Team Dougy

Meet our Team

Dougy Center is committed to providing grief support in a safe place where children, teens, young adults, and their families can share their experiences before and after a death. Our team of dedicated professionals enacts this mission every day with both heart and skill.

Kassie 1

Kassie Boehringer

Director of Marketing & Communications


I am passionate about inspiring awareness and support for Dougy Center. With 30 years of experience in marketing and graphic design, I first began working at Dougy Center in 2009. In 2013, I left for new opportunities but found I couldn’t stay away. I returned as Communications Manager in 2018 and I am humbled to once again be part of this important work.

Cristina web

Cristina Chipriano, L.C.S.W.

Director of Equity & Community Outreach Esperanza Program Coordinator


When I first walked through the doors of the Dougy Center, I thought to myself, “I need to find a way to be a part of this work!” Fast forward a few years, I am honored to call myself a member of Team Dougy. I am passionate about supporting children who are grieving, particularly those who historically have not had access to services. When I am not doing this work, I enjoy spending time with my family watching all types of sports but soccer is #1 in my heart, traveling, playing music, and exploring new food spots!

Trainer Bio
Website Photo JD 3

Jana DeCristofaro, L.C.S.W.

Community Response Program Coordinator


When I walked through the doors of Dougy Center 20 years ago as a volunteer, it was the first time in my social work career that I felt like I was home. Eighteen years into my professional role here, every time I pedal my way to work, I'm grateful for the chance to make a difference by creating community and connection for those in grief. You can also catch me on the airwaves, practicing my radio voice as the host of our podcast, Grief Out Loud.

Trainer Bio
Maddie Edwards

Maddie Edwards

Marketing Assistant


After finishing my bachelor’s degree in Advertising, I knew I wanted to work for a local non-profit to assist with marketing and social media. Having participated in activities over the past six years with Oregon Make-A-Wish and CASA, I am grateful to have found a place on Team Dougy. In my role I get to be creative and utilize my skills while continuing to learn. I look forward to sharing the positive impacts and important work the Dougy Center provides children and their families. In my free time you can find me reading, watching reality TV, and playing with my cats, Remy and Olaf.

Lani 4 web

Lani Faith, M.M.F.T.

Chief Advancement Officer


I’ve served nonprofits almost my whole career in the areas of fundraising, marketing and organizational development. And my work has always been driven by my passion for creating space for growth, new ideas, and possibilities; individually and organizationally. In my new role, I am eager to help expand the reach of Dougy Center services to those living on the west side of Portland. I’ve known loss as a child and as an adult and I’ve experienced the powerful presence of those who have walked the road before me; giving me courage to grieve deep and grieve well. I, in turn, want to create that space for others.

Photo staff Rebecca Hobbs Lawrence

Rebecca Hobbs-Lawrence, M.A.

Pathways Program & Grief Services Coordinator


I have enjoyed supporting and working alongside many wonderful people over the past 20 years at Dougy Center. I like getting my hands messy both at home and at Dougy Center with art projects, culinary delights, and any endeavor that encourages others to express themselves.

MK Pic for Website resized

Meredith Kelley, M.S.W.

Volunteer Placement & Grief Services Coordinator


After experiencing the death of my sister, I discovered the healing power that comes with being of service to others. Her death led me to my career in social work, where I’ve had the pleasure of working with youth and families in nonprofits and schools throughout Portland. I am honored to be present with families at Dougy Center as they experience grief. Outside of work, I enjoy sewing and walking my dog, Mac & Cheese.

Photo staff Sat Kaur Khalsa

Sat Kaur Khalsa, M.S.W.

Family Services Coordinator


As a young child, I experienced the death of a sibling long before folks understood the impact of childhood grief. It completely altered my life and perspective and absolutely informed my choice to become a social worker. Imagine my joy when I moved to Portland and found out about Dougy Center from a booklet on a new friend's coffee table! The next day I called to sign up for volunteer training with a plan to one day become staff. The plan became reality 1.5 years later and now 10 years in I am one of the Family Coordinators. I am honored to help families navigate their peer support journey from orientation and group placement to running 6 groups and answering emails. Working at Dougy Center feels like a full-circle moment for me. Outside of work, I find joy in my family (both human and canine), the spectacular nature of the PNW, and baking!

Photo staff Alysha Lacey

Alysha Lacey, L.P.C., A.T.R., F.T.

Director of Program Services


I've worked in the nonprofit world for most of my career, but at Dougy Center, I feel the most at home. My role is the perfect mix of supporting people, creativity, and administration. My schedule and job tasks are wildly different every day, which I really love. Outside of work, I spend as much time as I can on the beaches and mountains of the PNW with my family or exploring new routes to run.

Trainer Bio
Melanie s

Melanie Langlois, L.P.C.

Grief Services Coordinator


I have always been passionate about the power of peer support and am honored to be part of a community at Dougy Center that creates a safe, accepting space for children and families who are grieving to connect with and support one another. I also appreciate working with our volunteers who contribute so much of their time and energy to this important work, and I aspire to be an advocate for grief-informed practice within the larger field of mental health. When I'm not at work I enjoy spending time in nature and doing creative projects.

Tina Libby web

Tina Libby

Advancement Services Manager


I have been in the nonprofit world for over six years and assisting my community has always been important to me. I am so thrilled to be part of Team Dougy and helping support children and families. In my spare time you can find me going adventuring with my dog, watching holiday themed movies, and getting into shenanigans with friends and family.


Juliette Martinez, M.S.W.

SC L.Y.G.H.T. State Coordinator


While learning how to navigate through life after experiencing my own loss and grief, Dougy Center gave me an opportunity to help shine L.Y.G.H.T. into so many lives in the child welfare system. I've always known my passion in life was to give back to a population that I was once a part of. Dougy Center provided that pathway of healing and it's been an amazing journey from the start. In my free time, I enjoy being a mom, sister, friend, and mentor to the youth I serve.

Photo staff Monique B Mitchell Photo

Monique Mitchell, Ph.D., F.T.

Director of Training & Translational Research
National Director, L.Y.G.H.T. Program


El español es como música para mi alma y siempre estaré agradecida por cómo el idioma me consuela. In addition to my love for languages ​​and globetrotting, considering how to best support children who are grieving is where I invest most of my time. While my own losses have compelled me into the depths of grief, I place my greatest value on what I have learned from the children I serve. I am grateful to work at Dougy Center where I provide grief education and training about children’s grief, advocate for systems change for children who are grieving a death and non-death losses, and discuss the importance of becoming grief-informed.

Trainer Bio
James P

James Palau

Business Operations Manager


I am a Portland native who cares deeply about improving lives in our community. With more than four years of non-profit experience in the Portland area, I come to Dougy Center with the mission to offer open communication, efficient support, and infectious positivity to all departments in this wonderful organization. In my free time I enjoy great and terrible movies, hiking, cuddling with my cat, and cooking with my boyfriend.

Profile photo

Lin Parkison

Donor Relations Associate


In 2008 I found my calling in the nonprofit world on the development/fundraising side, and in 2013 I joined the development team at Dougy Center! As the Donor Relations Associate, I love finding creative ways to show our donors how much we appreciate them, how vital their support is, and the life-changing impact their support has on children and families who are grieving. As a proud mom and grandmom to three littles, I am grateful every day that Dougy Center is here for families and grateful to be a part of this amazing team.

Melissa web

Melissa Peede Thompson, M.S.

Grief Services Coordinator


After finishing my bachelor’s degree in psychology, I was unsure where I wanted to go. I knew I wanted to continue my education and when I found the opportunity to get my master’s degree in grief and bereavement it felt like a natural calling. My personal life experience in loss and death has created a passion for normalizing and validating grief. I am thrilled to have this opportunity to work with Dougy Center and those who enter our doors.

Grace web

Grace Purvis

Administrative Assistant – Training & L.Y.G.H.T.


After finishing my BA with a major in Political Science and minors in Conflict Resolution and Communication, I had become disillusioned with the extent of the changes I could make in the political realm. Feeling somewhat adrift at this realization, I turned with renewed vigor to pursue a career at a non-profit where I felt I could make a real change in my community. With a longstanding interest in serving children & families and/or underserved populations the Dougy Center seemed like a clear choice. Hired in 2022, I am honored to assist the Training Team and the LYGHT Team. In my free time I enjoy reading, walking, drawing, and listening to music.

MRM headshot 3 rev

Madison Reiling-Mullins, M.B.A.

Chief Operating Officer


Madison comes to Dougy center with a collective 12 years’ experience in the nonprofit sector in a variety of teaching and management roles. She has a bachelor’s and master’s degree from the University of Texas at Austin, and an MBA from Washington State University. She is thrilled to be connected to Dougy Center and this great team of passionate people and supporting the incredible mission. Madison, her wife, and their newborn son can be found frequenting local hiking trails or planning their next travel adventure.

Photo staff Cheryl Roberts

Cheryl Roberts

Program Assistant


You will see me at the front desk to welcome you to our home in Southeast Portland, but I first came to Dougy Center over 30 years ago with my daughter when my husband died. I began as a volunteer facilitator in 1995 and joined the staff in 2007. When I am not welcoming people to the Dougy Center and connecting them with our groups and resources, I am probably enjoying the outdoors.

Ana S Headshot

Ana Salazar-Walsh

Esperanza Group Coordinator


When I first walked through the Dougy Center’s doors in 2018, I knew I’d stumbled across something special. After six years as a volunteer for the Pathways and Esperanza programs, I am honored to be joining Dougy Center’s staff. I was drawn to this work out of a desire to support kids and families. What I didn’t expect was the profound learning that would take place as a result. It is a privilege to walk alongside our Dougy Center families as they navigate unimaginable pain and loss, and witnessing their strength has transformed how I make sense of my own early losses. When I’m not at the Dougy Center, I enjoy exploring Portland with my husband and two kids or snuggling up with a book and a cozy beverage.

Photo staff Donna Schuurman

Donna Schuurman, Ed.D., F.T.

Senior Director of Advocacy & Education

Executive Director Emeritus

I’ve had no deeper life privilege than serving children, teens, and families at Dougy Center, from 1986 when I first started volunteering, through 25 years as Executive Director, and in my current role writing, training, and advocating on their behalf. Dealing with death has deepened my appreciation for life. My soul is fed through travel, reading, kayaking, riding my Harley-Davidson, camping, hiking, skiing, hanging out with friends, and all things outdoors.

Trainer Bio
Grace S

Grace Starling

Operations Administrative Assistant & Bookstore Coordinator


I’ve admired Dougy Center for many years, first as a volunteer and now on staff, and I am honored to help support youth in our community through their grief. I find it deeply rewarding to be a part of this organization and its programs by coordinating our online bookstore and supporting the organization’s daily operations behind the scenes. Outside of work, you’ll find me baking tasty treats for my loved ones, jogging and enjoying the outdoors, and finding a fun craft or art project to dive into.

Photo staff Rebecca Sturges

Rebecca Sturges

Special Events & Corporate Partnerships


As a native Oregonian, I’ve grown up exploring the great outdoors and love the majestic beauty of Oregon from the coast to the mountains! I am passionate about planning fundraising events for the Dougy Center and enjoy finding creative ways to share our incredible mission with others.

Ben Toledo rev

Ben Toledo, M.Ed.

Training Coordinator


I found my way to Dougy Center after five years as a public school teacher. Working with students was an immensely rewarding, yet socially exhausting experience to my introverted nature. After a few years I was ready to apply my experience in education to a more focused, behind-the-scenes role. The Training Coordinator position at Dougy Center was exactly what I was looking for. The mission of Dougy Center resonates with me on a deep level; I am grateful for the opportunity to support it. Outside of work I can be found making music, exploring a natural area with my wife, or at home playing with my cats, Sparks and Fern

Mollie web

Mollie Winnninger, M.Div.

Grief Services Coordinator


I’m a San Diego native with a brimming stack of books, a full cup of tea, and a passion for community care. Before Dougy Center, I was a chaplain who specialized in trauma and the LGBTQ+ and disability communities. I aim to be the person I needed when I was younger, and I feel so privileged to work here at Dougy Center. In my spare time you can find me working on my Ph.D., listening to Carole King, and podcasting.

Photo staff Brennan Wood The Dougy Center

Brennan C. Wood

Executive Director


It is truly an honor to work alongside the tremendous Team Dougy — our dedicated staff, volunteers, and Board of Directors — to support children and families who are grieving. As a past Dougy Center participant, volunteer facilitator, and current Dougy Center parent, it is my life’s work and passion to further this critical mission. Outside of work, my time is spent with family and friends honoring my mother’s legacy of making every day a celebration.

Brennan's Story Trainer Bio