Executive Director / Co-founder

In 2016, after having been entirely volunteer-run for its first four years, Ruby’s Rainbow took on its first full-time Executive Director, Liz Plachta – co-founder and mom to Ruby – to meet the demands of this rapidly expanding organization. Still largely volunteer-run, the organization is made up of parents, family and friends of people who happen to be rockin’ that extra chromosome. Everyone involved with Ruby’s Rainbow is passionate about spreading the word about these inspiring and capable individuals.

Liz’s drive to start Ruby’s Rainbow came from her adoration for her family. Her passion to provide her children with the best inspired her to help other families like hers with educational costs and support, as well as helping to raise standards and expectations of individuals with Down syndrome. She truly is the driving force behind Ruby’s Rainbow.

Liz resides in Austin, Texas, with her handsome hubby, Tim, and their daughters, Ruby and big sister Ella Mae. The Plachtas enjoy spending time as a family and look forward to continuing their mission and passion of showing the world just what people who are rockin’ that extra chromosome are made of!!

Tim and RubyCo-founder / Secretary / Board Member

Co-founder of Ruby’s Rainbow, hubby to Liz, and proud father to his favorite girls on earth, Ruby and Ella Mae.

In 2012, Tim began serving the financial needs of special-needs families when he opened his own investment firm, Reliant Wealth Management, LLC. He also has eight years of experience as a professional educator, spending much of that time working with children with special needs.

Tim’s company: reliantwealth.com

Kelle HamptonVice President

Kelle is thrilled to be joining Ruby’s Rainbow after helping them promote their 3/21 Pledge campaign starting in 2015. That year, she had the pleasure of spending the day with two Rockin’ Recipients at Western Carolina University for a day-in-the-life experience that changed not only the way Kelle views the future for her daughter Nella, but for the opportunities that inclusion provides all of her children.

Kelle is a writer, blogger and photographer who lives with her family in Naples, Florida. Her blog, Enjoying the Small Things, has provided hope for many families new to the world of Down syndrome. Bloom, the New York Times best-selling memoir, is the story of Kelle’s first year with her daughter Nella.

You can follow her blog at kellehampton.com.

Treasurer

Bio is coming soon!

Catherine Avril Morris, Administrative DirectorAdministrative Director

Catherine first met the Plachtas in 2012 through the Down Syndrome Association of Central Texas, when her daughter Pearl (who’s rockin’ an extra chromosome) was just a baby. (Pearl is less than a year younger than Ruby, and they’re lifelong buddies!) Instantly, Catherine knew she wanted to get involved with this awesome family and their amazing organization, so she offered her services as a freelance writer and editor on a volunteer basis.

Over the next couple of years, she wrote some website content and articles for and about Ruby’s Rainbow, with the goal of helping to spread the word about the organization as well as its incredible and inspiring Rockin’ Recipients. She also served as a Board member as well as on the scholarship committee in various years.

In 2017, Catherine came on as the Social Media Representative for Ruby’s Rainbow, which is a position she holds to this day — writing and posting on social media in order to spread the good word! In January 2019, Catherine also began working in-office as the organization’s Administrative Director. She loves working alongside Liz and getting to help behind the scenes with making Ruby’s Rainbow run smoothly and efficiently, and flourish!

Catherine is also mom to Pearl’s little brothers, Zephyr and Emil, and she’s a freelance writer with work that’s been published all over the Web. She is the author of eight romance novels as well as co-author with YouTube star and motivational speaker Lizzie Velasquez of Dare to Be Kind: How Extraordinary Compassion Can Transform Our World. You can visit her on the Web at CatherineAvrilMorris.com.

Marc LippincottBoard Member

Marc Lippincott, a lawyer and managing partner of the Austin-based law firm The Lippincott Law Firm, PLLC, had little personal connection with the Down syndrome community prior to being introduced to Ruby and Ruby’s Rainbow. However, upon meeting the Plachtas and hearing about the organization and its purpose, Marc immediately made his firm an event sponsor, organized a bowling team, and began volunteering his time, ideas and effort to help Ruby’s Rainbow grow.

Marc and his wife Elisa (and their cat Maya) have lived in Austin since 2000. Marc volunteers with the South Austin Business Association (SABA); he is a Texas Tribune Founding Member, a “Love” sponsor with the Austin Film Society, and a Life Fellow of the Texas Bar Foundation. Marc is also proud to be known as potentially the worst bowler ever to lace it up at a Rockin’ RainBOWL event, and the worst golfer ever to play in a golf tournament. But hey, there’s always next year, right?

Sara Plachta- ElliotBoard Member

Sara has worked in the nonprofit community for 16 years, currently as a data geek who helps nonprofits evaluate their impact. She is the Executive Director of the Youth Development Resource Center in Detroit, which helps youth development programs use data for learning and program improvement.

Sara loved college so much she went three times! After completing a PhD in child, youth and family policy at Brandeis University in 2013, she is excited to have no more homework. Oh, and to spend some newfound free time helping Ruby’s Rainbow grow to provide even more young adults rockin’ an extra chromosome with opportunities to pursue their college dreams.

When Sara pulls herself away from such inspiring work on behalf of young people, she loves going on hikes and road trips with her husband Matt, their daughter, and their snow dog, Kaia. She is a proud aunt to five girls, including Ruby and her sister Ella.

Board Member / Website Manager

Ross and his wife, Lesley, are good friends of the Plachtas. After meeting Liz and the Plachta family in 2013, Ross volunteered to help Liz rebuild the Ruby’s Rainbow website, and a long-term friendship was born.

Soon after meeting Liz and her family, Ross was invited to join the Board of Directors. As a board member, he loves applying his experience in marketing to help Ruby’s Rainbow continue to grow and impact more people’s lives.

Ross works for a cybersecurity startup, Infocyte, as their Vice President of Marketing and continues to donate his free time to maintain the Ruby’s Rainbow website.

Board Member

Stephanie and her husband, Chris, moved to Austin in 2006 with no intention to stay longer than years. Thirteen years later, they love this town and the opportunities it has brought for their daughter, Grace, who happens to be rockin’ an extra chromosome.

Stephanie is an active member of the Down syndrome community, and she has served as a volunteer for the DSACT Buddy Walk and at The Rise School of Austin. In her professional life, Stephanie sells and produces corporate events and trade shows. She focuses on coming up with fresh ideas and new ways of looking at things to help her clients achieve their goals. In her personal life, she loves traveling, enjoying all the new restaurants that pop up around town, and hanging with her hubby, daughter and friends.

Stephanie is a former educator and has always believed college is a stepping stone to enhanced confidence, opportunity and greatness. When Grace was first born, Stephanie wasn’t sure what that meant for a person with Down syndrome. Now, because of Ruby’s Rainbow, she knows Grace has the ability to take the next step with all her friends and cousins.

Jon Michael Rogers, Board of Directors

Board Member

Jon-Michael Rogers is National Manager of Leadership Development for Alamo Drafthouse, and is a husband and father of three who cares deeply about the causes Ruby’s Rainbow is committed to. His involvement with the organization began when he met and fell in love with Ruby herself. She inspired him to want to help other peeps rockin’ that extra chromosome go for their college dreams.

Jon-Michael and his wife, Lauren, have continued to be among the organization’s top fundraisers, helping spread awareness through their own network of family and friends, and showing the world just how capable individuals with Down syndrome truly are!

Ruby's Rainbow Board member Tyrell McElroy and familyTyrell has spent his entire career working in the non-profit sector, only taking a brief 2½-year hiatus to do strategic planning in the public sector. Tyrell currently works for Boys & Girls Clubs of America as a Director of Organizational Development, assisting local Boys & Girls Clubs in establishing and achieving their organizational goals.

Tyrell met Liz after his wife attended the Lucky Mamas Retreat in 2017. After chatting with Liz about Ruby’s Rainbow’s mission, he quickly realized this was an organization that he knew he wanted to support. Tyrell’s passion for increasing organizational impact and organizational effectiveness is what he looks forward to bringing to the board of Ruby’s Rainbow.

Tyrell and his wife Katie, have two children, Charlie and Ansleigh, and reside in Tampa, FL. They adopted their son Charlie at birth, who rocks that extra awesome chromosome. Their plan had always been to adopt a child with Down syndrome, while also having a biological child six months younger to help with the developmental needs of their adopted child. Six months after Charlie was born, Ansleigh made her way to this world. Now that is some serious strategic planning.

Executive Director / Co-founder

After having been entirely volunteer-run for its first four years, Ruby’s Rainbow took on its first full-time Executive Director, Liz Plachta-Co-Founder and mom to Ruby, in 2016 to meet the demands of this rapidly expanding organization. The rest of the organization is still volunteer-run, and is made up of parents, family and friends of people who happen to be rockin’ that extra chromosome. Everyone involved with Ruby’s Rainbow is passionate about spreading the word about these incredible, capable individuals.

Liz’s drive to start Ruby’s Rainbow came from her adoration for her family. Her passion to provide her children with the best inspired her to help other families like hers with educational costs and support, as well as helping to raise standards and expectations of individuals with Down Syndrome. She truly is the driving force behind Ruby’s Rainbow.

Liz resides in Austin, Texas with her handsome Hubby, Tim, Ruby and her oldest daughter, Ella Mae. They enjoy spending time as a family and look forward to continuing their mission and passion of showing the world just what people who are rockin’ that extra chromosome are made of!!

Tim and Ruby

Co-founder / Secretary / Board Member

Co-founder of Ruby’s Rainbow, hubby to Liz, and proud father to his favorite girls on earth: Ruby and Ella Mae.

In 2012, Tim began serving the financial needs of special needs families when he opened his own investment firm, Reliant Wealth Management, LLC. He also has 8 years of experience as a professional educator, spending much of that time working with children with special needs.

Tim’s Company: reliantwealth.com

Kelle Hampton

Vice President

Kelle is thrilled to be joining Ruby’s Rainbow after helping them promote their 2015 3-21 Pledge campaign. She had the pleasure of spending the day with two rockin’ recipients at Western Carolina University this year for a day-in-the-life experience that changed not only the way she views the future for her daughter Nella, but for the opportunities that inclusion provides all of her children.

Kelle is a writer, blogger and photographer who lives in Naples, Florida with her family. Her blog Enjoying the Small Things has provided hope for many families new to the world of Down syndrome. Bloom, the New York Times best-selling memoir, is the story of Kelle’s first year with her daughter Nella.

You can follow her blog at kellehampton.com.

Treasurer

Bio to come shortly.

Marc Lippincott

Board Member

Marc Lippincott, a lawyer and managing partner of the Austin-based law firm of The Lippincott Law Firm, PLLC, had little personal connection with the DS community prior to being introduced to Ruby and Ruby’s Rainbow. However, upon meeting the Plachtas and hearing about the organization and its purpose, immediately made his firm an event sponsor, organized a bowling team and began volunteering his time, ideas and effort to help Ruby’s Rainbow grow.

Marc and his wife Elisa (and their cat Maya) have lived in Austin since 2000, and Marc volunteers with the South Austin Business Association (SABA), is Texas Tribune Founding Member, a “Love” sponsor with the Austin Film Society, and a Life Fellow of the Texas Bar Foundation. Marc is also proud to be known as potentially the worst bowler ever to lace it up at a Rockin’ Rainbowl and the worst golfer to ever play in a golf tournament. But hey, there’s always next year, right?

Sara Plachta- Elliot

Board Member

Sara has worked in the nonprofit community for 16 years, currently as a data geek who helps nonprofits evaluate their impact. She is the Executive Director of the Youth Development Resource Center in Detroit, which helps youth development programs use data for learning and program improvement.

Sara loved college so much she went three times! After completing a PhD in child, youth and family policy at Brandeis University in 2013, she is excited to have no more homework. Oh, and to spend some new found free time helping Ruby’s Rainbow grow to provide even more young adults rockin’ an extra chromosome with opportunities to pursue their college dreams.

When Sara pulls herself away from such inspiring work on behalf of young people, she loves going on hikes and road trips with her husband Matt and her snow dog Kaia. She is a proud aunt to five girls, including Ruby and her sister Ella.

Stephanie Anderson

Board Member

Stephanie and her husband, Shayne raise their three children in New Braunfels, Texas. Their son, Aaron, is rockin’ an extra chromosome and is fiercely loved by his big sisters, Allie and Ashlyn.

She became an active member of the Down syndrome community after Aaron was born in 2009. For the past five years, Stephanie has served with the Down Syndrome Association of South Texas as a fundraiser, staff member and board member. She is an active volunteer at the school and district level and when not chauffeuring her three kids around enjoys running, reading, hanging out with friends and family.

The Anderson family shares a passion for travel so are constantly on the go! Stephanie is thrilled to be a part of the Ruby’s Rainbow team as she believes strongly in the ability for people with Down syndrome to attend college.

Board Member / Website Manager

Ross and his wife, Lesley, are good friends of the Plachtas. After meeting Liz and the Plachta family in 2013, Ross volunteered to help Liz rebuild the Ruby’s Rainbow website, and a long-term friendship was born.

Soon after meeting Liz and her family, Ross was invited to join the Board of Directors. As a board member, he loves applying his experience in marketing to help Ruby’s Rainbow continue to grow and impact more people’s lives.

Ross works for a cybersecurity startup, Infocyte, as their Vice President of Marketing and continues to donate his free time to maintain the Ruby’s Rainbow website.