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Team Jack Board Members

The Team Jack Foundation is a nonprofit under the leadership of a volunteer board of directors consisting of community and business leaders from around Nebraska and the country. The board meets monthly to discuss budgets, events and other news about the fight against childhood brain cancer. The expert guidance of our volunteer board consistently drives Team Jack to new heights.

Rex Burkhead

Rex BurkheadRex Burkhead is a veteran running back for the New England Patriots of the National Football League. Originally drafted by Cincinnati in the sixth round (190th overall) of the 2013 NFL Draft, Burkhead has been with the Patriots since the 2017 season. He is a key offensive contributor each season and was a member of the Patriots 2018 Super Championship team, scoring the last two touchdowns during the thrilling overtime AFC Championship against the Kansas City Chiefs. Burkhead played college football at the University of Nebraska, which is where his story with Team Jack began.

Rex has played an important part to the development and ongoing success of the Team Jack Foundation. Not only does Burkhead serve as a board member on the Foundation’s board of directors, but he was instrumental in the Foundation’s inception itself.

Team Jack was formed to raise funds for pediatric brain cancer research. Its namesake is Jack Hoffman, a 15-year-old from Nebraska who has been battling the disease for most of his life. Hoffman and Burkhead formed an unlikely friendship when Burkhead was a star player at Nebraska that has continued to this day.

Hoffman even won a “Best Moment” ESPY award when he entered Nebraska’s 2013 spring game and scored a 69-yard touchdown while sporting No. 22, Burkhead’s number during his college days. The two even met President Barack Obama together at the White House in 2013.

Rex is from Plano, TX, where he currently resides with this wife, Danielle, and two sons, Jett and Steel.

Karen Carson

Karen CarsonKaren Carson is a Co-founder of Fat Brain Toys, a retailer and manufacturer of educational toys and games.

Karen’s introduction to the toy industry came about at the suggestion of her then 10-year old son, Adam. In the Fall of 2002, after finding it difficult to locate specialty toys online, her son suggested that she and her husband Mark build their own website to better serve the growing demand for toys online. Carson accepted the challenge from her son and thus began a new career in the toy industry.

Since 2002, Fat Brain Toys has grown into one of the largest online toy stores in the country. Recognizing the importance of a true multi-channel experience, Fat Brain Toys has since expanded into brick & mortar retail, opening retail store experiences in Omaha, Nebraska and Overland Park, Kansas. In addition to the company’s direct-to-consumer efforts, the company also designs and wholesales it’s own line of products to over 2,000 retailers around the world.

Fat Brain Toys is a frequent benefactor to a number of non-profit organizations that support the needs of children, including: Team Jack Foundation, Omaha Children’s Hospital Foundation, Royal Family Kids, The Toy Bank, and many others.

Karen has been married to her husband and business partner, Mark, since 1992, and lives in Elkhorn, Nebraska. Karen and Mark have three children, Adam, Makenzie, and Jenna.

Bridget Fargen

Bridget FargenAfter nine years as an anchor at 10/11 News in Lincoln, Bridget recently moved back to her home state of Wisconsin, where she is the news director at WSAW-TV in Wausau. She joined the Team Jack Foundation Board in May, 2014.

Bridget got involved with Team Jack when Rex Burkhead was nominated for the 2012 Rare Disease Champion Award through Uplifting Athletes. Since then, Bridget has done many stories to promote Team Jack and pediatric brain cancer awareness in Nebraska. In May of 2014, she traveled to Boston to interview Dr. Liliana Goumnerova about a phase of the brain cancer research she’s currently working on which is funded by the Team Jack Foundation. Through all the stories Bridget’s done, she’s had an opportunity to meet many families affected by pediatric brain cancer. She’s continuously amazed at the resilience of pediatric brain cancer families who are dealt life threatening diagnoses and never give up, despite the outcome, to beat this awful disease. These families and kids are what inspire her to help the Team Jack Foundation push for more research, clinical trials and hopefully, someday, a cure.

Bridget and her husband, former 10/11 meteorologist Tony DeGrand, live in Wisconsin with their son, Jackson.

Dr. Kari Galyen

Dr. Kari GalyenDr. Kari is originally from Pierce, NE. She went to the University of Nebraska. Dr. Kari Galyen is a general practice family physician. Dr. Galyen and her husband, Dr. Jim Galyen, own and operate Sunny Meadow Medical Clinic in Norfolk, Nebraska.

Originally from Pierce, NE, Dr. Galyen attended the University of Nebraska Medical Center where she received her medical doctor (MD) degree. She then completed a dual internal medicine/family practice residency in Omaha and Kearney, NE.

Dr. Galyen is a strong advocate for increased funding for child brain cancer research and was a guest speaker at the 2013 Team Jack Foundation Gala. She has a strong commitment to helping improve treatment options and overall survivorship for children facing the disease.

Dr. Galyen is married to Dr. Jim Galyen and together they live in Atkinson, NE with their four children, Ainsley, Brody, Blake and Luke.

Brianna Hoffman

Brianna HoffmanBrianna Hoffman is a pharmacist at West Holt Medical Services in Atkinson, NE. To contact: Brianna@TeamJackFoundation.org

Kenneth Maxwell

Kenneth MaxwellKenneth Maxwell is the co-founder and Vice President of Advertising for Proxibid.com, a privately held Nebraska based e-commerce Company serving more than a million buyers, and thousands of businesses, auction companies, and non-profit organizations worldwide. In his tenure with the company he has led multiple teams responsible for the design and development of their real-time auction platform, and more recently, led the expansion of the company’s marketing team to provide advertising and creative services to Proxibid and their clients.

Prior to Proxibid, Kenneth was the creative director for another Nebraska based startup – Leftbid.com, and was also a professional artist, selling original art through Anderson O’Brien Fine Art Gallery in Nebraska. Kenneth studied fine art at the University of Nebraska – Lincoln, and abroad in Florence, Italy. He is classically trained in painting and sculpture and graduated from UNL with a degree in Fine and Performing Arts.

Ken resides in Omaha with his wife Lynn, and two children, Kate and Harrison – as well as two black Labrador retrievers, Cira and Chloe, AKA – “the meatballs”.

Tiffany Miller

Tiffany MillerTiffany Miller is a law partner at the Davenport Evans law firm in Sioux Falls, SD. Her practice focuses primarily on banking and financial services law with an emphasis on bank regulatory compliance. Outside of the office, Tiffany is involved in a number of community activities. She serves on the board of directors for Downtown Sioux Falls, Inc., and is on the Sioux Falls Area Chamber of Commerce Community Appeals Committee.

Tiffany is motivated to serve the Foundation by the grueling and potentially harmful treatments currently used to treat pediatric brain cancer patients and the dire need for more funding to support pediatric cancer research. In honor of Jack and all children who are called to the front lines in the battle against cancer, Tiffany is committed to the Team Jack mission of raising awareness and funds for pediatric cancer research. She and her family are proud to Take A Stand in the fight against brain cancer together with the Team Jack Foundation.

Tiffany and her husband, Dr. Nate Miller, are parents to two young boys, Noah and Luke.

Janae Simard

Janae SimardJanae Simard is a Registered Dental Hygienist with Family and Implant Dentistry in Lincoln, NE, since 1997. Janae is an originating member of the Team Jack Foundation board and is committed to helping the organization fund pediatric brain cancer research. She was appointed secretary for the Team Jack Foundation in 2013.

Janae and her husband Robby live in Omaha, Nebraska with their two boys, Eli and Luke. The Simard family is dedicated to helping the Team Jack Foundation improve treatment for children with brain tumors. Having endured their own family adversity with one of their own children, Janae is a compassionate leader who is known for being a “hands on” servant leader for the Foundation.

Janae is active in her childrens’ school and devotes much of her spare time working with children. She enjoys traveling, scuba-diving and family activities.

Scott Fangman

Scott J. Fangman is the Regional Director for Arbor Point Advisors, a subsidiary of Securities America based in La Vista, NE. Scott assists Financial Advisors all across the country to enable them to run their practices in an efficient and profitable manner, and to adhere to their fiduciary standards. Prior to heading up the Arbor Point Advisor initiative, Scott was a Vice President, Institutional Sales for TD Ameritrade Institutional.

Scott is an Omaha native, married to Anne M. Fangman – who is also a committee member. Two children, Audrey, and cancer warrior, Oliver.

Andy Hoffman (Board Chairman 2013 - 2021)

Andy HoffmanCourageous. Passionate. Gregarious. Brave. Selfless. Spiritual. Unwavering. These are just a few of the words used to describe our Team Jack Foundation co-founder, Andy Hoffman. Tributes have poured in from around the country following Andy’s passing on Monday, March 1. Andy was shockingly diagnosed with glioblastoma multiforme, a rare and very aggressive cancer, after having a seizure while running on the Cowboy Trail, in his hometown of Atkinson, Nebraska, in July 2020.

Even after getting this devastating news, Andy was more determined than ever to find ways to raise money for Team Jack. And fast, while he was still able. Following his diagnosis, the Team Jack Foundation launched the “Twice the Fight” campaign as a way to show support for both Jack and Andy Hoffman’s brain cancer battles. One of Andy’s first visions to raise money for Team Jack was to sell t-shirts, and this time selling “Twice the Fight” t-shirts saw nearly 3,000 sold for over $65,000 raised.

Earlier in 2020, Andy worked hard to fulfill his New Year’s resolution and finished writing his first book, “Yards After Contact” which details the family’s experience during Jack’s fight. It was published in October 2020 and has been a huge success. From the beginning, Andy made one thing clear with his book: 100% of the proceeds for the book sales go to Team Jack and, Team Jack would own the copyright to the book. To date, over 2,500 books have been sold, raising nearly $80,000 for Team Jack.

In the book, Andy writes:
“This book is the mission statement for the Team Jack Foundation, a Nebraska business that tirelessly works daily to improve brain cancer treatment in its region and nationally fund child brain cancer research. I hope you can open this book and know Jack and what his foundation stands for.”

In early December, both ESPN and BigTen Networks produced shows giving an update on the Hoffmans’ life with cancer. The ESPN E:60 story aired as part of programming highlighting the importance of cancer research during ESPN’s 14th consecutive V Week on Dec.1-12. Andy spoke with Chris Connelly about his fight and his hopes for the future of those fighting childhood brain cancer. “This is going to sound screwy, but it’s been a blessing,” he said. “We’re supposed to thank God for the challenges that he gives us, and I’ve prayed the thank-you prayer. Thank you, God, for giving me brain cancer. Because he knows what he’s doing. And you don’t.” Check off another chance for Andy to raise awareness of this disease.

Andy always looked to seize every opportunity to raise awareness for childhood brain cancer and fund research from some of the brightest research minds in the country. Although the Hoffmans knew the research they were funding may not benefit their son Jack, he did it for all the families down the road that will receive the horrible diagnosis of pediatric brain cancer. Andy remained hopeful even when faced with the grim nature of his prognosis.
Andy worked hard to squeeze more life into his 42 years than most get in a lifetime. He did a couple of bucket list items, including a New Mexico elk hunt with his kids, his wife, and brothers during the last months of his life. He kept his unwavering faith and spent every moment possible with his family.

In mid-February, his condition progressed, and his fight ended on Monday, March 1, where he peacefully passed away at home surrounded by his loving family. He is survived by his wife Brianna, children Jack, Ava and Reese, parents Gary and Karen Hoffman of Spencer, brothers Tony (Amy) Hoffman of Crofton and Michael (Jacky) Hoffman of Spencer, sister Julia (Chris) Jones of Tellico Plains, TN, parents-in-law Kerry and Bonnie Stiner of Burke, SD, sister-in-law Tiffany (Nate) Miller of Sioux Falls, SD, brother-in-law Kollin (Sarah) Stiner of Lakeville, MN, nephews Nathan Hoffman of Spencer, Hudson and Hayden Hoffman of Spencer, Luke Jones of Cleveland, OH, Matt and Nate Jones of Clarksburg, MD, Noah, Luke and Graham Miller of Sioux Falls, SD, and Karson Stiner of Lakeville, MN, nieces Alison (Justin) Wegenke of Fort Collins, CO, Samantha (Cody) Kahl of Grand Island, NE, Lauryn and Amelia Hoffman of Spencer, and Isabel and Nora Stiner of Lakeville, MN. He was also excited to be a Great Uncle to Will and Wren Wegenke and Alton Kahl. He was preceded in death by his brother Luke Hoffman.

The Team Jack Foundation is committed to working harder than ever to ensure Andy’s legacy shines, and his mission grows. He had big ideas and big dreams for the foundation, and we will focus on making those a reality. He is irreplaceable and his smile and energy will be missed. But we will always follow the path he set to be a success. And fight on in his honor. How lucky we all are to have known him.

Team Jack Staff

Team Jack’s caring, driven staff is dedicated to ending childhood brain cancer by pushing Team Jack forward every day.

Kylie Dockter, Executive Director

Kylie DockterKylie (Tielke) Dockter joined the Foundation in August 2013 as the first full time employee for the Foundation and is excited to be part of the fight against pediatric brain cancer.

Kylie received her Bachelor of Science degree in Journalism: Public Relations in December 2009 from the University of Nebraska at Kearney with a minor in Political Science and has strong qualifications in management, marketing and sales through educational and job experience. Recently, she began working toward her Masters in Business Administration.

She has been involved in the non-profit sector for nearly five years. Prior to the Foundation, Kylie was the Director of Marketing and then Executive Director of a non-profit that benefits nearly 50 non-profits in the Denver, CO metro area. In addition to management skills, she assisted in planning large scale events to raise money for these 50 non-profits.

She joined the Team Jack Foundation in August 2013 as the Chief Development Director and is now the Executive Director of the Foundation. Working with a Foundation that has such an impact on children and children’s lives has truly been a career dream for Kylie, so she is very excited to join such a prestigious and impactful Foundation to help with their goals.

She was born and raised in Atkinson, NE and is married to her husband Stuart Dockter who is originally from North Dakota and together they have a daughter, Graesyn, and a son, Hayes.

To contact: kylie@teamjackfoundation.org

Lindsey Nemetz, Director of Marketing

Lindsey (Mlnarik) NemetzLindsey (Mlnarik) Nemetz grew up in Clearwater, Nebraska with four older brothers. She received her degree in Business Administration from Nebraska Wesleyan University in 2001 and was a member of the Prairie Wolves women’s basketball and softball teams from 1997 – 2001. In 2009, after six years as a property & casualty insurance agent in Atkinson, NE she changed her focus to her family. Lindsey and her husband, Chris, have five children, Maci, Drake, Avery, Landri, and Brooke. Lindsey began helping the foundation in October 2013 and is committed to finding a cure for pediatric brain cancer.

To contact: lindsey@teamjackfoundation.org

 

Shari Gilg, Community Relations Director

Shari joined Team Jack in June, 2020, to help expand the Foundation’s footprint in Omaha. She brings over 30 years of business management, event planning and marketing experience. She was most recently the Advancement Events Director at Marian High School in Omaha, where she helped raise over $4,000,000 with her events during her 10-year tenure. She earned her bachelor’s degree in Journalism from the University of Nebraska – Lincoln in 1987.

Shari and her husband, Tim, live in Elkhorn, Nebraska. They have two adult children, Sara and Ben. They are avid Nebraska football fans, and enjoy traveling and spending time with family.

To contact: shari@teamjackfoundation.org

Kimberly Kirlin, Office Manager

Kimberly Kirlin joined the Foundation in October 2020. She was previously employed by First Data for six years. During that time, she had the opportunity to attend Metropolitan Community College, studying Criminal Justice and Psychology. She moved to Atkinson, Nebraska, in May of 2019 and worked at the United States Postal Service until beginning her employment at Team Jack.

Kimberly was born in Louisana to a military family, which allowed her the experience of living in many places within the United States. She enjoys meeting new people and helping in any way that she can. She has always felt the desire to push for advancement in children’s treatment. Working to help improve research for childhood brain cancer gives her many opportunities to fulfill her ambitions of helping children.

Kimberly is raising her three children, Marley, Mason, and Magnolia, with her fiance Travis in Atkinson. She is so happy to do such important work for childhood brain cancer research in a small-town setting.

To contact Kimberly: kimberly@teamjackfoundation.org