Ariana Bostian-Kentes – President
Ariana is the President of Military Partners and Families Coalition (MPFC). Outside of her role as the MPFC President, Ariana works full-time as the Program Manager for Inclusive Leadership Education at the University of Michigan Spectrum Center, the nation’s oldest LGBTQ center on a college campus, in Ann Arbor, MI. She is also vice-president and co-founder of Military Spouses of Michigan (MSoM). She brings her passion for social justice education to the organization as well as her experience with public speaking and working with people from a diversity of communities. She and her partner, a Captain in the Michigan Army National Guard, live in Michigan.
Tom Desamero – Secretary
Tom is our Co-Lead Social Coordinator as well as an Outreach Coordinator. Having served 11 years as a Hospital Corpsman in the Navy, he is very friendly and compassionate to all. He is currently working towards his nursing degree at the Montgomery County College and his husband works at Walter Reed National Military Center in the Department of Nursing. Tom’s dedication to our event coordination and outreach efforts are second to none and he is eager to work with all new and veteran members.
Stephanie Boltrick – Treasurer
Stephanie is a Clinical Social Worker at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. She currently serves as a Captain in the Army Medical Service Corps and resides in the greater Seattle area.
Tracey Hepner-Smith is the wife of Army Brigadier General Tammy Smith and is a member of the Army Reserve senior spouse team. Ms. Hepner-Smith was invited to sit with First Lady Michelle Obama at the 2013 State of the Union Address in recognition of her tireless work in support of LGBT military families. She is also founder of Rainbow Ribbon and the Rainbow Ribbon Project, organizations dedicated to raising visibility of LGBT military families prior to the repeal of Don’t Ask/Don’t Tell (DADT). That involvement led her to testify to the Pentagon’s Comprehensive Working Group on behalf of LGBT military families, informing the study that eventually led to the repeal of DADT. Tracey recently retired from the Department of Homeland Security where she served as a Master Behavior Detection Officer. In 2013 Secretary of Homeland Defense Janet Napolitano recognized Hepner for her contribution to an inclusive workplace culture, awarding her the Department of Homeland Security DHS Pride 2013 Award for Service. Smith and Hepner were married in Washington, DC, in March 2012.
Dee is the wife of Army, Chief Warrant Officer III, Tania Dunbar, currently stationed at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, and is currently the treasurer of Tania’s unit’s FRG. Previously Dee, was the FRG leader for 26th Brigade Support Battalion, while they were stationed at Ft. Stewart in Georgia. Dee has also remained a member of the Spouses Coffee group and is an active volunteer on and off post. A previous resident of New Jersey where she completed her bachelor’s degree in social work, Dee is completing her MSW, and currently works as a counselot at a Therapeutic Group home. Dee joined Tracey Hepner, Ariana Bostian-Kentes, and Samuel Toba in testifying at the Pentagon’s Comprehensive Working Group on behalf of LGBT military families, informing the study that eventually led to the repeal of DADT. Her experience and knowledge in social work-related issues allows her to provide a unique perspective in her work with MPFC. She was instrumental in developing strong coalition bonds with members of Servicemembers Legal Defense Network (SLDN), Agape Empowerment Ministries in GA, Blessed Family of God in Fayetteville, Fayetteville Pride and You Are Strong! Center on Veterans Health and Human Services in Charleston SC. Dee is currently a Board Member at Blessed Family of God, a member of the planning committee for Fayetteville Pride, and holds the post of Executive Member of You Are Strong!. Dee was recently named the 2015 Fort Bragg Military Spouse of the Year!
Celeste is our Small programs and events coordinator. Having held many volunteer positions here at MPFC, Celeste is very familiar with our volunteer community as well as being very active in the community herself. Her husband is currently stationed with the 3rd Infantry Regiment at Fort Myer, VA and they reside on Joint Base Anacostia Bolling.
Amber has been a military spouse and partner for 18 years. Most recently, she was the Military Family Employment Advocate for the State of Florida’s Dept. of Economic Opportunity. Passionate about helping the military community, Amber understands how crucial it is to not only welcome, celebrate and make space for LGBT members in the service but to provide outreach, support and resources for their families.
Megan is a Lieutenant Junior Grade in the United States Navy Nurse Corps Having served in ROTC for 4 years through Northwestern University; she is familiar with the pre-military life. She and her wife, a fellow Nurse Corps Officer, are currently stationed at Walter Reed Bethesda. Megan is one of our Social Coordinators and assists with events taking place in her local area.
Eric served in the US Army four years as a military police officer and did a thirteen month tour in Balad and Basrah. Since leaving the Army he has served in multiple positions including, Executive Assistant at Helping Our Brothers and Sisters (HOBS), coordinated services for LGBT veterans and the LGBT Latino Task Force with the DC Center. He currently serves as the Youth Program Assistant at La Clinica Del Pueblo.