Our board of directors team is a "working board", as each member is actively engaged with our signature programs. Besides our time, we each financially contribute to NAMI Jacksonville.
Kent Rutherford - President
Kent is originally from Tyrone, Pennsylvania and served 38-years as a US Air Force Fighter Pilot. He has been a member of NAMI since 2002, President since 2015, and also serves on the board of directors of Clay Behavioral Health Center.
Tara Wildes - Vice President
Tara Wildes worked for over 30 years throughout the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office, primarily in the correctional environment. She retired in 2016 with the appointed rank of Director of the Department of Corrections, managing three correctional facilities and the Jacksonville Reentry Center, with over 3400 incarcerated persons, 800 employees and a budget of over 90 million dollars. She is certified by the state of Florida in both corrections and law enforcement, and as an instructor by the Criminal Justice Standards and Training Commission of Florida. Tara is currently employed as a consultant on corrections issues with Wildes Investigations, LLC and as an adjunct instructor with Florida State College at Jacksonville. She also serves on the boards of Disability Rights Florida and StopTB USA, representing the rights of the incarcerated population and is an advocate for criminal justice and mental health reform.
Ming Chan - Treasurer
Ming is retired as laboratory director from the Florida Department of Health, Bureau of Public Health Laboratories in Jacksonville. He joined NAMI membership in 2008 and has served in the NAMI board since 2012.
Chandler grew up in Fruit Cove, attended Bartram Trail High School, and got a bachelor's degree from Yale University. He is completing his master of social work program through Florida State University, and is is employed by the Sulzbacher Center. Chandler has served as our Connection recovery support group program coordinator.
Norma has been a member of NAMI Jacksonville for 11 years and served as Education/Program Chairman for five years. She has worked toward implementing and maintaining additional programs for education and support that we now offer to the community, has taught the Family to Family course for 10 years, and created a manual for our Helpline Team. In 2015, Norma and her husband, Hayes, accepted Mental Health America’s Agency of the Year Award on behalf of the NAMI Jacksonville membership.
Pam Swan has been a member of the NAMI Jax board since 2016. She is a full time Assistant Clinical Professor of Nursing at Jacksonville University. Her focus is Psychiatric and Mental health nursing, as well as, Community Health nursing. Her clinical background is Emergency Medicine and Child / Adolescent Mental Health nursing. Her research interests include Survivors of Suicide. She has lived in Jacksonville for 20 years and loves to play golf in her spare time.
John is from St. Louis, Missouri. He practiced real estate and land use law in Jacksonville for 32 years before joining the Hutson Companies as vice president of real estate operations in 2013. He and his wife Joyce have three sons and two granddaughters. They joined NAMI in 2012 after taking the Family to Family course.
Tory Wilcox, LMHC, MBA is the Assistant Director of Behavioral Health at Sulzbacher Center’s FQHC (federally Qualified Health Center), where she has worked for over 9 years. She previously gained 20 years of progressive management experience in financial services, ending as a Senior Vice President at Bank of America. Tory became involved with NAMI in 2014, and has hosted the Peer to Peer class several times. She joined the Board in early 2017 and serves as our Program Coordinator. Tory has a passion for helping others improve their quality of life through her counseling work, and outside of work enjoys her two sons, golden doodle, and the outdoors.
Linda Gregory (board advisor)
Linda was comptroller for a family business for 25 years, and then served as Church and Community Ministries Director for the Seminole Baptist Association; assisting in determining needs and in developing ministry programs. Following the death of Linda’s husband, a Seminole County Deputy, at the hands of a man who had suffered from paranoid schizophrenia and bi-polar disorder, she became involved in mental health and criminal justice advocacy. She has successfully lobbied state and national legislators for improved services and laws for those persons with mental illnesses, has given testimony and participated in interviews for both television and radio and has spoken at venues around the country. Linda has served on many boards and committees seeking better services for persons with mental illnesses and substance abuse issues. She was a team trainer for Law Enforcement Crisis Intervention Team training around the state. Linda is often a requested speaker at Women’s Retreats, Victim Advocate groups and churches where she offers encouragement and inspiration. Linda has received numerous community and national service awards. Linda currently serves as Board Advisor to NAMI Jacksonville, and as Secretary and Chair of the Governance and Re-Affiliation committee for NAMI Florida.