2016 - 2017

Shelby Schagrin, Founder

Amy Inman, President

Miriam Rogers Singer, Secretary

Cathy Carney, Treasurer

Madeline Creehan, Vice Chair, Treasurer

Christine Schmiz, Chair, Communications/Marketing

Elizabeth Schmidt, Vice Chair, Communications/Marketing

Berta James, Chair, Grants

Jo Ann Sanditz, Vice Chair, Grants

Patricia Allen, Chair, Impact

Membership Chairs:

Marianne Baer, Membership Engagement

Pam Lee, Membership Events

Barbara Bindler, Membership Events

Joni Karandjeff, Membership Coordinator

Amy Garrison, Chair, Technology

Jacqueline Byrne, Vice Chair, Technology

Caroli Young, Co-Chair, Education

Lee Anne Quatrano, Co-Chair, Education

Gwendolyn Wesley, Nominating

Vicki Sheehan, WCGN Liaison

Terri Beaty, At Large

Christy Beckmann, At Large

Marilyn Modak, At Large

Shirley Richey, At Large

Susan Block, Ex Officio

Kathy Frost, Ex Officio

Felice Joyce, Ex Officio

Shelby Schagrin, Co-Chair, Advisory

Vicki Sheehan, Co-Chair Advisory

Gwendolyn Wesley, Co-Chair Advisory



The Spirit of St. Louis Women’s Fund 
is a component fund of the St. Louis Community Foundation and a 
member of the Women’s Collective Giving Grantmakers Network, 
a growing, nationwide group of almost 50 organizations similar to our 
Fund and with more than 13,000 
members altogether.

2016 - 2017 SOS Board Members


Gwen Wesley - President

Gwen has worked in information systems technology, governmental and environmental affairs, curriculum development and training. She has been a court appointed special advocate for abused and neglected children, a third ­party reviewer for foster care cases and a facilitator for neighborhood redevelopment the city of St. Louis.  She sings with the St. Louis Symphony’s In Unison Chorus and the Legend Singers.



Christy Beckmann - Secretary

Christy Beckmann is a marketing and public affairs executive with experience in senior positions for corporations and non-profits, including the United Way of Greater St. Louis, Harris House, Monsanto Co., Solutia and Abbot Laboratories.


Terri Beaty – Treasurer

Terri Beaty is a vice president-investments for Wells Fargo Advisors, LLC. She has been a board member and volunteer for various non-profit organizations.


Cathy Carney – Vice-Chair, Finance

Formerly an investment banker with A.G. Edwards & Sons, Inc. and president of Brunson Construction Corp., Cathy is now a part-time financial consultant, community volunteer and fused glass artist.  She has served as a board member and volunteer for various St. Louis nonprofits, especially those addressing the needs of children, immigrants and refugees.

Christine Schmiz – Chair, Communications and Marketing

Chris started her own branding consultancy after working for many years as executive creative director for Nestlé Purina’s advertising agency, CheckMark Communications. She is active in various charitable causes and is a founding board member of Strange Cares, which enriches kids’ lives by helping them realize a personal dream.


Elizabeth Schmidt – Vice-Chair, Communications and Marketing

Elizabeth Schmidt is a marketing consultant specializing in brainstorming, strategic planning and team-building, including for nonprofits. She volunteers with kids and teens, tutoring and conducting leadership programs and is a member of the 2016-17 class of Leadership St. Louis.


Amy Inman - Chair, Grants 

Amy founded and operates Memorybox Films, LLC, a corporate/legal video production company. Previously she worked as a sales executive in the software database industry and in television and radio production. She is a board member and volunteer for various organizations including The Global Learning Exchange Initiative and Great Circle.


Berta James - Vice Chair, Grants

Berta James recently retired as a business consultant for Make-A-Wish America assisting Make-A-Wish chapters throughout the U.S. and is now a wish-granting volunteer for Make-A-Wish Missouri. She is also a member of the Women’s Society of Washington University.



Joni Karandjeff - Chair, Impact

Joni Karandjeff is a community volunteer focusing on children, health and education.  Her interests have included the Greater St. Louis Book Fair, St. Louis Children's Hospital, Women and the Kemper, the Women's Society of Washington University, Women of Achievement and the United Way.


Patricia Allen – Vice Chair, Impact

Patricia allen retired from AT&T after many years in middle management. Most recently she has served on the board of a non-profit organization that seeks to end incarceration in families, with a focus on maintaining relationships between mothers and their children.


Sue Trantham Rector – Chair, Membership

Sue is a retired speech-language pathologist. She volunteers with at-risk inner city children and veterans through The Gateway PGA REACH Foundation and has been Co-Chair of the Foundation's Annual Ozzie Smith Pro Am/Gala since 2014.



Marianne Baer - Co-Vice Chair, Membership 

An artist, Marianne has been active in the St. Louis art scene since the 1980s. She has been president of a nonprofit that helps integrate summer camps and has chaired many fundraisers for Sherwood Forest Camp. She is also a volunteer with various other organizations.



Pamela Lee - Co-Vice Chair, Membership

Pamela Lee has owned and operated a women’s hair replacement business for 40 years. She volunteers as a coach for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s Team in Training and trains people for adventure hikes in U.S. national parks. 



Amy Garrison - Chair, Technology

Amy Garrison owns Brand Virtue, LLC, which provides marketing and communications consulting to companies ranging from start-ups to large corporations. She also serves on the board of Safe Connections and dedicates her time to several other local non-profits.


Leslie Corey - Chair, Education

A retired health insurance company executive and recent graduate of Focus St. Louis’ Leadership St. Louis program, Leslie devotes her time to education and racial reconciliation. She tutors for St. Louis Public Schools, mentors an immigrant family and is president of a nonprofit supporting basketball leagues for low-income girls. 



Sheri Mistretta - Vice Chair, Education

Sheri Mistretta is the executive director of the Walker Scottish Rite Clinic at Maryville University and believes strongly in advocating for at-risk children in our community. She volunteers for and serves on the boards of several nonprofits.



Kathryn Frost – Ex Officio

Kathy Frost is active with Women and the Kemper, the Women’s Society of Washington University and Girls Giving, the  youth initiative of SOS.



Felice Joyce – WCGN Liaison

Felice Joyce practiced corporate, tax and estate planning law for 30 years. She has participated in many professional boards and associations and served on the boards of Congregation Shaare Emeth, the Interfaith Partnership and Faith Beyond Walls.


Shelby Schagrin – Advisory Council Chair, Founder of SOS

Shelby Schagrin, managing director-investment banking for Benjamin F. Edwards & Co., founded SOS and co-chaired it with Susan Block for its first three years.  Her goal was to bring together a group of women and pool their collective resources of time, talent and money to improve our community.


Caroli Young - At Large

Caroli Young owns N2it Marketing Solutions, a full-service digital agency. As a board member for an international nonprofit, she has traveled to Ethiopia to help establish orphanages, feeding programs for the malnourished and safe homes for girls rescued from human trafficking.




Lionelle Elsesser – At Large

Lionelle Elsesser is a volunteer with special interests in women and children. She has taught at the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana, worked at the V.A. Medical Center is Minneapolis and been executive director of the Health Sciences Communications Association.


Nina Needleman - At Large

Nina Needleman is community outreach Manager for the Alliance for Childhood Education. Previously she worked 28 years as a marketing/training/compliance professional and financial advisor in the brokerage industry. Her boards include Lift for Life Gym, Sheldon Friends and Seeds of Blessings.


JoAnn Sanditz - At Large

JoAnn Sanditz is retired from the staff of the Alzheimer’s Association. She is a docent at the St. Louis Art Museum and has served on the boards of the Women’s Society of Washington University and Women and the Kemper at the Kemper Art Museum.  



Miriam Rogers Singer - At Large

Miriam Singer is retired after 30 years of practicing law, most recently as Vice-President and Corporate Secretary for Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals. Miriam volunteers at the International Institute of St. Louis as a tutor in the agency's citizenship literacy classes. 


Susan Block, Initial Co-Chair of SOS; Ex Officio

Susan Block owns The Designing Block, a home décor and designing business.  She volunteers with and sits on the boards of various nonprofit organizations. With Shelby Schagrin, she co-chaired the Spirit of St. Louis Women’s Fund for its first three years, 2006-2009.  



Vicki Sheehan – Ex Officio

Vicki Sheehan, an attorney, is president of Sheehan Investment Services, which owns and manages office properties and a senior living community. A former SOS president, she  chairs the national Women’s Collective Giving Grantmakers Network, which includes 37 organizations like SOS.