Urban Ranger Corps
5908 Swope Parkway
Kansas City MO 64130
Our 2014 rangers at the Plaza Fountain
Web and Phone Contact
Telephone (816) 333-6455
Mission Statement
To help prepare at-risk inner city youth for responsible and productive futures through a program of disciplined work experience and service in their community; leadership development; and individualized planning for post-High School careers.
CEO/Executive Director Mr. J. Erik Dickinson
Board Chair Ms. Yvette Tunley
Board Chair Company Affiliation City of Kansas City, MO
History and Background
Year of Incorporation 2003
Financial Summary
Projected Revenue $528,000
Projected Expenses $522,350
Mission Statement To help prepare at-risk inner city youth for responsible and productive futures through a program of disciplined work experience and service in their community; leadership development; and individualized planning for post-High School careers.
Background Statement


The Urban Ranger Corps (URC) provides youth programming to boys and young men grades 7th-12th, ages 12 to 18, with a unique opportunity to develop the appropriate life skills necessary for them to become successful and contributing members of society. URC is a singular program which operates annually, from June through May and is broken down into two sessions; a Summer Session (June-August) and a School-Year Session (September-May). Since our founding (2005) we have worked with more than 650 young men; with 74 participants enrolled in the current program year. Ninety (90%) of participants attend school within Kansas City Public Schools or the Kansas City Charter School system. Eighty-six (86%) of participants are from single parent, low income households.

URC operates one holistic program, designed to work as a comprehensive community based system that promotes and shares ownership of its program success with the entire population of Kansas City. We utilize evidence based tools and widespread institutional partnerships to deliver quality projects and activities to our participants. All projects and activities are designed to offset some of the major problems affecting youth in the urban core while at the same time working to upgrade the status of our future human resource pool.

URC makes available to young men opportunities to expand their involvement in activities that will augment their future personal growth and development as members of a worldwide human resource pool. We offer each participant a global view in the content areas of Career & Academic Enhancement, Financial & Entrepreneurial Education and Neighborhood & Community Involvement. What makes URC unique is that for every program season, we evaluate these content areas in conjunction with the greatest needs of our participants. Thus, we develop specific projects and activities that are designed to upgrade each participant’s complete ability to become successful and productive citizens.

URC hopes to infuse a strong building block into Kansas City metropolitan area by offering high impact programming in a small community format that can be seamlessly duplicable. By providing specific and intentional services and activities, each participant will have a greater opportunity to be viable contributors and benefactors of URC and the Greater Kansas City community.


Impact Statement

2016 Accomplishments:
1. Provided services to 74 young men (12-18)
• 73.4% of students have a GPA of 2.0 or higher
• 32.8% of students have a GPA of 3.0 or higher
• 67.3% of students completed 20 or more hours of community service
• 42% of students completed 40 or more hours of community service
• 73.4% of students attend school regularly (mission no more than 5 days)
• 93.5% of students served completed the program year
2. Implemented our Overcoming Obstacle program where rangers attend sessions throughout the program year on Conflict Resolution (in conjunction with Peace Works and the Center for Conflict Resolution)
3. During the summer a team of rangers worked at Be Free Farms learning about what it takes to run a business, taking care of bees and working in the gardens.
4. Added new members to our Board of Directors, enhancing the diversity of the board.
2017 Goals:
1. Upgrade and/or enhance the student’s environment in order to foster positive social interaction, improved academic performance and worthwhile community involvement.
2. Upgrade and/o enhance student’s ability to make positive choices when confronted with opposition, obstacles and life set-backs.
3. Upgrade and/or enhance student’s relationships with caring adults, providing perspective, guiding their participation in constructive activities and develop a consistent sense of boundaries and responsibility.


Needs Statement

15.6” HD Laptop (3)

8” Apple Ipads (6)

Sony HD Video Camcorder

70” LED TV

Pull down Projection Screen

Video Projector



Service Categories
Youth Development Programs
Areas of Service
MO - Jackson County
MO - Jackson County Urban Core

Our work sites are primarily located within the Kansas City, MO urban core. Those boundaries for are Missouri River to the North; 95th Street to the South; city limits to east and Troost to the west. Other work sites are located throughout the Kansas City metropolitan area.

CEO/Executive Director/Board Chair Statement


This past year has seen several significant additions to the organization:

1. We have increased our capacity from the original 12 rangers in 2005 to serving 74 rangers in the 2016-2017 program year and will work with 94 young men in the 2017-2018 program year.

2. We hired a Success Coach who is responsible for ensuring that our young are achieving their individual career goals, are attending school on a regular basis, are achieving or maintaining a 2.3 GPA, and are fulfilling their commitment to providing 20 hours of community service to the community.

3. We added the Overcoming Obstacles program which teaches our rangers life skills and conflict resolution

4. We have added several new members to the Board of Directors, each of whom brings their individual skills/talents to the organization.

Since our founding, URC has worked with 637 young men enrolled in Kansas City MO Public or Charter schools. 99% of them are African American, and 86.5% live in households with incomes below the poverty level. 75% are from single parent households and 80% live in our five target zip codes (64110, 64127, 64128, 64130 or 64132).

Our mix of work experience/community service training, summer stipends, and a focus on career planning and achievement in high school, is now a proven model of youth development (using a mix of proven evidence-based methods), for teenage males living in high risk factor, inner-city neighborhoods. For over 80 percent of our rangers, the Urban Ranger program is their last and best chance. It is with great pride (and thankfulness) that rangers – who might have lost hope or been lost in the system - are staying out of harm’s way and graduating from high school and prepared to pursue rewarding and promising careers with valuable life skills. At least 95 percent are staying in school and we can boast a 100% graduation rate for this year’s senior rangers. Going to college and junior college, or enrolling in technical training programs, with some entering military service or direct employment are no longer dreams but reality. Some rangers who have gone onto college are returning to serve as assistant adult Team Leaders and mentors. We are also exploring new ways to engage the boys and provide other extra-curricular opportunities to further enhance their experience.

Our goal of bringing “hope” to the young men is being accomplished one young man at a time.

Yvette Tunley, Board Chair



The URC program is broken down into three main areas of focus:

  • Career & Academic Achievement  The primary function of the Career and Leadership Development component is to provide activities and resources that will enhance a ranger’s ability to (1) understand self and human characteristics, (2) build communication skills, group interaction, and team building (3) gain basic concepts of leadership theory and organization.
  • Financial & Entrepreneurial Education component has been designed to provide rangers with an opportunity to capture the “American Dream” by introducing them to the basics of financial literacy entrepreneurship.
  • Neighborhood and Community Involvement component represents “civic responsibility, getting rangers involved with community service activities, encouraging them to see the world in different ways and put their own family experiences and values into a wider context.

Category Youth Development, General/Other Youth Development, General/Other
Population Served Adolescents Only (13-19 years), ,
Short-Term Success

Of the more than 570 youth we have worked with: 85 percent completed the summer program; 100 percent of those successfully completing our summer program returned to school in the fall; 98 percent of this group successfully completed their academic year; 89 percent of rangers in their final year of high school graduated on schedule (vs. a 57.2 percent graduation rate for Kansas City MO public school enrollees.

Long-Term Success

Since 2007, we have worked with 46 rangers who were high school seniors. 45 one of them graduated high school and went on to college, the military or entered the work force.

Program Success Monitored By

URC’s annual program is designed to assist boys and young men discover their individual talents, skills and abilities while guiding them successfully from childhood to adulthood. Our ability to ascertain the effect and/or level(s) of impact the program has within their lives and the community as a whole will increase the productivity of URC in the urban core for years to come. The primary concern is to be able to determine if on-going program activities are having a progressive and positive effect on the participants.


We utilize the Apricot Client Management/Tracking System to verify, document, and quantify activities and their effects. This system is utilized in all facets of our program and designed to be updated and maintained by the Success Coach.
Data will be gathered to conduct controlled observations of rangers in a longitudinal manner. The progress, success, and shortfalls of every participant in the program will be collected and their
Examples of Program Success

ROBERT DAYS graduated in May 2015 from the University of Missouri, with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration emphasis in Marketing, and a minor in Entrepreneurship. Robert is currently an employee for AT&T in retail. In the future he would also like to begin to take advantage of his entrepreneurship minor and create his own entertainment marketing company.


Robert has had a long tenure with the Urban Rangers starting the program in 2007. He has been active each summer with the Rangers since that date, with his most recent position being the Assistant Program Director and Team Leader in the summers of 2014 and 2015. Robert appreciates how the Urban Ranger’s program has allowed him to become a leader in his community and set the foundation for his work ethic that he still takes advantage of today. Robert has expressed an interest in serving on our board as a way of “paying it forward.”

CEO Comments


The work to be done in the urban core of our communities is paramount and must continue to include youth from childhood through adolescence and pre-adulthood.

The Urban Ranger corps gives priority to the developmental pieces surrounding a so-called “lost generation” of boys and young men. Our perspective is, as this generation of boys and young men mature, a void grows in their lives that leave them less proficient and interested in productive and worthwhile activities. Our task is filling this void with viable activities that will promote boys and young men to utilize their time to become involved in positive endeavors that will continue throughout most of their lifetime.

The URC model is designed to work as a comprehensive community based system that promotes and shares ownership of its program success with the entire population of Kansas City. All programs and activities are designed to offset some of the major problems affective youth in the urban core while at the same time working to upgrade the status of our future human resource pool. Our vision is to infuse a strong building block into our city by offering high impact programming in a small group format that can be seamlessly duplicable. By providing specific and intentional services and activities, each participant will have a greater opportunity to be viable benefactors and future contributors of URC and the Great Kansas City community.



Executive Director/CEO
Executive Director Mr. J. Erik Dickinson
Term Start July 2012

J. Erik Dickinson joined the Urban Ranger Corps as Executive Director in July 2012, and was named President upon the retirement of Founder and President, Fr. John Wandless.


Mr. Dickinson has more than 20 years of experience in management and development of youth with the Boy Scouts of American and the YMCA, including executing fundraising campaigns and special events; training and motivating staff; recruiting and motivating top level volunteers; preparing budgets; planning and providing programs; marketing and public relations; and building relationships with institutions, organizations, neighborhoods and the general public.


Prior to joining the Urban Ranger Corps, Mr. Dickinson was employed at the YMCA of Greater Kansas City as Executive Director – Cleaver Family/Linwood Centers, beginning in 2008, where he partnered with district center executives in design, development and delivery of the YMCA strategic plans; provided leadership to over 60 employees including program directors, membership sales representatives, fitness instructors and life guards; and provided executive leadership to the Young Achievers Program.


For 15 years prior to that Erik was with the Boy Scouts of America, Heart of America Council. Beginning in 1993 as District Executive, he advanced to District Director in 1996 and to Assistant Director of Field Service in July 1999 until his departure in 2008.


Some of Erik’s accomplishments include:


  • Exceeding the YMCA Winter Campaign Membership Goal
  • Spearheading service area Friends of Scouting Four-Year Annual Campaign to exceed annual goals by 9.5%.
  • Directed YMCA Night Courts program that served over 400 at-risk young men



Erik is a native of and attended schools in Kansas City, Kansas. He holds the BA in Personnel Administration (University of Kansas, 1991).


Co-CEO/Executive Director
Term Start 0
Compensation Last Year
Former CEOs
Fr. John Wandless Jan 2003 - Dec 2012
Senior Staff
Title Program Director

Lynn Johnson joined the Urban Ranger Corps team in the fall of 2013 as Program Director. Lynn’s primary responsibility is to build a successful program model and lead goal-oriented teams while overseeing the delivery of quality programs and services.  Lynn has 25 years of service in youth development, including work within areas of education, leadership, mental health, juvenile delinquency, and emergency family support. He has served in such capacities as an After School Program Coordinator/Tutor for the Economic Opportunity Foundation in Kansas City, KS; Program Director at Boys and Girls Club of Greater Kansas City; Manager of the National Teen Program for Camp Fire USA (Kansas City); and most recently as Director of the Youth Development Center at Don Bosco Centers (Kansas City).  

Paid Full-Time Staff 2
Paid Part-Time Staff 3
Volunteers 30
Paid Contractors 1
Retention Rate 98%
Formal Evaluations
CEO Formal Evaluation Yes
CEO/Executive Formal Evaluation Frequency Annually
Senior Management Formal Evaluation Yes
Senior Management Formal Evaluation Frequency Annually
Non-Management Formal Evaluation Yes
Non-Management Formal Evaluation Frequency Annually
Plans & Policies
Organization Has a Fundraising Plan Yes
Organization Has a Strategic Plan Yes
Management Succession Plan Under Development
Organization Policy and Procedures Yes
Nondiscrimination Policy Yes
Whistleblower Policy Yes
Document Destruction Policy Yes


The major partnerships are with several Kansas City neighborhood associations, including Manheim, Town Fork Creek and Marlborough. In addition, URC has formed partnerships with: Blue Springs Police Department, Connecting for Good, W.E.B. DuBois Learning Center, Missouri Conservation Center, Kansas City Police Department, City of Kansas City Missouri, Local Investment Commission, Plaza Rotary Club, University of Missouri Extension, Harvesters, Center for Conflict Resolution, Catholic Charities, Junior Achievement, and Bishop Sullivan Center.


Every summer the rangers have an opportunity to participate in the Tour of Hope - African-American businessmen who give tours of their businesses to our rangers and talk with them about career possibilities: T-Shirt King, Mid-State Aerospace, State Farm, Proctor and Gamble, Woodley Building Maintenance, Carter Broadcast Group, Donald Maxwell (Attorney), Burtin & Associates


Government Licenses
Is your organization licensed by the government? No
Board Chair
Board Chair Ms. Yvette Tunley
Company Affiliation City of Kansas City, MO
Term Jan 2015 to Jan 2018
Board Members
Ms. Jacquelyn Blake Enterprise Bank and Trust
Mr. Nicholas Clasen U. S. Department of Health and Human Services
Mr. Derek Gale Jewish Federation of Greater Kansas City
Mr. Miles Gill Morgan Stanley
Mr. Kevin Henderson College Basketball Experience
Mr. Chester Hishaw Hishaw Construction
Ms. Tonya Lovelace City of Kansas City, Missouri
Ms. Christina McConnell The Thin Pencil
Mr. Jason Parson Parson & Associate
Ms. Lisa Peacock Burke Counseling and Consulting
Ms. Pamela Potts Mersoft Corporation/ICO Impact Div.
Ms. Davina Santimano Optiv Security Inc.
Mr. Joe Sweeny Country Club Bank
Ms. Joi Tillman Assurant Employee Benefits
Ms. Yvette Tunley City of Kansas City, Missouri
Dr. Rebecca Wates University of Kansas Medical Center
Mr. Doug Weishar Kansas City Missouri Police Department
Board Demographics - Ethnicity
African American/Black 9
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 7
Hispanic/Latino 0
Native American/American Indian 0
Other 1 Asian
Board Demographics - Gender
Male 8
Female 9
Unspecified 0
Board Term Lengths 3
Board Term Limits 2
Written Board Selection Criteria? Yes
Written Conflict of Interest Policy? Yes
Percentage Making Monetary Contributions 100%
Percentage Making In-Kind Contributions 25%
Constituency Includes Client Representation No
Number of Full Board Meetings Annually 6
Standing Committees
Development / Fund Development / Fund Raising / Grant Writing / Major Gifts
Special Events (Golf Tournament, Walk / Run, Silent Auction, Dinner / Gala)
CEO Comments

Fiscal Year Start Oct 01, 2015
Fiscal Year End Sept 30, 2016
Projected Revenue $528,000
Projected Expenses $522,350
IRS Letter of Exemption
Foundation Comments
  • FYE 9/30/2015, 2014, 2013: Financial data reported using IRS Form 990.
  • Foundation/corporate revenue line item may include contributions from individuals.
Detailed Financials
Revenue SourcesHelpThe financial analysis involves a comparison of the IRS Form 990 and the audit report (when available) and revenue sources may not sum to total based on reconciliation differences. Revenue from foundations and corporations may include individual contributions when not itemized separately.
Fiscal Year201520142013
Foundation and
Corporation Contributions
Government Contributions$48,791$62,719$50,903
Individual Contributions----$0
Investment Income, Net of Losses$0$0$130
Membership Dues$0$0$0
Special Events$69,243$54,271$102,921
Revenue In-Kind$0$0$0
Expense Allocation
Fiscal Year201520142013
Program Expense$345,947$396,944$426,507
Administration Expense$113,458$99,721$118,183
Fundraising Expense$33,842$38,400$53,895
Payments to Affiliates----$0
Total Revenue/Total Expenses0.960.920.90
Program Expense/Total Expenses70%74%71%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue7%8%11%
Assets and Liabilities
Fiscal Year201520142013
Total Assets$193,574$186,999$219,044
Current Assets$167,509$153,665$50,602
Long-Term Liabilities$20,000$0$0
Current Liabilities$18,549$12,585$2,013
Total Net Assets$155,025$174,414$217,031
Short-Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201520142013
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities9.0312.2125.14
Long-Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201520142013
Long-Term Liabilities/Total Assets10%0%0%
Top Funding Sources
Fiscal Year201520142013
Top Funding Source & Dollar Amount --Hall Family Foundation $26,400Community Development Block Grant $44,600
Second Highest Funding Source & Dollar Amount --Impact KC $25,000Kauffman Foundation $42,045
Third Highest Funding Source & Dollar Amount --United Way $15,000William T. Kemper Foundation $17,000
Capital Campaign
Currently in a Capital Campaign? No
Capital Campaign Anticipated in Next 5 Years No
Organization Comments

The Urban Ranger Corps has developed a more targeted fundraising initiative that includes three major activities: Annual Campaign; Annual Dinner; Year End Solicitation. Utilizing our fundraising database, eTapestry, we can segment donors to better target their giving, rather than “asking” them to donate to every initiative. In addition we are seeking initiatives to attract the Millennial Generation to become aware and hopefully donors to URC.


The organization has received tax credits from the State of Missouri’s Youth Opportunity Program. Information has been disseminated to our donors and the general community and has resulted in several donors increasing their donations to take advantage of this program.


Organization Name Urban Ranger Corps
Address 5908 Swope Parkway
Kansas City, MO 64130
Primary Phone (816) 333-6455
Contact Email urcinfo@urckc.org
CEO/Executive Director Mr. J. Erik Dickinson
Board Chair Ms. Yvette Tunley
Board Chair Company Affiliation City of Kansas City, MO
Year of Incorporation 2003