Meet our Executive Board
Our executive board and leadership provide the dedication, vision and spirit that helps Sibling Strong thrive. Their enthusiasm and willingness to dedicate their talents, plus the hundreds of volunteer hours they give to fulfilling Sibling Strong's mission, mean that many siblings separated by foster care now have opportunities to come together for meaningful visits.
Pictured: Sibling Strong co-founders: Deb Kennedy and Bob Partlow
Deb Kennedy, Co-founder and Director
Deb and her husband Dave Kennedy, a minister, lead by example. They are the parents of eight children, including two sibling groups adopted through foster care. For 11 years, Deb has poured her her time and passion for children in care into founding and serving as director of Sibling Strong and Washington's chapter of Camp To Belong International. She often represents our organization before groups and organizations. She is a recipient of the Foster Parents Association of Washington's Luminary Award for her contribution to the welfare of Washington children in care.
Bob Partlow, Co-founder and Board Member
Bob is an amazing champion for children and a valued member of leadership team and board, where he serves as secretary. He was instrumental in founding a Camp To Belong Washington chapter in our state while he was employed by Washington Children's Administration, now the Department of Children, Youth and Families. He served with the State for 11 before retiring. Previously, he was a political and investigative reporter for 27 years. He made the career change following several years of foster-parenting with his wife Deanna. They are parents to five, including one adopted child. Bob continues to volunteer with Sibling Strong and advocate for foster children. While at summer's Camp To Belong, Bob is a jack of all trades, and during the Christmas season, does his other favorite work, serving as a Santa at numerous celebrations in Western Washington.
David Lewis-Randolph, Board President
David, known to everyone at Camp To Belong's summer camp as B.A., has been a part of the Sibling Strong team since 2010. He is not only a member of our Leadership Team, but also serves as president of our organization's board. As a lead counselor at summer camp, B.A. is known for his ability to encourage and mentor the "tough boys" and to belt out goofy camp songs at any time. He is the proud father of daughter Kammarie, and when he is not being a camp superhero, he is a water infrastructure specialist.
Rebekah Bauer, Board Member
Rebekah Bauer joined the Sibling Strong team as an administrative assistant when she was a senior in high school. It didn't take long for her to fall in love with its mission and the kids she worked with. Besides serving on the Leadership Team, she is now in charge of year-round events in Pierce County, and also serves as lead counselor at Camp To Belong Washington. For much of the year, Rebekah is a gifted kindergarten teacher with a certification in special education. This year, following camp, she will teach in Korea for a year. When she is not occupied by Sibling Strong or teaching, she enjoys running and traveling the world!
Lena Mitchel, Board Member
Lena Mitchel became a volunteer in 2009 and joined Sibling Strong's executive board in 2010. A former foster parent and an advocate for youth in care, Lena is the mother of five, two of whom were adopted from foster care. She became active in the organization after adopting a child who is separated from his siblings. She serves as board treasurer and is active in fundraising.
Sarah Ridings, Board Member
Sarah Ridings, has served on Sibling Strong's executive board since 2019. She and her husband Dusten became involved with Camp To Belong Washington through their annual Night of 100 Stars Fundraiser. Sarah and her husband have 5 children, one adopted through foster care. They are currently a licensed foster family in Washington State. Sarah has a Bachelors of Science with a Psychology Major from Liberty University. When she isn't busy with homeschool and church, Sarah enjoys crochet and watching her boys play hockey.
Gretchen Lakin, Board Member
Gretchen Lakin is the newest member to join the Sibling Strong Executive Board in July 2021. Gretchen has been married for 28 years, has two incredible children, and two precious grandchildren. She has been a Bookkeeper for a small business for over 13 years and Treasurer for a small Credit Union for 6 years, as well as the Treasurer for a church for the last 11 years. She has been active in the Children's Ministry at her church for the last 25 years. Gretchen has a heart for children and understand how important family preservation is when children are effected by foster care and adoption,
You have never lived until you have done something for someone who can never repay you.