Meet the Speakers

Fall 2022-Spring 2023 speakers coming soon!
Check out past Leadership Wesleyan speakers below!

President Emeritus Barton Darrell ’84, J.D. 

Bart served as 44th President of Kentucky Wesleyan College from 2014 to 2019, during which time he served as a changemaker for the College, establishing new academic and community partnerships, leading a complete overhaul of the campus ministries program and increasing student enrollment. Perhaps most notably, he introduced The Wesleyan Way to the campus, local and global Wesleyan community, which became part of the overall brand and culture of the College.

Prior to serving as president, Bart held numerous Wesleyan titles including president of the Alumni Association, adjunct professor and member of the Board of Trustees. He was the recipient of the Outstanding Alumnus Award in 2017 and was inducted into the Alumni Hall of Fame in 2020.

Bart earned his law degree from the University of Louisville Brandeis School of Law in 1987 and has earned numerous career accolades including “Kentucky’s Outstanding Young Lawyer.”

Doug Hoyt ’84

Doug is the Chief Executive Officer for Wendell Foster. Prior to that, he spent 22 years at Kenergy and 13 years with the Green River Area Development District.

Doug was born and raised in Conneaut, Ohio and came to Owensboro in to attend Kentucky Wesleyan College. After graduation he attended Indiana State University where he received his Master’s Degree.

Doug is a graduate of Leadership Owensboro (2005) and Leadership Kentucky (2002). He is active in the community, currently serving on the boards of the Owensboro-Daviess County Regional Airport, the Kentucky Wesleyan College Alumni Board, Owensboro Community and Technical College, Leading Age Kentucky (where he also serves as the Chair of the Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (I/DD) Committee) and serves as a Deacon with First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ).

Doug and his wife Brenda have two children and five grandchildren.

Brandon Cox ’10 

Brandon Cox ’10 is the Chief Marketing Officer at LynnGroup, an engineering, construction and real estate development firm on the Gulf Coast of Texas. It’s his job to build relationships, reinforce the company’s core values and turn engineer-speak into marketing copy. The motto at LynnGroup is “We think BIG, to work BIG, to give BIG, so that we can positively impact the lives of our employees, clients and communities.”

He joined LynnGroup in June 2020 after serving as a media executive and working in journalism for more than a decade. In 2020, Editor & Publisher magazine named me to their annual 25 Under 35 list of rising stars in media and communications.

When not writing for work he plays guitar, cycles, dabbles in photography and still plans to write the next great American novel. He believes too many people are uninformed or unengaged, and has spent his career connecting people with information, ideas and each other so that they can make a difference in their communities. Brandon is a father of three (Alyssa, 11; Marshall, 8; Anderson, 7 months) and husband to a beautiful bride, Charity, that’s “way out of his league” according to him. They have two dogs – one that sheds and one that barks. They’re the reason he gets up in the morning, literally. Brandon and his family reside in Owensboro, Ky.

Hillary (Lantrip) Croft ’14, J.D. 

Hillary is currently an Assistant County Attorney and Child Support Unit Director with the Hopkins County Attorney’s Office. Her first experience in child support started in high school as an intern at the Hopkins County Child Support Unit. Upon graduating from Kentucky Wesleyan College she worked as a law clerk at the Jefferson County Child Support Office during her time at Northern Kentucky University, Salmon P. Chase College of Law.

Since law school, Hillary has worked as an Assistant County Attorney with the Jefferson County Child Support office and as an Assistant Henderson County Attorney and Child Support Supervisor.

Outside of the office, Hillary is the Vice President of the Hopkins County Bar, an Adjunct Professor at Madisonville Community College teaching Intro to Business Law, Chapter Advisory Board Member for Kappa Delta Sorority – Gamma Xi Chapter, Small Business Division Leader with United Way, a member of the Inter-Agency Council, an Executive Board Member of the Young Professionals of Hopkins County, and member Hopkins County Job Expo Committee.

Hillary is married to Daniel Croft, a Health & PE Teacher at South Hopkins Middle School. Hillary and her husband just welcomed their first child, Callen Bruce Croft, in December 2021.

Quadarius Wallace ’13 

Quadarius is the PE teacher and defensive coordinator coach for Daviess County High School. He also works as a sports trainer and as a coach for numerous travel teams. The retired college athlete found himself teaching and coaching after recognizing the role his former teachers and coaches played in his own success. When he realized he could be a similar beacon of light for others from all walks of life, he jumped right in. In his mind, it’s all about paying it forward and that’s the least he can do.

While a student, Quadarius played football for the Panthers, was a part of Sigma Nu Fraternity and majored in exercise science. He and his wife, Hannah, reside in Owensboro. After graduating from Wesleyan, he went on to earn his master’s in teaching from the University of the Cumberlands.

Ed Krahwinkel ’93 

After working Nashville for several years in the mailing and shipping industry, Ed returned to Owensboro and joined the the City of Owensboro in 1998 and retired as lieutenant and leader of the Criminal Investigation Unit of OPD in 2018. Following his retirement from OPD, Ed’s financial advisor of 20 years recruited him into the business; he joined Edward Jones as a financial advisor in 2018.

Ed is active in the community with the Hartford/Beaver Dam Lion’s Club, Owensboro Chamber of Commerce, Ohio County Chamber of Commerce, Fraternal Order of Police #16, FBI National Academy Alumni Association and the Owensboro Rotary Club.  Ed currently serves as the Secretary for the Owensboro Duplicate Bridge Club and has served on the board and as past president of New Beginnings and the Marlins USA Swim Club.

After graduating with a B.S. in Computer Science from Kentucky Wesleyan, Ed earned his MPA from Western Kentucky University. He is happily married to his own Wesleyan Sweetheart, Dr. Jodi (Parks) Krahwinkel ’93 and they have two children, Owen (KWC ’23) and Avery (EKU ’26 – can’t win them all). The family enjoys vacations, Jeeping and board & card games. They attend Tennessee Titan’s football games, UK basketball games and concerts (80’s rock when Ed gets to choose) regularly.

Lauren (Werner) Lee ’05

Prior to becoming a realtor, Lauren was quickly moving up the ranks at Kentucky Wesleyan College beginning first as an Admissions Counselor, Associate Director of Admissions, Interim Dean of Admissions, Director of Alumni, and lastly as Director of Admissions before transitioning into full time real estate. With over 11 years of full-time real estate experience, Lauren is known for her professionalism, strong commitment to personal service, and valued guidance. It’s her passion and dedication to her clients that make her an ideal realtor. Lauren’s goal is to ensure a smooth transition, which is why she is committed to helping her clients fulfill each need — from finding the perfect home to selling the property that has meant so much.

Lauren is most comfortable behind the scenes silently giving of her time and resources. Since becoming a mother of two young girls, her giving of resources has been drawn to organizations supporting children and organizations important to friends such as Shop with a Cop, Apraxia Awareness, Right to Life and the American Cancer Society. She is also instrumental behind the scenes of her husband’s company, SJL Contracting, and in development of the mission and business plan of their joint venture SJL Properties. SJL Properties works to purchase properties in lower income areas of Owensboro. Their goal is to rebuild or rehab to offer updated homes renters will take pride in at below market rental rates and help individuals get back on their feet or in need of a fresh start. They work to get to know the person for who they are now—not who they were. Proudly, there have been more successes than setbacks.

After graduating with a B.S. in Communications from Kentucky Wesleyan, Lauren earned her MBA from Murray State University. She is happily married to her own Wesleyan Sweetheart, Steven Lee ’08 and they have two beautiful little girls, Giuliana (4) and Olivia (9).

Scott Lyons ’03

Scott is a native of Breckinridge County, Ky., who came to Owensboro to pursue an education on a golf scholarship at Kentucky Wesleyan College. Scott graduated in 2003, with a degree in Business Administration. In February, 2004 he became a licensed Realtor® with L. Steve Castlen Realtors, where he remains today.

During his 18-year tenure in real estate, Scott has helped several hundred families achieve their dream of owning a home and been part of multiple boards and committees within the Greater Owensboro Realtor Association. Scott takes pride in having great working relationships with realtors in all offices. Along with knowing the real estate market as well as anyone, Scott has  established a reputation of professionalism and excellent customer satisfaction.

In his spare time Scott enjoys studying/investing in real estate, but most importantly spending time with family and friends. He and his wife, Meagan, have two young sons Bo (5) and Sam (3).

Bob McDole ’78

Bob is the vice president and general manager of Hendrick Screen Company in Owensboro, Ky. and the CFO and owner of Mr. Big Guns in Huntsville, Al. He is a high energy business leader with broad-based experience driving success through effective P&L management, accelerated sales and profit growth, business turnaround, acquisitions and integrations and focused operations in fast-paced manufacturing environments for over 40 years. Bob has earned and enjoys a reputation to being an assertive change agent, capable of building/leading winning teams and ensuring high quality standards through best practices. In addition to his work at Hendrick Screen and Mr. Big Guns, Bob has served as a member of the Kentucky Wesleyan Board of Trustees and as president of The Country Club of Owensboro (currently serving as vice president).

Bob majored in business administration at Kentucky Wesleyan and was a member of the Panther Baseball team. He is happily married to his Wesleyan Sweetheart – and our alumni relations coordinator – Mary (Turner) McDole ’79 and together they enjoy golfing, target/clay shooting and rooting on Kentucky Wesleyan men’s and women’s basketball.

Allyson (Forrest) Sanders ’05

Service is Allyson’s passion. As an industry program coordinator at Owensboro Community and Technical College’s Workforce Solutions division, Allyson serves by helping enhance lives through educational attainment and employment.  She also serves her community through her membership on numerous boards of directors including the Owensboro YMCA, H.L. Neblett Center, Habitat for Humanity, My Sister’s Keeper and Dugan Best. She is a graduate of the Leadership Owensboro Class of 2020, a 2021-22 Civic Leadership participant and is the former youth director of Cumberland Presbyterian Church.

In 2019, she took a true leap of faith with her husband, Marshall Sanders ’11, and her twin sister, Tina Forrest ’04, and opened The Party Space, LLC. While the idea for the business had been a brainchild of Allyson’s for many years, it took being in the middle of a global pandemic for Allyson and her family to finally bring the idea to life. The Party Space Place (TPSP) is a micro venue dedicated to providing the Owensboro community with an event space unlike any other venue it its design and offerings. The team at TSPC specializes in a variety of services from event coordinator, decorating and total clean up for guests following their event. Allyson and her family makes every one of their clients feel like their event is the venue’s top priority and the clients regularly brag on their warm hospitality and incredible attention to detail.

Allyson is a Paducah native and was a communications major at Kentucky Wesleyan. She met and married her own Wesleyan Sweetheart, Marshall Sanders ’11 and together they have two daughters, Amari and Analea.