Stephanie Tinsley Regagnon
Stephanie Regagnon is the founder and executive director of Ava’s Grace Scholarship Foundation.  Stephanie and her husband, Jason, formed the non-profit in March of 2010 after a harrowing personal experience in her family resulting in the incarceration of her mother.  It is now her personal passion to change the lives of children affected by incarceration through education. Stephanie is also a director of sustainability at Monsanto Company in St. Louis, MO.  Stephanie has worked in agriculture and energy policy and Washington, DC, and St. Louis.  Stephanie has two political science degrees from the University of Missouri and American University. She grew up in Kirksville, Missouri and currently resides in St. Louis with her husband and their daughter, Ava Grace.

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Dr. Jake Utterback
Dr. Jake Utterback resides in St. Louis, MO. He attended Chaminade High School, Truman State University for his undergraduate degree and Logan College of Chiropractic. He is the owner and primary chiropractor at Kirkwood Spine and Rehab. Jake believes prison reform begins with breaking the cycle of incarceration and that education is the key.
Stephanie M. Verhine
Stephanie Verhine was born and raised in St. Charles, Mo. She graduated from St. Charles West High School in 1984 and was a member of the United States Air Force from 1985 to 1988. After that she attended St. Charles County Community College. Stephanie is a Production Manager at Wainwright Industries Incorporated. She believes there are innocent people incarcerated and the children of those incarcerated are the ones who truly suffer. She is involved in Ava’s Grace Scholarship Foundation because she wants to give a child a choice–a choice to grow; a choice to learn; a choice for their tomorrow. Stephanie believes children are not victims but opportunities and these children should be able to make their own choices.
Jason D. Regagnon
Jason Regagnon was born and raised in Kirksville, MO, and received his undergraduate degree from Truman State University. He is currently employed by Armor Equipment in Arnold, MO. Through his personal experience with his wife’s family he has seen first-hand what incarceration can do to a family. Jason is proud to join Stephanie and others on the Board in the mission of helping children of the incarcerated achieve higher education.
Riq Dilly
Riq Dilly is a Media Productions Specialist who lives in St. Louis, MO. He is currently the owner/operator for Q2 Productions (, a high end multi-media production company. He is well respected in the metro area for his outstanding accomplishments for media productions, both in promotional cinematography and photography as well as having hosted both public and private events for over a decade. His work has been in the media spotlight numerous times, including television, print and also radio. If asked, Riq will tell you that the motivation behind his drive to succeed lies in a simple message conveyed to him by his father, embodied by recording artist Alan Jackson in his song “Walk on the Rocks”. The lyrics paint an all too familiar picture that touches home for Riq as his father actually served 26 years of a life sentence in a maximum-security prison. He is thankful to have been blessed with the God-given talents that he has been able to develop into a life long career, but realizes that not everyone can be so lucky. Riq has joined Ava’s Grace Scholarship Foundation to do his part to help those kids (like him) coming out of high school that have the potential and the drive for a higher education, in hopes that one day, they too can “Walk On The Rocks”.
Stephanie Hosler
Stephanie Hosler is a partner at Bryan Cave LLP, who concentrates her practice in the areas of business and transactional counseling. Her practice includes mergers and acquisitions, general commercial counseling, joint ventures and strategic alliances, private offerings of securities, stock-for-stock acquisitions, and acquisitions of minority interests. Ms. Hosler has experience representing public companies, closely held businesses, venture capital firms, investment partnerships, portfolio companies of venture capital and buyout firms, and financial institutions. She has experience with companies in a number of different industries, including consumer goods, telecommunications, banking, life sciences, and private equity. Prior to joining the firm, Ms. Hosler was a management associate with LEK Alcar, an international consulting firm which focuses in mergers and acquisitions. She was also an associate with the law firm of Kirkland & Ellis in Chicago, Ill.
Kathleen Steele Danner
Kathleen Steele Danner is the director of the Missouri Division of Tourism. Prior to her appointment with the Division of Tourism, she was the deputy director of Missouri Department of Economic Development. Before her appointment to the Nixon administration in 2009, Danner was the president of Athena Consulting, LLC, a public relations and community development firm working on behalf of local, state and national businesses and organizations. She served as regional director of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Region VII, in Kansas City, and as director of intergovernmental affairs for the entire department of HHS in Washington, D.C. during the Clinton administration. She also served as the chair of the Federal Executive Board representing the 24,000 Federal Employees in the Kansas City region. From 1988 to 1994, Danner served three terms as a State Representative in the Missouri General Assembly, representing the 2nd Legislative District from Northeast Missouri. She holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business and Public Administration from Truman State University in Kirksville, MO. Katie and her husband, Steve Danner, currently reside in Jefferson City, MO.
Kim Stinson
Kim is an attorney with Stinson Leonard Street LLP, where she is a member of the business and commercial litigation division. She represents clients in a variety of litigation matters, including contract disputes, real estate and construction litigation, and trusts and estates litigation. Kim received her JD from Saint Louis University School of Law in 2007, and her BA in English from the College of Charleston in 2004. Kim lives in Webster Groves with her husband and daughter.
Tom Utterback
Before moving to Florida ten years ago, Tom enjoyed a long and varied career as an attorney and businessman. He was the first city attorney ever elected to the Board of Directors of the Missouri Municipal League and in his years in the St. Louis area Tom represented cities throughout Missouri as special counsel in matters ranging from annexations to cable TV franchising. Also, in the St. Louis area Tom was an active litigator in civil litigation.  In his life Tom is most proud of his work, as a young city attorney for Cape Girardeau, in forming first offender and diversion programs; his years in the mid to late 1980′s as President of the Immanuel Lutheran School Board in Washington, Missouri; and his representation of the Kirkwood Policemen’s and Firemen’s Pension Plan in the late 1980′s through the late 1990′s. Tom has been a frequent critic of the criminal justice process and has an abiding commitment to education as the key to breaking the cycle of recidivism for young offenders. Tom and his wife, Jo Ann, are currently in the process of moving back to the St. Louis area, after a ten year absence. Tom hopes to be an active proponent of Ava’s Grace’s goals and see more of his grandchildren.
Julie L. Ward
Julie Ward was born and raised in Kirksville, MO. Her family relocated to Columbia, MO during her junior year of high school. Upon graduating high school Julie attended Southwest Missouri State University, Columbia College, and the University of Missouri. She is currently the property manager of two communities in Columbia, MO. Campus Apartments has properties across the nation. Julie believes in the mission of Ava’s Grace to due her close personal relationship with the founder, Stephanie Regagnon. Witnessing and experiencing first-hand how incarceration can change a family has given Julie the desire to improve on what is usually a “hopeless situation”. As a board member it is her wish to offer hope instead of hopelessness to these children.

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