National Executive Board

Fred Markham
Chairman, Learning for Life National Executive Board
Executive Director of Texas Pioneer Foundation
He created the foundation along with the members of the board of directors of Central Texas Higher Education Authority, Inc. The foundation makes grants for educational purposes that include leadership and character development, access and success in post-secondary education, support for public school foundations, history and civics and literacy and life skills.

Mark Wiesenhahn
Chair-Elect, Learning for Life National Executive Board
Vice President, Sportsman's Market, Inc. (Sporty's)
National Aviation Exploring Committee Member (1995-present)
Silver Beaver recipient (2009)

Bray Barnes
Vice-Chair of Career Development
Bray Barnes serves as the Director, National Cybersecurity Institute, Washington, DC, and is the Founder and Principal of Security Evaluation and Solutions Group, LLC that provides three unique Homeland Security cornerstones of service employing industry-wide Best Management Practices. Bray Barnes is licensed in New Jersey and Washington, D.C., has more than twenty years experience in the legal profession. Prior to Mr. Barnes’ legal career, he served in law enforcement for eleven years, on active duty with the United States Army and served as a Radio Operator during the Vietnam War. While working full time as a police officer in New Jersey and while he and his wife, Patty, raised a family, Bray attended school at night for 7 ½ years earning an Associates Degree from Brookdale College, a Bachelors Degree summa cum laude and Masters Degree from the City University of New York, John Jay College of Criminal Justice as well as his Doctorate in Jurisprudence from Seton Hall University School of Law.

Chief Carmen Best
Vice-Chair of Exploring
Chief Carmen Best assumed the role of Chief of Police of the Seattle Police Department on August 13, 2018.  Chief Best has served with the Seattle Police Department for 26 years.  Most recently, she served as Deputy Chief, overseeing the Patrol Operations, Investigations, and Special Operations Bureaus, as well as the Community Outreach section.  Chief Best has completed the Senior Management Institute for Police, The FBI National Academy, and the Criminal Justice Executive Leadership Academy. In 2015, she receive the "Newsmaker of the Year" award from the Seattle Black Press.   In 2016, Chief Best completed the Major Cities Chiefs Association Police Executive Leadership Institute.  She will receive her Master's in Criminal Justice Leadership from Northeastern University later this year.  Chief best is a member of the National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives (NOBLE), the National Latino Police Offers Association (NLPOA), the Law Enforcement Immigration Task Force (LEITF) and the Human and Civil Rights Committee (HCRC) for the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP),  She s also on the Trustee Board for Lakeside School, the Visit Seattle Advisory Board and the National Law Enforcement Exploring Committee. Additionally, Chief Best serves as the Leadership Council Chair for the United Negro College Fund (UNCF) Seattle, and is on the St. Jude Advisory Council for Seattle.  Chief Best is married and has two adult daughters.  

Craig Martin
Vice-Chair of Service
Craig has served as the Western Region Area 2 Exploring Chair and is currently a member of the Pikes Peak Council Strategic Planning Committee and serves as a Unit Commissioner and District Service Team Member.  Over the years he has earned several awards for his service, including Silver Beaver Award, District Award of Merit, two Distinguished Commissioner Awards as well as the Department of Defense Military Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal. He has completed Wood Badge, staffed seven Wood Badge courses, and ultimately served as Wood Badge Course Director. Craig is an Order of the Arrow Brotherhood member.  Professionally, Craig has over 49 years of experience within the Department of Defense systems engineering, logistics, and management. After 30 years of service to his country, he retired from the United States Air Force as a Colonel in 1998. After 19 years as a defense contractor, he recently retired as the Deputy Chief Engineer for Engility Corporation’s Global Position System (GPS) Systems Engineering & Integration Program.

Cecilia Retelle
Vice-Chair of LFL Curriculum Based Program
Cecilia is Vice President of Strategic Partnership Operations for Wiley Education Services. A lawyer and teacher by training, Cecilia was the Senior Director of Education policy at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce prior to co-founding Ranku. As a co-founder of Ranku, her responsibilities have included all aspects of the business. Currently she leads the Business Development and Client Services team for Ranku. Within this capacity, she is responsible for maintaining strong relationships with current clients, identifying and qualifying prospective university and system partnerships, developing and sustaining a robust pipeline of opportunities, and leading the development and delivery of our proposals to universities.

Kevin Ciak
Board Member
Kevin is director and national public education leader with more than 20 years of for-profit and not-for-profit financial, operational, strategic and governance experience related to financial operations, information technology, and customer or member engagement. P&L and FP&A responsibility for multi-national manufacturing division of General Electric with $450 million in gross revenues. Governance responsibility for educational, non-profit and governmental entities with gross revenue exceeding $200 million. Solid interpersonal and communication skills related to building key functional teams. 

Keith Clark
Board Member
Attorney, counselor, and business coach; Chairman, Shumaker Williams, P.C.; Immediate Past-Chairman, Learning for Life;
Learning for Life Russell C. Hill Award (2011)

bray barnes

Bill Grogg
Board Member
Bill is President and CEO of MCA, Inc. in Poughkeepsie, NY. Net pub is an award-winning digital printing company specializing in short-runs, direct mail, warehousing, distribution, and software solutions. He brings much experience in business, community and nonprofits organizations. Bill, an Eagle Scout, has served as President or Chairman of the Board of several organizations including Private Industry Council Dutchess and Putnam Counties, American Heart Association and United Way of Dutchess County.

Dr. Helen Stiff-Williams
Board Member

Helen is a Professor of Education at Regent University, Virginia Beach, VA.  Her experience in education encompasses both public school and higher education.  Helen has a wide variety of assignments at Regent University that includes teaching and advising as directly related to Character Education.  Aside from teaching, Helen has served as a department chairperson, educational consultant, member and coordinator over the course of several years for many committees as well as serving as the Chairman of the Master's Program, K-12 School Leadership.  There are many credits associated with Helen's deep knowledge in research and development, including K-12 standards-based education, Character Education, Urban Education, Culturally Responsive Schooling and African-American Achievement Gap, and teacher preparation.