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Coalition for Family and Children’s Services in Iowa Celebrates Tanager Champions for Putting Children First

The Coalition for Family and Children’s Services in Iowa proudly acknowledges the invaluable contributions of three exceptional individuals, Ryan Shenefelt, Lexi Erger and Sam Blowers, who have demonstrated unwavering dedication to the mission of Tanager and have consistently put children first.

The Coalition firmly believes that communities thrive when family and children’s services are at the forefront. Recognizing the transformative power of support and empowerment, the Coalition honors those who embody this ethos.

Ryan Shenefelt, honored with the Friend of Children award, is a pivotal figure at Tanager as a founder and current president of the Associates Board. Through his leadership, he has successfully recruited talented professionals, raising crucial funds to advance Tanager’s mission of inspiring, empowering, and healing children and families. Serving on both Tanager’s Foundation and Operating Boards, Ryan is deeply committed to fostering a welcoming and enriching community for youth, recognizing their pivotal role in the community’s future. His dedication is evident in his hands-on approach at Tanager, ensuring every child is treated with respect, actively listening to their needs, and consistently incorporating feedback from board members to make impactful

changes that benefit the well-being of the children Tanager serves.

Lexi Erger, the recipient of the prestigious Al Schulte Memorial Award, exemplifies a kind and gentle spirit that provides solace to even the most fearful and anxious clients and caregivers. Children find safety, comfort, and refuge in her presence, where she employs her unique ability to see beauty in all. Through her vision, she transforms and heals hearts, leaving a lasting impact on those she encounters.

The Tom Lewis Award recipient, Sam Blowers,  goes above and beyond her duties, showcasing exceptional leadership in programming, clinical care, family intervention, and communications. Known for her positivity and solution-focused approach, Sam builds positive and healthy relationships with clients, even those with the most challenging behaviors. She plays a crucial role in supporting staff across all three branches of the program – clinical, medical, and operations – dedicating at least 80% of her time to clients in the community. Her leadership capabilities surpass her role, and her commitment to ensuring the well-being of clients and families is unparalleled.

The Coalition for Family and Children’s Services in Iowa commends these exemplary individuals for their commitment to putting children first and making a positive impact on the lives of families in our community.

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