About Us

WHO WE ARE

Holland Children’s Institute was founded in 2013 by Richard D. Holland. Holland Children’s Institute is a 501(c)(3) nonpartisan nonprofit organization.

MISSION

Holland Children’s Institute serves as the trusted destination for research and analysis related to income disparities and equitable access to opportunities essential to prosperity for Nebraska children and families.

VISION

Nebraska will become the national beacon in economic security and opportunity for all children and families.

MEET OUR TEAM

Hadley Richters

Chief Executive Officer

Hadley leads Holland Children’s Institute as the Chief Executive Officer. Hadley is responsible for the development and implementation of The Institute’s overall program and research priorities.

Hadley has a range of executive experience in several organizations, public education campaigns, non-profit capital campaigns, and other projects, and extensive expertise in fundraising, communications, and public opinion research. She has seen some of the most ambitious initiatives to the finish line in Nebraska through her work at RichtersBrinkman LLC and independently. Hadley is known for delivering results and breaking records.

A graduate of the University of Nebraska, Hadley has served as manager to successful projects for various non-profit organizations, including the Child Advocacy Center, University of Nebraska Charitable Gift Fund, Community Health Endowment of Lincoln, as well as business leader groups Vision 2015 and the Lincoln Employer’s Coalition.    

Born and raised in Lincoln, Nebraska, Hadley now resides in Omaha, and can be spotted in Midtown, accompanied by her faithful sidekick and Goldendoodle, Lois. 

“The people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones who do.” – Steve Jobs

Maria Vieyra Villeda

Director of OPERATIONS

As Director of Operations, Maria works to ensure that the day-to-day operations of the Holland Children’s Institute run efficiently to accomplish our mission.

Maria has devoted her time volunteering for nonprofits, such as Council Bluffs Recreation Association (COBRA), United Way and Open Door Mission. She brings passion and a vast amount of project management skills to the Holland Children’s Institute. She has managed high-profile projects for financial institutions on behalf of First Data Corporation. Maria has a Bachelor of Arts degree from Buena Vista University in Marketing and Management with a Masters in Business Administration from Bellevue University.

Maria and her husband Kal enjoy participating in outdoor activities such as hiking, sand volleyball, and Jazz on Green at Midtown Crossing.

“You may not always have a comfortable life and you will not always be able to solve all of the world’s problems at once but don’t ever underestimate the importance you can have because history has shown us that courage can be contagious and hope can take on a life of its own.” – Michelle Obama

Joseph Adler

Director of Strategic Engagement

As Director of Strategic Engagement, Joey maximizes The Institute’s outreach and public education efforts to leaders, policymakers, and community partners.

Joey brings a strong combination of issue area expertise and technical skill to his role at the Institute. A former legislative aide in Nebraska’s Unicameral, he is fluent in the mechanics of state policymaking. Joey’s range of Nebraska-specific policy issue and legislative experience is broad and includes research, analysis, and public education. 

Joey leverages his experience and passion for qualitative and quantitative research as well as political analysis in his capacity as the liaison to several important state Coalitions to which the Institute belongs. Joey works with Institute staff to ensure data is interpreted correctly and applied to strategic frameworks according to institutional and situational best practices. 

“We will do what is hard. We will achieve what is great. This is a time for American Heroes and we reach for the stars.” – President Bartlet (The West Wing)

JohnCarl Denkovich

DIRECTOR OF COMMUNICATIONS & PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT

As Director of Communications and Program Development, JohnCarl works with Institute staff to bring the mission, vision, and values to life, by telling the important stories of Nebraskan’s children and families, as well as giving voice to the data collection conducted on policy issues on the minds of Nebraskans.

JohnCarl holds a dual Bachelors of Arts from Hastings College in Political Science and Psychology, and Masters in Public Administration, Nonprofit Management from the University of Nebraska at Omaha. He previously served as a Program Coordinator for Heartland Family Service.

Outside of professional commitments, JohnCarl serves as a member of the Board of Directors for GLSEN Omaha, and creates national impact through their role as a senior member of GLSEN’s National Advisory Council. GLSEN seeks to create safe, healthy, inclusive, and affirming school communities for ALL students, including LGBTQ+ students. JohnCarl is Co-Chair of the Mayor’s LGBTQ+ Advisory Board, a member of Young Jewish Omaha, and volunteers with the Institute of Holocaust Education. They are also a recipient of the Omaha Jaycees’ Ten Outstanding Young Omahans Award, 2018.

“It is easier to build strong children than to repair broken [adults].” -Frederick Douglass

Victoria Jones

Graphic Designer

Victoria brings technical skill and talent as Graphic Designer at Holland Children’s Institute. She pairs her creativity with our mission to produce relevant reports and materials. Her ability to translate data and research into digestible visuals drives results for children and families. Victoria interned at The Salvation Army, along with working with children at the University of Nebraska at Omaha’s science and math summer camp, Aim for the Stars. She graduated with her B.S. in Communications from UNO.

“My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style.” – Maya Angelou

Board of Directors

  • Andy Holland

  • Wanda Gottschalk

  • Deb Love

  • Carol Russell

  • Katie Weitz, PhD