Institute Advisory Council

The Indiana Community Action Poverty Institute’s Advisory Council guides and supports the Institute's work activities through monthly council meetings, review of work products, and participation at Institute events. We welcome new members with lived experience of financial instability and strive to maintain diverse representation both in terms of social identities and members’ locations within the state.

Current Members: 

Kim Kim Boyd, Indianapolis, IN – I am the Founder & President of the H.O.P.E. (Helping Others Prosper Economically) TEAM which is a grassroots, volunteer collaborative effort that has been seeking to help the underserved in Indianapolis for over 30 years.  Originally from Gary, Indianapolis has been my home for over 40 years. I enjoy spending time with my family and grandchildren.
  • Policy interestsChildren/families being able to cope in dysfunctional environments, crime, seniors being able to "stay in place", the welfare system, DCS, affordable childcare
Destiny Destiny Faceson, Indianapolis, IN - I am a Grassroots Maternal and Child Health Leader. As an advocate of public health, I focus my efforts on lowering Indiana's infant and maternal mortality rates, helping families secure and keep their housing, and supporting community collaborations.
  • Policy interests: Family mental health, housing insecurity, paid time off, and wage gaps.
Lillian Lillian Singh, Noblesville, IN – I am a passionate and inquisitive individual, dedicated to lifelong learning. With a keen interest in artificial intelligence and robots, I embrace the ever-evolving world of technology. Alongside fascination with AI, I am deeply committed to addressing policy issues that advocate for workplace diversity and inclusion, while recognizing the importance of creating equitable environments. I believe in the power of continuous education for professional growth and am full of hope and excitement for social change that lowers the poverty percentage of BIPOC women in Indiana.
  • Policy interestsAdult learning, apprenticeship opportunities, the upskilling of adult employees
Akiah Akiah Riddick, Indianapolis, IN – I'm 14 years old and from Northeast Indianapolis. I love to dance, try new food, and spend time with my best friends. I am also a member of the Northeast Corridor Youth Advisory Council and Leading Ladies. 
  • Policy interests: Education, health care, paid maternity leave, diversity in higher levels of power
Dana Dana Gaines, Indianapolis, IN – I married my childhood sweetheart and we have been married for eight months. I am also a grandmother of 10, and their ages range from 21 to 6. I love listening to music and dancing.
  • Policy interestsAffordable housing, childcare assistance, adult care, social safety (gun laws), education
 Crystal Crystal Hilbert, Losantville, IN 

I worked in the medical field for 19 years. I love to help others and have a passion to do so. I’m a mom of one grown son that’s 24. I like to spend time with my nieces and nephews. I served as SGA President at Ivy Tech Community College at the Richmond campus. I enjoyed learning policies, procedures, voting and how things work. 

  • Policy interests: What we have in place for people with disabilities and the time in between working and getting disability, housing issues, tenants' rights
  Aimee West, Muncie, IN - Aimee is Executive Director for the Anderson Education Foundation, is BOD Secretary for the Facing Project on NPR, and has served as Vice President for Family Alliance, Community and Neighborhood Organizer for Muncie's strategic plan, Muncie Action Plan, Executive Director for Cancer Services of East Central Indiana, and public educator at the Youth Opportunity Center via Muncie Community Schools, where she also served on the Community Engagement Council. She is a mother of four, a writer/photographer, alumna of Ball State, and a former rural victim rights advocate and CASA (Court-appointed special advocate) for children. She prioritizes civic engagement and preserving declining local investigative journalism to help improve public health outcomes and combat mis/disinformation in Indiana. 
  • Policy interests: Education, health care, housing, child care, women's equity.

Derrick Faulkens, South Bend, IN - I have three adult children. I was a union carpenter for more than 20 years and I have also held several sales jobs over the past 40 years to make ends meet. I am currently in my 11th year as a bartender at Legends on the campus of the University of Notre Dame. In September, I will begin the final phase of the South Bend Entrepreneur Adversity Program.

  • Policy interest: Workforce development, education and youth leadership programs, housing, community health and welfare and social justice

Wendy Wright, Camden, IN - I worked in and out of healthcare for over 20 years and received my Bachelor's Degree in Health Care Administration/Management before becoming disabled because of an unconventional cervical spinal cord injury in 2019. I have been a Certified Health Care Worker and Certified Addictions Recovery Coach, have led women's trauma groups, and have worked in in-patient facilities and schools along with working with patients in behavioral and mental health. I have also engaged in social work, helping link people to resources and assist them with navigating and completing different programs. I am a passionate advocate for mental health, trauma victims, fighting against homelessness, and fighting for the aged and disabled communities.    

  • Policy interests: Addressing circumstances contributing to the increasing amount of people who are living in poverty and on the verge of homelessness, bringing more awareness to people about assistance programs, addressing the lack of assistance and insurance coverage for people with disabilities who are not veterans to address what people with disabilities actually need and the challenges they face. I also want to help identify and address the many issues within federal programs that are in place that contribute to people being disqualified from state programs

Kassandra Berger, Jasper, IN

  • Policy interests: Support of foster children/ families (with a focus on those with high medical and/or support needs), workers' rights, health care access, education, fair lending practices, recidivism reduction


Kendra Cuyler, Merrillville, IN 

  • Policy interests: Housing, supports for individuals with disabilities