Founder

Wings President

Ann Edenfield Sweet 

Executive Director & Founder
Click Here for Ann's Biography

Mailing Address:
2270 D Wyoming NE #130
Albuquerque, NM 87112
1-505-291-6412 Office
1-505-554-6698 Cell
annedenfield@wingsforlifeinternational.org

Organizational Chart


Board Members

Click Photo for Contact Information






Don Shapiro - Chairman of the Board

Born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, Don Shapiro has been a seasoned worker in the field of youth development and community service for over fifty years, and is dedicated to helping young people build meaningful and productive lives. Highlights of Don's career in community and youth services have included - in New York City - pioneering work in adolescent substance abuse treatment and services for runaway-homeless youth where he was a co-founder and organizer/administrator of The Door-A Center of Alternatives (from 1972-1990) an internationally acclaimed comprehensive free-clinic and multi-service center serving inner-city adolescents, currently in its 43rd year of successful operation and where his efforts won for The Door, the Eleanor Roosevelt Award for Community Service and where he was recipient of the NYC Mayor's Award for Youth Leadership Development.

Don's published works include "Many Doorways: A Comprehensive Approach to Intervention and Treatment of Youthful Drug Abusers" (NIDA/DHHS Monograph Treatment Services for Adolescent Substance Abusers (1985) and chapter author of "Planning to Live: Evaluating and Treating Suicidal Teens in Community Settings; A Holistic Treatment Model for Working with Suicidal Youth." (1989).

Don He is a graduate of Empire State College in New York City with a degree in Community and Human Services. After moving to New Mexico, his experience in organization and leadership development and his graduate studies at The New School for Social Research/Graduate School of Management and Urban Policy led him to the University of New Mexico in 1997 where he served for seven years as an internal organization development consultant seeking to strengthen inter-departmental teamwork, strategic planning and change management.

In 2004, experiencing an "existential" longing to resume his work with young people, Don signed on with the New Mexico Children Youth and Family Department where he has served for over 10 years focused initially on community collaboration and partnership building within the behavioral health system and currently with the Transition Services helping young people in the juvenile justice system transition back into the community and into adulthood. Don's concern for young people who have lost too many years of their young lives in prison and in the JJ system's facilities has led him to become a strong advocate for justice reform, and a supporter and volunteer, and recently Board member for Wings For life, Intl. Don's other passions include playing guitar – Flamenco and worship music, natural medicine, eco-spirituality, and environmental health and healing.


James Zanios
Vice Chair
James Zanios is the Executive Director of the New Mexico Independent Auto Dealers Association.  He is also the owner of Zanios Car & Truck Gallery.  James is married and the father to two sons. James and his family have been supporting Wings For LIFE International and their programs for over 22 years.  He is passionate about helping change the lives of at-risk kids and the families that support them.

Gary Pennington
Secretary
 

Andrea Christman
Treasurer

Christy Waite
Miss New Mexico - As a victim of child a use and homelessness I have become an advocate for child abuse, homelessness & Incarceration dedicating my life to serving those who are suffering. From this, my ministry Crown of Beauty was made. I go around the state and not just share my testimony but tell them about the unfailing and never ending love that Jesus has to offer!

Paula Burns
Paula moved to NM in 2001. She is the mother of two grown sons. Paula has worked in corrections since 1992 as a Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor, Therapeutic Community Program Director/Counselor, and now since 2005 Bureau Chief NMCD for Internal Audits, Standards Compliance. Paula keeps fit by mountain/road biking, hiking and winter sports.

Beverly Oppedahl

Beverly Oppedahl is a Social Worker and co-owner of FootPrints Home Care. Footprints hires caregivers, home health aides, RNs and LPNs to provide home care to seniors and medically fragile children. Beverly is also on the Board of Wings For LIFE International and Woman of Worth. She volunteers at prison family days and Monday night family meals. Monthly, she serves lunches a Noon Day ministries and tutors at Saranam. She hosts international students in her home 2 to 4 times a year, friendship partners throughout the semester, and provides meals a few times a year through ISI- International Students Inc. She has foster dogs in her home through the East side shelter, several times a year. Beverly, and her husband, Gary Oppedahl, are in the process of becoming Respite Foster Parents though the city. She is a big sister in Big Brothers, with her second little sister. She teaches a bible study on Monday nights at the juvenile detention center for girls, though Life Quest. She volunteers when called for Family Promise, Silver Horizons, ABQ Heading Home, Peaceful Habitation, Love Inc., FCCI- Fellowship of Companies for Christ International, and ABQ Reads. Beverly and her husband support Faith Comes by Hearing, RTLC-Rainbow Trail Lutheran Camp, Young Life, Family Life Radio, and Food for the Hungry.


Carla Eyberg
Carla retired as a Judicial Assistant from the U.S. District Court for the District of New Mexico in 2011 after 25 years of federal service. She is also a proud "Big Sister" in the Big Brother/Big Sisters program for 30+ years. Although she and her "little" aged out of the formal program years ago, they are still enjoying their sisterhood.

Carla volunteered for several agencies after retirement before coming to Wings in 2015. She feels very strongly about helping the youth of our community. Also, during her professional career, there were many concerns about what actually happened to the families of the people appearing in federal court.

Carla says, "Being involved in the Wings Monday night programs, the Wings prison family days, and Wings community holiday parties is an honor and joy. I truly feel blessed to be involved with this powerful, successful organization tackling one of the most important problems facing our community. What we do with the funds we have is phenomenal."

Resa Johnson
Resa has been volunteering with Wings since 2010. She works as the office manager of the oldest Yamaha dealership in the US, started by Robert (Bobby J) Johnson in 1957. Before going to work at Bobby J's, she taught sixth grade at Hope Christian School in Albuquerque. She believes in the work that Wings is doing, and enjoys the time spent at the Monday night workshops, getting to know the families of those incarcerated, as well as the women who are on probation or parole. She sees this as a way to give back to the community.


Alexandra Nellos
Alex Nellos was born and raised in Albuquerque, New Mexico. At the beginning of her teenage-hood, she moved to Panama City, Panama for twelve years. In that time, she finished high school and proceeded to study architecture and construction management. She worked as an on-site architect and as a project coordinator for four years. She recently moved back to Albuquerque and is a Masters student at the School of Architecture and Planning at the University of New Mexico. Alex is an avid believer in helping people through education. Through the Nicholas C. Nellos Memorial Foundation, Alex learned about Wings for LIFE. She is an advocate for forgiveness even in the toughest of situations. At a young age, Alex's father was murdered, and she is a firm believer that the only way to survive in life is by "forgiving and loving the people that most need it; especially the ones that take a life of a loved-one

Tom Smidt II
Tom has an AV Rating® from Martindale-Hubble and is listed in Best Lawyers in America.

Tom is currently the Chair of the Board for Adventures in Anthropology and serves on the Board of Wings for Life, an organization serving the children and families of incarcerated individuals.

John McWaters
John McWaters is active in the Alliance of Therapy Dogs, a non-profit service organization where registered dogs are used offer provide dog therapy comfort to better people’s lives. Woody, John's canine therapy partner, is a Rottweiler mix who was rescued from the Albuquerque shelter 3 years ago. Woody and John have been registered active in therapy work for two years. Both provide dog therapy assistance for “Read to Dogs” at a local library, the county youth detention center, nursing homes, hospitals, and Wings For L.I.F.E.

John previously retired from PNM, is a Vietnam Army Infantry Veteran, who also served as NM Veterans Services Deputy Secretary. He was active with the Home Builder Association for 20 years while at PNM.

His goal is to address crime in Albuquerque by supporting prisoners with supportive family through Wings For L.I.F.E. training and behavior modification.

Holly Chee

Rob Koehler

Chaplain Shirley Compton

Chaplain John Compton

Staff



Yolanda Mattison, Volunteer Coordinator
Yolanda has been involved with WFLI for since 2006. Since 2013 she has been the Volunteer Coordinator. Prior to being the Volunteer Coordinator she served on the Board of Directors for 5 years, and volunteered prior to that. Yolanda is retired from Sandia Laboratory Federal Credit after 25 years of service and also worked as a mortgage loan originator with Access Funding Inc. for 8 years.

Pamela Smyth, IT/Media Manager
Pam has been working part-time with WFLI since 2012. She has a degree in Computer Science with a business focus along with over 19 years of IT experience; 10 which has been in the correctional field. Pam has a strong faith in God and His love for ALL people and wants to share that with those she comes in contact with.

Dominic LeDoux, IT/Data
Dominic has worked at WFLI part-time since 2014. He has been working in corrections in an IT capacity since 2005. Having seen the effect of incarceration on the families he became interested in helping.

Michelle Cruz, Kitchen
Michelle Cruz has experience in real estate, auto sales, and has worked as a general manager of a restaurant. Michelle has one child and is currently working full time as an auditor at a hotel. She enjoys cooking and for about four years managed the kitchen at the restaurant so has commercial experience to share with Wings.

, Tutoring Program Coordinator

Margo Tracy-Selters
I originally came from Upstate New York and moved into Albuquerque a year ago. Working my last two months as a NICOA employee, I found I just couldn't walk away after getting to know what WINGS is and does for families of the incarcerated. I've never had anyone in prison, but there was just something about this program that spoke to me and I felt I had to be a part of it. We found that I could do collages of all the wonderful photographs that are taken at all the events, and a spot was found for me to utilize these skills. I love going into the prisons and I love interacting with the family members at activities we hold for the families. I believe WINGS will be a part of my life for a very long time.