Play Ambassadors

Our Play Ambassadors PLAY an important role in the dissemination of knowledge about the Value of Play.  Since our founding in 2009, the US Play Coalition has grown exponentially.  Growth of our network relies on the passion our ambassadors share via word of mouth, social media learning opportunities such as #WePlayChat, and email shares. Our Play Ambassadors are making a tremendous difference in leading the voice on the value of play. Next time you run into them, ask them how you can be involved too.  Learn more about the Play Ambassador program by emailing

Team Leaders

  • Heather Von Bank, PhD

    Chair and Associate Professor
    Family Consumer Science
    Minnesota State University-Mankato

  • Seniz Yargici Lennes

    Founder, Twin Cities Adventure Play & Director of the Teen Program, Improv Theater at HUGE Theater
    Minneapolis, Minnesota

  • Brian VanDongen

    Assistant Director of Recreation
    Readington Township, NJ

  • Kara Fortier

    Creator & Host
    PlayGrounding Podcast
    Los Angeles, California

  • Matt Leung

    Master Trainer, DANCEPL3Y
    Team Lead, Active Play
    Vivo for Healthier Generations
    Alberta, Canada

  • Patty Stine

    Co-founder, Pure Play Every Day!
    Southern Maryland
    (Washington, DC area)

  • Darryl Edwards

    Author and Founder of the Primal Play Method
    London, England

  • Tracey Gilmour

    School Health Facilitator and Educator
    Ever Active Schools
    Alberta, Canada

  • Dale Sidebottom

    Owner and operator Energetic Education & Bottoms Up Fitness
    Victoria, Australia