Our Team

Ready to start a conversation about your philanthropic giving?

Our staff welcomes the opportunity to chat with you about your vision for your family’s philanthropy. They are skilled in helping families just like yours give efficiently, effectively and meaningfully to their favorite charitable causes. They can help you establish your family’s charitable approach and connect you to the community foundation’s vast knowledge and nonprofit resources. They are also skilled at working with professional advisors, so feel free to have your wealth managers, attorneys, accountants and trust officers join in on the family philanthropy conversation, too.

Karen A. Hrdlick


Karen A. Hrdlicka
Director, The Center for Family Philanthropy


Margaret MedzieMargaret Medzie
Vice President and Chief Development Officer


Laura FinkLaura Fink Lederer
Senior Director of Development & Advisor Relations


Renee ScherickRenee Scherick
Major Gifts Officer

Diane SchumakerDiane Schumaker
Scholarships & Grants Administrator


Cathy Erisey
Donor-Advised Fund Administrator

Debra HoffmanDebra Hoffman
Affiliate Fund Events and Administrative Coordinator

Delinda HermanDelinda Herman
Development & Marketing Assistant

The Full Akron Community Foundation Team


John T. Petures Jr.

President and CEO

John T. Petures Jr.John, who celebrated his 12th anniversary with the foundation in May 2020, has championed the transformation of Akron Community Foundation into a more donor-centric organization. Since 2009, the community foundation has doubled its assets to more than $222 million while increasing the number of fundholders by two-fold to more than 680. Grants and distributions back into the community have exceeded $10 million for the past seven years. John leads a 20-person team to build lasting relationships with donors, fundholders, board members and community leaders while promoting permanent philanthropy for the good of our community.

De Shawn Pickett

Executive Assistant

De Shawn PickettDe Shawn is the first face and voice of the community foundation when guests walk in the door of our transformed headquarters. She is the liaison to the president and CEO and coordinates the day-to-day administration of the community foundation’s operations. She also coordinates our annual meeting each summer and the Bert A. Polsky Humanitarian Award dinner in the fall.

Development & Donor Engagement

Margaret Medzie

Vice President and Chief Development Officer

Margaret MedzieAs leader of the development and donor engagement department, Margaret helps charitable people, families and organizations give efficiently, effectively and meaningfully to their favorite causes and charities, not just today but forever. She connects them to the community foundation’s vast knowledge and nonprofit resources, introduces them to like-minded philanthropists, and – through the power of endowment – ensures their good work continues forever through a fund in their name.

Laura Fink

Senior Director of Development & Advisor Relations

Laura FinkLaura meets with potential fundholders to discover their philanthropic passions and show them how they can do great things through the community foundation. She also leads the Professional Advisor Council made up of wealth managers, trust officers, attorneys and accountants to create giving opportunities that are simple and accessible for fundholders.

Renee Scherick

Major Gifts Officer

Renee ScherickRenee provides direction to our seven affiliate funds through their major gift and donor stewardship programs and supports the funds’ major gift development activities.

Diane Schumaker

Scholarships & Grants Administrator

Diane SchumakerDiane manages all of the community foundation’s scholarship funds and works with local schools to administer each scholarship. She also drafts language for new fund agreements and processes the community foundation’s agency endowment and designated fund distributions.

Cathy Erisey

Donor-Advised Fund Administrator

Cathy reviews and processes grant recommendations from our donor-advised funds. She also assists fundholders with navigating DonorCentral, the foundation’s online donor resource center.

Debra Hoffman

Affiliate Fund Events and Administrative Coordinator

Deb manages events and provides administrative support for the community foundation’s seven affiliate funds. She also serves as a liaison between the funds’ advisory boards and ACF staff.

Delinda Herman

Development & Marketing Assistant

Delinda HermanDelinda provides administrative support for both the development and marketing departments. She is responsible for managing the community foundation’s database and recording important information about donors, their families and their interest areas.

Community Investment

John Garofalo

Vice President, Community Investment

John GarofaloIn partnership with the other community investment staff, John keeps a pulse on what is happening with the nonprofit community in Akron. He works with nonprofits to determine what their most pressing needs are and advises them as they create a compelling grant request. He also oversees the grant distribution process for all of the community foundation’s affiliate funds.

Cristina González Alcalá, Ph.D.

Community Investment Officer

Cristina uses her in-depth knowledge of the nonprofit community to assist Akron Community Foundation’s board of directors in awarding and evaluating quality grants. In addition to managing the community foundation’s competitive grant cycles, she also cultivates relationships with local nonprofit leaders and encourages collaboration on community initiatives. Her expertise on the needs and resources of Greater Akron help us connect our fundholders to meaningful funding opportunities in their areas of interest.

Brian Reitz

Agency Endowment & Engagement Officer

Brian ReitzBrian cultivates relationships in the community to better understand nonprofit needs, resources and opportunities to ensure their good work continues forever. He enhances the community foundation’s services for agency endowment and designated fundholders, including stewardship, endowment building, and other technical needs. Additionally, he educates nonprofits about strategic capacity building, financial viability, and fundraising best practices while also assisting in our grant process.

Kim Nott

Grants Administrator

Kim NottKim administers the community foundation’s issue-specific grant programs and processes all of the quarterly grant distributions from the Community Fund. She also handles the administrative duties for the community investment department.

Marketing & Communications

Tracy Burt

Vice President, Marketing & Communications

Tracy BurtTracy promotes the community foundation to its fundholders, donors and the general public through a variety of mixed media. She manages the community foundation’s online and social media presence, in addition to writing and designing many of its printed materials. She also helps fundholders leverage community foundation resources to build their brand and reach in the community.

Kristen Ashby

Marketing Manager

Kristen AshbyKristen promotes the community foundation through a variety of digital and traditional communications. In addition to managing the foundation’s website, she also provides marketing support for its Professional Advisor Council and special events. Kristen works closely with the community foundation’s affiliate funds to produce their newsletters, event materials, press releases and other publications.

Arielle Campanalie

Marketing & Communications Specialist

Arielle manages the community foundation’s day-to-day advertising, media relations and e-communication activities. In addition, she works closely with the development department on a variety of projects, including providing marketing support to affiliate funds.

Chris Miller

Communications & Community Investment Officer

Chris shares the unique stories of our fundholders and grantees using the power of video, photography and social media. As the editor of our community news site, Akronist.com, Chris gives voice to local residents and nonprofits making an impact daily throughout our community. He also assists in our grant process.


Steve Schloenbach

Vice President and Chief Financial Officer

Steve SchloenbachSteve maintains the integrity of the community foundation’s financial and accounting systems. He is always accessible to fundholders who want to discuss their financial statements or other fund activity. He works diligently to preserve the transparency of the community foundation.

Dennis Jansky

Director of Accounting & Administration

Dennis JanskyDennis handles all of the community foundation’s daily accounting and expenses. He also assists with quarterly and annual financial activities. Throughout the year, Dennis assists the community foundation’s Initiative Funds with their fundraisers and events. He also manages many of our human resources responsibilities.

You might also be interested in:

  1. What Is A Community Foundation?
  2. About Akron Community Foundation
Karen A. Hrdlicka
Karen A. Hrdlicka Director, The Center for Family Philanthropy
Call me at 330-436-5640 or email me
Interested in Uniting Your Family Through Philanthropy?

Together, we can create the best giving strategies for you and your family.