Marta Howell – Executive Director
Marta is a graduate of Michigan State University with a degree in Urban Planning. She was hired as Executive Director for Friends in 2010. She has held position of Executive Director with the M.S. Hershey Foundation and Neighborhoods Inc. of Battle Creek, and served as interim executive director for numerous nonprofit organizations in a consulting capacity. Marta enjoys cooking, reading, and boating.
Debbie Frank – Program Director
Debbie is from Virginia Beach, VA. She has lived in Florida on/off since 1996 spending several years in St. Augustine and traveling about before making SW Florida home. She graduated from Lee University with a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology. Her background includes event planning, marketing, and providing operations support, research, and management in the field of education, the home service industry, and the entertainment arena. Debbie joined the Friends in 2015 as Program Director. She enjoys exploring the Gulf Coast beaches, listening to music, and spending time with her husband and two cats.
Kyle Rich – Multi-Media & Communications Specialist
This New Yorker landed in Englewood in 2004 at only 13 years old. Talk about a culture shock! Kyle is a performer at heart. He’s spent most of his life performing on stage in musical theatre and rock & roll bands. Art, technology, writing and philosophy are also passions of this eccentric young “dude”. He received his B.S. in Recording Arts at Full Sail University in Orlando 2011, where he also began working in live show production. Now at 24 years old and as a proud new father, Kyle is looking to settle in Charlotte County for a while with his fiancé Jessica, and his son, Saylor.
Jessica Smith – Program Assistant
Jessica is no stranger to helping others after putting her office expertise and customer service skills to work as a Medical Assistant at Pivotal Health & Medicine and as Box Office Assistant at Englewood Event Center. Prior to working as an assistant, Jessica attended art school for media art and animation and began working as a freelance graphic designer. She loves all things Disney and enjoys drawing and painting, but her favorite pass time is spending time with her son, Saylor.
D.J. Keisling – Executive Assistant & Boca Bunch Director
Keisling, a Pittsburgh native, graduated in 1987 from Edinboro (PA) with a B.S. in Health and Physical Education with minors in Fitness Management and Athletic Coaching. Has been a teacher at L. A. Ainger Middle School in Rotonda West since 1994. Coached football, wrestling and track for 15 years at Lemon Bay High School. D.J. and his lovely wife of 25 years, Janine, have two children, Trent and Alannah, who attend Thiel College in PA. He has been with the Friends since April 1995.