Board |
Meg Flack - President

On May 3, 2009,  Meg Flack, Ph.D., of Columbus, who holds a Master’s Degree in Public Policy and Management as well as a Doctorate in Sociology, was unanimously elected to a two-year term by the delegates to the 2009 LWVO State Convention.

Dr. Flack has served on the LWVO state board as both secretary and chair of advocacy and legislation. She also is a member of the LWVO Lobby Corps where she lobbies on capital punishment issues.

Dr. Flack has a long history of community volunteerism and has held leadership positions with Court Appointed Special Advocates of Franklin County (CASA), VOICES for Children and Families, and the Junior League of Columbus. In 2007, she was appointed by Gov. Ted Strickland to the Ohio Judicial Appointments Recommendation Panel.

Ardith Keck - Vice President

Ardith Keck served on the LWVO 2005 board, helping with fund raising and grant writing as well as serving on the Media and Resource Committees. She has served twice on the Nominating Committee of the Ohio League. She is a past president of the Akron Area League, and has moderated many candidate nights.

Jean Koznarek - Second Vice President

Jean graduated from Pratt Institute with a BFA in1977 and an MA in Arts Administration from Rider University in 1986. She has been involved with several non-profit groups including the Friends of the Cleveland Institute of Music. She has been on the board of the LWV Shaker Heights 1997-2007 and chaired many committees including Voter Services and Membership.

She is currently the Chair of the Member Development Committee

Debbie Schmieding- Secretary

Debbie, currently a member of the state board, found good uses for her financial talents as Treasurer. Her League jobs have included being the President of the Athens League and newsletter editor. As a member of the state board, she has been treasurer and a member of the imPACT Planning Committee. In the rest of her life, she is a mom of two grown daughters and executive director of a community nonprofit serving citizens with disabilities. Her husband will confirm that you do not want to cross her on the Scrabble court.


Gail Pytel - Treasurer

For her Kent League, Gail has served as president, vice-president, VOTER editor, and on more committees than she cares to think about! From 1997-2001, she was Treasurer of the LWVO.

She has also chaired the state League’s Budget Committee. Gail serves on the Leadership Portage County Alumni board.


Nancy Brown- Director and Advocacy Committee Chair

Nancy received a B.A. in 1962 and a M.A. in 1963 from the University of Chicago and a J.D. from The Ohio State University in 1974. Her professional career included almost 30 years with Borden, Inc., including stints as General counsel of Borden Foods Corporation and Borden Chemical, Inc. Nancy's League of Women Voters experience began in the 60's in Berkeley, California and included serving on the Board of Trustees of the League of Women Voters of Metropolitan Columbus where she was president from 2003 to 2005. Nancy has served on the Board of Trustees of the Columbus Council on World Affairs and is currently a volunteer guardian ad litem with CASA. She enjoys traveling, hiking, reading and, most of all, her three children and twelve grandchildren.

Melissa Currence - Director

Melissa has been a member of the League of Women Voters since 1997. Active in the Cincinnati Area League, she has served since 2006 as Vice President of Voter Services where she has overseen the production of the LWVCA’s election guide with a press run of 100,000 and managed Ohio’s pages, including its expansion for the presidential election of 2008.

She is also a member of the board of LWVCA’s Ed Fund and has served in the past as action chair of the LWVCA board. A native of Cincinnati, Melissa is public relations professional for Talbert House, a social service agency. She received a B.A. from Xavier University and M.A. from Ohio State University and lives in West Chester, Ohio.

Gwendolyn Fish - Director

Gwen has a great interest in community development. She applies her energy, organizational skills, and attention to detail to projects she has been involved with. Her most significant employment was serving with the Youngstown Area Urban League (YAUL ) as the Housing/Home Ownership Coordinator. She has established relationships with other community based organizations. She is currently working with the NAACP as Housing Chairperson.

She has been involved in many political campaigns. Gwen is a charter member/officer of several community organizations such as the Community Mobilization Committee, Community of Faith Credit Union, Ohio Black Caucus, NAACP and the Political Action Coalition, and also the LWVGY Membership Chair. Most importantly she is the proud mother of two sons, four grandchildren, two great grandchildren and one great grandchild due in July.

Ann Henkener - Director and Legislative Director

Ann received her bachelors degree in Sociology from the Ohio State University  and her Juris Doctorate from Capital University Law School. Her professional experience includes serving for eight years as in-house counsel for a non-profit health care organization in Columbus, Ohio and spending over 20 years as an Assistant Attorney General, representing the State of Ohio in regulating health care, and regulating public utilities.

She has been on the Board of Trustees of the Columbus Metropolitan League of Women Voters since 2003 and the Board of Trustees of the League of Women Voters of Ohio since 2007. She is also the Ohio League’s Legislative Director and focuses on redistricting and public records.

Mary Kirtz Van Nortwick - Director


Upon retiring from the University of Akron as Professor of English and Director of Canadian Studies, she joined the LWV of the Oberlin Area and has served on its board in a number of positions since 2003, including Vice-President and Voter Services Chair. In addition, she is president of the Oberlin Public Library Board of Trustees. She serves on the Issues and Education Committee and is the chair of the Personnel Committee. .

Sally Mier - Director

She received a B.A. from Pomona College. She and her family moved to the Dayton area in 1968. She completed her master’s degree in child development and special education at Wright State University and began teaching adolescents who were MR/DD (mentally retarded and developmentally disabled). She has worked on the Board of MR/DD as the curriculum coordinator for children and adult programs. She also wrote and managed grants for the program. When Sally retired, she became involved in the Dayton League.

Kurt Miller - Director

Kurt received his B.A. in 1975 and Ph.D. in 1981 from the University of Wisconsin at Madison. His professional experience includes faculty and professional staff positions in both basic biological research and clinical programs at several institutions. He has been involved in numerous non-profit activities including the Shaker Heights PTO, the Shaker Schools Foundation and ONE Shaker, a community group working for excellence with equity in education. He was appointed to the Ohio Department of Education Parent Advisory Council in 2009.

Kurt has been a member of the Board of Trustees of the Shaker Heights Public Library since 2006, a member of the Strategic Planning Committee in 2006-2007 and is currently secretary of the Board. He has been on the board of the LWV Shaker Heights since 2005 and was appointed to the LWV-US Election Audits Taskforce in 2008.

Teana Nichol - Director

Her alma mater is Wright State University where she received a BS in History. Teana was the VP of Membership for the LWV of the Greater Dayton Area (2005 – 2008) where she increased the net membership by 10% through targeted membership recruitment, surveys of members, improved relationships with community partners, increased visibility, membership retention programs, and annual networking events. Currently, she is on the LWV Ohio state board for membership development where she successfully lobbied for Ohio’s participation in the national LWV Membership Recruitment Initiative. She also supports the professional needs of women in her role as the International Women in NCR VP of Membership and Chapter Development. Teana enjoys reading, hiking, cycling, yoga, Scrabble and Rock Band.

Terrie Tarchinski-Nielsen- Director

Terrie earned her B.A. in political science from the University of Michigan in 1985 and her J.D. from Case Western Reserve University School of Law in 1988. She practiced law as a litigation attorney for fifteen years. After making a quality of life decision, she obtained her current position as an admissions counselor for the adult programs at the Weekend College and Office of Graduate Studies at Hiram College. Terrie has been on the League Board since 2007 and is on the membership development committee. In addition to being a sports wife and mom, she is the President of the League of Women Voters of Kent, finance chair for the Mental Health and Recovery Board of Portage County and liaison to the Family and Community Service Board.

Deidra Reese - Executive Director * Non Voting Member

League of Women Voters of Ohio Executive Director Deidra M. Reese joined the League Staff in May 2008. She has more than 20 years of public policy experience including serving as Chief Lobbyist and Director of Governmental Services for a statewide membership association.

She also served as a Legislative Aide in the Ohio House of Representatives and the Ohio Senate. Mrs. Reese has policy experience in a number of key areas including Education, Health Care, Election Reform, Redistricting and Campaign Finance Reform. She has extensive experience as a presenter, facilitator and public speaker on many topics.

Deidra is a Graduate of Denison University with a Degree in Sociology and Anthropology. She is a certified Organizational Development Consultant and is currently pursuing a Masters Degree in Public Policy.