Chief Executive Officer
Prior to joining the non-profit sector, Matt spent more than a dozen years working in the world of political campaigns and management of state government. His political career spanned multiple Iowa Caucus campaigns, Iowa Gubernatorial campaigns, and a four year stint as Chief of Staff to Lt. Governor Patty Judge. Judge and Unger then partnered in a consulting firm, PJJ Solutions, where they would focus not just on political campaigns, but business and organizational strategy as well as public policy.
Originally from Wisconsin, Matt, a Drake grad, has called Des Moines home for over twenty years, and lives with his wife, Anita, in Beaverdale.
Leslie L. Garman, CFRE
Director of Development and Outreach
Her experience has focused on nonprofit organizations and working in several different roles, including mostly recently as Community Engagement Director for Employee & Family Resources (EFR). She has also worked with such organizations as the Spina Bifida Association of Iowa, Des Moines Metro Opera, the Chrysalis Foundation, and House of Mercy which is a part of the Mercy Foundation. While there she was instrumental in the re-forming of the House of Mercy board of directors and in the creation of the organization’s FIRST signature event: Helping Lives Bloom.
As a heart survivor herself, Leslie spent the majority of her career (nearly two decades) with the American Heart Association, leaving in 2005, as Metro Executive Director. While at Heart she visited nearly every school in Iowa for Jump Rope for Heart, trained staff statewide, and in Des Moines, conducted hundreds of events, and organized communities to hold educational events. Her more recognizable accomplishments in Des Moines include the creation of the Des Moines Heart Ball and Nurturing Women’s Hearts (the predecessor of Go Red For Women).
Leslie attended Morningside College in Sioux City, Iowa and received her CFRE (Certified Fund Raising Executive) designation in 2013. Today she is active with several organizations, including the Association of Fundraising Professionals, the Association for Women in Communications, MOIsson Women’s Breakfast Club, the Affinity Breakfast Club and the Des Moines Downtown Chamber.
In her spare time, she enjoys running, playing tennis, thrifting and restoring antique furniture. She has two adult children (Vanessa and Adam) one granddaughter named Devyn (age 2) and currently resides in Urbandale.
Food Pantry Network Director
With a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration – Marketing and a Sociology minor, she oversees the daily operations of a 12-site food pantry network distribution system serving 34,000 consumers annually, and will be invaluable to the growth of the system. Becky is a gifted speaker and regularly presents to faith, civic and student groups about food access needs in Greater Des Moines, and the work of the food pantry network.
Rev. Sarah Trone Garriott
Coordinator of Interfaith Engagement
As an AmeriCorps VISTA working for Northern New Mexico Legal Aid in Gallup, New Mexico, Sarah engaged community and faith leaders around the issue of Domestic Violence. As a hospital chaplain in Philadelphia and Chicago, Sarah supported patients and staff of all religious backgrounds. In parish ministry, first in rural Virginia and later in suburban Des Moines, it was her priority to build relationships beyond the church building and work together with interfaith partners.
Sarah holds a BA in History from the College of St. Scholastica, a Master of Theological Studies from Harvard Divinity School, a Master of Divinity from the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, and ordination through Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA).
Food Pantry Data Manager
Joe attended Westwood College and Lewis University studying Criminal Justice. Joe relocated to Des Moines in 2012. While never seeing himself as an Iowan in the past Joe is now a proud transplant, with deep roots in Iowa.
Joe enjoys being outside, wandering around the metro thrifting in his time off, along with cooking and watching documentary films.
Communications and Advocacy Manager
Luke Elzinga joined DMARC in April of 2014. As Communications and Advocacy Manager, he writes, edits and designs The Voice, creates and distributes the eVoice, designs and maintains dmarcunited.org, takes photos at events, produces videos, manages social media, designs print pieces and graphics, manages advocacy efforts, and other communications tasks.
Luke attended Iowa State University, where he earned his BA in Advertising. After graduating, he served a year as an AmeriCorps VISTA member at Montana Legal Services Association in Helena, Montana. Luke is a 2017 fellow of the New Leaders Council Des Moines Chapter. He is a board member of dsmHack and the Iowa Hunger Coalition, and a former board member of the Young Nonprofit Professionals Network (YNPN) Des Moines.
In his free time, Luke enjoys cooking, reading, documentary films, board games, and spending time with his partner Piper and their two cats, Gladley and Sibyl.
John graduated from Oklahoma State University with a degree in Technical Education- Adult Learning. In John’s free time he enjoys spending time with his wife and dog, traveling to state parks and watching sports.
Community Outreach and Volunteer Manager
In her personal life, Shoshana is mostly focused on the joyful experience of raising her son, Rufus, but indulges her passions for reading, thrifting, and weaving when time allows. She is a graduate of DePaul University in Chicago.
Linda Vander Hart
Linda and her husband, Dan, have three adult children and nine grandchildren. Linda’s leisure time is spent reading, going to grandchildren’s sport events and movies, and spending time with family and friends.