President & CEO
Mindy has led Special Olympics Colorado (SOCO) as President/CEO for ten years. Since coming to SOCO, Mindy has helped the organization grow to over 20,000 athletes. Under Mindy’s direction, the organization rolled out – The Young Athletes™ Program – which serves children ages 2 ½ to 7 with developmental/intellectual disabilities or delays. Mindy has also led the Project UNIFY® initiative which increases Special Olympics collaboration with schools by expanding inclusive sports opportunities through Unified Sports® and Young Athletes, more deeply engaging young people in our sports movement, and promoting youth leadership and youth advocacy for acceptance and inclusion of our athletes in schools and communities.
Prior to joining SOCO, Mindy served as the Executive Director of Walden Family Services, a treatment foster care agency that trains and supports foster families who care for severely abused and neglected children with significant behavioral and emotional problems. During her tenure at Walden, she was instrumental in researching, developing, and implementing new programs and initiatives to better serve children in the program. Under Mindy’s leadership, Walden expanded its treatment foster care services to include care for youth with developmental disabilities and children with special health care needs. As the Executive Director, Mindy was responsible for the overall administration of an agency caring for over 400 foster children in five district offices throughout Southern California with an annual budget of $11 million.
Chief Financial Officer
Becky Kennedy joined Special Olympics Colorado in July 2015 as the VP of Administration/CFO. Becky manages all financial activities of SOCO to ensure integrity and fiduciary responsibility. Becky’s career as a non-profit finance professional spans more than 20 years including 4 years with Children’s Hopechest and 16 years with Christian Booksellers Association, both in Colorado Springs, CO. She has a BS in Accounting and Finance from Adams State, and a MBA with an emphasis in IT from CU, Colorado Springs. Becky grew up in Southeastern Colorado and enjoys spending time with her family and friends.
Senior Vice President of Programs
Chaka Sutton has worked for Special Olympics Colorado for 19 years and served as the Coaches Education and Outreach Coordinator (3 years) and Foothills Area Manager (8 years), before being named VP of Programs in 2007. Chaka oversees the program department and ensures quality delivery of the SOCO mission. Under his leadership, Chaka has directed Project UNIFY implementation, area realignment and program restructure, two National Games Teams, the SOCO Rapids Team, introduction of flag football and the addition of the Summer Classic. Chaka is also the direct liaison to Special Olympics International, Special Olympics North America and Team USA for sports. He has coached three World Games teams for Special Olympics Team USA (snowshoeing in 2005 and powerlifting in 2007 & 2011). Prior to joining SOCO, Chaka was a preschool teacher at the Denver Child Opportunity Program – Lowry Campus and was an assistant football coach at East Tennessee State. Chaka earned his Bachelor of Science in Sociology and Psychology, with a minor in Sport Management, in 1995 from East Tennessee State, where he played football.
Senior Director of Development
Megan Toohey is responsible for the planning, development and execution of SOCO’s overall development efforts, including prospect education, cultivation, solicitation and stewardship of the individual, foundation and corporate donors; gift planning; special events; and leadership of the development team. Megan served as the Director of Events for just over a year prior appointment as Director of Development in February 2015, and in January 2016 she was promoted to Senior Director of Development.
Prior to joining the team at Special Olympics Colorado, Megan served as the Senior Events Manager at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and the Events Manager for the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl, where she ran large scale events, and was responsible for a 10,000-person volunteer force. The New York native earned her Bachelor of Arts in Integrated Strategic Communications from the University of Kentucky and went on to receive her Masters of Science in Tourism and Non-profit Management from Arizona State University. Megan enjoys hiking, traveling and spending time with her husband, Marc, and dog, Riggs.
Senior Vice President, Training and Program Innovations
Tello directs implementation of new programmatic initiatives impacting growth and development of the Special Olympics movement in Colorado.
Previously, Tello worked for Special Olympics North Carolina where she oversaw a field services staff of five area directors and the Special Olympics Mecklenburg County and Guilford/Greensboro directors and was ultimately responsible for management of all Special Olympics local programs statewide. Tello earned a bachelor of arts in psychology with a concentration in recreation management from Franklin Pierce University in Rindge, NH and has worked with special populations and parks and recreation departments in North Carolina, Florida and New Jersey. She has more than 30 years of experience in program planning.