Board & Staff

Board Officers

 

President
Jackie O. Rochelle
Bailey Glasser LLP
Vice President
Mila Baumann
Cigna
Treasurer
David Bell
Schnucks Markets
Secretary
Mary Larner
Enterprise

Board Members

Hadi Al-Shathir
Thompson Coburn LLP

Dr. Rhonda Brown, Ph.D
Healthy Blue Missouri/Anthem BCBS

Brad Brown
Contemporary Productions

Don Cobin
Kennedy Capital Management

Maggie Curico
First Bank

Alexis Hershey
Midwest BankCentre

Katherine Kirby
Centene Corporation 

Sean Knight
APC Integrated Services Group

LaShonda Lambert-Howze
Schnucks

Maurice Mahone
Daugherty Business Solutions

Jim Martin
Dowd Bennett

Tim Niemann
Gunna Drinks

Tom Noack
Commerce Bank

JP Perry
Edward Jones

David Singer
Warehouse of Fixtures

Adam Tilford
Mission Taco

Dara Webb
Mercy

Cari Wegge
Visory Health

About the Board of Directors

As a non-profit, 501(c)(3) agency, we are overseen by a Board of Directors.  The Board is made up of a variety of corporate and child welfare representatives, many of whom are foster/adoptive parents.

Junior Board

Officers

President: Dashawn Cason Vice President: Joe Schwegel
Secretary: Erin Sternberg Trivia Chair: Graham Spence
Event Support: Courtney Troy Social Media/Communication Chair: Kaitlin Hrenak
  Volunteer Engagement: Sara Price
 

Junior Board Members

Ola Babalola

Daniell Bennet

Diana Blair

Kaitlyn Brehe

Sara Chamberlain

Emily Faither

Christine Hall

Ashley Hayes

Mackenzie Hynes

Tyler Mackie

Kathryn Modeer

Grace Palmer

Maureen Coughlin

Alexandra Schnarre

Emily Smith

Ali White

Emily Zaner

Kevin Zhou

About the Junior Board

Our Junior Board is an auxiliary committee made up of young professionals, ages 25-35 who want to get involved and make a difference. The Junior Board serves three distinct purposes:

  • Be ambassadors for the Coalition in the community
  • Participate in an annual service project
  • Help fundraise for the organization

If you are interested in joining our Junior Board, please contact Natasha Leonard at natashaleonard@foster-adopt.org or at 800.FOSTER.3 (314.367.8373).

Staff

Melanie Scheetz – Executive Director

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e melaniescheetz@foster-adopt.org

Melanie Scheetz and her husband are proud adoptive parents of two children. Melanie has 29 years of nonprofit management experience in the areas of administration and development. She joined the Foster & Adoptive Care Coalition as its Executive Director in 1999. Under her guidance, the agency developed the groundbreaking programs, Extreme Recruitment® and 30 Days to Family®. Melanie has been honored with the St. Louis Business Journal’s 50 Most Influential Business Women of 2019 award; North American Council on Adoptable Children’s “National Adoption Advocate” award; the Congressional “Angels in Adoption” award; and the “Women of the Well” award. She has a BS in accountancy from Miami University.

Makayla Abernathy – Family Connection Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.376.8373
e makaylaabernathy@foster-adopt.org

Makayla joined the Foster & Adoptive Care Coalition as a Family Connection Specialist in June 2022. Makayla graduated from the University of Missouri – St. Louis (UMSL) with a Bachelor’s degree in Criminology & Criminal Justice in 2019 and is now pursuing her Master’s in Social Work at UMSL. Prior to joining the Coalition, Makayla worked as a Foster Care Case Manager for the State of Missouri. Makayla was born and raised in St. Louis. Makayla is excited to be working with the Coalition as she is passionate about working with children and families from the very community in which she grew up. In her free time, Makayla enjoys traveling and spending time with family.

Niquisha Adail – Extreme Recruiter

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.376.8373
c 314.709.8451
e niquishaadail@foster-adopt.org

Niquisha joined the Coalition in May 2022 as an Extreme Recruiter. Prior to working at the Coalition, Niquisha worked as a Foster Care Case Manager for three years in St. Louis City and County and volunteered as a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA). Niquisha graduated from the University of Missouri-St. Louis in 2007 with a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work. As an Extreme Recruiter, she is responsible for adoption recruitment for children in foster care, ensuring that they find permanency with forever families. Niquisha has a passion for serving youth who have been affected by childhood trauma as a result of placement disruption. She is a firm believer in community service and is intentional about meeting the needs of those less fortunate than herself. In an effort to serve, Niquisha volunteers with a small group that provides food and other basic necessities to unhoused individuals throughout the St. Louis Metropolitan area. 

Karen Alyasiry – Director of Family Development 

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e karenalyasiry@foster-adopt.org

Karen joined the Coalition on May 21, 2018. Karen graduated from Saint Louis University with a BA degree in Criminal Justice and a Master’s in Organizational Leadership. Karen also holds a Master’s in Business Administration from Northcentral University and a Doctorate in Business from Northcentral University. Karen has dedicated 18 years of community service and development within the underprivileged communities of St Louis. After working for over ten years as a career foster placement provider and adoptive parent of a loving boy with high needs, Karen decided to assist families in finding permanency from a different capacity. Karen is passionate about advocating for families and is dedicated to ensuring that all children and families impacted by foster care receive the support, value, and voice they deserve.

Taryn Anderson – Educational Advocate

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.376.8373
c 314.938.9609
e tarynanderson@foster-adopt.org

Taryn joined the Coalition in 2019 as an Educational Advocate. She taught for six years in preschool and elementary classrooms before becoming a service coordinator with Missouri’s First Steps early intervention program. Taryn has an understanding of early childhood and elementary special education and working with infants and toddlers with disabilities and developmental delays. Taryn graduated from Southwest Baptist University with a Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education, emphasis in Early Childhood Education. She then earned a Master’s degree in Early Childhood Education from the University of Missouri Columbia. She is the mother of one adopted daughter.

Lauren Atherton – Youth Acceptance Project Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.376.8373
e laurenatherton@foster-adopt.org
Lauren joined the Coalition as the Youth Acceptance Project Specialist with our Family Works team. In 2019, she graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with her Bachelor’s degree in Human Development & Family Studies. A few years later, Lauren moved to St. Louis and obtained their Master’s in Social Work from Washington University in 2023 with a focus on violence prevention. Lauren’s social work journey began serving suspended and expelled youth, and she has gone on to work in the criminal legal sector and several youth empowerment programs. As a member of the LGBTQ+ community, Lauren is grateful for the opportunity to advocate for and uplift queer and trans youth in the child welfare system. When not working, she loves to read, go thrifting, explore the city with friends, and (most importantly) hang out with her new kitties, Juno and Luca.

Melissa Bailey – Production and Procurement Manager

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e melissabailey@foster-adopt.org

Melissa joined the ReFresh team as the Donations Manager in February 2023. She started her career in retail as a cashier for a gift shop chain, becoming the regional manager after one year. She continued on to become a retail sales manager for a multimillion dollar thrift store company and was later promoted to production manager. Melissa has two daughters and two dogs. She is a four time cancer survivor. Melissa enjoys thrift shopping and spending time with her daughters. Melissa is a proud St. Louis native, having grown up in University City.

Gerald (Jerry) Bailot – Technology Manager

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e geraldbailot@foster-adopt.org

Jerry joined the Coalition in November 2017 with over 20 years of technology experience. He holds degrees in Small Business Administration (first career) and Computer-Aided Design (second career). Prior to coming to the Coalition, he was a program manager for an electronics/software company and a computer software consultant specializing in automating business processes. Jerry and his wife are the proud parents of two daughters, one of whom is adopted.

Cisely Beard – Senior Director of General & Targeted Recruitment

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e ciselybeard@foster-adopt.orgCisely joined the Foster & Adoptive Care Coalition in December 2011 as a 30 Days to Family® Specialist. In 2018, she transitioned to Supervisor of Advocacy and Family Works STEPS. Later in 2019, she transitioned into the Director of Advocacy and Support role. In 2022, she became the Senior Director of General & Targeted Recruitment. She graduated with a Bachelor of Liberal Arts in Psychology from Southern Illinois University in 1999 and has a Master of Arts degree in Professional Counseling from Lindenwood University. Cisely’s over twenty-four years of child welfare experience includes specialized case management, foster/kinship parent training and licensing, and program development.

Anthony Bedford – Comprehensive Systems Navigator

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e anthonybedford@foster-adopt.org

Anthony joined the Coalition in May 2022 as a Family Works STEPS Specialist. He graduated from William Woods University with a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work and went on to further his Education at Abilene Christian University, earning a Master’s degree in Education. Prior to joining the Coalition, Anthony worked as a Children’s Services Worker for the Children’s Division. His role was to work with parents and children once the children were removed from their homes due to abuse and or neglect. He continued the same line of work in transitioning to Lutheran Family and Children’s Services as a Family Case manager for three years in the Foster Care department. Before leaving LFCS, Anthony transitioned to the Child Development department, offering parents and children early intervention and prevention services. He gives credit to his humble beginnings in life, being born drug-exposed and later adopted as the catalyst that created the platform for his career in Social Services. Anthony takes joy in knowing that he can be a part of helping so many individuals overcome challenges in their lives and showing them that they, too, can turn their pain into purpose.

Holly Bennett – Family Connections Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e hollybennett@foster-adopt.org

Holly joined the Foster & Adoptive Care Coalition as a Family Connection Specialist in November 2022. Holly graduated from Lindenwood University with a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work in 2018. Prior to joining the Coalition, Holly worked as a Family Service Worker and Family Development Specialist. Holly is excited to continue working in advocacy and following her passion for building lifelong connections.

Andrew Berhorst – Chief Financial Officer

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e andrewberhorst@foster-adopt.org

Andrew joined the Foster & Adoptive Care Coalition as the Director of Accounting in February of 2023 and assumed the role of CFO in February of 2024. Andrew began his professional career in the hospitality industry as a restaurant manager and bookkeeper. Andrew graduated from the University of Missouri – St. Louis in 2014 with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration – emphasizing in Finance and minoring in Economics. After working for years in restaurants, he opened a small business after the birth of his first child and has continued to work with the community. Two years ago, Andrew made the decision to close his business and return to higher education in pursuit of his CPA over the next three years. He currently has gained his second undergraduate degree in accounting and is on pace to graduate in early 2026 with a master’s in accountancy and CPA license. Andrew is excited to be at the Foster & Adoptive Care Coalition, so he can continue to maximize the organization’s financial reporting, cash management, Capital project activities, and board/donor relationship needs to best ensure that as many children and families are helped as possible. Andrew enjoys reading, spending time with his family, and educating anyone who wants to listen about the value of managing their finances!

Maddie Bobbitt – Extreme Recruiter

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e maddiebobbitt@foster-adopt.org
Maddie joined the Foster and Adoptive Care Coalition in September 2017 as a 30 Days to Family® Specialist. In November 2019, Maddie transitioned into her current role as an Extreme Recruiter. As an Extreme Recruiter, Maddie is responsible for doing adoption recruitment for children in foster care. Maddie graduated from Southeast Missouri State University in 2012 with a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work. Prior to working at the Coalition, Maddie worked as a Foster Care Case Manager for three years in St. Louis and Jefferson County. Foster care and adoption have played a big part in Maddie’s life and she is honored to serve children and families through the Coalition.

Madison Brown – Family Enrichment & Volunteer Manager

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e madisonbrown@foster-adopt.org
Madison joined the Coalition in March 2022 as the Volunteer Manager. She graduated in 2019 from Vanderbilt University with a Bachelors in Sociology. After finishing up her undergraduate degree, she moved to St. Louis and completed her Masters in Social Work at the Brown School of Social Work. Madison focused on community development and community organizing during graduate school, engaging with and supporting caregivers, young people, and educators in the St. Louis region. Before coming to the Coalition, Madison worked alongside young people for over six years through volunteering with and developing empowerment and anti-racism programs in Nashville, Georgia, and St. Louis. She is passionate about building networks of care for Black children and families. When she is not managing volunteers and donations, she enjoys walking her dog, baking for friends, and reading in Tower Grove Park.

Cassie Burghoff – Family Works Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e cassieburghoff@foster-adopt.org

Cassie Burghoff joined the Coalition as a Family Works Specialist in August 2022. She received her Bachelors of Social Work from the University of Central Missouri in 2013 and recently graduated with her Masters of Social Work from the University of Missouri-St. Louis in May 2022. Cassie has worked in a variety of social work settings, including schools, residential programs, community settings, and crisis lines. Cassie is passionate about St. Louis and being a change agent in her community.

Tonya Campbell – Director of Regional Family Support

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e tonyacampbell@foster-adopt.org

Tonya Campbell joined the Coalition in July 2019 as a Families United Specialist. She transitioned to her new role in April 2022. Tonya has over 20 years of experience in the child welfare field in the areas of juvenile justice, case management, crisis intervention, program and community partnership development, foster/kinship parent training and licensing.  She looks forward to supporting, assisting and empowering her team as they help foster, guardianship and adoptive parents navigate the foster care system. The Coalition has been a vital part of Tonya and her wife’s journey of fostering and then adopting their three children. Tonya’s most challenging and fulfilling role is being a proud parent of her three children. She holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Psychology, a Master of Public Administration and Policy Analysis degree from Southern Illinois University and a Masters Degree in Human Resource Management from Lindenwood University.

Angela Chewe – Director of Treatment Foster Care

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
c 314.614.7623
e angelachewe@foster-adopt.org
Angela joined the Foster & Adoptive Care Coalition in September of 2014. Angela has always had a passion and desire to help older children in the child welfare system. Angela’s sixteen years of child welfare experience with a contract agency includes crisis management, creating community partnerships, and securing and coordinating resources that ensure client success through stabilization and utilization of services. Angela also has experience being the Lead Drug Court Case Manager for her consortium for over five years. While in this position, she was able to build successful relationships with St. Louis Family County Courts, residential facilities, Probation and Parole, and the Department of Mental Services. Angela graduated from UMSL with a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology with an emphasis in Adolescence in May of 1998.

Connie Christman – Training Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
conniechristman@foster-adopt.org
Connie first began with the Coalition in 2014 as a contractor, providing training services to foster and adoptive families. In February of 2017, she came aboard full-time as a Family Development Specialist within the innovative Dennis and Judy Jones Foster Care and Adoption Program. In addition to past experience in child welfare, Connie brings years of specialized training services to the Coalition, as well as personal experience in her favorite role she shares with her husband–proud adoptive parent of five children. She holds a BA in Communications Management from the University of Dayton.

Jada Coleman – Director of Professional Development 

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
jadacoleman@foster-adopt.org

Jada has worked in the child welfare field for over 15 years in various positions. She began her tenure at the Coalition in July of 2015. Jada holds a Bachelors in Psychology from Southern University and A & M College as well as a Masters degree in Professional Counseling from Lindenwood University. Before her work with the Institute for Child Welfare Innovation, she worked as a Family Reunification Specialist working with parents whose children were returning to their custody from being in foster care. For seven years she worked as a CASA Advocacy Supervisor coaching and facilitating training for community volunteers advocating for children in the child welfare system. She also worked as a 30 Days to Family® Specialist searching for the family of children who had recently come into foster care. She currently assists in facilitating training in the St. Louis area for child welfare professionals/foster parents, replicating the 30 Days to Family program and aiding organizations in family search and engagement efforts nationwide.

Quesha Combs, MSW, LMSW – Family Works Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
c 314.737.0996
e queshacombs@foster-adopt.org
Quesha joined the coalition team in August 2020 as a Family Works Specialist. Quesha obtained her Bachelor of Psychology from University of Missouri-Columbia and her Master of Social Work from Saint Louis University. She has previously worked both direct care and clinically in residential programs, where she developed her passion for working with adolescents and their families in a trauma-informed way. Quesha is passionate in her pursuit of being a “lighthouse” who guides people to their best selves.

Heather Craig – RESPOND Targeted Recruiter

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e heathercraig@foster-adopt.org

Heather joined the Coalition as a Targeted Recruiter for RESPOND in August 2022. She graduated from the University of Missouri- Columbia with a Bachelor’s degree in Human Development and Family Studies in 2008. She obtained her Master’s Degree in Legal Studies from Webster University in 2013. Prior to joining the Coalition, Heather worked for PreventEd as a community strategist and assisted in substance misuse prevention efforts. She also has a history working as a case manager for Family Forward. Heather has a passion for all things related to child welfare and wellbeing. She is a licensed foster parent and has four children, two of which are adopted. She wrote a children’s book, “Fostering Love,” to depict an African American family going through the licensing process as told from her sons’ viewpoint. She enjoys date nights with her husband Aaron and spending time at community events with her children. Heather is so excited to begin her work with the Coalition and has long supported the mission of this organization. She feels like working here brings her educational and professional career full circle!

Colletta Daniels – Educational Advocate

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e collettadaniels@foster-adopt.org

Before joining the Coalition in 2021, Colletta worked for Memphis-Shelby County Schools as a special educator for students with severe/profound disabilities and as a mentor teacher. Colletta has more than 15 years of experience serving students with specialized needs. She holds a BFA in English, an MA in Professional Counseling, and an M.Ed in Educational Leadership & Instruction. As an Educational Advocate, she strives to provide children with the services they need to grow and caregivers with support to become the best advocates for their children. 

Michelle Davis – Director of Coalition CareLine Support

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e michelledavis@foster-adopt.org

Michelle Davis joined the Coalition in June of 2021. Michelle has over 25 years of experience working in the child welfare field in the areas of case management and resource development: recruiting, training, and licensing foster parents. Prior to joining the Coalition, Michelle served as a Foster Care Case Manager for over 15 years, as a Foster Care Case Manager Supervisor for five years, and as the Program Manager of Foster Care for two and a half years. Michelle holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Child Development from Southeast Missouri State University and a Master’s in Counseling from the University of Missouri-St. Louis.

Amanda Denning – Director of Extreme Recruitment

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
amandadenning@foster-adopt.org

Amanda joined Foster and Adoptive Care Coalition in September of 2014 as an Extreme Recruiter during which time 33 kids on her caseload were adopted. In April 2022, she was promoted to the Director of Extreme Recruitment. Amanda graduated from University of Missouri-St. Louis with her BSW in 2009.  In 2011, she obtained her MSW from Saint Louis University with a Community Programs concentration and a Nonprofit Administration certificate. She has worked in the child welfare field in the St. Louis community for 15 years. Her past experience includes residential work, running a respite/mentoring program, and foster care case management with a contracted agency. Her previous work experience has instilled a desire to prevent kids from aging out of care without family connections and permanency. Amanda believes in fostering connections with biological families for youth and providing every youth with a forever home.

Sherry Diaz de Leon – 30 Days to Family® Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e sherrydiazdeleon@foster-adopt.org

Sherry joined the Foster and Adoptive Care Coalition in November 2017 as a 30 Days to Family® Specialist. As a 30 Days to Family® Specialist, Sherry is responsible for locating safe and appropriate relative supports and placement options for children in foster care. Sherry is a North Carolina native and she graduated from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro with a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work in 2008. She has worked as a Foster Care Social Worker for the Surry County Department of Social Services in North Carolina for 3 years and as a Foster and Adoption Supervisor for another 2 years. When she moved to St. Louis prior to working at the Coalition, Sherry worked as a Foster Care Case Manager for three years in St. Louis and St. Charles County. Sherry is passionate about working with and improving the lives of the families and children she works with through the Coalition.

Kylie Dickerson – Director of Marketing

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.637.8768
e kyliedickerson@foster-adopt.org

Kylie joined the Coalition as the Director of Marketing on May 2, 2022. Kylie graduated from the University of Missouri with dual Bachelor’s degrees in Business Administration and International Studies—together, the International Business joint degree. Kylie also obtained the Multicultural Certificate, ratifying her efforts to learn about and celebrate other cultures throughout the globe. As a sophomore, Kylie co-founded Buckets for Change, an organization designed to serve underprivileged children in the broader Columbia community through tailored mentorship and educational and career advocacy. Kylie currently serves as a Court Appointed Special Advocate in the City of St. Louis. In this role, she ensures the voices of St. Louis-area children in foster care are heard in the courtroom. Prior to joining the Coalition, Kylie worked as a legal and marketing analyst for a plaintiff-side law firm. Kylie is thrilled to use her communications and marketing skill set to amplify the innovative, impactful work that the Coalition does on behalf of children in foster care.

Molly Tyo Doyle – Family Development Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e mollytyodoyle@foster-adopt.org
Molly joined the Coalition on April 19, 2022, as a Family Development Specialist. Molly graduated from Missouri State University with a Bachelor of Arts in Social Work and a minor in Child and Family Development. Molly has extensive experience working in child welfare across case management, child abuse and neglect investigation, and licensing/resources. Throughout her child welfare journey, Molly has partnered with the Coalition on efforts to stabilize foster homes and develop and increase access to critical support programs. Molly continues to advocate for foster families and children through her current role as a Family Development Specialist. 

Adam Drennan – ReFresh Store Manager

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e adamdrennan@foster-adopt.org
Adam joined the Foster & Adoptive Care Coalition as ReFresh Store manager in April 2023. Adam has previous experience as an Assistant Retail Sales Manager/Donation Manager of a multimillion-dollar thrift store company. Coming from a retail Management background, he is excited to use his knowledge at an organization that gives back to the community by providing resources for foster and adoptive families. He is eager to help the Coalition’s mission through the sales of Refresh, to provide excellent customer service and clothes for youth in care.

Genesis Elkin – Extreme Recruiter

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e genesiselkin@foster-adopt.org

Genesis joined the Coalition in October 2022 as an Extreme Recruiter. Prior to working at the Coalition, Genesis worked as a Resource Development Specialist for two and a half years at MBCH. Genesis has also served the communities as a Foster Care Case Manager in Southern Illinois and as a Financial Specialist at the Department of Social and Health Services in Lakewood, WA. Genesis graduated from Kutztown University of Pennsylvania in 2015 with a Bachelor’s degree in Industrial/Organizational Psychology. She has found her passion for advocating for children in the foster care system and is eager to learn her new role to better serve children and families in the community. In her free time, Genesis enjoys being a foodie with her husband, Grant, spending time with their two dogs, and fostering for Stray Rescue of Saint Louis.

Samantha Fisher – Extreme Recruiter

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e samanthafisher@foster-adopt.org
Samantha joined the Coalition in October of 2019 as an Extreme Recruiter. She received her undergraduate and Master’s degrees in Social Work from University of Missouri-St. Louis. Prior to joining the Coalition Team, Samantha served as a foster care case manager for three years and stepped into a foster care supervisor role for two years, serving three counties. She is passionate about locating permanent support systems for children and older youth. Samantha works with a local animal rescue fostering cats and dogs in her spare time.

Emma Fitzgerald – CareLine Support Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e emmafitzgerald@foster-adopt.org
Emma joined the Coalition in May 2018 as the Family Support & Advocacy Specialist. Emma is a born advocate with a passion for connecting people and families to each other, to supports, and to meaningful resources. She graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work and went on to obtain a Master’s degree in Social Work from Saint Louis University. She became a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in 2013. Emma and her husband eagerly became licensed foster parents in 2007 and have since adopted. Emma brings experience working with domestic violence, sexual assault, and human trafficking. She also worked as a foster care case manager with Children’s Division for 9 years, which only furthered her passion for working to promote equity, equality, and respect for kids, parents, and foster/adoptive/guardianship families that cross her path.

Joel Friesen – Director of Family Connections

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e joelfriesen@foster-adopt.org
Joel joined the Foster and Adoptive Care Coalition in July 2019 as a 30 Days to Family® Specialist. He is responsible for locating safe and appropriate relative supports and placement options for children in foster care. Prior to working at the Coalition, Joel worked as a Foster Care Case Manager in St. Louis City and County. He graduated from Covenant College in 2015 with a bachelor’s degree in Community Development. Joel lives in south St. Louis and enjoys looking at birds and playing soccer.

Allana Glass – 30 Days to Family® Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e allanaglass@foster-adopt.org

Allana joined the Foster and Adoptive Care Coalition in September 2023 as a 30 Days to Family® Specialist. In this role, she is responsible for locating safe and appropriate relative supports and placement options for children in foster care. Allana graduated from the University of Missouri St. Louis in 2017 with a bachelor’s degree in criminology & criminal justice. Prior to joining the Coalition, Allana served as the Dropout Prevention & Recovery Liaison and has over two years of foster care case management experience. Allana is also a dance studio owner and a proud mom to two amazing boys. Allana is very excited to dive into her new role here at the Coalition in order to better serve children and families in the community.

Katina Goodlow – Family Development Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e katinagoodlow@foster-adopt.org

Katina joined the Coalition on September 6, 2022, as a Family Development Specialist. Katina graduated from the University of Missouri St. Louis with a Bachelor of Science in Criminology and Criminal Justice. In addition to her Bachelor’s degree, she has completed 32 hours in legal studies from Webster University and a Master’s of Science in Criminal Justice Administration from Lindenwood University.  Katina has over 23 years of experience in child welfare across case management, child abuse, neglect investigation, and licensing/resources. Throughout her child welfare journey, Katina has partnered with the Coalition on efforts to stabilize foster homes and develop and increase access to critical support programs.  Katina continues to advocate for foster families and children through her current role as a Family Development Specialist. 

Trisha Gordon – Chief Growth Officer

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e trishagordon@foster-adopt.org

Trisha joined the Foster and Adoptive Care Coalition as Chief Growth Officer in January 2024. She has 25 years of experience in the nonprofit sector, most recently serving as Vice President of Community Investment with United Way of Greater St. Louis. Trisha managed more than $42 million in annual investments supporting 160 plus health and human services nonprofits.  Trisha has a Bachelor’s in Political Science, Master’s degrees in Business Administration, and Human Resources, and certifications in Entrepreneurship and Information System. She is trained in the Baldrige Performance Excellence Framework. As a former foster care youth, Trisha is passionate about advocating for youth and families impacted by foster care. She also supports and serves on the board of directors of several local youth-serving nonprofits.

Edna Green – Relative Support Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
c 314.614.2413
e ednagreen@foster-adopt.org

Edna joined the Foster & Adoptive Care Coalition in August 2011 as an Extreme Recruiter. In the late 1980s, she began her work with families at St. Joseph’s Home for Boys as a Child Care Worker (CCW). Edna has worked as a Contracted Case Manager, Family Focus Case Manager, Family Advocate, and briefly contracted with Probation & Parole as a case manager, mentor, and residential case manager. Her previous work experience prepared her for her position as a Wendy’s Wonderful Kids Recruiter, where she was able to go into the field and actively advocate and recruit for children in foster care. In 2021, Edna transitioned to the Families United team on a renewed journey – supporting relatives who have children in foster care coming into their homes. She works with relatives to continuously build stronger relationships within their families and helps provide permanency for children as a Relative Support Specialist.

Trenice Green – Therapeutic Foster Care (TFC)

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
c 314.806.2542
e trenicegreen@foster-adopt.org

Trenice joined the Coalition in August 2023 as a Therapeutic Foster Care (TFC) Specialist. She graduated with her bachelor’s degree in social work from University of Missouri-St. Louis and received her master’s degree in human services from Webster University. She has worked in child welfare services for 10+ years as a Foster Care Case Manager and as a supervisor for the Children’s Division contracted agency. Trenice’s background in social services has led her to work in a variety of settings, such as residential, school settings and within lines of crisis. She is very passionate about serving youth and families whose lives have been impacted by trauma. She is motivated by advocating for permanency and stability for children in foster care. She is excited to serve as a Therapeutic Foster Care (TFC) Specialist because she believes foster parents are the first contact and influence on a child who has entered care.  Through education, training, and awareness, foster parents will be ready to serve to their fullest potential. In her spare time, Trenice enjoys shopping, spending time with family, and traveling to the beach.

Michael Hall – Family Connections Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
c 314.808.1293
e michaelhall@foster-adopt.org

Michael joined the Foster & Adoptive Care Coalition in November of 2017. Michael works primarily with Extreme Recruitment® locating and notifying family members of children in foster care, facilitating reconnections, and supporting adoptive placements through permanency. Prior to the Coalition, Michael worked for two and half years as a Foster Care Case Manager and two years as a Correctional Officer in St. Louis City. Michael’s dedication to locating family supports for children in foster care as a case manager led him to full-time family finding.

Jasmine Hamilton-Baldwin – Therapeutic Foster Care Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e jasminehamiltonbaldwin@foster-adopt.org

Jasmine joined the Foster & Adoptive Care Coalition in August of 2022. She graduated from Missouri Baptist University with a Master’s degree in Criminal Justice. Jasmine has been in the Social Services field for 7 years. Prior to joining the Coalition, Jasmine worked as a Family Development Specialist licensing foster parents. Additionally, she has 4 ½ years of Case Management experience. Jasmine is excited to be a member of the Coalition family and looks forward to working with the clients we serve.

Tammy Hayes – Volunteer Coordinator

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e tammyhayes@foster-adopt.org

Tammy joined the Coalition on July 17, 2018. Born and raised in Coushatta, Louisiana, Tammy obtained her Bachelor of Science degree in Marketing from Saint Louis University. Throughout college, she worked for Ann Taylor while pursuing her degree, and later served as a supervisor for a national trucking company for twelve years. Despite her successful career in the logistics industry, Tammy’s love for clothing and design remained a constant passion. After volunteering at ReFresh, Tammy was inspired to make a career shift and joined the Coalition team as Volunteer Coordinator. Her dedication to serving our families and her commitment to excellence have made her an invaluable asset to our organization. In her free time, Tammy cherishes spending time with her son and daughter.

Jefferic Hibbler – Educational Advocate

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e jefferichibbler@foster-adopt.org

Jefferic joined the Coalition in June of 2022 as an Educational Advocate. He has over 12 years of experience in educating and supporting individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, along with the families and professionals that support them. Prior to joining the coalition, he served students with disabilities as a Special Education Teacher, provided residential case management as a Qualified Intellectual Disability Professional, and served as a Regional Trainer for a network of residential facilities that serviced youth and adults with developmental disabilities. He holds a BS in Sociology from the University of Tennessee – Chattanooga and a MAT in Special Education from the University of Memphis. Jefferic is a passionate advocate who strives to build meaningful relationships with the individuals he supports to facilitate positive outcomes for them.

Michelle Hune – ReSource Manager

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e michellehune@foster-adopt.org

Michelle joined the Foster and Adoptive Care Coalition in the summer of 2017 as a ReFresh volunteer.  She later became a manager at ReFresh, and in March 2023, transitioned to her current role as manager of the organization’s clothing closet, Resource.  Michelle has a BA in Advertising/Public Relations and minors in Marketing and Dance from Loyola University Chicago.  Her previous careers have included working as a store manager for The Limited in Chicago and working as a paraprofessional in Special School District classrooms throughout St. Louis.  Michelle is grateful to be able to bring these skills and experience to her current role as she assists kiddos impacted by foster care with their clothing needs.  When Michelle is not working, she loves to spend as much time as possible with her daughter and husband!

Erika Hughes – Family Connections Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e erikahughes@foster-adopt.org

Erika joined the Foster & Adoptive Care Coalition as a Family Connections Specialist in September 2022. She graduated from Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville with a Bachelor’s degree in Public Health in 2018. Prior to joining the Coalition, Erika worked as a Foster Care Case Manager for Children’s Division. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her family and friends, cooking/baking, and traveling. Erika is excited about working with Children and their families and making a big impact on their lives.

Quintella Ivory – Director of Human Resources

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e quintellaivory@foster-adopt.org

Quintella joined the Coalition as the Director of HR in July 2022. Quintella is a well-organized and highly efficient HR professional with several years of experience in HR and Healthcare. She is experienced in administering employee benefits, recruiting, Onboarding, employee relations, problem-solving mentoring, FMLA, Cobra, Performance Reviews, payroll, and building relationships. Quintella holds two Master’s degrees, one in Healthcare Administration and one in Interpersonal and Organizational Communication. Her career started in Customer Services with United Healthcare, and she eventually transitioned into HR as the On-site Benefit Manager role with Cigna Healthcare. She is very passionate about HR and enjoys discovering why things operate the way they do. She is considered a great listener and believes in fair treatment for all. She may seem a little reserved until she gets to know you, but once she does, watch out! She is the life of the party. Quintella enjoys working out, live music, seafood/ Mexican, traveling, planning events, and spending quality time with family and friends. She also spends a lot of time volunteering with various organizations throughout St. Louis and hopes to obtain her PHR/SHRM by 2023.

Tammy James – CareLine Support Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e tammyjames@foster-adopt.org

Tammy James joined the Foster and Adoptive Care Coalition in June 2022 as a Family Support and Advocacy Specialist. Tammy graduated from the University of Missouri-St. Louis with a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work and has a Master’s degree in Counseling from Lindenwood University. Tammy has over 21 years of experience in the child welfare field, where she has worked in the areas of case management, hotline investigations, and supervision of hotline investigators. Tammy enjoys advocating for families who have experienced some level of trauma and assisting families with working through the different systems of care.

Jenny Jones – Director of RESPOND & Traditional Licensing

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
c 314-724-2827
e jennyjones@foster-adopt.org

Jenny joined the Foster and Adoptive Care Coalition in July 2017 as a Family Development Specialist in the Dennis and Judy Jones Foundation Foster Care and Adoption Program. In 2022, Jenny transitioned into her current role as the Director of Traditional Licensing/Respond. As a Family Development Specialist, Jenny was responsible for training potential foster parents as well as providing them with resources and support during their first year of licensure. Jenny graduated from Lindenwood University in 2011 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology and Sociology. Prior to working at the Coalition, Jenny worked as a Licensing Worker for three years in St. Louis County. Jenny is passionate about supporting and training families as they begin their exciting journey as foster and adoptive parents.

Denise Kelley – Chief Program Officer 

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e denisekelley@foster-adopt.org

In 2001, the Coalition expanded services to foster and adoptive families through its Family Advocacy program. Denise instituted a self-advocacy model to provide one-on-one case-based advocacy to foster parents, adoptive parents, relative caregivers, biological parents, and child welfare professionals. When the Coalition launched its groundbreaking permanency program, Extreme Recruitment, Denise took on the role of supervisor. In addition to continuing supervision of Extreme Recruitment, in 2011, Denise became the Director of Programs to provide additional support to the Coalition’s expanded programming. In 2022, she transitioned into her current role as the Chief Program Officer – Recruitment. Prior to joining the Coalition team, Denise worked in the child welfare field providing crisis intervention services through the Intensive In-Home Services program and later as a foster care case manager. Denise holds a Master in Social Work from Saint Louis University and has received ongoing professional development in the areas of trauma and best practices to enhance child well-being.

Stacy Irby King – Family Development Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e stacyirbyking@foster-adopt.org
Stacy joined the Coalition in April 2022 as a Family Development Specialist. She graduated from the University of Missouri-St. Louis with a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice. Stacy has extensive experience working in child welfare with a particular focus on case management and licensing/resources. She spent the past 22 years partnering with community resources and agencies to advocate for foster youth’s best interests. Stacy leverages her passion for licensing and training to increase foster parents’ capacity to build healing, supportive homes for children in care navigating separation, loss, and grief. 

Leah Kralovetz – Salesforce Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e leahkralovetz@foster-adopt.org

Leah Kralovetz joined the Coalition in August 2022. Leah holds a Bachelor’s degree in International Relations from Michigan State University. Prior to joining the Coalition, Leah spent the previous 7 years in the education industry at a company that certified students to teach English as a foreign language. After initially working in the Student Affairs Department, she transitioned to a role as Systems Analyst. There she developed, tested, and rolled out new processes, configurations, and integrations across the company’s CRM, e-commerce platform, and Learning Management System. Leah is also a certified Salesforce Administrator and enjoys delivering innovative solutions.

Michelle Lapsley– Family Connections Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e michellelapsley@foster-adopt.org
Michelle joined the Coalition on September 19, 2022, as a Family Connections Specialist. Michelle graduated from Alabama State University with a Bachelor’s in Social Work. Michelle worked at Children’s Division for several years as a Child Abuse Investigator, working both as an in-home and Out of Home Investigator.  Michelle is eager and excited to be a part of the Coalition. She is thrilled to work with Family Connections to help unite kids in foster care with their family members. 

Jaime Ley – Development Operations Manager

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e jaimeley@foster-adopt.org
Jaime joined the Coalition in January 2020. She graduated from the University of Missouri—Saint Louis with a Bachelor’s degree in Sociology in 2010 and has her Master’s degree in Nonprofit Administration from Lindenwood University. She has ten years of experience working with children and families at risk of child abuse and neglect. Her broad range of experience across the child welfare spectrum includes investigation of child abuse and neglect allegations, provision of family-centered services to at-risk families, foster care case management, foster parent licensure, and adoptions. Working to make a difference within the child welfare system has greatly impacted Jaime’s life. She is passionate about supporting the foster and adoptive community.

Brittney Lockett – Older Youth Readiness Navigator

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e brittneylockett@foster-adopt.org
Brittney joined the Coalition in May 2022. She graduated from Denison University with a BA double major in Psychology and Black Studies. Prior to joining the Coalition, she worked for over eight years in the child welfare field, serving as a case manager and later as a supervisor in hotline investigations. Brittney is extremely passionate about working with children and families who have been impacted by the foster care system. She enjoys advocating for them, but delights more in empowering them to become advocates for themselves to find their voice and recapture the control and power that is often stripped from them by agencies and systems.

Carlos Lopez – Diligent Search Liaison and Coach

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e carloslopez@foster-adopt.org

Carlos joined the Coalition in January 2008 after serving over 20 years in law enforcement with the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department. As a detective in the Juvenile Division, Carlos participated in small group discussions with students in urban schools regarding interactions with police officers and the importance of school attendance; he found the positive interactions with youth to be rewarding. Carlos was the first family finder with the Coalition’s Extreme Recruitment program. He conducts diligent searches to help locate and engage the family members of children in foster care for possible connection and adoption. He transitioned to supervisor of the Family Connections Program in March 2022. He enjoys fitness activities, the outdoors, and advocating for vulnerable kids.

Karen Martin – Director of Navigation & Support

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
c 314.607.0557
e karenmartin@foster-adopt.org
Karen Martin joined the Coalition as a 30 Days to Family® Specialist to locate safe and appropriate kinship placements for identified children entering the Foster Care system. Currently, she works as the Director of STEPS/Older Youth. Her responsibilities are to identify needed medical, educational, specialized, socialization, developmental, mental health services, and supports for children entering into or presently placed in Foster Care. There is an equally committed effort made to secure services for placement providers and parents and address barriers that impede placement stability. Karen has served Children and Families in various capacities for over 30 years. Her work history includes DMH Case Management, Residential Care, Supportive Living, Family Reunification, Intensive In-Home, Family Focus, and Direct Care. Karen received a Bachelor’s of Social Work Degree from the University of Missouri St. Louis.

Katrina McCrary – Family Works Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e katrinamccrary@foster-adopt.org

Katrina joined the Coalition as a Family Works Specialist in May 2024. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Liberal Arts and a Master’s degree in Social Work. Prior to joining the Coalition, Katrina worked at Centene. She is passionate about building relationships and empowering families to nurture and educate their youth to reach their fullest potential. Katrina is an adoptive parent and believes it is her calling to help and support people facing challenges and marginalization.

Teresa McGlown – CareLine Support Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
c 314.806.2561
e teresamcglown@foster-adopt.org
Teresa McGlown joined the Coalition in October 2021. Teresa has over 25 years of child welfare experience in the area of case management and advocacy. Teresa’s experience includes Director of Residential Services and Coordinator of Contracted Services which included foster care case management, family reunion, and IIS. Teresa also has over 10 years of experience being a Family Case Manager. Teresa has participated in numerous trainings with the Children’s Division and the Juvenile Court System, both with City and County Courts. Teresa holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology and Social Work from Alcorn State University and a Master’s degree in Business Administration from the University of Phoenix. Teresa is also a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) through the State of Missouri.

Molly Mitchell – Older Youth Readiness Navigator

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e mollymitchell@foster-adopt.org

Molly joined the Coalition as an Older Youth Readiness Navigator in July 2023. She graduated from University of Missouri-Saint Louis with a bachelor’s degree in liberal studies and a minor in trauma studies and psychology. Prior to joining the Coalition, Molly worked as a foster care case manager for several years. Her role was to help guide youth and families through traumatic experiences, provide services and work alongside individuals to overcome their personal challenges. She and her husband have two children. Molly was born in Peru, adopted internationally, and has lived most of her life in Saint Louis, MO. Molly enjoys listening to music, trying new and different foods, and spending time with family and friends.

LaTieke Moore – Families United Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e latiekemoore@foster-adopt.org
LaTieke Moore joined the Coalition in May 2022 as a Families United Specialist. Prior to the Coalition, LaTieke served as a licensing worker at Family Forward for 3 years. She also served as a mentor and youth advisor with the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Saint Louis and an ILP Case Manager with Epworth Children and Family Services. She has a passion for assisting youth and families, encouraging them to reach their fullest potential. In 2008, LaTieke graduated from the University of Missouri-Kansas City, earning a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology. Currently, she is pursuing a Master’s in Counseling in an effort to better serve the community.

Teresa Miller – Foster & Adoptive Home Recruiter

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e teresamiller@foster-adopt.org
Teresa Miller joined the Coalition in August 2022. She has a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville. She worked at Children’s Home + Aid and served as a Licensing Specialist for Foster Care & Adoption.  A primary role was to monitor the homes of traditional foster parents and licensed and unlicensed relative caregivers, ensuring that DCFS compliance standards were being followed and maintained.  Thus, promoting and securing the safety and well-being of the children and youth placed in the homes.  Teresa is passionate about about helping to serve the needs of vulnerable populations and advocating to improve their quality of life.

Kami Narayan – Educational Advocate

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
c 314.614.2428
e kaminarayan@foster-adopt.org
Kami Narayan joined the Coalition in December 2013. After graduating from the University of Missouri-Columbia in 2008, Kami returned home to St. Louis and began to teach preschool through 12th grade in a wide variety of settings, from a summer preschool program to an alternative high school. After gaining experience teaching, Kami attended Washington University Law School with the career goal of impacting the educational futures of children in need. As a clerk in law school, Kami interned at the Children’s Legal Alliance (CLA), a division of Legal Services of Eastern Missouri. While at the CLA, which focuses on disadvantaged children’s educational needs and goals, Kami gained experience with federal and state educational law, the special education process, IEPs and 504 plans, and the rights of children facing suspension and expulsion. Kami is excited at the opportunity to bring this training to the Coalition, where she can help foster and adoptive children and their families navigate the school system and achieve their educational goals.

Veronica Neuhoff – Family Support Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
c 314.614.1328
e veronicaneuhoff@foster-adopt.org
Veronica joined the Coalition in March of 2020 as a Jefferson County Family Support Specialist. Veronica graduated from the University of Missouri- St. Louis with a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work. As a Family Support Specialist, Veronica is responsible for providing a mixture of direct and navigation services proven to prevent placement disruptions for children in foster care, guardianship, or adoptive homes. Veronica brings to the Coalition over eighteen years of child welfare experience in areas of residential treatment, case management, child advocacy, crisis intervention, and program development. Veronica resides in Oakville with her husband and son.

Brooke Nicks – Family Development Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e brookenicks@foster-adopt.org

Brooke joined the Foster and Adoptive Care Coalition in August 2022.  She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work from Southeast Missouri State University and a Master’s Degree in Gerontology from Lindenwood University.  Prior to joining the Coalition, Brooke worked for the State of Missouri Children’s Division as a Child Abuse and Neglect Investigator specializing in Newborn Crisis Assessments.  Brooke is passionate about helping families thrive and being a beneficial asset to the Coalition.  She is a mother to one son and one daughter, who are the epitome of her life.  Brooke is eager and excited to be a part of the Coalition and is thrilled to work with her new families.

Erin Oberbeck – 30 Days to Family® Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e erinoberbeck@foster-adopt.org

Erin Oberbeck joined the Coalition in July of 2023 as a 30 Days to Family® Specialist. Erin graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work from the University of Missouri-St. Louis in 2009. She went on to further her education and received her Master’s degree in Social Work from the University of Missouri-St. Louis in 2011. During graduate school, Erin worked at the St. Louis Crisis Nursery, supporting children and families in crisis. Erin began working in the foster care field in 2011 as a Foster Care Case Manager at Every Child’s Hope. Continuing her passion for supporting children and young adults impacted by foster care, she founded her own nonprofit organization, Fostering Futures. Erin has always admired the Coalition and its incredible programs. She is honored to be part of the team and continue her passion for serving children and youth in foster care.

Clementina Ojo – Data Analysis and Integrity Manager

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e clementinaojo@foster-adopt.org

Clementina joined the Coalition as the Children & Family Data Analyst in July 2022. She graduated from Saint Louis University with a Bachelor’s and a Master’s degree in Criminology and Criminal Justice. Prior to joining the Coalition, Clementina was completing her master’s degree while working as a research assistant in the School of Social Work at SLU. She collaborated with faculty on various publications on the topic of evaluating inter-agency collaboration between social service workers and police officers. Before that, she worked as a research assistant at the PRiME Center in the School of Education at SLU, where her primary objective was to investigate the impact of the school-to-prison pipeline and traditional discipline alternatives. Clementina is passionate about creating research that inspires the development of solutions to social issues. 

Risharda Parker – Director of Educational Advocacy

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e rishardaparker@foster-adopt.org

Risharda joined the Coalition in September of 2021. She has a passion for working with children and families. She has experience working in Child Protection, Service Coordination for Individuals with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, Foster Care, Autism Spectrum Disorders in children and adults, Mental Health Case Management, and Civilian and Government Schools. She has also worked with transitioning service members and their families as a Site Manager and a Trainer in an outpatient laboratory. She graduated from Fontbonne University in 2007 with a Bachelor of Organizational Studies in Human Resource Management and has a Master of Human Services: Social and Communities Services. She and her husband have two children. She was born and raised here in Saint Louis, MO. She enjoys camping, reading, skating, and traveling with family and friends.

Patrick Pisani – Director of Replication & Coaching 

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
denisepudlo@foster-adopt.org
o 314.367.8373

Patrick Pisani is the Director of Replication & Coaching at the Institute for Child Welfare Innovation in St. Louis, Missouri. His experience in the child welfare field includes case management, child abuse and neglect investigations, and relative and foster home training and licensing. In 2015, Patrick began working as a 30 Days to Family® Specialist at the Coalition, conducting diligent and exhaustive search and engagement efforts for family members of children just entering alternative care. He believes that partnering with families is the key to stabilizing outcomes for children, and imagines holistic systems change to a child welfare system built upon family partnership.

Denise Pudlo – Director of Information Systems

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
denisepudlo@foster-adopt.org
o 314.367.8373

Denise joined the Coalition in April 2014. After working 19 years at The Boeing Company as a Programmer/Analyst, Denise chose to stay home to raise her children for nine years. She graduated from Southeast Missouri State University with a BS in Business Administration with a major in Computer Science and Accounting. She is happy to be using her skills at the Coalition. 

Alex Puricelli – Comprehensive Systems Navigator 

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e alexpuricelli@foster-adopt.org

Alex joined the Coalition in July of 2023 as a Comprehensive Systems Navigator. He graduated from Boston College in 2018 with a B.A. in Psychology. Prior to his role in the Coalition, Alex worked at Washington University School of Medicine as a Research Coordinator in the Child Psychiatry department. His research focused on early childhood depression and suicidality, and through this position, he had the opportunity to speak with hundreds of parents and children about their unique challenges, experiences, and strengths. Some of his roles included conducting diagnostic interviews, administering EEGs, making community referrals, and creating personalized safety plans. Before his time as a researcher, Alex worked as a Registered Behavior Technician at BlueSprig, where he administered applied behavior analysis therapy for children with autism. He has a longstanding passion for helping children in need and is excited to meet and assist families with the Coalition.

Shonetta Reed – Director of 30 Days to Family® 

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
c 314.810.2265
e shonettareed@foster-adopt.org
Shonetta joined the Coalition as an Extreme Recruiter in March 2012. In 2014, she joined Carlos Lopez as an investigator. In 2022, she transitioned into her current role as the Director of 30 Days to Family. Shonetta always had a passion for working with and helping to improve the lives of the youth in our communities. After graduating with a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology with an emphasis on Adolescence and Criminology, she began her career in the child welfare system in 1999 as a Program Specialist with SafeFutures, a community-based program for at-risk youth. Shonetta then dedicated 12 years to a position at the Missouri Children’s Division, where she worked with youth and families involved in foster care. There, she built connections with community partners, court professionals, and other agencies. This experience, matched with her understanding of the need for reconnecting children in foster care with their biological families, is what drives her in her pursuit to track down lost relatives, get the facts, and help pursue permanency for kids and teens.

Terricka Reese – Family Development Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e terrickareese@foster-adopt.org

Terricka joined the Coalition as a Family Development Specialist for RESPOND in July 2022. She graduated from Harris Stowe University with a Bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice. Prior to joining the Coalition, Terricka worked for the State of Missouri Children’s Division and as an ICPC Specialist. Terricka is a critical thinker passionate about helping individuals in need and taking on DIY projects. She has a 2-year-old daughter and a husband, both of whom bring her life immense joy. She is very excited to embark on this journey of learning and helping others with the Coalition.

Summer Renne – Director of Families United & A Place to Call Home

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e summerrenne@foster-adopt.org

Summer joined the Coalition as a Manager of Training & Community Engagement in December 2016. In 2019, she transitioned into her current role as the Director of Families United. Summer assists relative foster parents through the licensing process by providing training, assessment, and ongoing support. She also coordinates “A Place to Call Home” in partnership with St. Louis’ NBC affiliate, KSDK 5 On Your Side. Prior to joining the Coalition, Summer worked in early childhood education, training, foster care licensing, and adoption recruitment. She is passionate about working alongside families as they navigate the intricacies of the child welfare system and providing positive memories for children during their times in care. Summer is a graduate of Lindenwood University, where she obtained her Bachelor’s degree in Social Work.

Ashley Ricks – Regional Family Support Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e ashleyricks@foster-adopt.org

Ashley joined the Foster and Adopt Care Coalition in September 2023 as a Regional Family Support Specialist. Ashley received her bachelor’s in criminal justice from Southeast Missouri University in 2012. Prior to working at The Coalition, Ashley worked in the child welfare field in Franklin County for seven years. Her experience includes child abuse and neglect investigations, family-centered services, foster care case management, resource development, and investigative and resource supervision. Ashley is excited to bring another area of support to families in Franklin, Lincoln, and Warren counties. Ashley lives in Marthasville with her husband and two children.

Hali Russell – Comprehensive Systems Navigator

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e halirussell@foster-adopt.org

Hali joined the Coalition in October of 2023 as a Comprehensive Systems Navigator. With several years of experience in the social work field, she has dedicated her career to supporting various communities by helping individuals connect to essential resources. Hali earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology from Virginia Commonwealth University and is currently pursuing her master’s in social work at Capella University. Hali’s passion lies in supporting individuals and ensuring they are connected to the resources needed for a more inclusive life. In addition to her role with the Coalition, she is actively engaged in a practicum at VOYCE, advocating for older adults in long-term care facilities. Furthermore, she is looking forward to launching a respite care program in the near future to provide valuable support to individuals and their families. Hali’s motivation to join the Coalition stems from her dedication to the field and her pursuit of becoming a licensed foster caregiver. It was her participation in the STARS training that inspired her to apply, as she is committed to making a difference in the lives of those in need.

Danielle Sitze – Family Development Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e daniellesitze@foster-adopt.org 
Danielle joined the Coalition in April 2022. Danielle graduated from Columbia College with a Bachelor of Arts in Human Services. She graduated from Saint Louis University with a Master’s in Social Work with a Community & Organization concentration. Danielle has extensive experience working in child welfare in the areas of teen outreach, case management, and case advocacy. The Coalition has been an ongoing resource for Danielle while supporting her clients through foster care. Danielle continues her passion and desire to support families through her current role as a Family Development Specialist. 

Mariah Smith – Family Development Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e mariahsmith@foster-adopt.org

Mariah joined the Coalition as a Family Development Specialist in September 2022. Mariah graduated from Missouri Baptist University with a Bachelor’s degree in Human Services in 2014 and is now pursuing her Masters in Social Work at Missouri Baptist University. Prior to joining the Coalition, Mariah worked as a Case Advocacy Supervisor with CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates) and previously worked as a Foster Care Case Manager for the State of Missouri. Mariah grew up in a small town in mid-Missouri. Mariah lives in the Florissant area with her daughter and is passionate about the St. Louis community and child welfare. In her free time, Mariah enjoys yoga, caring for her house plants, and going on adventures with her daughter.

Amy Storm – Families United Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e amystorm@foster-adopt.org
Amy joined the Foster & Adoptive Care Coalition in May 2022 as a Therapeutic Foster Care Specialist. Amy is a natural advocate for children and families with over 15 years of experience in education and child welfare services. Prior to joining the Coalition, she worked in residential care, special education, early childhood education, and private adoption. Amy has spent the past five years as a home visitor with at-risk families in Arizona. Amy’s training in trauma-informed care has strengthened her passion for supporting families and advocating for all children to have safe and loving homes. Amy graduated from Principia College with a Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology and History.

Rossi Summers – Chief Operating Officer

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e rossisummers@foster-adopt.org
Reshelle “Rossi” Summers has more than 28 years of child welfare experience. She holds a BS in Business Administration from the University of Kansas, Master’s degrees in Human Service Agency Management and Human Resource Management, and a certificate in Business Management for Non-Profit Leaders. Rossi joined the Coalition in 2000, and her duties have included workshop and support group facilitation, newsletter editing, and business and human resource management. As the Chief Operating Officer, Rossi oversees the day-to-day operations of the agency. Rossi and her husband are the proud parents of three children, two of whom were adopted.

Shelley Thomas-Benke – Director of Family Enrichment & Volunteers

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e shelleythomasbenke@foster-adopt.org
Shelley joined the Coalition in 2006. She has a Bachelor of Science from the University of Minnesota and received her Juris Doctor, cum laude, from the University of Wisconsin law school. She works part-time at the Coalition, helping to make the time children spend in foster care as enjoyable as it can be. Shelley worked as an attorney specializing in child abuse/neglect issues and appellate work for over 10 years before joining the Coalition. 

Tricia (Trish) Taddeucci – Lead Educational Advocate

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
c 314.614.2420
e triciataddeucci@foster-adopt.org

Trish joined the Coalition in 2011 as an Educational Advocate with over 15 years of diverse teaching experience in the St. Louis area in both public and private schools, as well as experience as a classroom teacher for the Missouri Division of Youth Services. Trish graduated from The University of Tulsa with a BA; she completed her Master’s in Educational Administration at UMSL. In 2014, her dedication and commitment to children earned Trish a 2014 Missouri Child Advocate Award. As an educator, Trish has always believed that relationships and connection are the hidden keys to a student’s educational success, which can only be nurtured through educational stability, continuity, and interconnectivity.

Hannah Trout – Families United Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
c 314.614.2420
e hannahtrout@foster-adopt.org

Hannah joined the Foster and Adoptive Care Coalition in December 2019 as a Families United Specialist. She graduated from Loyola University Chicago in 2015 with a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology before obtaining her Master of Social Work in 2017. Prior to the Coalition, she worked for 2 years as a foster care case manager in St. Louis County and City and then 1 year as a relative licensing worker. Hannah has always been passionate about working with children, and having been adopted herself, she is dedicated to advocating for and supporting foster and adoptive families in the community.

Tiffany Walls – Family Works Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e tiffanywalls@foster-adopt.org

Tiffany joined the Coalition as a Family Works Specialist in May 2024. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from UMSL and a master’s degree in Forensic Psychology from the Chicago School of Professional Psychology. Before joining the Coalition, Tiffany worked on the Ryan White Team at Washington University. She believes every conversation is an opportunity to listen, learn, and connect on a deeper level, delving into the complexities of the human experience with unwavering empathy. Through advocacy, education, and support, she fosters hope and resilience, lighting the path toward healing and understanding for all. In her free time, Tiffany enjoys reading and singing karaoke.

Teara Westfall – 30 Days to Family Specialist®

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
c 314.817.4520
e tearawestfall@foster-adopt.org

Teara joined the Coalition in October 2019 as a 30 Days to Family® Specialist. Teara graduated from the University of Missouri-St. Louis in 2012 with a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work. As a 30 Days to Family® Specialist, Teara is responsible for locating safe and appropriate relative supports and placement options for children in foster care. Teara brings over five years of child welfare experience to the Coalition. Prior to working at the Coalition, Teara worked as a child abuse/neglect investigator for the Missouri Children’s Division. Teara resides in St. Louis with her husband and children.

Paula White — Senior Director of Specialized Support

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
c 314.614.6388
paulawhite@foster-adopt.org

Paula White is a native and lifelong resident of St. Louis; Paula has over 19 years of experience working in child welfare at Missouri Children’s Division (the state’s child welfare agency). Prior to joining the Coalition, she worked diligently in the community, advocating for a well-being orientation for the children in the St. Louis region. She joined the Coalition in September 2018 as a Family Works STEPS Specialist and was promoted to Director of Navigation and Support in March 2020. She continues to advocate for families who experience complex trauma and assist families with navigating through the many systems of care. She holds a Master of Public Policy and Administration and a Certificate in Nonprofit Leadership and Management from the University of Missouri, St. Louis.

La Carla Williams – Family Development Specialist

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e lacarlawilliams@foster-adopt.org

La Carla joined the Foster & Adoptive Care Coalition in August 2022. La Carla was born and raised in North St. Louis City and graduated from Cardinal Ritter College Preparatory High School in 2000. In 2004, La Carla graduated from Lincoln University (Jefferson City, MO.), where she obtained her Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Psychology. She enjoys collaborating with individuals, no matter what the capacity may be. Prior to working at the Coalition, La Carla has operated extensively within the Healthcare and Social Services realm with over 13 years of proven success. She is also a proud member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated, in which she is dedicated to serving those in need from the very community in which she was reared. In her free time, La Carla loves to travel, meet new people, and spend quality time with her family and friends.

Kenya Willis – Senior Director of General Support

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e kenyawillis@foster-adopt.org

Kenya Willis joined the Coalition in October of 2020 as a Family Development Specialist. She transitioned into her current role as the Senior Director of General Support in 2022. Kenya graduated from the University of Missouri-St. Louis with a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work. As a Family Development Specialist, Kenya was responsible for training potential foster parents as well as providing them with resources and support during their first two years of licensure. Kenya brings to the Coalition over sixteen years of child welfare experience in the areas of resource licensure, subsidy, case management, and child abuse & neglect investigation.

Hannah Woods – Director of Family Works

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e hannahwoods@foster-adopt.org

Hannah joined the Coalition in May 2018 as a Family Works Specialist. She received both her Bachelor’s of Social Work and Master’s of Social Work from the University of Missouri-Saint Louis. She is a licensed clinical social worker and thoroughly enjoys facilitating growth and healing in the families she serves. Hannah has an extensive background in serving children and families in the St. Louis area in the areas of medical social work, domestic violence services, and parenting education services. In 2022, Hannah transitioned into her role as Director of Family Works and supervisor of the Youth Acceptance Project program. One of Hannah’s greatest joys in life is being an aunt to her nephews.

Jo Anne Zarky – Senior Director of Child Specific Recruitment

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
e joannezarky@foster-adopt.org
Jo Anne Zarky joined the 30 Days to Family® Team in September 2012 which she was responsible for locating safe appropriate relative supports and placement options for children immediately upon entry their into foster care. In 2017, Jo took over the role as the Director of 30 Days to Family where she supervised the program until 2022 when she transitioned into her current role as the Senior Director of Child Specific Recruitment.  Her duties include the oversite of the 30 Days to Family, Family Connections, and the Extreme Recruitment programs.  Prior to her work at the Coalition, Jo had over 15 years’ experience in the child welfare system.  Her experience includes working in residential care, foster care case management, foster and adoptive home licensing and working in the court system as a Deputy Juvenile Officer.  Jo earned her Psychology, Criminal Justice degree from Southwest Missouri State University. She currently resides in Webster Groves with her husband and their 5 children.

Anne Zink – Clinical Consultant & Coach

1750 South Brentwood Boulevard, Suite 210, Saint Louis, MO 63144
o 314.367.8373
annezink@foster-adopt.org
Anne joined the Coalition in 2015 as the Director of Family Support. She manages the Family Works Program. Anne has 35 years of experience. Her certifications include: Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training (ASIST), Triple P® Positive Parenting Trainer, Batterer’s Intervention Trainer, Training for Adoption Competency (TAC), STARS Trainer, and Nurturing Parenting Program™ Trainer.