Co Founder and Board Chair

Nancy has provided educational services to students for over 30 years. She has worked in a variety of capacities including as an educational diagnostician, a Special Education teacher providing  services for elementary and high school students to teaching adults English. She has developed curriculum and taught students in a Leadership and Scholarship program for 7 years. The students are an inspiration for Nancy. The Ambassador Foundation has  a wealth of other-motivated young people with amazing talents, ideas and drive. Providing a young person with the opportunity for an education has a huge impact not only on the student but the family and the larger community. Her 2 children and 2 grandchildren are the light in Nancy’s life!


Co Founder, Director of College Advising and Board Vice Chair

For over 40 years, Joni has been working with students and their families to help make college a reality. She found that college advising was the best career choice for her. She believes that a college education is life changing, not only for each student, but their families, friends and all the people they will meet, support, and work with over the course of their lives. Joni likes to help students find their voice and message in their applications, essays, resume and interviews, the best school match after an informed search, and the funds to make the choice possible, through scholarships and grants.


Executive Director

Marius Finch was born and raised in Denver, specifically in the Whittier neighborhood that he still is proud to call his home. As a product of the desegregation busing system he benefited from attending schools inside and outside of the neighborhood. As a recipient of a first generation scholarship, he attended the University of Colorado Boulder. There he received a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and minored in Business Administration. With over 20 years of direct service he brings experience working in non profits and government agencies. This includes completing a 10 year cohort as a Program Director at Colorado I Have a Dream Foundation. And managing resident and community service programs for the Denver Housing Authority.


Assistant Director of Leadership Program and Board Member

Nel lives in Boulder with her husband where they raised their three daughters, and now they get to be doting grandparents of 4 lovely little humans.  Spending time with their grandchildren is her very greatest pleasure. Nel’s life long career has been in the field of education.  She has taught  kindergarteners through high school students. Several of the years years have been spent writing curriculums, training teachers and serving as assistant principal. She loves creating curriculum and problem solving with students to make learning accessible for all.  With the Ambassador Foundation she now has the opportunity to work with amazing young adults as they make their way through their own educational journey.  Nel feels incredibly fortunate to spend her working life doing what she loves. 


Assistant Director of College Advising

Lisa Atufunwa was born and raised in Denver, Colorado. She graduated from a college preparatory high school, where she got a first-hand experience of what life on a college campus would be like for a student. She attended Michigan State University – Go Green!– and earned her Bachelor of Arts degree. After graduation, she worked as a social media and public relations coordinator for non-profit organizations, start-up companies, and agencies. Lisa wanted her work to impact her community directly, so she transitioned to the education sector and became a small group math instructor for Denver Public Schools, teaching 6th through 10th graders. She oversaw the small group math instruction program at the Montbello Campus for three years. Lisa’s passion for equitable education and ensuring all students have educational opportunities at any level led her to support high school students through the college admission world as a college advisor. She aims to help students leave their K-12 education and move on to the next chapter in their education journey that aligns with their goals.


Director of Development

During the last 20 years, Jennifer has worked in Denver’s museums and non-profit communities engaging donors, policy makers, foreign dignitaries, and patrons to support philanthropic opportunities. Her robust network is a result of her passion for people’s stories. Her talent for making connections developed in art museums and galleries, where she was driven by curiosity in roles that intersect education and development. With a Masters from the University of Denver, she produced an endowed artist lecture series for the Denver Art Museum, created early content for the Clyfford Still Museum’s education department, and owned a wellness coaching business where she helped clients integrate healthy practices into their lifestyles. She currently sits on a steering committee for the Denver Art Museum’s curatorial interests.   She served on the Colorado State Capitol Building Advisory Committee. Her research in Fairmount Cemetery remains a highlight of their autumn tours.


Director of Communications

Mara has called Denver home for the past 15 years. Still a teenager she came from Chihuahua Mexico with the goal of learning English in a year and returning to her hometown. That goal changed early in her stay. With relentless determination and the help and support of many people she was able earn a college and Master’s degree in Strategic Communication from the University of Denver. “If there is a will there’s a way” is a fitting phrase to her dedication and drive. Paying it forward is something Mara is passionate about and being part of The Ambassador Foundation’s team  is something she is very proud of. 


Board Secretary

Crilly was born and raised in Denver, Colorado. She has been married for over 10 years and has two beautiful children. Crilly got her masters in Forensic Psychology from the University of Denver in 2011 and worked as a counselor within the correctional system, as well as providing community mental health services to children and families in Palm Beach County, Florida. During her time in Florida, Crilly completed her master’s degree in Speech and Language Pathology at Florida Atlantic University. After completing school, she moved back to Denver to work at an elementary school. She has been at her job for the last 8 years and loves supporting students in Pre-K through 4th grade with their speech and language needs so students can reach their full potential, gain confidence, and become independent.   


Board Treasurer

Caleb joined UMB in 2012 and currently serves as a Senior Vice President in their Commercial Banking Group. He works with middle market clients across multiple industries to address their financial challenges and helps them develop a plan that ensures long term financial success. Prior to joining UMB, he spent 4.5 years as a lender with another financial institution. Caleb is active in his community and his past board involvement includes Tennyson Center for Children, Denver Children’s Foundation, Denver Children’s Advocacy Center, and Colorado I Have a Dream Foundation. He is a Denver native and attended Colorado State University where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration – Finance and a minor in Economics. Caleb enjoys spending time with his wife and their son and exploring the Colorado outdoors.


Board Member

Emmanuel’s journey is one of determination and a commitment to making a positive impact on the lives of others. As a first-generation immigrant, he embarked on a new chapter in his life when he left his native Ghana and made Colorado his home in October 2010. During his college years, he founded Health Vision, an organization dedicated to bringing health and well-being to underserved communities. Emmanuel’s dedication to healthcare didn’t waive when he relocated to the United States. He has continued his mission as a hospitalist nurse practitioner at Intermounter Health. In this role, he advocates tirelessly for patients, ensuring they receive the care and support they need to lead healthy lives. His work goes beyond treating medical conditions; it’s about empowering individuals to take control of their well-being. Emmanuel’s personal life is just as inspiring as his professional journey. He is a loving husband and father to two beautiful daughters, which adds another layer of purpose to his life. His commitment to family and community is a testament to his character.

Connect with us if you are interested in being part of our Board Of Directors

(303) 474-4351

available from 9:00am – 4:30pm


Fridays by appointment

Address: 925 S Niagara St Suite 360, Denver, CO 80224