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Meet the team



Talia Leman is the CEO and a Founder of RandomKid. She develops ideas, strategies and networks between kids internationally to increase their impact. She also leads "power" assemblies, doles out seed funds to help jumpstart their philanthropic ventures, organizes web-conferences between youth across the globe, and mentors her peers in success strategies for achieving their goals to benefit others. Having been appointed UNICEF's first known National Youth Ambassador, Talia has worked with kids from 20 countries and together these kids have reported close to 11 million dollars through RandomKid-guided initiatives. Talia is the winner of numerous international and national awards for her philanthropic work including the National Jefferson Award for global change along with co-recipients Marlo Thomas and Ruth Bader Ginsberg, and was the subject of a New York Times op-ed piece written by Nicholas Kristof entitled "Talia For President". Talia travels the globe speaking about "The Power of ANYone" and has a book coming out in the spring of 2012 with Simon & Schuster's Free Press imprint. What does Talia love most about RandomKid? "The moment when the random youth who come to us realize that we are here to work FOR them."

Dr. Ed Brenegar is RandomKid's Chief Strategist. He is the leader and owner of Community of Leadership, LLC, a leadership development and planning consultancy. He works with leaders to help expand the leadership impact of their lives and their organizations. Ed is the writer of Real Life Leadership, a local business leadership column for the Asheville (NC) Citizen-Times (, and writes the Leading Questions weblog at He is a Presbyterian Church (USA) minister who writes The Presbyterian Polis blog to encourage pastors and lay leaders in their service. He served for seven years as a Boy Scout troop scoutmaster, and now serves his troop as Eagle Scout advisor and high adventure trip coordinator. Ed came to RandomKid through his daughter Shelby, who is a member of the RandomKid National Task Force to Rebuild the Gulf. “Adults too often sell kids short, believing that they are just kids. What I’ve learned from working with kids over the years, and what I love about RandomKid, is that kids have the desire and capacity to make a difference. All they need is support and help to fulfill their dreams of impact.”

Michelle Durand-Adams is Chairman of the RandomKid Board. During a 16-year career as a bank executive and as founder and president of a regional student loan company, Durand-Adams gained extensive experience in sales, marketing and team leadership. In 2006, Durand-Adams established e-Market Solutions, LLC, an internet marketing firm providing a full range of internet marketing products and services. In addition, Durand-Adams keeps busy with a number of non-profit and civic organizations including being Commissioner on the Iowa College Student Aid Commission for which she was awarded the Volunteerism Award by Iowa Governor Tom Vilsack for outstanding service to the State of Iowa, Member of the board and Treasurer of the Friends of the Iowa Commission on the Status of Women, Member of the Higher Education Coordinating Council of the State of Iowa, and Board of Trustees of the Foundation for Children & Families of Iowa, to name a few! Durand-Adams is committed to the mission and vision of RandomKid. “Empowering young people to learn, grow and lead will have the greatest positive impact on our world than any endeavor we can undertake. RandomKid is training a legion of youth volunteers that is already having a noteworthy effect in a variety of ways. Few things in life are more fulfilling.”


Zander is the Chief Operating Nemesis of RandomKid, also referred to as our C.O.N. Due to his dedicated and unwavering opposition to RandomKid in its early days, he propelled RandomKid into the media limelight leading to the success we now know. Zander brings many talents to our organization, from his ability to morph into every super hero and super villian known at a moment's notice, to inspiring us with his candor in all things. A blogger, bibliophile, video aficionado, lover of french fries and comedian extraordinaire, he is the spark that lit the fire-- the reason we are here to serve youth today.  Zander wants everyone who reads this far into this to know, "As President Lincoln once said, 'A house divided against itself can not stand'. RandomKid's success depends on the quality and equality and responsibleness and respectfulness and caringness and safeness of all of us working together to save the planet and each other from starvation and dehydration and hypothermia and other things unwanted. I love life."


Dana Leman is the Exectuive Vice President on the Randomkid board and a Founder, and facilitates in the development and implementation of kid-directed ventures and corporate partnerships. A woman of diverse interests, Dana has a teaching certificate in Kohlberg Studies in Moral Education from Harvard University, and was a regular guest lecturer out of the Department of Religion and Philosophy at Drake University in Des Moines, IA. She wrote and hosted an educational television program centered around family values entitled "Light One Candle" which won the nationally acclaimed Charles Goodall Award for Excellence, and was a free-lance project designer for Better Homes and Gardens' "Do-It-Yourself" special interest publication. Called "Helping Hands", the magazine feature showcased creative home-projects for kids. What does Dana love most about RandomKid? "EVERYTHING! There is nothing more fulfilling than helping a child to help another."


Wendy Bain is a Director on the RandomKid Board.  Wendy brings broad based experience in marketing and public relations including non-profit (social services) and for-profit (high technology, training, financial services and media) environments. Since joining Blick&Staff Communications in 2004, Wendy has worked across all of Blick&Staff’s business sectors including spearheading marquee programs for Build-A-Bear Workshop, Energizer and Borden Cheese. In addition, she has played an instrumental role in collaborating with international agencies on client projects to achieve desired results. Prior to joining Blick&Staff Communications, Wendy was the Community Partnership Director for Youth-In-Need. She also previously worked in communications for Solutech, Inc. and Edward Jones. Her experience includes media relations, strategic planning, international public relations, strategic public and community relations program development, and special event planning.