2018 AmeriCorps VISTAs

VISTA (Volunteers In Service To America) was founded in 1965 as a national service program to fight poverty in America. In 1993, VISTA was incorporated into the AmeriCorps network of programs. In 2016, AmeriCorps St. Louis added AmeriCorps VISTAs to our team!


Jane Kersch

Development and Events Coordinator

Jane is from Dubuque, Iowa. She has a Bachelor’s of Arts in Political Science and a Bachelor’s of Science in Global Resource Systems with a minor in Sustainability from Iowa State University. She served with AmeriCorps St. Louis Emergency Response Team Year 24. Prior to serving, she worked for her local Parks & Recreation, where she discovered her passion for public lands and local government. Politics, animals, The Office, and memes make her happy. Jane is excited to strengthen and grow AmeriCorps St. Louis’ capacity for service this year as a VISTA member.


Jimmy Tyler

Disaster Support Coordinator

Jimmy is from Indianapolis, Indiana. He received a Bachelor’s in History and a Minor in Religious Studies at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana. Jimmy started with AmeriCorps St. Louis as a Member of Year 24 and has decided to become a part of the VISTA team focusing on Disaster Response. Before ERT, Jimmy had a slew of different occupations like working on a golf course, managing an office, and substitute teaching. Jimmy became interested in trying to take more trips into the wild which lead him to AmeriCorps St. Louis. As a VISTA Member, Jimmy hopes to raise awareness to local communities about disaster response and is excited to learn as well.


Ellen Alston, M.S.W.

Outreach Coordinator

Ellen grew up in the Chicago area. She attended Saint Louis University (SLU) in St. Louis where she earned her Bachelor’s of Science in Social Work. Post-graduate work took her to Billings, Montana, with Jesuit Volunteer Corps Northwest––an AmeriCorps National partner––where she served with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Yellowstone County. After acquiring her Master’s in Social Work and a Certificate in Disaster Mental Health and Trauma Studies from Tulane University in New Orleans, she spent a short time working for nonprofits in Madison, Wisconsin. Last fall, she and her husband got married and returned to St. Louis. Ellen strives to be a lifelong learner and loves dabbling in various subjects, especially relating to disaster preparedness and response, mental health, and sustainable living. As a VISTA, she hopes for another fulfilling and challenging AmeriCorps experience and for her diverse experiences to support ACSTL's mission.

Updated 5/13/2019