Independent Connection, Salina, KS

Dedicated to Serving Others

Staff Team

As a Center for Independent Living (CIL), Independent Connection was designed by individuals with disabilities, for individuals with disabilities. More than 51% of our board and staff team are people with disabilities. Their valuable experiences contribute to our approach. We are passionate about working with people of all ages and disabilities to eliminate barriers so that living independently is made possible for all.

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Cindy Hardesty

Program Assistant

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Cindy Hardesty

Program Assistant

Cindy Hardesty joined Independent Connection in 2023 as a Program Assistant. Cindy assists with program activities and reporting. Cindy recently retired but before that worked for many years at a local state government office. She has lived in a small town all her life where she and her husband raised two children. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her family, keeping up with her six busy grandchildren, and supporting her mom. She has learned how important support from others is as life changes and loved one’s age.

Nayenci Lamar - Independent Living Specialist, a black female wearing a white shirt smiling at the camera.

Nayenci Lamar

Independent Living Specialist

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Nayenci Lamar

Independent Living Specialist

Nayenci Lamar joined Independent Connection in 2021 as an Independent Living Specialist.  Nayenci assists customers in attaining their goals to become more independent.  She provides a variety of independent living skills services including peer support, training, and transition services. In her free time, she spends time with her family and enjoys attending church. While working at Independent Connection she has learned about having disability pride.

Tammy Modrow - Office/I&R Specialist, a white female wearing a black shirt looking at the camera.

Tammy Modrow

Office Support/I &R Specialist

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Tammy Modrow

Office Support/I &R Specialist

Tammy Modrow joined Independent Connection in 2023 as the Office Support/Information & Referral Specialist. She assists callers and consumers in accessing community resources and helps with a variety of administrative tasks. She’s worked in a variety of roles throughout her career, most recently in customer service.  In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her family and keeps in touch with her son and his family who live far away. She has family members with a variety of disabilities and learned throughout her life that providing support when she can is the best way to help. Tammy is continuing to adjust her daily life as her needs and abilities change.

Karady Nash - Independent Living Services Coordinator, a white female wearing a tan/brown striped sweater smiling at the camera.

Karady Nash

Independent Living Services Coordinator

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Karady Nash

Independent Living Services Coordinator

Karady Nash joined Independent Connection in 2022 as an Independent Living Services Coordinator. Karady’s role is to work with consumers to identify goals and provide support. She supports youth as they develop self-advocacy skills and learn new independent living skills. She also focuses on peer support. Karady previously worked two years as an advocate in a non-profit organization. She holds a master’s degree in Business Administration from Grantham University. Salina has been home for her entire life; in her free time, she enjoys spending time with her husband and family. Karady has experienced the value of support as she learned to apply strategies that have helped her with her disability.  She enjoys being a part of an organization that is constantly growing and adapting in order to reach as many people as possible to help them find their voice and pursue success.

Elyse Pfizenmaier - Independent Living Specialist, a white female wearing a red shirt smiling at the camera.

Elyse Pfizenmaier

Independent Living Specialist (Health & Wellness)

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Elyse Pfizenmaier

Independent Living Specialist (Health & Wellness)

Elyse Pfizenmaier joined Independent Connection in 2023 as an Independent Living Specialist (Health & Wellness program). Elyse’s role is to provide independent living services with a focus on health/wellness topics including consultation, skill building opportunities, and educational outreach services. She holds a bachelor’s degree in general studies from Fort Hays State University with an emphasis on human services/psychology and a Certificate in life stages and transitions. Elyse brings many years of experience providing customer service with a focus on high quality support. She has a passion for helping others and is excited to help consumers meet their goals. In her free time, she enjoys being outside with her pets and spending time with her husband and family.

Christen Robinson - Program Manager, a white female wearing a black sweater and purple shirt smiling at the camera.

Christen Robinson

Program Manager

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Christen Robinson

Program Manager

Christen Robinson joined Independent Connection in 2022. After filling a new Coordinator role for over a year, Christen is now the Program Manager. She oversees service strategy and program quality, increases collaboration with partners, and provides support to consumers. Her career spans 18 years in long term care administration; she has a strong background in advocacy. Christen holds a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration with a Human Resource emphasis from Kansas State University. She has lived in the Salina area since 2000. She and her husband have three daughters. She enjoys spending time with family and friends, attending school activities and rodeos, golfing, and enjoying the outdoors. Her personal connection with disabilities occurred when her husband experienced a traumatic brain injury from an accident 13 years ago. While he has recovered, Christen’s awareness and passion for helping others has grown even stronger since that experience.

Angie Saenger - Executive Director, a white female wearing a black jacket and grey patterned shirt smiling at the camera.

Angie Saenger

Executive Director

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Angie Saenger

Executive Director

Angie Saenger joined Independent Connection in 2021 as the Executive Director. Angie oversees operations of ICI, works to increase funding and partnerships, and collaborates with the ICI Board of Directors. Her career spans 17 years in early childhood system building and non-profit administration. She has a strong background in human resources. Angie holds a bachelor’s degree from Emporia State University in Business Management. She has called the Salina area home for most of her life. She and her husband have three daughters, who keep them busy with school activities and sports. She enjoys reading, time at the lake, and all kinds of family activities. Her personal connection with disabilities grew while navigating some health issues and while supporting her daughter who was born with health issues. As her daughter’s needs shifted, Angie began advocating for support in the learning environment.

Heather Williams - Independent Living Specialist, a white female wearing a green shirt smiling at the camera.

Heather Williams

Independent Living Specialist

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Heather Williams

Independent Living Specialist

Heather Williams joined Independent Connection in 2023 as an Independent Living Specialist. She assists consumers in attaining their goals to become more independent. Heather provides a variety of independent living skills services including consultation, skill building, and educational services. In her 13+ years of working with children, she developed a passion for helping others and appreciates the opportunity to provide feedback and guidance based on her experiences. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her 10-year-old daughter in the great outdoors, playing board games, and watching movies. Heather has learned through her own experiences that being able to talk with others is important.

Board of Directors

  • Gary Martens

    President

  • Eryn Wright

    Vice President

  • Gina McDonald

    Treasurer

  • Deborah (Deb) Furgason

    Secretary

  • Shelia Nelson-Stout

    Ex Officio

Interested in Our Services?

If you have questions about any of our independent living services, please contact us at (785) 452-9580. We look forward to speaking with you!

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