Board of Directors
Safe Communities America, Inc. is the
non-profit, coordinating and accrediting
organization for Safe Communities in
the United States.


Safe Communities America, Inc. is overseen by a board of directors.  The directors represent individual Safe Communities, the National Accrediting Center, and the Safe Communities Support Center.  Directors serve without compensation and are committed to the growth and development of Safe Communities and injury prevention in the United States. 


Steve Sparrow  

Steve Sparrow is a program manager for the Kentucky injury Prevention and Research Center (KIPRC).  KIPRC is a joint partnership between the University of Kentucky and the Kentucky Department for Public Health.  Steve manages the Core Violence and Injury Prevention Program and also serves as the Kentucky Safety and Prevention Alignment Network (KSPAN) Coordinator.

Steve graduated from Eastern Kentucky University in 1979 with a BS degree in Biology/Chemistry.  He previously worked for the Kentucky Occupational Safety and Health Program for 28 years, first as an industrial hygienist and then as the Director of Compliance from 2003 to 2007.  Steve came to work for KIPRC in 2008 as the KSPAN Program Coordinator where he has worked to build and strengthen Kentucky's statewide network of injury prevention and safety promotion advocates. 

Steve works to promote and support the Safe Communities America initiative as a community program to build capacity for violence and injury prevention.  In addition to serving as the accreditation manager for the National Safe Communities Accrediting Center, Steve serves as a Safe Community site reviewer. 

Steve Sparrow    
Kentucky Injury Prevention and Research Center
(National Accrediting Center)
Marcia Howell, JD  

Marcia Howell, JD, has served as the Executive Director for the Center for Safe Alaskans since October 2008. Ms. Howell’s work has focused on public health, policy analysis and advocacy, epidemiological analysis, biometric health promotion message testing, and project evaluation since 2000. She has 19 years of experience in research, implementation and evaluation of a variety of public health issues. Her experience includes facilitating focus groups, conducting evaluations, analysis of trauma registry injury data, vital records data and both municipal and state motor vehicle crash reports. She has developed, implemented, and evaluated social marketing strategies.

Ms. Howell has been involved in multiple community collaborative assessment and strategic planning efforts focusing on the negative impacts of alcohol, opioid misuse and heroin use, and bullying in Anchorage. She has presented research findings and community efforts on transportation safety and multiple other topics around the world. Prior to working at AIPC, she was an attorney for nine years in Alaska, specializing in disability and domestic violence issues.

Ms. Howell is the Chair and founder of the World Health Organization’s International Safety Media Awards (ISMA). She is a doctoral candidate at Jönköping University in Sweden.

Marcia Howell, JD    
Anchorage, Alaska    

Cheryl Wittke is Executive Director of Safe Communities, an award-winning coalition of 350 organizations and individuals working to save lives and prevent serious injuries in Dane County. She coordinates joint action by coalition partners to reduce our community’s top causes of injury and injury-related death: drug poisoning, falls among older adults, suicide and traffic crashes. She has served as Safe Communities’ director from the coalition’s inception in 1999, manages a $645,000 annual budget, oversees state, federal and foundation grants and a staff of employees and consultants.

Cheryl has a master's degree in public administration with a concentration in community development from University of Wisconsin’s Robert M. LaFollette School of Public Affairs.

Cheryl Wittke    
Chair Elect    
Madison - Dane County, Wisconsin    
Dan Martin, MS  

Dan Martin, MS, is the Safe Community Coordinator for the Village of New Lenox, an accredited Safe Community since 2010.  Dan has been the leader of the New Lenox Safe Communities America Coalition since its inception in 2009.  Prior to accepting the full-time position as Safe Community Coordinator in March of 2017, Dan was a 30-year law enforcement officer, holding a variety of positions from Patrol Officer to Chief of Police. 

Dan has a Master’s degree in Criminal Justice from Lewis University and is a graduate of Northwestern University’s Center for Public Safety - School of Police Staff and Command (Class #100). In addition, Dan is a graduate of the FBI National Academy in Quantico, VA (Class #211).

Dan has incredible respect for volunteers, leading the village’s Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) and Search and Rescue (SAR) Teams, which have a combined strength of over 150 volunteers.  In addition, Dan oversees the coalition’s Task Groups, which include Older Adults Falls Prevention, Emergency Preparedness, Suicide Prevention and Awareness, Motor Vehicle/Traffic Safety, and Poisoning by Prescription Drug Overdose/Substance Abuse.

Dan Martin, MS    
Financial Officer    
New Lenox, Illinois    
Genia McKee  

Genia McKee is the Coordinator for the Kentucky Drug Overdose Prevention Program (KYDOP) at the Kentucky Injury Prevention and Research Center (KIPRC). KIPRC, which is located at the University of Kentucky, is a bona fide agent of the Kentucky Department for Public Health.  Genia has held various positions within KIPRC including Kentucky Safe Communities Coordinator, Occupational Fatality Database Coordinator, and Outreach Coordinator for - Kentucky’s near real-time substance use treatment locator and website.  Her latest work involves working with communities to support drug overdose prevention and treatment. 

Genia is a graduate of Berea College.  Prior to her work at KIPRC, she was a community organizer working in agriculture and community development finance. 

Genia McKee    
Kentucky Injury Prevention and Research Center
(International Safe Communities Support Center)
Randy Gooch, CPH  

Randy Gooch, CPH has served as Executive Director for the Jessamine County Health Department in Nicholasville, KY, a community of 50,000 people, located just south of Lexington, KY since August 2012. Previously, he served as Finance Director for the Lake Cumberland District Health Department where he oversaw the financial operations of ten local health departments in southern KY with a total budget of $18 million providing services to more than 200,000 residents.

Before beginning his public health career in 2001, Randy worked in the home health care industry as a financial manager for 12 years. He currently serves as a Board Director for the Kentucky Public Health Association; as Co-chair of the Jessamine County Healthy and Safe Community Coalition, a safe community accredited by Safe Communities America; as a member of Nicholasville Rotary Club; and as a member of the Community Advisory Counsel for the Foundation for a Healthy KY. He also currently serves on the Kentucky Health Department Association Executive Committee as Treasurer, an association in which he was awarded the Trailblazer Award in 2014.

Randy previously served as a Board Director for the Jessamine County YMCA; a Board Director for Nicholasville NOW; as well as Past-President of the Kentucky Public Health Association of which he has been an active member since 2001, served as a Board Director in 2008 and was subsequently elected to the office of Treasurer in 2009. He served two years in this capacity before being elected Vice President in 2011 and then, President-Elect in 2012.

Randy earned his undergraduate degree in Finance/Management/Economics from Lipscomb University in Nashville, TN. He earned his CPH (Certification in Public Health) in February 2016. He is a Fellow of the Kentucky Public Health Leadership Institute at the University of Kentucky and served as a mentor for the 2006 and 2008 classes of KPHLI Scholars. He has been married for thirty-one years to his wife, Kim, and they have three daughters. He is a member of Catalyst Christian Church in Nicholasville.

Randy Gooch, CPH    
Jessamine County, Kentucky