Lewis Acampora
Senior Content Director - Science, AdvanceKentucky
Cell: 502.263.3626
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Lewis "Lew" joined KSTC in February 2008. After 21 years of teaching secondary school chemistry, physics, and mathematics at independent schools in North Carolina, California, and Kentucky, Lew joins KSTC as Science Director for the AdvanceKentucky initiative. During his tenure as a classroom teacher, nearly all of Lew's students consistently earned qualifying scores on Advanced Placement examinations in chemistry, physics, and calculus. He has acted as a reader, table leader, and question leader for the AP Chemistry program, and is a College Board consultant in chemistry. Lew has also developed curricular materials for chemistry education, helping to develop commercial molecular modeling software and integrating the laboratory component of science courses into the content. He is currently a member of the PRAXIS test development committee in middle school physical science and has presented workshops at regional and national conferences. His expertise in successfully teaching science at the secondary level will support the efforts of the AP Science teachers in the schools selected to participate in the AdvanceKentucky Initiative.

Danielle Adkins
Senior Accounting Assistant
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Danielle joined KSTC in May 2010 as an Accounting Assistant. Previously, Danielle worked at Daugherty Petroleum Inc. (DPI) for two years in their accounting department. Prior to DPI, Danielle worked for Glenn Springs Holdings, Inc. for eight years as an Accounting Assistant.

Chris Baker
Chief Information Officer 
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Chris joined KSTC in August 2007 as the IT Manager and currently serves as Director, Information Technology. He is responsible for the systems development and alignment of technology needs across the multiple on-going and new projects at KSTC. Chris began his career as a Computer Technician at Alltech, Inc. while attending Sullivan University. In his 7-years at Alltech, he grew both personally and professionally leaving as the North American IT Manager. Prior to coming to KSTC, he served two years as a Collaboration Software Project Manager with Department of Defense contractor L-3 Communications. Chris brings over 10-years of technical knowledge and 5-years of IT Management to the position, with the goal of continually aligning business and IT in the form of business value.

Shari Ball
Executive Assistant, KEF, KNEV, Kentucky Innovation Network
[email protected]

Shari joined KSTC in March 2007 supporting the Kentucky Enterprise Fund staff. Previously, Shari worked as Administrative Assistant/Office Manager at the University of Kentucky Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care, and Sleep Medicine. Prior to UK, Shari was a Technology Assistant for public schools in both Asheville, North Carolina, and Houston, Texas.

Nancy Brown
Procurement Specialist, Kentucky Procurement Technical Assistance Center (KyPTAC)
[email protected]


Nancy moved to Lexington, KY from Amman, Jordan 15 years ago. From the internship she landed at Queen Rania's Office, Nancy became passionate about creating change in her community. Before devoting her work to KSTC, Nancy served as a Program Manager for the Going Places Network, an opportunity development and self-sufficiency initiative funded by the Walmart Foundation, in collaboration with Dress for Success Lexington. Nancy received her Bachelor of Arts in Communications from the University of Kentucky and proceeded to work with fast, multifaceted iconic brands including UK HealthCare and Valvoline Headquarters. Nancy's communication and marketing background spans across day-to-day operations and execution of complex campaings for new products, brand awareness campaigns and programs that maintain consumer loyalty.


Dallas Browning
Marketing Associate, Kentucky Innovation Network
[email protected]


Dallas joined KSTC in September 2015 as a Business Research Intern and in May 2016 he completed his BA in Politicald Science at the University of Kentucky.


Kenzie Dickens
Administrative Assistant, Kentucky SBIR/STTR Matching Funds Program
[email protected] 


Barbara Flexter
Director of Operations
Cell: 859.229.7161 
[email protected]


Barbara has been on the KSTC staff since April 1990 and is the company-wide Director of Operations. She supports various activities of the KSTC President and select activities that involve multiple, interrelated programs managed by KSTC across all divisions.


Darrall Henderson
Program Manager, Kentucky Procurement Technical Assistance Center (KyPTAC)
[email protected]



Darrall has years of experience in leadership and business ranging from the boardrooms to operations throughout the world and is passionate about helping Kentucky businesses grow. Prior to taking over as the State Director for the Kentucky PTAC, Darrall worked with a consulting firm that provided strategic planning, enterprise resource planning and change management advice to small and medium sized companies. Darrall was a Colonel in the Army Corps of Engineers with years of experience as an engineer, analyst and strategic planner.  After leaving active duty, he worked for a large aerospace company as a Business Development Executive, Program Manager, and Country Manager for activities in Afghanistan. Prior to being appointed as Country Manager in Afghanistan, Darrall worked for another large defense contractor as the Program Manager for the Afghan Education Project, responsible for a team of professionals selected to create and implement the professional development and education system for the Afghan National Army. He received his Bachelor’s Degree in Building Construction from the University of Florida, holds a Master of Science degree in Operations Research from Stanford University and a Masters in Strategic Studies from the US Army War College.  Darrall also holds a Ph.D. in Industrial Engineering and Operations Research from Virginia Tech.


Richard A. Johnson
Vice President, Technology Commercialization, Idea State U, Kentucky Innovation Network (ICC)
Cell: 859.327.9195
[email protected]

Rick joined KSTC in February 2011 as Technology Commercialization Executive in Residence. Previously Rick ran two closely held electronic manufacturing companies and divisions of two publicly traded electronic manufacturing companies. Rick started his career as a design engineer and progressed into engineering management, sales management and then general management. Rick has experience in the telecommunications, petrochemical, security, transportation, components, electronic sensing and capital equipment markets. Rick holds a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from U.C. Berkeley, an M.S. in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University, and an MBA from UCLA. Rick has been awarded four U.S. patents.

Kris W. Kimel
Cell: 859.229.6161
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Kris Kimel is President and a founder of the Kentucky Science and Technology Corporation, an independent non-profit company with an international reputation for designing and implementing innovative and broad-scale initiatives in  science, technology, talent development, entrepreneurship and disruptive innovation. Kris holds Bachelor's and Master's degrees from the University of Kentucky and while a student was a 1974 recipient of the University of Kentucky's Sullivan Medallion. He is also founder of the international IdeaFestival and was a leader behind the vision and successful  implementation of Kentucky Space.


Rick Kurzynske
Director, Kentucky Statewide EPSCoR Program
[email protected]

In September 2002, Rick began as the new part-time Director for Kentucky's Statewide EPSCoR Program. His background includes a decade in Chicago with a natural gas energy consortium that principally invested in research, development and commercialization of energy related technologies. There he managed a $60 million technology investment portfolio and guided the successful commercialization of over a dozen technologies. Rick moved to Lexington when he became an officer of the Mason & Hanger Corporation, a Forbes 500 Company, which prior to its sale, principally provided technical and manufacturing services to the Federal government. Rick has been responsible for two high-tech startup companies, and is or has been an officer/board member of 10 companies. He has an MBA from the Keller Graduate School of Business, and a Ph.D. in Civil Engineering (energy and environmental focus) from the University of Tennessee – Knoxville.

Maria Labreveux
Executive Dirrector, Kentucky Science and Enginnering Foundation
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Maria Labreveux joined KSTC in February 2007 and is the Program Director R&D and Commercialization for the Kentucky Science and Engineering Foundation (KSEF). Maria manages the KSEF R&D and the Kentucky Commercialization Fund (KCF) programs, for which KSTC receives funding from the Commonwealth of Kentucky through a contract with the Council on Post-Secondary Education. Maria brings research and grants management experiences from the Delaware State University (DSU) where she worked as an Assistant Professor before moving to Kentucky. Maria secured over $2 million in two and half year period at DSU for her research and teaching from federal and state agencies such as the United States Department of Agriculture, National Recourses Conservation Services (USDA-NRCS), the Cooperative State Research, Education and Extension Services (CSREES), the National Science Foundation (NSF), and University of Delaware. Dr. Labreveux is an active member of the Early Career Professional Division of the Agronomy and Crop Science Societies of America and a contributor to the society's monthly newsletter. Maria received her PhD in Agronomy-Plant Science from The Pennsylvania State University, and her MS and Ag. Engineering degrees in Argentina.

Elizabeth LaVigne
Senior Executive Assistant, AdvanceKentucky
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Liz joined KSTC in February 2006 in a shared position supporting the Kentucky Enterprise Fund staff and the Executive Vice President. Currently, she is dedicated full-time to support the Executive Vice President. Previously, Liz worked as the International Procurement Manager for Great Lakes Dredge and Dock Company, and was assigned to job sites in West Africa, Kuwait, Bahrain, Iraq, and Egypt. Prior to Great Lakes, Liz was the Medical Student Education Coordinator at the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine, Departments of Emergency Medicine and Surgery

Jana Layne
Manager of Science Content, AdvanceKentucky
Cell: 859-229-9972
[email protected]

Jana Layne joined KSTC as a Science Content Manager with AdvanceKentucky in 2011.

Anthony Mires
Executive Director, AdvanceKentucky and LTF State Director
Cell: 859-230-6383
[email protected]


Anthony joined KSTC in June 2011 as Director of Educational Services.  His current duties include management of Kentucky’s pre-AP Laying the Foundation training program, work with AdvanceKentucky to accelerate access to AP coursework in high school, and management of IF Origins, the introductory level of IdeaFestival® that serves middle school students. Before taking the position, Anthony taught AP Biology at Barren County High School where he helped develop the AP science program and sponsored a science club that won state honors in both Science Olympiad and BEST Robotics.  During his tenure Anthony was recognized by the National Math and Science Initiative as an All-American Teacher of the Year for AP Science in 2010.  He earned a BS in Biology, a BA in English, and a MA in Secondary Education from the University of Kentucky. 


Monique Morton
Senior Content Director - Math & Computer Science, AdvanceKentucky
Cell: 859.230.0530 
[email protected]

Monique joined KSTC in September 2008 as the Math Content Director for AdvanceKentucky. Before relocating, Monique taught high school mathematics in a Washington, DC public school for over 20 years. During that time, nearly all of her AP Calculus AB and BC students took the Advanced Placement examination and the majority of those students earned qualifying scores of 3 or above. Monique has served on several committees and writing teams, including the AP Calculus Test Development Committee and the SAT Mathematics Test Development Committee. She is a College Board consultant for AP and Pre-AP mathematics and has been a reader, table leader, and question leader for the AP Calculus reading. Monique earned a BS in mathematics from the College of William and Mary in Virginia and completed graduate courses in mathematics and education at several Washington, DC area institutions.

Jon Olsen 
Senior Procurement Specialist, Kentucky Procurement Technical Assistance Center (KyPTAC)
[email protected]


Prior to joining KSTC, Jon was the Procurement Operations Manager for the Corporate Services Office of the Western Area Power Administration. Jon has a total of 30 years experience in Federal contracting and financial assistance award placement and administration. Within the Department of Energy, he held positions as a Contract Specialist, Grants and Agreements Specialist and Contracting Officer for the Western Area Power Administration and  Golden Field Office. He also was a civil Contracting Intern with the US Army and a Contract Negotiator with the US Air Force. Jon earned a Bachelor's degree from the University of Alaska -- Anchorage and an MBA from the University of Colorado - Denver.


Steve Pelphrey
Cell: 859-327-0840
[email protected]


Steve joined KSTC in April of 2017 as Controller and is responsible for all internal/external financial analysis and reporting, contract compliance/revenue recognition across diverse federal, state and private funding sources, cash management/banking relationships, coordination of annual independent audit process and other periodic governmental audits and regulatory compliance. A Kentucky native, Steve has extensive financial leadership experience with both for-profit and non-profit organizations including YMCA of Central Kentucky, ATMA Investments, Keeneland Association, Lexmark International and Kentucky Housing Corporation. Steve holds a BS in Accounting from the University of Kentucky and an MBA in Finance from Xavier University. He is also a Certified Public Accountant and a Certified Internal Auditor.

Kelby Price
Fund Director, Kentucky Enterprise Fund
[email protected] 


Kelby joined KSTC in November 2014 as KEF Fund Director and has provided valuable expertise in making strategic inestments in several innovative start-ups as well as timely assistance on business funding issues to KEF's diverse and growing portfolio of clients.


Debbie Rempfer
Senior Executive Assistant, Kentucky Science and Engineering Foundation
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Debbie Rempfer joined KSTC in August of 2006 and is the Senior Executive Assistant for the Kentucky Science and Engineering Foundation (KSEF). She supports the KSEF Executive Director and provides administrative assistance for the Kentucky Science and Engineering Foundation, the Research and Development Excellence program (R&D), the Kentucky Commercialization Fund program (KCF), the Phase Zero and Phase Double Zero programs (PZ-DZ), and Kentucky SBIR-STTR Proposal Preparation Workshops and Conferences (organized by KSEF and KSTC). Debbie's business experience includes executive support, publications and print media, business and medical office management, personnel, benefits, and finance and policy administration. Her professional background includes working at Artemetrx, CHA Health and the Center for Psychological Health before joining KSTC. In addition, she is a published author (David C. Cook Publishing Company), and worked as an editor and writer for Bristol Books. Debbie received her Bachelor's from Asbury University.

Ken Ronald
Senior Program Manager, Kentucky SBIR-STTR Matching Funds Program
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Ken Ronald joined KSTC in February of 2007 and is the Program Manager for the Kentucky SBIR-STTR Matching Funds Program. Ken brings experience from the Virginia/DC area where he was a support contractor for the Marine Corps. Ken worked as a Captain for six years flying for Colgan Air, Inc., a US Air Express carrier. His previous work included 15 years with the Air Force at WPAFB in the Manufacturing Technology Directorate, Nonmetals Branch, supporting composite structures processing and design programs. He has supported C-17, Global Hawk, F-22 and JSF (Joint Strike Fighter) manufacturing issues. While working for the Air Force, Ken managed many Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) and Historically Black College and University (HBCU) contracts. Ken has a Bachelors Degree in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Florida.

Tina Rose
Senior Content Director - English, AdvanceKentucky
Cell: 502.548-6315
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Tina joined KSTC in January 2008 as English Director for AdvanceKY. She comes from a multi-faceted background which spans 12 years in education. Tina taught high school English including AP Language and Literature and most recently worked at the Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) organizing, developing and delivering presentations for state and international conferences. During her work with KDE, Tina conducted extensive analysis of the ACT test, coordinated the analysis of the test with other consultants, designed and delivered presentations on dialects in Kentucky and their effects on reading and worked with curriculum development. She earned a BA in Teaching Secondary English from the University of Kentucky and an MA in Linguistics from the University of Louisville. Students taking Ms. Rose's AP English classes showed great success in acquiring qualifying scores on national AP exams. Tina brings to AdvanceKentucky schools her expertise in successfully teaching AP English classes, data analysis, and research.

Terry Samuel
Executive Vice President/Chief Operating Officer
[email protected] 

Terry Samuel joins  KSTC effective January 1, 2017.  Samuel just recently completed a long career at Lexmark and IBM. His  final role at Lexmark was as Vice President in the Global Service Operations group. Previous to this assignment, Samuel was the VP and GM of Lexmark’s Global OEM & Alliances business unit, serving customers in Asia, Europe and North America. As part of this role, Samuel spent 2½ years on assignment in Singapore. Across his career, Samuel succeeded in a broad cross section of leadership roles including general management, international sales, supply chain, product development and service operations. Samuel holds a BS in electrical engineering from the University of Massachusetts and an MBA from Xavier University.

Jessica Sanford
Senior Executive Assistant and Data Specialist, AdvanceKentucky
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Jessica joined KSTC in July 2010 as Administrative Assistant for the AdvanceKentucky Program.

Debra Talbott
Accounting and Human Resource Specialist
[email protected]

Debra joined KSTC in May 1998 supporting the Accounting Manager and Chief Financial Officer, and responsible for purchase orders, the invoicing process and accounts receivable. Prior to joining KSTC, Debra was employed for ten years as Office Manager of the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association, a national non-profit organization.

Aaron Timmons
Mathematics Content Manager, AdvanceKentucky
[email protected] 


Aaron joined KSTC in August 2016 as the Math Content Manager for AdvanceKentucky. Before taking the position, Aaron taught mathematics, including AP Calculus AB and BC, at Bryan Station High School in Fayette County for 10 years. During that time, he served for 7 years on the school's Site Based Decision Making Council (SBDM). In addition, Aaron has been part of several school and district committees involving curriculum, assessment, and grading. He is also endorsed by the National Math and Science Initiative (NMSI) as a mathematics trainer for Laying the Foundation. Aaron earned a BS in mathematical economics from the University of Kentucky and completed master's programs at UK and Eastern Kentucky University.


John B. Wehrle
Senior Vice President of Finance & Human Resources
Cell: 859.797.5826
[email protected]


John joined KSTC in April 2000. A Kentucky native, John's extensive multi-industry administrative and financial management experience enable him to effectively direct KSTC's grant compliance and accounting systems used to monitor diverse federal, state, municipal, and private foundation funding sources, as well as coordinate other areas such as corporate budgeting, cash management, human resources, risk management and internal control. Prior to joining KSTC, John was CFO for Technologies International Holdings, Inc., a multi-state environmental consulting and remediation contractor in federal, state, and private markets. John holds a BS in Accounting from the University of Kentucky and is a licensed CPA and CMA.

Christine Wildes
Program Manager, Kentucky Innovation Network - Headquarters
[email protected]


Christine Wildes joined KSTC in February 2013 as a Program Manager working with the Kentucky Innovation Network and the Governor’s School for Entrepreneurs.  She earned B.S. and M.S. degrees in Education from the University of Wisconsin-Stout and an MBA from the Minnesota School of Business. Christine’s background also includes exceptional business skills acquired from her experience as a Director of Admissions for several universities and in management positions in private industry, including retail buyer, real estate broker, office manager and President/Administrator of a successful parent cooperative preschool.