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Board of Directors

Hank Poore, Director/Founder

Hank is a 21 year old from Tuscaloosa, with a killer smile, great sense of humor, extreme motivation, and cerebral palsy. He is the youngest of 4 children — 2 older brothers and a sister- who have treated him like every other sibling treats their baby brother — with lots of rough housing, teasing, slight torture, and of course, lots of love.

From an early age, Hank has been motivated to overcome his many obstacles, and has always been eager to try new things, and very rarely says "no", or "i can't/won't do that".

He has snow skied and water skied on a regular basis, attended weeklong overnight camp since he was 7, and started cycling when he was 15.

He has cycled 10 half marathons, and 4 full marathons- including the Marine Corps Marathon in Washington DC, and the New York City Marathon.

Most recently, in 2019, he and a friend cycled 158 miles in western Colorado to raise awareness and funds for athletes with disabilities.

In 2016, he began working at Urban Cookhouse, where he delivers food to customers on a specially made tray , and he also volunteers as a camper buddy at Camp Mcdowell during a camp for children with and without disabilities.

He has also spoken to many groups, including classes at UA and local elementary schools, and a state conference for high schoolers with disabilities. He also was a highlighted speaker at United Ability's annual fundraiser in Birmingham in 2019.

He is the recipient of many awards, including Camp Ascca Camper of the Year, Alabama Department of Rehab Services Consumer of the Year, Delegate at The Alabama Youth Leadership Conference, Tuscaloosa City School Outstanding Secondary Special Education student, Speech and Hearing Association of Alabama Distinguished AAC User Award 2021and perhaps the most important, Homecoming King of Northridge High School in 2019.

During his senior year in high school, he, his mom and a longtime friend began discussing the need for an organization to provide opportunities to persons with disabilities in our community and beyond. Here the idea of the Hank Poore Foundation was born, and Hank along with many others is excited about this next phase- and are looking forward to giving back to the community that has been so giving to him.

Ashley Ferry, President

Ashley Ferry is a wife, mother of 4 children, community volunteer, and retired attorney. She served many years on the Board of the Verner Elementary PTA as well as volunteering in the Verner library. She is an active member of Christ Episcopal Church and currently serves on the Episcopal Diocese of Alabama’s Sawyerville Department. Ashley was the Executive Director of Christmas in April/Rebuilding Together Tuscaloosa and served on the boards of Arts n Autism and Theatre Tuscaloosa. She also enjoys volunteering at the Community Soup Bowl and looks forward to serving the Hank Poore Foundation.

Kathy Poore, Secretary

Kathy Poore is an Alabama native who has called Tuscaloosa home for 22 years. She attended Auburn University and graduated with a BSN in Nursing from UAB School of Nursing in 1991, before working in the Surgical Intensive Care Unit at UAB for four years. Following this, she worked as a cancer nurse at the Wake Forest Comprehensive Cancer Center before deciding to stay home to raise her four children.

When Hank was born in 2000, she began educating herself about disability rights, inclusion, and adaptive opportunities for Hank, becoming his biggest advocate. Her biggest desire was that Hank would live a vibrant and full life—whatever that might look like for him. It turns out that a full life for Hank is a very busy one: on any given day, she is cheering him on at races, boarding a flight with Hank so that he can participate in his next major marathon, driving him to work at Urban Cookhouse, buttoning his shirts for weddings and parties, or driving him to one of the many summer camps he attends and works at. She, along with Hank’s father, Raymond, and three older siblings, have been working since 2000 to give Hank a life full of experiences, community, and opportunities.

In 2015, Kathy began her current position at Heritage House Coffee & Tea as a pastry chef. In her free time, she enjoys running, long walks, reading, and spending time with her grown children: Whitt (Lorin), Will, Katie, and Hank.

The seed for the Hank Poore Foundation was planted shortly after Hank cycled 158 miles with a close friend through the mountains of southwest Colorado. It was the adventure of a lifetime for Hank, and representative of that which the Hank Poore Foundation seeks to bring to other individuals with disabilities: inclusive communities and relationships, access to adaptive activities, and a greater sense of what is possible for those with disabilities. She is thrilled to see this vision finally coming to life.

Whitt Poore, Treasurer

Whitt Poore was born in Winston-Salem, North Carolina and raised in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. After graduating from Northridge High School in 2011, Whitt attended Auburn University where he majored in accounting and graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration. Whitt is an active Certified Public Accountant and member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and an Assurance Supervisor at RSM US LLP in Birmingham, Alabama.

During Whitt’s time at RSM US LLP he has audited and supervised the audits over several private and public companies. This includes financial statement audits and reviews for both public and private clients, initial public offerings, secondary offerings, opening balance sheet audits, ICFR audits and employee benefit plan audits.

Cynthia Almond

Cynthia was born and raised in Tuscaloosa. She graduated from Central High School and then attended Vanderbilt University. She received a Bachelor of Arts from The University of Alabama, majoring in History and minoring in Spanish, and she also received her Juris Doctor from The University of Alabama School of Law. Cynthia is in the private practice of law where she concentrates in estate planning and probate, business law, and real estate. She also owns a title company, Capitol Park Title.

Cynthia is completing her 4th term on the Tuscaloosa City Council, where she serves as the President Pro Tem and as representative for District 3. She is a graduate of Leadership Alabama and Co-Chair for its Regional Council; she currently serves on the Boards of the West Alabama Regional Commission (past Chairperson), Capstone Health Services Foundation, and the Tuscaloosa County Tax Board; and she serves as a Sunday School teacher, on the Missions team, and as a small group leader at First United Methodist Church.

Babs Anderson

Babs was born in Jasper, Alabama. She is a 1988 graduate of Auburn University where she earned a Bachelors degree in Communication and a Masters degree in Journalism. She currently serves as Vice President and Treasurer of Auburn University Tigers Unlimited Foundation Board and a member of Auburn University Foundation Audit Committee. She is also a member of Auburn’s Women Philanthropy Board.

Babs serves as secretary of the Counseling Ministry Professionals Board which offers Christian counseling to families of the Tuscaloosa Community.

Babs is the owner of Momentum Fitness Gym and is a member of First Methodist Church and enjoys serving on mission trips to Honduras.

Babs has been married to her husband, Michael Anderson for thirty- one years. They have 2 children Logan Strickland (Wesley) and Liza. They also have one grandchild Ruby Strickland. Babs enjoys time with her family, traveling, golf, tennis and anything that involves Auburn University.

Cheryl Arnold

Cheryl has made Tuscaloosa & Northport, AL home since relocating from KS in 1994. She worked as the Director of Rehabilitation Services at the DCH Health System from 1994-2018, before returning to Physical Therapy work from 2018-2020. She retired in 2020. Cheryl is a Fellow within the American College of Healthcare Executives (FACHE) as well as earning her Geriatric Clinical Specialist (GCS) designation from the American Physical Therapy Association. She has a degree in Physical Therapy from Wichita State University and a Masters Degree in Health Services Administration from Central Michigan University.

Jamie Barnett

Jamie grew up in Fairhope, Alabama. She is a 1990 graduate of Auburn University with a degree in Rehabilitation and Special Education for students with Behavioral Disorders.  She has worked at Tuscaloosa Middle School, University Place Elementary, and First Presbyterian Preschool.  For the last 15 years, she has been a collaborative teacher at Northridge High School.  She was even fortunate enough to be Hank’s teacher while he was there!

Jamie has been married to her husband, Matt, for thirty-one years .  They have three children Hannah Haas Burkhalter (David), Matthew and Lucy.  Jamie enjoys being with her family, walking her dogs, reading, and tailgating in Auburn.

Andrew Crowell

Andrew Crowell was born and raised in Colorado. Soon after graduating from BIOLA University in La Mirada, California, he worked as the Operations Manager for an investment brokerage in Durango, CO. Through a series of divine events and great friends, Andrew married his wife, Jessica in 2013. Four years later, they moved to her hometown of Tuscaloosa, AL to help run her mom’s business. This business, Heritage House Coffee & Tea, is where Andrew developed a friendship with Hank’s mom, Kathy, and soon after with Hank and his siblings. When Andrew isn’t working or spending time with his wife and 2 young children, you can most likely find him on the golf course.

Susan Daria

Susan Daria has been teaching in UA’s Department of Advertising and Public Relations since 2002. She specializes in branding, public relations and community engaged learning. Daria uses every opportunity to foster community service and other experiential opportunities for her students. Her classes have provided work for various local nonprofit organizations such as Tuscaloosa Angels, Tuscaloosa Metro Animal Shelter and the Actor’s Charitable Theater. Over the last ten years, her class partnership to support Alabama Credit Union’s Secret Meals For Hungry Children program has raised over $225,000 which has provided weekend food packs for an entire school year to more than 1780 West Alabama children.

She is co-director of advising for the A+PR department and faculty adviser to the Student Initiative Board. She served for ten years as adviser to the Capstone Student Advertising Federation and was the National Student Advertising Team coach for four years. Daria also serves on the board of directors for the Secret Meals For Hungry Children Foundation and for the Boys & Girls Clubs of West Alabama. She lives in Tuscaloosa with her husband, Mike and their two sons, Nicholas and Tyler.

North Patterson

North Patterson was born and raised in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. After graduating from Northridge High School in 2015, North attended The University of Alabama where he was a member of UA’s Honors College, Capstone Men and Women, and the Alpha Tau Omega Fraternity. North graduated from UA with a B.S. in Education, and is a certified Kindergarten through 12th Grade Special Education teacher. Currently, North is a law student at The University of Alabama School of Law. North has a passion for bettering the lives of children and adults with disabilities. North is an active member of Capstone Church, and Men’s bible study leader. When North is away from the law books, he enjoys spending his time with great friends, his little brother, Pierce, and little sister, Mattie.

Mary Turner

Mary is a graduate of Capstone College of Nursing, University of Alabama May 1986. She graduated from The University of Alabama School of Law May 1989. She worked as a Public Defender at the Tuscaloosa County Public Defender’s Office from 1989 – 2001, and left for private practice in February 2001 and practice law at the Turner Law Group in Tuscaloosa Alabama. Mary lost her father, mother and brother to suicide and has been involved with suicide support groups and suicide prevention since the death of her mother in 2004. She also leads a suicide support group in Tuscaloosa Alabama that helps people deal with the loss of a loved one to suicide. She is on the Board of Directors of the Alabama Chapter of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, and is a frequent speaker on depression and suicide and recently wrote an article for the Alabama Lawyer talking about her struggles and her survival.