Women Veterans Committee

Lauri Brooke: Co-Chair

Lauri Brooke is the Co-Chair of the DAV Women Veterans Committee. She is the Becker County Veterans Service Officer. She currently serves as on the DAV MN Foundation Board and is the Treasurer for her local DAV Chapter. In her spare time, she enjoys cooking, spending time with her husband Darren and her 4 spoiled dogs.

Kerry Allison: Co-Chair

Kerry Allison is the Co-Chair of the DAV Women Veterans Committee. She is a Rating Veteran Service Representative with the St. Paul Regional Office. Kerry has been a lifetime member of DAV since 2014 and has served in a number of roles. She has served as Chapter 28 2nd and 1st junior vice commander and Department of MN 2nd, 3rd, and 4th junior vice commander. Currently, Kerry serves as a director with the Foundation. Her committees include outdoor, women veterans, volunteerism, and membership.

Dr. Patricia McNeese: Committee Member

Retired 2014 from Federal service at the Naval Air Warfare Center Training Systems Division, Orlando, Florida as an Instructional System Specialist with the culmination of over 30 years of dedicated service to our country. After four year of active duty Navy, transferred to the Naval Reserves where she served over 13 years from 1988 to 2001 achieving the rank of Petty Officer Second Class. Received a doctorate in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Central Florida 2009 and currently works for the Department of Employment and Economics Division for the State of MN.

Jessie Faue: Committee Member

Jessi Faue is a Registered Nurse at the Minneapolis VAMC. She is currently in the role as the Outreach and Education Specialist in Suicide Prevention. Jessi is an Army Veteran having served in the Michigan Army National Guard and Active Duty with deploying for Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2005. She is an advocate for women’s health and Whole health for Veterans, which is why she enjoys serving on the DAV Women Veterans Committee.

Candace Ballstadt: Committee Member

SPC Candace Ballstadt, MN Army National Guard, Regular Army, & Army Reserves, 1998-2006. Field Artillery Land Surveyor and 75B. 

Kimberly (Dobler) Johnson: Committee Member

Currently, having nineteen years in the MN Army National Guard as a Human Resource Non-Commissioned Officer.  As a Soldier that completed my mission in Iraq, 2008-2009, with an Aviation Company, I take the role of assisting Women Veterans and Gold Star Families personally. Reside in Apple Valley, MN with her five-year old daughter, Danielle and husband Bryan.

Ashley (Riester) Laganiere Secretary

3rd generation Army veteran and spouse with 10+ years’ experience in veteran services, from the US Department of Veterans Affairs, Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs and current role as an Olmsted County Veteran Service Officer. She currently holds a MS in Public and Nonprofit Administration and is seeking an MA in Health and Human Services Administration. A native of Rochester, Ashley is an active member of Chapter 28 Mayo Southeast as well as WWP and American Legion Post 551. She enjoys event planning, being a mom, and advocating for women veterans.

Amanda Hooper: Committee Member

Amanda has been with the YMCA of the Greater Twin Cities (YGTC) for 5 years, and she currently holds the position of Social Responsibility Project Coordinator for the YGTC. Holding a BS in Human Services she over sees the Veteran and Military inclusion strategic plan for the YGTC and is the chairperson for the YUSA national veteran’s inclusion program working group.  She is a 8-year veteran of the Army and has used her knowledge as a veteran to help bring cultural competence to the YMCA. Along with this work, she also oversees the volunteer management and cooperate volunteer management for the YGTC association. She holds extensive knowledge in volunteer management, grants, fundraising, and disabilities training. She is also a key player in the Service Provider Network and Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Key partner. She is a mom to three adorable kiddos and has an amazing husband who she met in the Army. 

Victoria Chamberlain: Committee Member

After serving in the Air Force for six years I transitioned into an Employment Specialist position out of Moorhead, MN working for the Minnesota Assistance Council for Veterans.  It’s a rewarding and challenging opportunity that I enjoy being a part of and which led me to becoming a member of the women’s veterans committee.  There are a lot of great ladies on this board with some great ideas and I look forward to working with them.