Rachael Kennedy, President
Rachael Kennedy was born in Manhattan, Kansas, where when she was 12, she met the boy who would become her husband, Paxton Schneider. Paxton and Rachael have two children.
She graduated from The University of Kansas with a degree in Human Development and Family Life. She graduated from The University of Missouri - Columbia School of Law in 1997, stayed in Columbia, and has focused on family law since then. She had a solo practice for six years, and has mediated over 2500 hours of family cases.
Art Nissenbaum, Treasurer & President Elect
St. Louis, MO
Art Nissenbaum of Arthur H. Nissenbaum, LLC, is an attorney concentrating on family law matters in St. Louis, Missouri. Art is a graduate of the University of Kansas in Lawrence where he majored in Psychology and in Human Development and Family Life. He received his JD from The John Marshall Law School and holds a Masters Degree in Public Administration from St. Louis University. Art's practice focuses on all aspects of family law including mediation, Parent Coordination and he often works as a Guardian ad Litem for children in contested custody cases in the metropolitan St. Louis area. Art is a trained Parent Coordinator and he was a member of the Task Force for Parent Coordination for the St. Louis County Family Court. He was instrumental in bringing Parent Coordination to the St. Louis County Courts. Art is a board member of Lawyers for Kids which supports safe place exchange centers in St. Louis City and County. Art has been serving on the MO-AFCC board since October of 2007.
Dawn Kuhlman, Corresponding Secretary &
Chapter Council Representative
Dawn Kuhlman, MA, holds a Master of Arts in Clinical Psychology from the University of Dayton. She is a mediator and parent education facilitator for the Office of Dispute Resolution Services for the Seventh Judicial Circuit in Liberty, MO. She also teaches in the Conflict Management and Dispute Resolution Master’s Program at Baker University. Dawn coordinates the MO-AFCC Kansas City area lunch and learn programs. Dawn also serves as the MO-AFCC Corresponding Secretary and Chapter Council Representative.
Richard Scott, Recording Secretary
St. Louis, MO
Hailing from St. Louis, Dr. Rick Scott is a father of two, making him a busy parent and coach. He is an avid fan of music and baseball. He received his undergraduate degree in psychology and philosophy from Bradley University and attended St. Louis University for his master's and doctorate degrees in Clinical Psychology. He has been a licensed psychologist and certified forensic examiner since 1992. For the Missouri Department of Mental Health, he conducts pretrial criminal and sexual predator commitment evaluations, and consults across the state on issues of risk assessment and best practices in forensic mental health. In his private practice, Dr. Scott performs pretrial criminal evaluations, but also conducts parenting and child custody evaluations, as well as therapy to facilitate co-parenting in high conflict cases. Dr. Scott is a member of the American Psychological Association, the American Psychology & Law Society, and the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts. He is a clinical member of the Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers and is a charter member of the Missouri chapter.
Sherrill P. Roberts currently serves as Family Court Commissioner in Clay County, Missouri, presiding primarily over matters involving paternity, child custody, child support and related issues. She was appointed Family Court Commissioner in 2005. Prior to her appointment as Family Court Commissioner, she was a partner in the firm of Kuhlman, Reddoch, Sullivan & Roberts, P.C., a small general practice firm, where her practice was concentrated in family law litigation and representation of children as a Guardian ad Litem. She received bachelor’s degrees in Political Science and Philosophy from William Jewell College in Liberty, Missouri, and her Juris Doctor from the University of Missouri at Columbia.
Katherine (Katy) Tynes attended Stephens College and Tulane University where she received her M.S.W. degree. Katy was a liaison for the Juvenile Court Judges for ten years with various agencies in New Orleans, Louisiana. Katy was also the Clinical Director for ten years at St John's Psychiatric Program in Springfield, Missouri. Since 1991, Katy has been in private practice with Tynes & Associates. She currently holds a L.C.S.W. and L.M.F.T. license in the state of Missouri. Katy is currently involved in custody mediation and divorce cases, where she also practices in the area of parent coordination.
Honorable Douglas R. Beach,
St Louis, MO.
Douglas R. Beach was appointed Associate Circuit Court Judge for St. Louis County, Missouri in 2005 and appointed to the Circuit Court by Governor Jay Nixon in 2010. Judge Beach has been assigned to the Family Court since 2005. He has been very active in family law matters such as Parenting Coordination and speaks on various family law matters and judicial issues involving children and the courts. He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers. He was named in the Best Lawyers of America publication for 10 consecutive years. Judge Beach graduated from Central Conn. State University in 1970 and received his law degree from New England School of Law (Cum Laude) in 1973.
Michelle Henry, Web Master, Past President
St. Louis, MO
Michelle Henry is a trained mediator and the Assistant Supervisor of the Mediation and Special Court Services Unit of the St. Louis City Family Court. Michelle Henry works with a team of mediators who provide domestic relations and intra-family mediation services for Divisions 1, 14, 14A, 15 and 30 of the Twenty-Second Judicial Circuit. The unit also provides supervised visitation and supervised exchange services, performs home studies, and completes screenings of applicants for Child Orders of Protection. Ms. Henry is a facilitator at the Family Court’s Pro Se Clinic assisting participants in the completion of their petitions for Dissolution of Marriage. Ms. Henry is the Program Liaison for the Court’s Family Sub-Contracted Services program, a program of subcontracted services provided to the clients of the Family Court where she supervises 20 vendors. She has been employed by the Family Court for 11 years.
Michelle Henry has served on the Board of Directors of Shalom House, a homeless shelter for women, since April 2006 and has been the Program Committee Chairperson since 2007.
Michelle Henry has been on the Board of Directors of the Missouri Chapter of AFCC since October 2007 and served as the Chapter’s secretary in 2008 and 2009. Michelle Henry earned her Bachelor of Science from Southeast Missouri State University in 1992 and her Master of Science from Lindenwood University in 2002
Mercedes Fort, Past President
Cape Girardeau County
Ms. M. Mercedes Fort is a partner with The Fort Law Firm, LLC. She concentrates her practice in matters involving family law. She is a mediator and serves as the guardian ad litem in the FIRST family drug court program in Cape Girardeau County. She also serves as guardian ad litem in high conflict cases. In addition to her J.D. degree she has a Master’s Degree in Psychology from Florida State University and a B.A. degree in Psychology from Georgia Southwestern University. She teaches on an adjunct basis at Southeast Missouri State University in Cape Girardeau and provides training for the local CASA volunteers. She serves on the Board of Directors of the Missouri Chapter of the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts, currently serving as president of that board, the Board of Directors of the Safe House for Women, the SEMO Citizens Advisory Board and she has recently written a grant on behalf of the 32nd Circuit for a supervised custody exchange program which is now up and running.
Advisory Board Members:
Andrea Clark, M.S.W. Advisory Board Member
St. Louis, MO.
Andrea Clark is a trained mediator with the Domestic Relations Services Unit (DRS) of the Family Court of St. Louis County, Missouri, where she has worked for more than 25 years. She works with parents and children by court referral to assist them in developing and carrying out custody plans. Ms. Clark earned a Master in Social Work from St. Louis University (1978), a Certificate in Marital and Family Therapy from Washington University in St. Louis (1988), and trained in mediation with Zena Zumeta (1995). She is one of the founding members of the Missouri Chapter of AFCC, where she is an active member of the MO-AFCC Board of Directors, a past president of the board, and co-editor of the bi-monthly chapter e-newsletter.
Honorable Norman C. Steimel III., Advisory Board Member
St. Charles County, MO
NORMAN C. STEIMEL III is an Associate Circuit Judge in St. Charles County. He was first elected in 2006 and re-elected in 2010. Prior to being elected Associate Circuit Judge, Judge Steimel served for eleven years as a Family Court Commissioner. He is a graduate of Washington University and the Washington University School of Law.
Larry Swall, Advisory Board Member
Larry V. Swall is Executive Director of M.A.R.C.H., Inc., (Mediation Achieving Results for Children) and family attorney in Liberty, Missouri, with Larry V. Swall & Associates, LLC. He is a graduate of the University of Kansas School of Law, 1990, where he did his masters work, in philosophy; and San Diego State University, BA-Philosophy, 1987. His private practice is concentrated in areas of family law and domestic relations, including family mediation and parenting coordination. Mr. Swall was honored in 2009 by the Missouri Bar Association with the President’s Award for Distinguished Service to the Bar and the Roger P. Krumm Family Law Practitioner of the Year Award. He is a member of the Missouri Bar Family Law Section, serving as Chair since 2008, as well as serving on the Family Law Legislative Review Committee and the CLE Committee; he was Planning Chair for the Missouri Bar Annual Family Law Conference for seven years beginning in 1999; and, a member of the Missouri Supreme Court Child Support Guideline Review Committee 2008 to present. He is a member of the Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association, in both the Family Law Section and Juvenile Law Committee, and the Clay County Bar Association. Mr. Swall is a past President and founding member of the Missouri Chapter of the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts, serving as Chair of the Parenting Coordination Task Force; a member of the American Bar Association Family Law Section, and a General Member of Association of Conflict Resolution. Mr. Swall was formerly a Professor with Drury College in Springfield, Missouri where he taught in areas of law, including family law, as well as in the Department of Philosophy, and at Maple Woods Community College, Kansas City, Missouri in the Department of Social Science, Philosophy