January - Vickie French, Randolph County
Vickie French has volunteered with the Mary Sallee SPSF of Randolph County since its inception in 1998 and currently serves as Treasurer. She is the Administrative Assistant to the President for Black River Technical College, where she has been employed for 26 years. The Single Parent Scholarship Fund in Randolph County was founded to honor the memory of Mary Sallee, a former teacher at Black River Tech who took several single moms “under her wing” to assure their success while in college. A single mother herself for most of her adult life, Vickie raised her son and daughter on her own. Today she enjoys watching them parent her three grandsons, ranging in ages from teen, tween, to Kindergarten. Vickie exclaims, “These three boys are what I live for!”
She understands on a personal level how much the extra funds mean to a single parent, so she is an active part of the giving community at Black River Tech. Having been influenced by Mary Sallee, you will often find Vickie at commencement ceremonies in support of our recipients, cheering them on
February - Jerry Davis, Sevier County
Jerry Davis has volunteered for seven years and currently serves as the Board Chair of Single Parent Scholarship of Sevier County. Tracking applications and completing progress reports, Jerry ensures that operations of the affiliate run smoothly. The SPSFSC Fish Fry is an annual fundraising event where you will likely find Jerry cooking and serving food to students and donors.
The Fish Fry raises enough money annually to cover scholarships in Sevier County. What makes Jerry so outstanding is his belief that Single Parent Scholarship Fund “is a great asset for Sevier County because it fills a need that is not met by traditional scholarships.” His willingness to go the extra mile to help others is the reason he deserves recognition and accolades.
Jerry also volunteers with the City Planning Commission, Public Housing Commission, Sevier County Rescue Unit, Toys for Tots and Rotary, just to name a few. Jerry and his wife Mary have two adult sons and two beautiful and talented granddaughters.
March - Yuna Lee & Daniel Armbruster, Benton County
Yuna Lee and Daniel Armbruster of 40/29 News Sunrise are recognized for their outstanding commitment to single parents in Benton County. Yuna and Daniel attend fundraising events, Emceed the 2016 and 2017 Student Benefits, and the 2017 Corporate Luncheon, as well as participated with both the corporate and advisory councils. They also have promoted SPSF of Benton County on numerous occasions and have conducted on-camera interviews about events. SPSFBC is fortunate to have them as supporters.
Yuna received an English degree from the University of Virginia which has helped her in her interviews with a variety of people, including Vice President Joe Biden. She loves spending time with her husband Michael and little boy, lovingly nicknamed “Cubby”.
Daniel graduated from the University of Texas at Arlington with a degree in Communications and Political Science, and has covered many intriguing stories, such as the Fort Hood Shooting in 2014. He is a devoted dog-dad to his precious pup, Bailey.
April - Brenda Still, Boone County
Brenda Still has been an active and committed volunteer with SPSF of Boone County since 2006. She has served in various capacities on the local board including Treasurer, Fundraising Chair, contact person for students, and the member who reports to ASPSF on scholarships and follow-up. Brenda’s belief in the scholarship program and her desire to help single parents improve through education is exemplified by her innovative approach and willingness to collaborate with volunteers and staff.
In 2016, Brenda joined a state-level work group to develop standards and programs to be implemented for all counties affiliated with Arkansas Single Parent Scholarship Fund. Brenda has hosted regional meetings for Boone and other neighboring counties in North Arkansas to update volunteers on the changes, get their feedback and input, and encourage them to get to know one another.
Brenda retired from a long career in 2015. She and her husband Rick were high school sweethearts, and have been married over 40 years.
May - Fran VanDerZwalm, Bradley County
Fran VanDerZwalm works diligently with the single parent students of Bradley County, showing patience and compassion in responding to their questions and assisting them in the completion of their applications. Her creativity, consistency, attention to detail, and leadership, serves to promote and improve Single Parent Scholarship Fund of Bradley County.
Fran says she loves watching single parents better themselves by becoming the first in their family to get a degree, going on to better paying careers so they can support their family and break free from government assistance. She appreciates the community involvement of the local retired teacher’s organization and others that donate every year to ensure that SPSFBC can give out more scholarships, serving and impacting more families.
Fran’s eldest daughter found herself as a single mom facing the struggles of trying to support herself and her two children without help from their father and decided to go back to school. She realized her daughter was not alone in her struggles and that many single parents do not have resources, family, or support networks to help them. Being there for and helping others is what drives Fran VanDerZwalm to be such a valuable volunteer.
June - LaDeana Duncan Fleshman, NWA
LaDeana Duncan Fleshman first became involved at Single Parent Scholarship Fund of NWA (SPSF NWA) as a recipient. LaDeana worked 30+ hours a week, going to school full time all while raising her two children Sir and Justice, whom she describes as truly amazing kids and the reason for everything she does. LaDeana is passionate about paying it forward since graduating from John Brown University in 2007. Today, LaDeana is a Senior Manager of Health & Wellness Implementation at the Sam’s Club Home Office where she inspires her team to adopt a SPSF NWA recipient family for Christmas, recruits Walmart executive involvement, and remains active in the Alumni Association promoting the scholarship to single parents in the community.
LaDeana is proud to say that SPSF NWA truly helped transform her family’s story. Now she is fully financially independent and has been for several years. LaDeana was the Founding President of the Alumni Association, and is currently a member of the Executive Committee and an officer, serving as Secretary of the SPSF NWA Board of Directors. She also serves on the Development Committee.In May of this year, LaDeana married Roman Fleshman and we are so happy to welcome him into the SPSF NWA family as well!
July - Helen Bullard, Jackson County
Helen Bullard began her service for the Jackson County Single Parent Scholarship Fund in 2015 and has recruited several new volunteers to serve along with her. She has been involved as a board member, Secretary, and currently serves in the Treasurer’s position for the Jackson County SPSF. Helen has leveraged hundreds of dollars in matching funds for Jackson County from local fundraising campaign efforts. She is now a retired Medical Technologist, who volunteers her services to several nonprofits in her community.“I am originally from the Helena area. I was raised by parents that did not have a lot but tried to share what they had and passed that sense of ‘all one community’ to me. As a divorced mother of a 6 year old, I started college and my daughter begin 1st grade. Because of programs that were available in 1973 I was able to graduate, work and elevate to where I am now. ASPSF is very important to me as another way I can give back.” – Helen Bullard
August - Tabetha Hguyen, Howard County
Tabetha Nguyen has volunteered with Single Parent Scholarship Fund of Howard County since the fall of 2015. She currently serves as a board member and an academic advisor to recipients. She shares marketing and social media duties with other board members, and works closely with volunteers to help promote, organize, and execute the organization’s annual fundraising event, Howard County Trade Days.
Tabetha has been a faculty member of the English Department at UA Cossatot for twelve years where she enjoys advising and teaching her students to help them reach their academic goals. She is an active member of the Arkansas Association for Developmental Education (ArkADE) board, serving in various capacities.The Single Parent Scholarship Fund is dear to Tabetha’s heart as her paternal grandmother was a single mom when her three boys were young, working as a waitress to support her family. Tabetha hopes the time she serves as a volunteer with the organization will honor her grandmother’s memory and encourage the hard work of single parents as they push towards the future for their families. She hopes to continue to work with, encourage, and empower single parents to reach for their education and life goals. A native of Nashville, Arkansas, Tabetha and husband Floy Nguyen are raising their five-year-old son Oliver.
October - Kay Williams, Grant County
Kay Williams is a volunteer and board member for the Grant County Single Parent Scholarship Fund. She has served on every committee since 2013 and has been Secretary, Treasurer, and currently serves as Chair. In that capacity Kay facilitates monthly SPSF meetings; manages the fundraising, programming, and scholarship activities; and leads the volunteers in board recruitment, enrollment and engagement.
Since the Fall of 2016, Kay recruited an almost new volunteer organization, recruiting eight new members out of 12 volunteers. This year she is leading the organization in meeting the fundraising goal for 2017 of $7000. She is fearless in setting powerful pertinent goals for Grant County SPSF, and then managing and leading to achieve these goals.Kay was a single parent while going to college and understands the financial struggles that occur. She is now an accountant for a small accounting firm and has been there for 18 years. She feels honored and humbled to contribute her skills and to be a part of Arkansas Single Parent Scholarship Fund