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Our Board


Executive Officers

DeAnn Hunt


DeAnn Hunt earned her BSN at Henderson State University in 1986. She worked as a surgical RN, a PACU RN, and then as an SICU RN from 1986 until the birth of her son, Al—who was born with Down syndrome—in 2003. After Al’s birth, DeAnn taught RN nursing students at Baptist Health School of Nursing for three years.  She has continuously volunteered for Easterseals Arkansas for over seventeen years.  She also founded and ran a summer day camp for children with DS for six years—from 2011 to 2017. She served on the statewide Advisory Board for Best Buddies Arkansas.  DeAnn joined the Board of Directors for Arkansas Down Syndrome Association in 2013. 

Brittany Saviers

Vice President

Brittney Saviers has been practicing as an occupational therapist since 2008 in multiple roles—including academician, practitioner, fieldwork educator, and program developer.  An alumnus of the University of Central Arkansas, Mrs. Saviers is proud to be a faculty member within the UCA Department of Occupational Therapy since 2013.  In clinical practice, Mrs. Saviers’ focus has been serving children and youth—of all ages—in a variety of settings.  Her niche is working with adolescents in school-based and community settings—with a focus on transition planning.  In addition to teaching and advising, Mrs. Saviers has conducted research related to the Theory of Occupational Adaptation, community-based programming, effective teaching/learning methods, occupational and environmental influences on health outcomes, and pediatric family-centered care.

In addition to her clinical, educational, and research responsibilities, Mrs. Saviers is active in community-based program development and advocacy.  She co-directs Acting Creates Therapeutic Success (ACTS) in Little Rock, a community-based program providing adults with disabilities the opportunity to participate in the performing arts.  She also co-directs an annual weeklong performing arts summer camp for adults with disabilities through the ARC Arkansas.  Mrs. Saviers is also involved in numerous community and professional organizations:  she currently serves as an Executive Board member of Arkansas Down Syndrome Association; is an auxiliary member and performing arts coordinator for the Arkansas Enterprises for the Developmentally Disabled organization; is a member of the Arkansas Workgroup of Pediatric Health Professions; and is actively involved in the Arkansas Occupational Therapy Association, and the American Occupational Therapy Association. Mrs. Saviers is currently completing her doctoral degree in occupational therapy at Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

Ashley O'Neill


Ashley O’Neill received her M.S. in Communication Sciences and Disorders from UAMS in 2009 and has worked at Arkansas Children’s Hospital as a speech-language pathologist since receiving her degree. She works closely with children with Down syndrome and their famlies, especially in the area of feeding and swallowing. She is a native of Little Rock and is married with three children. In her spare time she loves to hike and trail run with friends. 

Fran Lanari


“Never Say Never” and “Believe” are two mantras that Fran Lanari uses daily to navigate the wonderful yet often challenging world of being a parent of someone with Down syndrome.  Fran is mother of two wonderful children: Rachael and Michael Joe.  Michael Joe was born in 2001—which was when her journey began with Arkansas Down Syndrome Association (ADSA).  “They were with me every step of the way.  ADSA made our world so much more expansive and inclusive,” she says.  Fran agreed to take on the role of Board Treasurer in 2019 and says that she has loved the experience of being on the Board.  Fran routinely utilizes her 17 years’ experience from working for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (where she ran the Configuration Control Office for the Automation and Robotics Division!). Fran resigned from NASA in 2001 to be a full-time mother for Michael Joe, until she felt comfortable resuming a career. In addition to serving on the Board for ADSA, Fran currently owns a successful residential staging company “Savvy Stagers” and is a Realtor for Capital Sotheby’s International Realty.

Board Members

in alphabetical order

Jansen Goodwin Sr.

Jansen Goodwin Sr. is a devout husband and a father of 4 beautiful children. He is currently studying Early Childhood Development at Pulaski Tech in Little Rock. Jansen is an established musician in central Arkansas with over 10 years of production experience. Because of his love for music and his passion for teaching children, Jansen provides music therapy at Easterseals Arkansas Little Rock Developmental Preschool as a recreation aide—where his youngest child Oliver also attends. Jansen says, “From the time our family found out we would be blessed with a child as beautiful as Oliver, we have advocated for children with Down Syndrome. I am honored to have this opportunity to serve on the Board of Directors for Arkansas Down Syndrome Association.”

Suzie Hicks

Founding Member

Karen Hobgood


Karen Hobgood is a pediatric speech-language pathologist at Easterseals Arkansas—she has been with Easterseals Arkansas for 26 years.  Karen spent her college years in Ruston, Louisiana, at Louisiana Tech University.  She is passionate about serving children with disabilities and their families. When not working she loves to bike, spend time outside with her dogs, and go hiking. Karen says it has been an honor to serve on Arkansas Down Syndrome Association’s Board of Directors for the last three years.

Heather Honaker MA

Heather Honaker, a native of Alabama, has enjoyed living in Little Rock for over a decade and feels like she has found her home. For nearly 20 years, she’s dedicated herself to nonprofit management—raising money for some of the state’s largest public organizations—and most recently she added promoting these organizations and their talented supporters through freelance writing for local magazines, newspapers and trade publications. In addition, she and her husband, Ben, a Little Rock attorney, have three children and one puppy who keep her laughing and on her toes. In 2018, her daughter, Ellie, was born with Down syndrome and a host of other complex medical conditions opening her eyes to different abilities and all that comes with them. She has a blog at that has gained national popularity through its honest and raw stories about her family’s oddities, challenges, and special needs. She serves the community through the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra Guild, Medicaid Client Voice Council, Arkansas Children’s Hospital Cardiology Family Advisory Board and the Arkansas Down Syndrome Association.

James Hunt, MD

James Hunt graduated from Baptist Health School of Nursing in 1992 and completed his BSN at University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) in 1995. He earned his MD from UAMS in 2003 and completed a residency in Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine at UAMS in 2007. Dr. Hunt is Board certified in both anesthesiology and pediatric anesthesiology by the American Board of Anesthesiology. Since 2008 he has dedicated a portion of his clinical time to providing perioperative anesthesia and sedation services for children and adults with special needs—both at Arkansas Children’s Hospital (ACH) and UAMS.  Outside of work, Dr. Hunt volunteers significant time in community service:  he currently serves on the Boards of Directors for Easterseals Arkansas, Special Olympics Arkansas, and the Arkansas Down Syndrome Association. He also serves as a Trustee on the Board of Trustees for the Arkansas Medical Society, and previously served two terms on the Arkansas Governor’s Council on People with Disabilities. He has been an invited speaker for multiple national-level fora on the topic of perioperative care for people with special needs—and was recipient of a 2018 Special Olympics and Golisano Foundation Health Leadership Award.  He recently served on the Musculoskeletal Committee of Global Down Syndrome Foundation’s Adult Down Syndrome Health Guidelines project. Dr. Hunt is a member of the American Society of Anesthesiology, American Society of Interventional Pain Physicians, American Academy of Developmental Medicine and Dentistry, Arkansas Medical Society, Arkansas Society of Anesthesiology, Down Syndrome Medical Interest Group—USA, and the Society for Pediatric Anesthesia.

Tammy Jones

Tammy Jones recently joined the Board of Directors for Arkansas Down Syndrome Association after retiring in December 2019 from her position as Project/Program Manager for the US Army Corps of Engineers.  Tammy spent 30 years with the Army Corps of Engineers managing construction projects and service contracts for many military installations throughout the United States.   Tammy is Mom to two amazing young men:  Joshua, age 28—who is married and has a 16-month old daughter—and Nicholas, who is 24 years old, has Down syndrome, and attends the Access Life Program.  Tammy is very excited about helping to plan and execute the events and programs provided by Arkansas Down Syndrome Association.  Mostly, Tammy is looking forward to making new friends, experiencing fun adventures, and sharing the many lessons learned from raising a child with Down syndrome.  

Alexa Milam MS, CCC-SLP

My name is Alexa Milam, and I grew up in central Arkansas. I graduated with my undergraduate degree from the University of Arkansas in 2017 and I received my Master of Science degree in Speech-Language Pathology in 2019 from UAMS. Since graduating, I have worked in pediatrics as a speech-language pathologist and have worked at Easterseals in the developmental preschool since 2021. I get to work closely with families that have children with Down syndrome. I love helping those with neurodevelopmental needs build their communication skills so they can share with others their own wants, passions, and needs! I am honored to be serving on the Board for the Arkansas Down Syndrome Association.

Katie Olive PT, DPT, C/NDT

Katie Olive was born in northeast Arkansas and raised in the town of Leachville, Arkansas. She attended Arkansas Tech University and received a bachelor’s degree in biology. From there, she returned to Jonesboro to attend Arkansas State University, where she received her Doctor of Physical Therapy Degree. Upon graduation, Katie moved to Little Rock to begin her career as a physical therapist at Easterseals Arkansas Little Rock Developmental Preschool in 2014. Katie now serves Easterseals Arkansas as the Physical Therapy Coordinator for Outpatient Therapy. Katie holds many specialized certifications, including Certified Neurodevelopmental Therapist for Pediatrics, Prechtl General Movements Assessment Administrator, and Credentialed Clinical Instructor. Katie is passionate about working with children and adults with neurologically based movement disorders. Katie is a member of the 4300 club, which supports the Home for Healing at UAMS, as well as volunteering her time at Women and Children First domestic abuse shelter and Easterseals events. Katie says, “My life has been so enriched by the opportunity to work with those with developmental disabilities, including Down Syndrome, and their families. I’m honored for the opportunity to give back to this community through my service with such a wonderful organization as the Arkansas Down Syndrome Association.”

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