Meet the JDRF Wisconsin Chapter Staff



Tanya Bissen is the Executive Director for the Wisconsin chapter and has 25+ years’ experience as a professional fundraiser in the metro-Milwaukee area with an expertise in healthcare, community services, research, academia, and Catholic mission-based fundraising.  Tanya holds a BA in Business Management from Cardinal Stritch University and is an alumna of the Future Milwaukee Leadership Program at Marquette University.  Tanya and her husband, Greg, reside in Sussex and have three daughters, ages 15, 17 and 21 who all love on their 10-year-old Rottweiler mix, Mr. Chandler Bing.  When Tanya isn’t busy planning her family’s schedule, you can find her volunteering her time at her parish.  Tanya and her husband enjoy staying active through golf, softball and cornhole tournaments.


Julie Feest is the Market Director at JDRF Wisconsin, and has lived in Wisconsin her entire life.  She currently lives in Appleton with her husband Jim, who’s the perfect fishing partner.  She graduated with a degree in Social Work from UW-Oshkosh. Julie has been with JDRF for over 22 years. One of the things she enjoys the most about her work at JDRF is connecting with families and individuals. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with family, friends, time at the lake, and playing with her grandson.





Dana Brill started her 20-year career at JDRF with the Minnesota Chapter (5 years) before joining the Northeast Wisconsin Chapter. Dana is a Sr. Development Manager at JDRF Wisconsin and has participated in three century JDRF Rides and has had a Walk Team every year she doesn’t Ride. While she doesn’t have a direct T1D connection, Dana’s connected through the relationships developed with families and supporters she’s met through the years. Dana is proud to work for an amazing organization that is transforming the way we treat T1D and cannot wait for cures. She is excited to meet even more families and T1D supporters throughout our great state. In her free time, you can find Dana shuttling her 12-year-old daughter to all her activities. She grew up in Madison, currently lives in Appleton and LOVES cheering on the Badgers and Packers! On Wisconsin!


Erin Vella is a Sr. Development Manager for the Wisconsin Chapter, and has worked at JDRF for 13 years. Long before her tenure at JDRF, Erin’s connection to T1D is a family friend whose daughter was diagnosed at only three months old and is now 22!  Through relationships with JDRF families that participate in the Ride and Walk programs, her T1D connections have grown by the hundreds. She considers herself fortunate to have these connections, because of the amazing passion shown by our T1D community and yet unfortunate, because she meets more and more people struggling with a new diagnosis. This shared passion for cures, drives the work she does every day at JDRF. She has a daughter Rowan (4), a son Lincoln (2), a dog Freeway and along with her husband, Joe, owns Joe Mama’s Bar & Grill in Colgate, WI and Woody’s Bar & Grill in North Lake, WI.





Ashleigh Sand is a Development Manager at the chapter, and has worked for JDRF for 5 years. She lives in Appleton with her husband, Brett, and 3 children: Charlie (9), Violet (5), and Aria (2). Her connection to T1D is through her son, Charlie, who was diagnosed at 22 months in 2015. She was introduced to JDRF through the walk program and became passionate about the mission and sought out employment. Now her connections run deep through all of the wonderful families and individuals she has met along the way.




Anne Kahl joined the chapter in April 2022, serving in the role of Development Manager. She previously served in roles in corporate marketing and public relations, as well as post-secondary education advancement and women’s leadership. Her connection to T1D is her daughter, Morgan (8) who was diagnosed in September 2021 at the age of seven. Anne feels blessed to be able to use her skills to now serve families and individuals through a mission that is very personal.  She has another daughter Aidanne (11) and a son Holden (12). Along with her husband Jack and Puck the family dog, they reside in Pewaukee.  Anne spends her free time coaching her daughters’ soccer teams and watching her son play hockey.





Claire Schmidt joined the JDRF team as the Development Coordinator in August of 2022. She has previously worked at various nonprofit theatres after receiving a degree in Theatre from Millikin University. Her connection to T1D includes her grandfathers and an uncle. She currently lives in Appleton and enjoys reading, spending time with friends, and singing in choirs. As well as working at JDRF, Claire is a freelance theatre director/dramaturg and performer.




Have questions about any of our programs or want to get connected?  Email us at or call our main line at:  (920) 997-0038.

Our main office is located at:

JDRF Wisconsin
1800 Appleton Rd., Suite 2
Menasha, WI 54952