Patricia Dunbar of Warren – President and Board Member
Patricia Natali Dunbar is a native of the Mahoning Valley and one of the original founders of the FOMR. Patricia has been essential in the growth of the FOMR spearheading multiple projects including receiving 501 (c)(3) nonprofit status, Riverfest organization and recruiting members. With her professional and volunteer activities, Patricia has seen first-hand the benefits the Mahoning River brings to the Valley. Her goals are to educate the community about the Mahoning River, continuing work on dam removals so that one day the Mahoning River will run unimpeded, and to improve the water quality thereby enhance the aquatic life and recreation.
Sara Smith of Girard – Treasurer I have always lived in the Mahoning Valley area and currently reside in Girard. The largest part of my business career was spent working for Packard Electric, a Division of General Motors. Seems I’ve always been aware of the Mahoning River as I lived on the South side of Youngstown very close to the Sheet & Tube Company located on the Mahoning River in Campbell. Over the years, I have developed a real interest in ecology and how our human presence in this world has impacted the land and our effect on the life of the animal world. I joined the Friends of the Mahoning River in 2013 and volunteered to be Treasurer, a position I enjoy. I am also Diversity Chair for The American Association of University Women, belong to Warren City Federation of Women’s Clubs and Stonecroft Ministries. The Raymond John Wean Foundation has accepted me as a member of its Resident Council.
Felicia Armstrong of Canfield – Vice President and Board Member
Felicia Armstrong is a professor of environmental science at Youngstown State University. She is highly involved with research related to environmental quality, including water quality of the Mahoning River and its watershed. Dr. Armstrong encourages her students to get involved with local issues and supervise the YSU student organization call Youngstown Environmental Sustainability Society (YESS). She has been a member of FOMR since 2012 and has been on the board of directors since 2013 and is a member of the Education committee and Riverfest.
Don Rex of Girard- Board Member
Don is a retired teacher and administrator in the Girard Schools; and a Student Teacher supervisor at Kent State University. His interest in developing the river as a recreational and educational resource began years ago when he was a Girard teacher and Girard councilman. He views the Friends of the Mahoning River as the group where he can best pursue those interests. He’s proud to be a member, and is currently a member of the Education, Membership, and Recreation Committees.
Stuart Smith – Poland- Board Chairman
Stu Smith is a consulting ground-water scientist (Ground Water Science), mostly working in municipal water supply. He has made the Mahoning River watershed (specifically the Yellow Creek valley) his home since 2010, and FOMR member since 2015, so kind of a new kid on the block. He is a fan of various rivers, and previously active in leadership of the Sandusky River Watershed Coalition. He has been coordinating the new FOMR water quality monitoring effort. His goal is to increase the use of quality citizen science on the river as well.
L.K (Lois) Williams – Secretary/Volunteer Coordinator and Board Member
L.K is a native of Cleveland, Ohio. After high school she traveled to California to attend San Diego State University (formerly San Diego State College) majoring in life science with a minor in math. Later she returned to college as a part of the National Teachers Corps and obtained her teaching credential. She then returned to Cleveland and taught 2 years before returning to California to teach science and math for 12 years in several cities. In the nineties LK came back to Ohio and taught in various cities in northeast Ohio – subjects included science, math, social studies, and language arts. LK retired from teaching in 2010 and relocated from Painesville to Boardman, Ohio. Since being in the Greater Youngstown area, she has volunteered with various organizations and has found a home with the Friends of the Mahoning River which focuses her top three areas of concern; social justice, education, and the environment.
Pete Morabito- Board Member
Pete Morabito is a Mahoning Valley local who loves the Mahoning River. As a result of this love and his love of community, Pete has been an active member of the FOMR. He is on the board of directors and is an active member of the group’s Recreation Committee. Pete loves being on the water in his kayak and volunteering with the FOMR where he actively participates in the annual RiverFest, clean-ups, fundraising, and whatever else needs done.
Meredith Mckenzie- Board Member A native of Champion Ohio and graduate of both Bowling Green and Kent State Universities, and a graduate of Loyola Law School/Los Angeles.
While teaching at Cal Poly, her students created an Idora Neighborhood/Mill Creek Sustainability Design Plan for the Youngstown Neighborhood Development Corporation as well as the Downtown Warren/Mahoning River Peninsula ‘River’s Edge’ Development Plan for the City of Warren. Meredith is a past Sustainability Program Manager for the Arroyo Seco (River) Foundation, member of the Los Angeles River EPA Federal Partnership Program, and founding Board Member of the Kern River Conservancy. She is transitioning to consulting work after a successful California career as a successful real estate broker/land use expert and adjunct professor of urban and regional planning at the California State Polytechnic University/Pomona, where her focus was on environmental planning and sustainability, utilizing a watershed approach to ‘river towns’ development. An avid equestrian and trail rider, Meredith also loves to kayak and is now ‘testing the waters’ as a fly fisherwoman.