Who We Are

Message from the founder

Brian Conyer

Leadership Team

Connect-A-Kid takes pride in the mentorship program they have created and believe that it could not have been accomplished without the strong friendships you see reflected on the board, the leadership team, and within the group of mentors, we have across the nation. Connect-A-Kid is more than an organization, it is a family.

Connect with us

Leadership

Elizabeth Kolar
Programming Director
Elizabeth Kolar, Ph.D. has been involved with Connect-A-Kid for 4 years as a mentor for the Baltimore team, and now serves as the organization's Program Director. She received her B.S. from Salisbury University, and went on to receive her Ph.D. in Biochemistry at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Besides Connect-A-Kid, Elizabeth has sat on the Board of Directors of Adoption Links, DC, serving the adult adoptee community in the MD/VA/DC area. Currently, she is a Post-Doctoral Fellow at Boston University Medical Center with her research focusing on Type 2 Diabetes. Elizabeth was born in South Korea, raised in Red Lion, PA, and currently lives in Boston, MA.
Julia McElhone
Director of Marketing and Public Relations
Julia McElhone has been involved with Connect-A-Kid since 2014 where she started with the organization as the Social Media Manager and now acts as the Director of Marketing and Public Relations. Julia received her B.S. from Towson University and currently resides in Baltimore, Maryland where she works full-time in Sports Television and freelances running her own Event Planning, Marketing, and Public Relations agency. Julia, an adoptee who was born in Bogotá, Colombia, was raised in Maryland with her older brother who is also a Colombian adoptee. She is thrilled to be a member of this organization she calls family and can't wait to see what the future brings.
Sara Campbell
Executive Director - Family & Mentor Outreach
Sara is an adult Korean adoptee who has been involved with post-Korean adoption services since 2003. She is mom to Noah, who is 11, and partner to another Korean adoptee, Brian. She received her Master’s degree in Social Work from Michigan State University. Sara has been involved with the Korean Adoptive Family Adoptee Network (KAAN) by being on the advisory council from 2010-2016 and assisted with planning the 2005 and 2013 annual conference. Sara began volunteering with Connect-A-Kid in 2014. Her hope is that young adoptees find mentors who can help and connect with them through their adoption journey. She currently resides in the Detroit, MI area.

Board of Directors

Karen Brown
Vice Chair
Karen Brown, a proud parent of three adopted children from China, Rwanda, and the Marshall Islands, recently relocated to the United States with her family from Hong Kong. Karen graduated from Indiana University with degrees in journalism and education. She began her career as a teacher before focusing on knowledge management and technical communications. During her years living in Hong Kong, Karen was elected chair of the International Montessori School's PTA and owned and operated a summer camp in Hokkaido, Japan. She is currently based in Los Angeles where she works as an independent contract technical writer and participates in many community- and adoption-based organizations. Karen’s experience living in diverse communities, coupled with the increasingly diverse world of international adoption, motivated her to join Connect-A-Kid. She hopes to help Connect-A-Kid continue to grow and to ensure its inclusivity.
Thomas Kaplan
Board Member Secretary
Thomas Kaplan (Lee, Sung Joo), is adopted from Busan, Korea and grew up Long Island, New York. He has been in reunion with his paternal birth family since 2000. As a board member, Thomas would like to enhance the team mentoring program to develop our children's adoption identity and creating lifelong friendship with mentors and mentees.
Kim Hanson
Board Chairman
Kim Hanson has been with Connect-A-Kid since it began in 2011. Through the years he has been instrumental in growing and maintaining the organization and developing strong ties with the Consulate General of Republic of Korea Los Angeles. Kim currently works at Grifols a global pharmaceutical company in Los Angeles as Global Director, Talent Acquisition of Biomat USA, Inc. the largest division of Grifols. The division has 12,000 employees & 200 plus plasma collection centers, labs & testing facilities.
Kimberly Mundala
Board Member