Ryan Gardner


Originally from Minnesota, Ryan has a Bachelors degree in Finance and a Masters degree in Leadership.   After separating from the Air Force, he decided to take a break from the corporate world and went to Nicaragua to volunteer in December of 2011 and lived and worked in an orphanage in Jinotepe.  During the next ten months Ryan saw firsthand how wide spread the poverty was in Nicaragua and the impact it had on the families in the rural parts of the country.  Ryan also met his now wife, Stephany, while living in Nicaragua.  Stephany, born and raised in the rural Rivas area, spent the majority of her childhood without access to clean water.  After seeing the impact on the families and hearing stories of Stephany’s own childhood, Ryan was determined to give back to a country that had taught him so much.  And with that, the idea of Buena Agua was born.

Sean Tokic

Vice President

Raised in the Kansas City area, Sean grew up volunteering with the Kansas City Down Syndrome Guild and the local Special Olympics with his younger brothers. While attending the University of Kansas Sean was engaged with the Natural Ties as well as co-planning many Boys and Girls Club fundraisers and events. Sean graduated KU with degrees in Finance and Economics, and currently works in Corporate Strategy at UMB Bank.


John Heddens

Operations Director

Before joining Buena Agua in 2015, John had non-profit experience as the Co-Chairman of Children’s Mercy Hospital’s ‘Chip it for Children’ event and has participated in Habitat for Humanity trips and volunteer opportunities, among many other experiences. John was born and raised in the Kansas City metro area, but graduated from Texas Christian University in May of 2014 with a degree in finance. He is currently employed by UMB Bank.