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Board and Advisors

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Board of Directors

Carl Ellison - Chair and Treasurer
Carl is Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of the Indiana Minority Health Coalition (IMHC), a statewide health advocacy organization he helped found in 1992.  In this role, he manages, under Indiana’s Minority Health Initiative, the funding and oversight of twenty-four (24)  local minority health coalitions and other community based organizations.  He also is involved in legislative education and policy development on a wide range of issues.

Jeremy Efroymson - Member
Jeremy comes to the board after already providing years of support to Global Peace Initiatives. We consider him one of our founders. Jeremy founded the Indianapolis Museum of Contemporary Art and he serves as the Vice Chair for the Efroymson Family Fund which is one of the funds of the Central Indiana Community Foundation. His philanthropy is vast and generous within the arts, environment and agencies who serve the disadvantaged.

Angela Leddy - Secretary
Angela is Office Manager for IU Health Orthopedic Surgery and also Secretary of the Board for The Church Within. Angela is also Reverend Leddy through The Church Within. She is passionate about peace and compassionate service to others.

Matt Langenbacher - Member
Matt is a firefighter and serves as a safety officer and Battalion Chief for the Indianapolis Fire Department. He is also an attorney and specializes in fire and labor law. Matt is also passionate about sustainable living. He has a mature aquaponics system in his basement and a geodesic dome in his backyard. Matt considers himself a sustainability "geek". We love our geeks.

Wayne Naylor - Member
Wayne serves as the Vice Principal for Brook Park Elementary School, which is the Environmental Magnet Program for the Lawrence School District. Wayne has a special interest in alternative education in order to bring out the best in high risk youth. His expertise is well suited to help us move forward with non traditional educational opportunities.

Angela Smitman - Member
Angela is a Master Gardener and has served as President of the Garfield Park Master Gardeners Association at least three terms. Angela is also passionate about animal welfare, her children and their educational needs. Angela has home schooled her two daughters, who are also world class figure skaters.

Stuart Harvey - Member
Stu is a licensed realtor and works for Flock Realty in downtown Indianapolis. Prior to graduating from Butler University, where he was a wide receiver for the Butler Bulldog football team, Stu served a full-time internship in the Global Peace Initiatives Peace Gardens. He then went on the next summer to establish the urban farm on the campus at Butler.

Linda Proffitt - Executive Director and Founder
As founder and executive director of Global Peace Initiative, Linda is hands on in every aspect of organization operations and administration. Resourceful and innovative are two words that describe her leadership.


Hugh “Red” Baker - Counsel
Hugh is an attorney at law in Indianapolis. Practicing 35 years, Hugh finds his passion in gardening and sharing knowledge about the earth as a guide for spiritual practice. He is legal counsel for Indiana Living Green Magazine and Chief Tiller for the GPI Peace Gardens. Hugh actively supports other garden initiatives including, Immaculate Heart of Mary parish in northern Indianapolis. In this garden refugee families from all over the world are involved in making the garden a place of community building.

Dr. Nelson Kraus
Nelson is a physician, a career military officer, television and radio comentator, college professor and now...peacemaker. As a physician, Nelson came to know that the internal processes of mind and thought toward wellness had as much to do with recovery as the physical remedies he could provide to patients as a doctor. He has also realized the power of media. Nelson has provided medical commentary on radio and television for over fifteen years, including appearances on “Oprah.” Nelson believes in the potential of the mission of GPI to develop and promote positive messages that empower peace within and all around us.

Yogi Jim Wills
Jim provides peace instruction all over the city of Indianapolis through his talents as a yoga instructor. As a yoga instructor, he is known for keeping his cool in a hot yoga setting. Jim has also served as a Board member for the Indiana Yoga Association. Jim serves as Peace Hike leader for Global Peace Initiatives. Yogi Jim has also provided excellent leadership to youth in the Peace Gardens. In his spare time Jim enjoys his dog Bradley, other less hairy friends, his church, travel, fine food and attending cultural arts events. Jim was a graduate of Butler University’s Jordan School of Dance.


Efroymson Fund Logo

Global Peace Initiatives is supported by the generous contributions from the Efroymson Family, which is one of the funds that make up the Central Indiana Community Foundation.

IUPUI Spirit and Place Logo

Global Peace Initiatives events were selected five years in a row for inclusion in IUPUI Polis Center’s Spirit and Place.