May 17, 2016

Our Team

Our Staff


Executive Director


The Executive Director of Kids In a New Groove, Laura has been employed by KING since 2013.

Having previously served as Program Manager, she not only carries an intimate understanding of our program, the youth in foster care we serve, our partners, and our Mission, but she also has the experience and vision to lead KING to a brighter and more musical future.

Laura received her Bachelor’s and Master of Science in Counseling Psychology Degrees from Abilene Christian University. After graduating, she began her career in foster care as a Director of Intake for a national child placing agency. She worked there for 5 years prior to Kids in a New Groove, verifying and training foster homes as well as placing children into the foster homes.

She quickly adopted the Austin culture and is a music aficionado who is incredibly involved in the local music scene.

Program Manager


Carmen stepped into the role of Program Manager in September 2016. She is an Austin transplant, originally from Kansas. Earning her Master's degree in Social Work at the University of Kansas, Carmen has devoted her professional career to youth empowerment and development.

After moving to Austin, Carmen became a Family Services Worker for a national child placing agency, providing case management and care coordination for youth in foster care. She has an inside understanding of the foster care system and the youth served by Kids In A New Groove. Carmen brings with her a strong combination of education and work experience. She is dedicated to being a champion for youth, to equip them with the opportunity and ability to meet their full potential. 

Carmen and her husband moved to Austin in 2010, to be a part of this vibrant city. They enjoy taking in all that Austin has to offer with live music, amazing food and outdoor activities. Carmen is an avid sports fan and likes to stay active through CrossFit. 

AmeriCorps VISTA Community Outreach Coordinator


A former camp counselor, day care assistant, and elementary school creative writing instructor, Matt adores and thrives off of the enthusiasm, curiosity, and creative spirit of young people and is passionate about channeling their inherent energies into tools of personal growth and empowerment. It is no exaggeration to say that working for KING is his dream job.

Matt received a Bachelor’s in English from the University of Missouri and a Master’s of Fine Arts in Creative Writing from the University of South Carolina where he worked as a writing tutor and taught in the First-Year English program for four years.

A graduate of the Conservatory of Recording Arts and Sciences, Matt has well over a decade of experience in the audio industry, providing his skills for film and television productions and working with artists like Rob Thomas, Avril Lavigne, and Brian Wilson.

Brand new to Austin, Matt spends much of his time making music, exploring the local music and arts communities, and trying to meet like-minded, creative people.

Program Coordinator

Charlene is KING's Program Coordinator. Charlene received her Bachelor's in International Relations at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and has always been interested in foreign languages and traveling.
After two years of teaching English abroad in France and China, she decided to try Austin's taco and non-profit scene as an Americorps member.
Since living in Austin, she has worked continuously with Salesforce and is passionate about bringing data-driven solutions to non-profits. 

Our Board


Mark Porter

Chairman of the Board

Advisor at Brinson Benefits

Tamsen Cohagan



Chris Bauer


Managing Partner at Bauer & Company, LLC

Elizabeth Rogers

Compliance Officer

Shareholder, Privacy & Data Security at Greenberg Traurig

Clint Strait

Vice President, Strait Music Company

Dana Keeven

Senior Contract Divisions Manager, C3 Presents

Dorian Colbert

Instructor of Psychology at Huston-Tilloston University

Hector Beltran

Program Committee Chair

Systems Analyst, Managing and Reporting Statistics, Texas Department of Family and Protective Services

Jerri Paul

Business Architect Director for Federal Business at Dell, Inc.

Karyn Scott

Founder of Kids in a New Groove & Lifetime Board Member

Kelly Conway

President of Fleming & Conway Insurance Agency, LLC

Lisa O’Neill

Marketing Committee Chair

Principle at Newton O’Neill Communications

Lowell Keig

Division Director for Texas Workforce Commission, Civil Rights Division

Mitch Flax

Committee Chair

Managing Director, Emerging Markets at MassMutual Workplace Solutions

Nicole Watson

Director of Marketing and Giving, Hotels for Hope