Photos by Dieter Kinner
Noe Pesina came to live with Anita Bible and her children when he was 16, in the summer of 2016. One of six children in his family, he had been placed in foster care by his mother. It had always Anita Bible’s goal to help teenagers who are put in similar situations. Her plan was to provide emergency care–one night or a weekend at most.
Anita recalls, “Noe was calm, quiet, had a huge smile on his face, always ready to please me by helping around the house. He told me, ‘‘Wow, you live in a mansion and your house is so clean. Can I live here forever?’”
Living in a town home in south Overland Park, Anita certainly doesn’t live in a mansion, but Noe’s statement told her a lot about where he came from. She soon learned he had been living through physical abuse for years.
Noe came to Anita’s family the summer of his junior year in high school. With Fs & Ds his freshman and sophomore years, Anita knew he would not be graduating with his class. But Noe flourished at Blue Valley West High school and graduated with his class in May. He will be moving on to Jr. College this fall.
Over Christmas, Anita and her children, Tori and Lee Griggs asked Noe if he wanted to be a permanent part of their family through adoption. Lee is working here at Lake Quivira in groundskeeping for the summer break; Tori lives on her own in Springfield, MO. “We all cried and hugged when he said yes,” recalled Anita.
“We then came up with a plan for his new name. He wanted my children’s name and mine, so we came up with Griggs-Bible.” Noe also asked if he could change his first name to something else, and he came up with Hunter.
Hunter was legally adopted by Anita on July 17, 2017.
Bruce and Sandy Allen
Bruce and Sandy have already begun integrating into their new community! They grew up in Missouri and met in high school. Bruce attended Baylor University, while Sandy attended the University of Missouri, then they both earned graduate degrees at the University of Missouri. They both began work in the consulting field, Bruce with Arthur Andersen, and Sandy with Peat Marwick. They now are self-employed consultants, which give them more flexibility to raise their three kids. They did enjoy a three-year stint in Melbourne, Australia, where Bruce was on assignment.
The couple have three kids: Lannea is a senior at Bishop Miege, while twins Daniel and Mariel are freshmen at Pembroke. Two English bulldogs, Augie and Dottie, round out the family. They had been looking for the right house and happened to find it here. Little did they know they had also found a welcoming community. They moved to their LQ home in June and haven’t had to do anything but “plunk down” the furniture, which fit perfectly, and be greeted by their new neighbors and friends.
“It’s easy to move here– if you need anything, everyone will help,” says Sandy. She feels they’ve been embraced by the down-to-earth people who live here, and the younger kids have met lots of new friends. Lannea has enjoyed bringing her cross-country running companions to the lake to run the trails, followed by breakfast. Bruce is also a runner who has competed in half-marathons. He enjoys reading, helping the kids with their activities, and just hanging out with friends. Sandy enjoys walks around the lake and on the trails. On her bucket list was to live at a place where you can ride a golf cart. Done! Welcome to the Lake, Sandy and Bruce.
By Aline Zimmer
Coming up fast is the annual Lake Quivira Triathlon on Sat., Sept. 2. There’s still time to put together a team or go it alone to complete a 500-meter swim, bike twice around the lake and run a 5K. The morning starts with the National Anthem, and the excitement continues to build with a race announcer, music and cold bottles of water at the finish, with prizes awarded for the top finishers. After you are cheered to the finish, enjoy a reviving pancake breakfast with fellow athletes and friends.
The event is open to all members and their guests, ages 16 and older. Guidelines and entry fees are at www.lakequiviratriathlon.com. Friends and guests can purchase tickets for the pancake breakfast at the event for just $5 for adults (16 and over) and $3 for kids.
If you want to participate without racing, consider volunteering your time. You’ll get a free shirt, all the pancakes you can eat, and the fun of cheering for your friends and neighbors. The triathlon can’t take place without volunteers, and our amazing community rises to the occasion each year. Volunteers help on race day to hand out water, keep an eye out for traffic, set up and decorate and much more.
Hope to see you there!
How Do You Do? (#2)
Let me introduce the skink,
You’re apt to miss her if you blink.
She zips about from task to task,
Then pauses in the sun to bask.
A member of the lizard clan,
She’s got the perfect exit plan.
Whenever she gets in a bind,
She simply leaves her tail behind.
By Leanna Walters
Alison Coordes Phillips, Lake Quivira mother of three, recently earned a Master of Science Degree in Criminal Justice from UMKC (see page 15).
Before Alison moved to Lake Quivira nearly thirteen years ago, she was a bush pilot in Alaska. What was it that made Alison decide she wanted to do a complete about-face in her life?
“Life comes at us in seasons,” says Alison. “It was time to start another chapter.”
She loved the environment of the Prudhoe oil fields of Alaska and the diverse set of experiences she was allowed as a pilot there. No routine schedules for her! Her husband, Sean, also a pilot, was a smoke jumper, and sometimes gone half the year. “Kids were not part of our life plan,” recalls Alison of that time in her life.
Then kids did become part of the life plan. Jackson was born in Alaska, but Alison and Sean wanted their kids to know family. Alison had grown up in Colorado. Sean was from Shawnee and was familiar with LQ through his friendships with Ben Kalny, Charlie Gomer and others. It seemed like a wonderful place to raise a family—friendly, safe and secure.
Alison and Sean felt blessed with the birth of their two boys, Jackson and Paul, and wished to share their love with a baby from India, an arduous, three-year adoption process before little Sonam finally joined them at Lake Quivira.
It was during those three years of investigating orphanages in India that Alison became aware of the rampant problem of trafficking of young girls and sought out organizations dealing with the problem of sexual trafficking to learn more.
Through her research she found the problem was closer to home than she had envisioned. One need not live in India to experience workplace harassment, assault at parties, date rape, sexual violence, domestic abuse, pornography, Internet predators—they’re all forms of exploitation. “Spend any time with a group of women, and the stories come out,” she says. Recently a social worker at the KC Rescue Mission was asked about the prevalence of trafficking within their population. “All of our women have been trafficked,” she answered.
And it starts with the young. “One out of four girls and one out of six boys will experience sexual assault before age 18,” says Alison.
Even in the friendly, safe and secure environment of Lake Quivira? “Smart phones level the playing field for predators looking for kids,” says Alison. “The front gate is no deterrent to the Internet. If anything, the front gate may make kids here more naïve and vulnerable, thinking evil is ‘out there.’”
Alison is heartened when she reads that for the first time in many years, the number of flip phones sold is growing. If your kids need a phone–Alison admits there are legitimate reasons they might—she implores parents to buy them flip phones.
She connected with local groups such as Restoration, which takes a holistic approach to helping sexually abused women build better lives—first through providing safe housing, then by addressing health needs, therapy, a support system and good employment.
Another group she is associated with is KC Street Hope, whose mission statement reads as follows: “We exist to help individuals and organizations who fight sex trafficking in the areas of advocacy, prevention and restoration. Our role is to create awareness and to mobilize community resources where they are most needed, at the time they are most needed. Our ultimate goal is to help end sex trafficking, including domestic minor sex trafficking, in the greater Kansas City area.”
But she was also discovering the need for legal reform. “If laws work against us, it won’t work,” she says. “Women can be arrested for the same things they are victimized for. We can’t arrest our way out of the problem.”
Aptitude tests Alison took as an undergraduate showed law enforcement could be a good match for her personality and skills. “My parents did a nice job of making me think I could do what I set my mind to,” said Alison. And being a woman pilot in a male-dominated profession had further bolstered her confidence.
After much soul searching, Alison made the decision to enter the Criminal Justice degree program at UMKC, thereby increasing her ability to effect change. She doesn’t necessarily see herself in a Police uniform anytime soon. Rather, she is finding ways to combine resources of community groups to work with law enforcement and vice versa.
She is a tireless speaker at shelters, schools and churches. Recently her networking paid off when Quiviran Megan Treas, armed with a fresh nursing degree to go with her degree in psychology (see page 16), approached Alison about empty billboards and the possibility to spread the word writ large. It turned out another Quiviran, Howard Fowler, is with Outfront Media, and he arranged for Alison and Megan to meet with the woman at Outfront who handles the budget for billboard community service.
With Megan helping with the legwork and artwork, and through a Gofundme site, enough money was raised to place public service announcements about the consequences of purchasing sex on several vinyl billboards and electronic message boards around town.
Megan, a nurse with a penchant for community service, has also convinced the Jackson County County Jail they need an educational piece for inmates and jail workers. And the circle grows.
In a recent Facebook post, Alison wrote, “I’m super blessed to have such a great support network of family and friends, especially my husband, who always cheered me on! It feels great to have finished. There were many moments of doubt. My degree is a Master of Science-Criminal Justice & Criminology. As for what is next, UMKC hired me to teach an elective on human trafficking for Criminal Justice and Sociology majors starting this fall. They also want to talk about future ideas for my department to engage on this issue.
“I’m very excited to see where these open doors lead.”
Nicole Ainsworth, daughter of Marla and Mike Ainsworth, graduated from the UMKC School of Dentistry on May 12, where she was Clubs Class officer and 2013-2017 Fundraising Chair. As a Summer Dental Scholar Participant 2014-2015, she presented her findings in a trip to Boston.
Bruce Bowman, Nicole’s grandad, was her patient at the Dental School this spring. His procedure qualified to meet a graduation requirement.
She plans to live in Albuquerque and practice at Albuquerque Modern Dentists. Her memories of LQ fishing, pontooning and swimming with family and friends will accompany her there.
On May 10, 2017, Meggie Alpert graduated Magna Cum Laude with a master’s degree in social work and a specialization in school social work from Loyola University, Chicago. Meggie is the daughter of Kate Alpert of Kansas City and David and Angela Alpert of Lake Quivira.
While a student at Loyola University, Meggie worked at Deborah’s Place, a permanent housing shelter for homeless women in the West Side of Chicago. Meggie helped residents navigate the barriers faced with being homeless, facilitated counseling regarding physical and mental health-related needs and participated in professional development. In addition, Meggie collaborated with other staff members to help reach the goal of 98 percent of the residents obtaining health insurance.
Most recently, Meggie worked at Evanston Township High School as a school social work intern. At ETHS, Meggie worked with 9th and 11th graders in Special Education, providing counseling, crisis intervention, group facilitation and case management services to students and their families. Additionally, Meggie served as a member on the LGBTQ Risk Advisory District Board at Evanston Township High School, in which she coordinated professional development for other staff members in supporting diverse students and orchestrated future strategies to better include LGBTQ-identified students and allies.
Meggie will begin her post-graduate career as a school social worker for the UNO Charter School Network in Chicago, where she will be working with grades K through 8.
Dennis and Ginny Ayer’s son, Riley Ayer, graduated from The University of Missouri-Kansas City (UMKC) with a master of arts in economics. While at UMKC, Riley was able to obtain a summer internship as a trading analyst at Valero Energy Corporation. Here, he utilized his skills in computer programing and statistical analysis to develop various crude oil pricing models to assist Valero’s Trading Department and Economic Planning Department.
After graduation, Riley will continue his graduate studies at UMKC by pursuing a doctorate in economics. He intends to focus his studies on mathematical finance and macroeconomics. In particular, he is eager to investigate the behavioral aspects of the financial markets and the impacts they have on the overall economy.
Delaney Bates, daughter of Raymond and Evelyn Bates, earned a BS degree at the University of Kansas, with a major in ecology and evolutionary biology. She was on the College of Liberal Arts and Science Honor Roll for four semesters.
While in pursuit of her degree, Delaney was a member of the group Natural Ties her first two years, served on the Executive Board her junior year, and was elected president her senior year. Likewise, Delaney served on the Executive Board of Delta Epsilon Mu her junior and senior year, as Director of Prospects and Secretary, respectively, and a member of Kappa Alpha Thetaall four years.
Delaney was a research assistant her junior year in Costa Rica. She conducted work for her independent research project during her senior year in Cabo Pulmo, Mexico. She received an Undergraduate Research and Travel Award Recipient from The Howieson Opportunity Fund, and an FAS Crimson & Blue Merit Scholarship.
During her junior and senior year she volunteered at the University of Kansas Natural History Museum in the Division of Mammalogy as a collection assistant.
As for the future, Delancy applied to medical school and plans to begin that chapter of her life in August 2018.
Delaney’s favorite LQ activity is spending time with her family and dogs.
Alec Friesen, son of Craig and Lynn Friesen, received a BGS (Bachelor of General Studies) degree at the University of Kansas, with a major in psychology and a minor in applied Behavioral Sciences. He was the recipient of a Crimson and Blue Scholarship all four years and was listed on the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Dean’s Honor Roll from 2014 to 2017
Alec was a Yell Leader for KU Cheer Squad, 2014-2016. In 2015, the KU Cheer Squad placed 4th at the UCA (Universal Cheerleaders Association) Nationals Competition in Orlando, Florida–the highest place the KU Cheer Squad has ever placed.
Jobs during college included Research Assistant at University of Kansas Cancer Research Center, 2013-2014; Research Assistant at University of Kansas Psychology and Applied Behavioral Science Departments, 2015-2017; and Football Manager, 2016-2017.
In addition, Alec volunteered over 300 hours toward long term commitments at Health Care Access, a clinic that serves low income and uninsured families of Douglas County, Kansas, Don Bosco Center in Kansas City and Asera Care Hospice in Lawrence, Kansas.
Alec will begin Medical School at Kansas University Medical Center in July 2017 and has received the Gladys Lichty Medical School Scholarship.
Adam Huff, son of John and Marian Huff, graduated May 14, 2017, from the University of Saint Mary with a doctorate in physical therapy.
In addition to his studies he was the Social Chair and Class Ambassador for the Department of Physical Therapy class of 2017.
Adam graduated from Kansas State University in 2014 with a bachelor of science degree in kinesiology and was a member of Theta Xi fraternity, where he served as recruitment chair. He met his fiancé, Briana Talkington, while at the University of Saint Mary.
Briana is also a graduate from the University of Saint Mary with a doctorate in physical therapy, who resides at 128 Lakeshore Drive West. They were married June 3 at Lake Quivira and plan to live and work in the Kansas City area.
On May 13, Adam Perkins, son of longtime Quivirans Tim and Teresa Perkins, received BS and BA degrees from Drake University in entrepreneurial management and marketing, with a finance concentration. While at Drake, Adam was a member of Alpha Kappa Psi Professional Business Fraternity, 2014-2017, and competed in pole vaulting all four years as a member of Drake University Track and Field.
At Lake Quivira had a business delivering flyers around the lake. In addition, he followed in his father’s snow tracks by snow plowing driveways.
Adam has taken a position with the Gremler Financial Group in Des Moines as a financial advisor and is currently studying to take the Series 7 Securities Exam.
Alison Phillips graduated Summa Cum Laude with a Master of Science degree in Criminal Science from UMKC. Her thesis, entitled “Commercial Sexual Exploitation: An Analysis of Prostitution in Kansas City” formulated Kansas City’s first ever population estimate of the number of adult commercial sexual exploitation victims using a statistical method common to wildlife biology. Furthermore, the thesis is being nominated by the Criminal Justice & Criminology for UMKC’s “Thesis of the Year.”
During my time as a graduate student Alison worked part time as a graduate teacher’s assistant for UMKC’s Criminal Justice Department. Additionally, she worked on a volunteer level as Community Engagement Coordinator for KC Street Hope (a faith-based non-profit working to eradicate sex trafficking in Kansas City). However, perhaps the most demanding job Alison held during college was raising three kids!
Upon graduation, UMKC hired Alison to teach an elective for criminal justice and sociology majors on human trafficking. The department is looking to expand their work on the issue of human trafficking and Alison looks forward to being a part of that effort. In addition, she will continue working for KC Street Hope, helping to raise awareness about human trafficking and inspire grassroots level engagement and volunteerism. “We have several exciting initiatives and events we are working on for the next year that promise to be real difference makers,” she says.
Joseph William Rebori, son of Bob and Elaine Rebori, received a Master of Arts degree in Economics from the University of Kansas on May 14. Following graduation, he took a 10-day trip to Cinque Terre, Florence, and Rome, Italy.
For the last nine years, Joey has worked in Research & Development and Sales at Bio-Microbics, Inc. during his spare time and has now started his full time position in Sales and Product Development at Bio-Microbics, Inc.
His hobbies include golf, family get-togethers, spending time with friends, tinkering with his 3D printer and small antique sewing machine motors and flying his drone.
Joey is in the process of buying his first house!
Stewart Simms, daughter of long-time members Anne and David Simms, graduated with a Masters Degree in Social Work from Boston College in May.
Stewart’s academic focus has been mental health and international refugee support. She recently completed a five-month practicum with Jesuit Refugee Services at the Vatican, traveling to the Kokuma refugee camp in Kenya.
In August, she will travel to Zambia with a BC professor to conduct HIV related research before pursuing work in refugee support.
Kelsey Marie, daughter of Mark and Jan Stephan, and granddaughter of Milton and Jennie Stephan and Dean and Donna has graduated from the University of Kansas with a major in East Asian Languages and Culture and an emphasis on Japanese Language & Culture.
Through the years, you’ve probably seen Kelsey kayaking during the summer and taking photos of all the amazing plants and animals here at the lake. In addition, Kelsey worked at the Lake Quivira Clubhouse during the time she attended classes at Johnson County Community College.
Kelsey has been graciously accepted into the Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Program and will be traveling to Japan on July 22 of this year to live and work there as an ALT (Assistant Language Teacher) for at least one year. Her tentative goal is to remain there through the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.
Kelsey would like to thank everyone for all the goodwill and support she has received over the years at Lake Quivira. No matter where she travels, her memories c of the lake will always remain close to her heart.
Johnny Terry, son of Stewart and Lianne Terry, received a Bachelor of Science degree from Oklahoma State University in business administration, with a major in marketing and a minor in management information systems. He was on the Dean’s Honor Roll, a member of Oklahoma State President’s Leadership Council and a Jim Watson Scholarship recipient,
While at Oklahoma State, Johnny was a member of Beta Theta Pi fraternity (Pledge Class President 2014, Head Recruitment Chair 2015, Executive Board Member 2014-2017, Conduct Committee Member 2015-2017); Spear’s Business Student Council; Spring Sing Director 2015-2017; Freshman Follies Director 2015-2017 and OSU Varsity Review Director 2016-2017.
Johnny was a counselor at Kanakuk Kamp in 2014 & 2016. His favorite LQ activity is hanging out with family and friends on the lake.
Next up: Johnny will begin his career as a consulting analyst at Cerner.
Bridget Treas, daughter of Randy and Leslie Treas, graduated in May from Columbia College in Chicago with a Bachelor of Arts degree in visual arts management. Bridget was on the Dea’s List and a member of the National Society of Collegiate Scholars (NSCS). Her work was selected for a student photography exhibition at Prescott College
While at Columbia, Bridget managed the Hokin Gallery, a student-run art gallery at the college.
In 2013, Bridget completed a gap year program called SeaMester. Through this program she had the opportunity to spend a semester at sea exploring the world from the deck of a sailing vessel while earning college credit in marine sciences and seamanship, as well as sailing and scuba diving certifications. In 2014, she completed a 21-day backpacking trip through the Grand Canyon and the Superstition Mountains, while going to school at Prescott College in Arizona. In 2017, she gained a new perspective of international art business from a condensed, intensive international exhibition management course in Rome.
Currently, Bridget is in the process of moving back to Kansas from Chicago and is very excited for her next adventure in life, whatever that may be. She will continue to look for a career in visual arts management, a field about which she is passionate.
Megan Treas, daughter of Randy and Leslie Treas, graduated in May from William Jewell College with a Bachelor of Science degree in nursing, where she was awarded the Mary Grant Seacole Award for Service 2017. Previously, Megan had attended Wichita State University, where, in 2015, she received a BA with a major in psychology and a minors in sociology, health professions and anthropology.
She was a member of the Student Nurses Association, 2015-16; Assistant to the Health and Disabilities Coordinator (Intern Position) Operation Breakthrough – summer 2013; Co-founder and Project Manager of Anti-Human Trafficking Billboard Campaign alongside KC Street Hope, 2016 to current; and member of the KC Street Hope (Anti human trafficking collation).
While a student at Wichita State U, Megan worked as a Pediatric Patient Care Tech/CAN from 2014 to 2016 at Via Christi St. Francis Hospital and was also the only female member of the Wichita State Club Hockey Team, 2013-2015.
Megan is passionate about community service. The following are highlights: International Health Volunteer with Cross Cultural Solutions, working with orphans with HIV/AIDS in Salvador, Brazil 2015; three trips to Haiti during college with the Global Orphan Project; working with Jackson County Corrections about victim recognition / victims of human trafficking 2015.
When asked about future plans and goals, Megan replied, “I will be getting married to the love of my life on September 23 of this year and I got a job starting in July as a Labor and Delivery Nurse at Truman Hospital downtown! I couldn’t be more excited to empower the laboring women, educate the new mommas and touch the lives of many during their childbirth journey. I plan to attend graduate school within the next five years.”
Mentioning that a favorite activity at LQ was swim team, Megan commented, “ I hope to have future kids on the swim team someday.”
Hannah Weise, daughter of Paul and Staci Weise, graduated from the University of Kansas with a major in applied behavioral science and a minor in psychology. Part of her education consisted of studying abroad in Stirling, Scotland, UK.
Academic Honors include the Todd R. Risley Award for outstanding achievement in autism and adults with developmental disabilities, the Dean’s List spring 2014-2017; Academic Distinction Award (4.0 GPA) spring 2015-2017; Academic Excellence Award (3.5+ GPA) spring 2014-fall 2014.
While at KU, Hannah worked for Personal Care Attendant Helpers, Inc. ; was an undergraduate teaching assistant for Anatomy; and an undergraduate research assistant.
She was a ember of Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority and a member of Kansas Association for Behavior Analysis.
Her favorite LQ activity is hanging out with friends on boats
Hannah is currently working as an Applied Behavioral Analysis Technician at North Star Academy and plans to work toward a Doctorate in Occupational Therapy next year.