“I find great reward and satisfaction in doing human rights and cross-cultural understanding work where few others engage their energies.”
Ed is one of the family members who, along with Boise’s First Presbyterian Church, created Kessler-Keener Foundation in 1997. He spent his working life first as an elementary school teacher then as a Presbyterian pastor. He retired in 2000 to return to Boise and carry on the human rights legacy of his grandfather, Harry Kessler, and his mother, Margaret Keener.
Ed was one of the founders of the Interfaith Sanctuary Homeless Services in 2005. As Board President Ed, the Board, staff, and volunteers work collaboratively with people of good will to shelter and serve individuals experiencing homelessness. Ed was arrested twice in the spring of 2014 blocking the state Capitol building hallways during the Idaho legislative session to force the legislature to add the words sexual orientation and gender identity to the Idaho Human Rights Act.
Today Kessler-Keener Foundation’s work takes Ed to Idaho’s reservations and towns. He is an outdoor enthusiast, backpacking, camping, hunting, and fishing with his spare time. Ed has spent the last 48 years with his childhood sweetheart and wife, Martha. They’ve reserved Mondays together as their day off together for 35 of those years. Ed maintains an organic vegetable and flower garden on their three acres that also contains a labyrinth and walking paths open to the public for retreat and enjoyment.
“I am grateful for the influence of my mother who encouraged me to see the world through many varied lenses.”
JamieLou met Ed Keener in 2010 at the Frybread Forum, a Native American Awareness Week event at Boise State University. Attracted by the social justice focus of Kessler-Keener Foundation and the organization’s current efforts to foster cross-cultural understanding and dialogue between Native and non-Native people, JamieLou soon joined the board. Since that time, she has helped to plan various events focused on cross-cultural dialog in the Treasure Valley.
JamieLou Delavan is the State Minority Health Coordinator at Idaho Department of Health and Welfare where she serves as cultural liaison and cultural competency guide for public health programs. As an active volunteer, JamieLou has a particular passion for efforts that support the local community and foster equity and diversity. She has served as board president of the Idaho Women’s Network and on the board of the LGBTA Community Center. The Idaho Business Review honored JamieLou as one of the Women of the Year in 2012.
JamieLou Delavan is from a richly diverse family background. Jamie is of Filipino and Scandinavian descent, her Filipino grandfather having migrated to America when he was 15 years of age. Jamie spent her childhood years in Botswana, the home of her African stepfather, and Rhodesia during wartime. Now based in Boise, JamieLou spends her spare time traveling with her husband of 27 years, her two adult children, and her camera.
“From a young age, family members influenced my enthusiasm and understanding toward human rights and equality through their examples and actions”
Serving on the Kessler-Keener Foundation Board since 2012, Bob is the grandson of Harry S. Kessler and nephew of Margaret Keener and cousin of Ed Keener. His mother, Katherine (Kessler) Armstrong, co-founded Kessler-Keener Foundation with Ed Keener in 1997.
Currently serves as Instructor Emeritus for Treasure Valley Community College, Bob is the current music director for the Treasure Valley Symphony and the Boise Community Band. In addition, he currently plays the string bass with Boise’s Serenade Orchestra, the Sawtooth String Quintet and is a guest conductor for regional educational ensembles.
Bob spent his career working in the field of music education teaching in British Columbia, Alaska, Washington, Oregon and Idaho. Bob was awarded the 1985 Alaskan Music Educator of the Year by the Ontario Chamber of Commerce, 1995 Educator of the Year, and the Treasure Valley Community College’s 2007 Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society’s Teacher of the Year. He retired from the college after 23 years as the Director of Instrumental Music. Bob served as the musical director of several community organizations over the years including the Anchorage Community Band, the Lewis- Clark Community Band, and the Treasure Valley Community Band.
Bob met his wife Dana 42 years ago in the college choir. As an Alaskan bush pilot at the time, one of his first activities with her was to fly her in his ski plane to an Alaskan ski resort. Bob and Dana enjoy attending musical events and long drives, generally when they end with a visit with their children and at the ocean. Bob is an active cyclist and enjoys flying his RC aircraft.
Naomi Johnson is a proud Idahoan with a strong connection to her community. Born and raised in Idaho, she has a vested interest in the rights of Idaho’s people and families. As a community organizer and clinical social worker, she works side by side with residents from all walks of life to improve our community.
Naomi’s focus on issues of social justice and civic engagement, her work as a civic organizer, and her background in social work, provide a platform to aid Boise as it continues to grow and meet the needs and issues of all its community members.
Claire Aca Manning-Dick is a member of the Shoshone-Paiute Tribes of the Duck Valley Indian reservation. She received her BA teaching degree at Arizona State University and her Masters in School Counseling at the College of Idaho. Claire married Richard Dick, USAF who served in the Vietnam war. They have one son, daughter, and grandson. When Richard passed away she retired and takes care of her 94 year old Mother-In-Law. As an educator, Claire stays actively involved in her community. She is involved in the youth cultural American Indian Girl/Boy Scouts Association, Gold Star Wives, Miss Indian America organization and her church’s activities.