, service providers, faith-based leaders, government officials, labor leaders, educators, philanthropists, foundation executives and members of the media.
Easter Seals Dixon Center Leadership
The Easter Seals Dixon Center team works closely with Easter Seals' staff and stakeholders at the national and local affiliate levels, creating synergies and a multiplying effect that dramatically enhances real access to services and advocacy, benefiting military service members and veterans, their families and the families of the fallen.
David W. Sutherland
Colonel David W. Sutherland is the co-founder and Chairman of Easter Seals Dixon Center for Military and Veterans Services and the Chief Strategy Officer, Easter Seals Military and Veterans Services. He actively contributes to numerous national veteran and military family committees and boards. Sutherland speaks in communities at universities, businesses and conferences around the country as a vocal advocate and leader for transformational change. He is a vocal advocate for our service members, military veterans, their families, and the families of our fallen.
Colonel Sutherland culminated his 29 years of service following Brigade Command, as the Special Assistant to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff with principle focus on Warrior and Family Support. By visiting hundreds of communities and assisting thousands of organizations, he created a nationwide network of support utilizing grassroots solutions for veterans and their families. As the Chairman of Easter Seals Dixon Center, Sutherland brings innovative approaches that harness existing community-based support to deliver profound results for veterans and their families.
Awards and decorations include, among others, the Bronze Star Medal with oak leaf cluster, Purple Heart, Ranger Tab, Combat Infantryman's Badge Second Award and Senior Parachutist Badge. He is also the 2008 Freedom Award recipient presented by the No Greater Sacrifice Foundation, the 2011 Meritorious Service Award recipient presented by the National Coalition for Homeless Veterans, and the 2013 Commitment to Service award presented by Give An Hour for his work on behalf of returning service members, veterans, military families and families of the fallen.
He holds a Bachelor's degree from Bowling Green State University in History and Economics and a Masters in Strategic Studies.
Kimberly Mitchell is the President and Co-Founder of Easter Seals Dixon Center. Kim speaks at conferences across the country, and is a vocal advocate for our military service members, veterans, military families, and families of the fallen. She is also an official spokesperson for the Department of Defense 50 Year Vietnam War Commemoration Committee.
Kim served in the United States Navy for 17 years as a Surface Warfare Officer serving onboard surface ships and at shore commands. Her last 2 years on active duty were as the Deputy Director for the Office of Warrior and Family Support. She has visited hundreds of communities and has assisted thousands of organizations and together with Colonel David Sutherland, has created a nationwide network of support utilizing grassroots solutions to address the challenges of transition and reintegration for our service members, veterans and military families.
Kim has spoken at the YWCA of San Gabriel Valley Women of Achievement Awards Dinner; several events sponsored by Bank of America; General Federation of Women’s Clubs; Society of Fundraising Professionals Conference on Philanthropy; Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund Annual Father’s Day Ceremony at the Wall; and the first Vietnam Veterans Honor Flight in 2013.
Blue and Gold Star Family Partner
Latrese Dixon is the mother of four children and a Gold Star wife. After marrying Staff Sergeant Donnie D. Dixon in 1994 she proudly lived the life of a military spouse. She understands the challenges, solutions, and joys of being a Blue Star family. Since Donnie's death (Operation Iraqi Freedom, 2007) she understands the challenges of a Gold Star wife and family. She always displays courage, resilience, pride, and a compassion that is enabling her children to achieve their life goals.
Latrese received her Associate Degree in Business Administration in 2012 and her Bachelor's Degree in Business Management in 2013. She assists Easter Seals Dixon Center with program and solution development and research as well as providing volunteer services in her community and schools. A soft spoken woman, Latrese provides insights and expertise on the practical needs of our military and Gold Star families. Her expertise is the result of living the life of both joy and tragedy, but never giving up.
Daniel Patrick Forrester
Daniel Patrick Forrester is an author, strategist and navigator of organizational and cultural change impacting commercial, not for profit, and government entities. He has worked with the top leaders of organizations from every facet of American life and commerce. He supports the Executive Director and Deputy Director in animating the end vision for Easter Seals Dixon Center through business analysis, strategy development and planning. Forrester has worked with numerous nonprofit leaders and boards focused on Veterans. For example, he is a special advisor to the Chairman of the Board for No Greater Sacrifice. Forrester is the Founder of Thruue Inc, a consultancy that helps client's develop high performance cultures. He also holds a BA from The Catholic University of America and an MBA from the University of Rochester's William E. Simon Graduate School of Business.
Senior Vice President of Operations
Linda Mayo serves as Senior Vice President of Operations for Easter Seals Dixon Center and Easter Seals Military Veterans Initiative. Her role is to advance the Easter Seals Dixon Center and Easter Seals partnership in the delivery of and delivery to quality services in the areas of education, employment and access to healthcare. Linda is presently on assignment with Easter Seals Dixon Center from Easter Seals NJ where she is the Chief Operating Officer. Linda holds degrees in social work (BSW) and social work administration (MSW) from Rutgers University, and a MS in health policy and nonprofit management from New York University.
Major Gifts Officer
Nancy Kuhne serves as Major Gifts Officer of Easter Seals Dixon Center. She has ten years of nonprofit experience, including multi-million dollar events, university leadership giving and ground-up fundraising. Her lifelong dream has been to humbly serve others – bettering even a single person’s life by lessening obstacles.
Prior to moving to Washington, Nancy was heavily involved with her local communities in South Carolina and Virginia. She served on several nonprofit committees and boards, including one that worked diligently to transition a local organization into a nationally certified Child Advocacy Center. She served on the board of directors for the Julie Valentine Center for five years, with two as an executive leader.
An opportunity to directly serve veterans arose in 2012, and Nancy found herself passionately leading this effort almost accidentally. An intense desire to humbly serve individuals and families who had honored the United States with their service of duty was personal, as she had experienced some of the challenges of both deployment and transitional living of service members through civilian eyes within a military family. It became evident that a duplication of services within the community were not needed, instead, a collaborative effort of nonprofit and governmental agencies partnering together with their own expertise to holistically serve a common population. She has been honored to speak before the Joint Leadership Council and at the Virginia War Memorial in response to the Habitat for Heroes program she helped create in Central Virginia. The attention received nationally has established the chapter to become an example and leader for the 1,500 stateside affiliates of Habitat for Humanity.
Nancy earned her undergraduate degree in psychology from Furman University.
Marketing Communications and Content Development
Marie Manning assists Easter Seals Dixon Center with marketing communications and content development.
Marie is an award-winning marketing communications professional with 20 years’ experience developing and implementing regional and national programs for government, non-profit and private sector organizations. While at Ogilvy Public Relations and Porter Novelli, she gained extensive expertise with organizational branding, community/public outreach, social and multimedia communications, media relations, large-scale events and crisis communications. Marie is an accomplished writer, presenter and spokesperson.
In April 2010, Marie was selected to embed with U.S. Special Operations Command for a week as part of a civilian outreach program operated by the Department of Defense. In 2012, she was one of only two women to participate in the Marine Corps Executive Forum. From 20102011, Marie served as a civilian volunteer for the Command Sergeant Major of the NATO Training MissionAfghanistan.
Marie holds bachelor's degrees in English and Communications from Boston College and is a black belt in tae kwon do. Her husband, Sgt. Sean Rohe, spent three years in Afghanistan with the U.S. Army and currently serves in the Illinois National Guard.
President, Carly Brasseux Consulting
Carly Brasseux is President and Owner of Carly Brasseux Consulting. As a relationship and problem-solving enthusiast, she currently works with clients in marketing and sales strategies.
As the former Director of Community Relations at a Dallas-based nonprofit, Allies in Service, Carly raised awareness and promoted the needs of veterans. By proactively building and maintaining community relationships, solidifying brand position and identity, developing and executing the marketing and communication plans, she established an organization for one of Dallas’ most respected businessmen.
Before Allies in Service, Carly worked with the North Texas Super Bowl XLV Host Committee as the External Affairs Manager. As the first full-time staff member, she contributed in the areas of government relations, public safety, transportation, aviation, accommodations, stadia, practice sites, city décor, volunteers and overall office operations.
Sara Heidenheimer is the Administrative Coordinator for the Easter Seals Dixon Center team. She is originally from Texas where she received her Bachelor's of Business Administration from Angelo State University in San Angelo, Texas. Sara brings with her an array of skills in the areas of business administration, marketing, special events, and social media. Her background includes work with the military and their families as the Newsletter Editor and Community Services Coordinator at Lincoln Military Housing in San Diego for five years. While there she produced and edited their newsletter, maintained relationships with other military affiliated organizations, and planned events large and small to enrich the lives of those in the military community. Prior to that Sara worked at the San Diego Armed Services YMCA as an Administrative Assistant and Program Coordinator where she helped facilitate and manage volunteer activities, provided outreach to military families at homecomings, and led tours of San Diego for those new to the area.
Sara is a proud military spouse and has been married to her husband J.G. for 12 years. He is currently serving in the United States Navy as a Chief Petty Officer. They have two sons, Zachary and Ryan, and live in Maryland after relocating from Hawaii.
Project Manager, Strategic Initiatives
Sherri Kum serves as Easter Seals Strategic Initiatives Project Manager. She manages and supports projects and related activities of national significance that reflect major areas of current service delivery and anticipated growth that address the needs of communities, military, veterans and their families. Sherri works across functions to enhance the Easter Seals’ mission by advancing the work of our centers, projects, and programs — at the headquarters and affiliate level.
She brings more than 12 years of resource management and program development experience with an emphasis on higher education administration and strategic business operations. Immediately prior to joining Easter Seals, Sherri served as the Administrative Coordinator in the Deans Office at Howard University College of Medicine. While at the University, Sherri was responsible for managing vital internal and external relationships, departmental budgets, a $10 million grant, and served an instrumental role in the accreditation process. Sherri studied at Norfolk State University and is a three-time graduate of University of Maryland University College where she received a B.S. in Psychology, an M.B.A., and a M.S. in Business Management with a focus on Nonprofit and Association Management.