Young Professionals Giving Back
Friends of the House is a young professional group that comes together to support the children and families served by Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Texas. Together, members fundraise, volunteer and participate in events that bring comfort to our families. Friends of the House members enjoy many activities and benefits including:
- Participating on a Cook Team to prepare meals for families staying at the Ronald McDonald House
- Networking at quarterly Happy Hours with Friends of the House members
- Receiving discounted admission at select Fundraising Events
- Joining Volunteer Opportunities like the Friends of the House holiday decorating party or Hops for the House
- Getting involved in leadership opportunities and serving on the Leadership Council to help direct the Friends of the House strategy
To stay informed about all the upcoming Friends of the House events, send your contact information here.
Hops for the House – September 26, 2019
Save the Date for Friends of the House’s biggest fundraiser — Hops for the House! Enjoy craft beer, tacos, live music and an amazing silent auction at Lazarus Brewing Co. To get involved or become a sponsor, click here.
It costs $100 per night for RMHC CTX to cover the cost of a family staying at the Ronald McDonald House. Families are asked to donate $20 per night, but no family is ever turned away due to an inability to pay. By becoming a member of Friends of the House, you will help support family night stays at the Ronald McDonald House.
Friends of the House three different membership levels include:
If you are interested in joining Friends of the House, but want to experience an event before committing, join us for a Cook Night or Happy Hour to learn more. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
The Leadership Council is the executive team responsible for overseeing Friends of the House.
|Kaeley Benson, President
Research Director, CFRP Child and Family Research Partnership at LBJ
Kaeley has supported RMHC-CTX as a volunteer at the Ronald McDonald House, in the Ronald McDonald Family Rooms, and at Bandana Ball and Starlight Affair. She serves as the Research Director for the Child and Family Research Partnership at the LBJ School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin. A North Carolina native, Kaeley has lived in Austin since 2008. She enjoys running, attending UT football games, going on adventures with her husband, and keeping their pup, Tillie, out of mischief.
|Ryan Bednarz, Vice President
Director of Finance, Alen Corporation
Ryan joined the Friends of the House in 2016 as a member of a Cook Team and took on the role of captain of a Cook Team in 2017. This is Ryan’s second year of participating on the Leadership Council. Ryan is the director of Finance for Alen Corporation, a company dedicated to providing Pure Air for Life through its line of premium air purifiers. As an Austin resident, Ryan enjoys tennis, fitness, traveling the world and all things Texas A&M. Whoop!
|Justin Brodnax, Service Chair
Preconstruction Manager, Hoar Construction
Justin joined Friends of the House in 2017, and became a lifetime Friends of the House Member in 2018. He has supported RMHC by being on the Sporting Clay Classic Committee the past two years and through his employer they have been cooking lunch at the house for over 3 years! They also spearheaded a refresh of the offices, play room, and kitchen at the house in 2018. Just is also on the Associate Board for the ACE Mentor Program in Austin, and most recently an alumni of the Real Estate Council of Austin’s Leadership Council. He is looking forward to growing the membership or friends and expanding the service opportunities. Since moving to Austin in 2015, he has enjoyed all the outdoor activities the hill country offers.
|Josh Huard, Treasurer
Private Wealth Advisor, e3 Wealth
Josh has been a member of Friends of the House for four years and is currently serving a second year as treasurer. When he isn’t volunteering his time, Josh is a private wealth advisor for e3 Wealth, a wealth management firm in the Austin area. As a native Austinite, Josh enjoys spending his time giving back to the community including participating in a variety of Friends of the House activities including decorating the Ronald McDonald House for the holidays.
|Yetunde Sokunbi, Co-Membership Chair
Yetunde has been a Friends of the House Member since 2018, and is excited to be serving on Leadership Council. She is a Board Certified Family Medicine Physician currently at the Austin Diagnostic Clinic. She enjoys Cook Nights and is looking forward to getting more young professionals involved with Friends of the House. She enjoys volunteering, reading, traveling, and spending time with friends and family.
|Timeca Davis, Co-Membership Chair
Dental Hygienist at Alan Schauer, D.D.S.
Timeca Davis has been involved with RMHC CTX and Friends of the House Leadership Council for the past two years. When she is not working as a dental hygienist, she enjoys volunteering her time at RMHC CTX’s signature fundraising event, the Bandana Ball. She enjoys joining her colleagues to support the many families that rely on RMHC CTX. In her spare time, Timeca likes to watch college football and run in the beautiful city of Austin.
|Emily Franke, Social Co-Chair
Go Red For Women Director, American Heart Association
Emily became a member of Friends of the House in 2018 after supporting the organization in a professional capacity for many years. As social co-chair, Emily is responsible for planning and organizing Friends of the House’s events including its annual fundraiser, Hops for the House. A native Austinite, Emily is the Go Red For Women Director at the American Heart Association and in her free time enjoys spending time with her family and her aussiedoodle, Mila.
|Solveig Torjesen, Social Co-Chair
Realtor, Keller Williams Realty
Solveig first became involved with Friends of the House on a Cook Team in 2017 and became Captain of a Cook Team in 2018. This is her first year serving as Social Co-Chair on the Leadership Council and she is excited to be on board. When she is not planning events for Friends of the House, she enjoys helping people fulfill their real estate dreams as a Realtor with Keller Williams. In her spare time, she enjoys participating in fitness events, travelling and hikes with her pup, Henry.
|Lindsay McCullough, Education and Outreach Chair
Manager of Training and Development, iFLY Indoor Skydiving
Lindsay has served on Leadership Council for two years and is now responsible for coordinating the volunteer opportunities and service projects for Friends of the House members. From organizing cook teams or securing volunteers for Friends’ events, Lindsay ensures member enjoy participating in the young professional group. When she is not coordinating service opportunities, she is planning and developing training for the team members of iFLY Indoor Skydiving. Lindsay embodies her job to the fullest as one of favorite things to do is ride the wind at iFly.
|Danielle Mizerak, Communications Chair
Business Development Executive, Ingram Micro
Danielle serves her second year as the Communications Chair for Friends of the House. She has a long history of supporting RMHC including serving as the philanthropy chair for the Austin Alpha Delta Pi Alumnae Association, where she organized fundraising activities and meals for families. When Danielle is not volunteering you will find her hiking with her pups, Wally & Arnie.
|Justin Luper, Member at Large
Worldwide Events Manager, George P Johnson Experience Marketing
Justin has participated in Friends of the House for four years and is now the social chair responsible for organizing and coordinating various Friends’ events. As a native Austinite, he is passionate about giving back to his community and enjoys supporting RMHC CTX during cook nights, service projects, social events and more. Justin is the worldwide events manager on the IBM account at George P Johnson Marketing Experience. When he’s not event planning, he's on the hunt for the best places to eat in town or cheering on the Longhorns on game day.
|Jacob Campbell, Member at Large
Construction Manager, CastleRock Communities
Jacob serves as a Member at Large on the Leadership Council and has been with Friends for four years; this is his third year of service on the council. Jacob is a Construction Manager at CastleRock Communities. He has lived in the Central Texas area for ten years and is married with a one year old daughter. Jacobs enjoys being involved with Friends of the House as it’s a great way to meet like-minded individuals while supporting his community.
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