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.

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Kassie Boehringer

Director of Marketing & Communications

she/her/hers
kassie@dougy.org

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.

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Cristina Chipriano, L.C.S.W.-S.

Director of Equity & Community Outreach Esperanza Program Coordinator

she/her/hers
cristina@dougy.org

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!

Photo staff Bill Cullerton

Bill Cullerton

Finance Manager

he/him/his
bill@dougy.org

I am a Portland native and I've spent much of my career working in accounting for local nonprofits. I love being able to support the amazing mission of Dougy Center. On weekends you can find me on nearby hiking trails.

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Jana DeCristofaro, L.C.S.W.

Community Response Program Coordinator

she/her/hers
jana@dougy.org

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
Photo staff Rebecca Hobbs Lawrence

Rebecca Hobbs-Lawrence, M.A.

Pathways Program & Grief Services Coordinator

she/her/hers
rebecca@dougy.org

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.

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Emily Johnson

Bookstore Coordinator

she/her/hers
emily@dougy.org

I first became a part of the Dougy Center community as a volunteer children’s facilitator. Now on staff coordinating our online bookstore, I ship our grief-related publications all over the United States and abroad. It is a wonderful reminder to me of how our work here supports children, families, educators and health care professionals far beyond our immediate community. Outside of Dougy Center, you might see me walking in the woods or scribbling away on an assignment for a current class.

Photo staff Sat Kaur Khalsa

Sat Kaur Khalsa, M.S.W.

Family Services Coordinator

she/her/hers
satkaur@dougy.org

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 help@dougy.org 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.

Director of Program Services

she/her/hers
alysha@dougy.org

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
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Juliette Martinez, M.S.W.

L.Y.G.H.T. Research & Program Associate

she/her/hers
juliette@dougy.org

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 Linda Miles

Linda Miles, M.B.A.

Development Manager

she/her/hers
linda@dougy.org

There is nothing that brings me joy like connecting passionate donors with ways to make a difference for grieving kids. I’ve worked in fundraising for more than 20 years and Dougy Center’s mission is near and dear to my heart. Fun fact about me: my undergraduate degree is in theatre arts.

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

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

she/her/hers
monique@dougy.org

El español es como música para mi alma y siempre estaré agradecido 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
Photo staff Lin Parkison

Lin Parkison

Donor Relations Associate

she/her/hers
lin@dougy.org

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 3 littles, I am grateful every day that Dougy Center is here for families and grateful to be a part of this amazing team.

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Melissa Peede, M.S.

Group Coordinator

she/her/hers
melissa@dougy.org

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.

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Crystal Perry, M.S.

Development Systems Associate

she/her/hers
crystal@dougy.org

My love and passion for Dougy Center has been burning since I attended a peer-support group here as a child in 1994, and working at Dougy Center for the past two years has been an absolute dream. You’ll find me managing our database system, processing gifts we receive from our supporters, and thanking our supporters for their generosity. Outside of Dougy Center, I am energized by and find joy in hiking, singing, meditating, and spending quality time with those I love.

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Cheryl Roberts

Program Assistant

she/her/hers
cheryl@dougy.org

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.

Photo staff Donna Schuurman

Donna Schuurman, Ed.D., F.T

Senior Director of Advocacy & Training

Executive Director Emeritus
she/her/hers
donna@dougy.org

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
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Parker Sczepanik

Operations Manager

she/her/hers
parker@dougy.org

I believe that grief is my life-long companion and supporting young people in their grief is my life-long passion. After five wonderful years volunteering at Dougy Center, I transitioned into the Operations Manager role in 2021. I am honored to be a part of Team Dougy! You can find me supporting the team, strategizing, organizing, and finding ways to laugh a lot. In my spare time, I’m usually camping with my husband and our two dogs, fly fishing, hiking, and re-reading Harry Potter.

Photo staff Rebecca Sturges

Rebecca Sturges

Special Events & Corporate Partnerships

she/her/hers
rebeccas@dougy.org

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.

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Valenca Valenzuela, M.S.W.

Volunteer & Group Coordinator

she/her/hers
valenca@dougy.org

Throughout my childhood, I experienced several significant losses, including the death of my father. This profoundly changed me and was the catalyst for my social work career. When I found Dougy Center, I knew I wanted to be a part of its important mission. I have had the great honor of serving Dougy Center families as a volunteer facilitator since 2009. I am beyond grateful to now be the Volunteer & Group Coordinator, where I get to still assist the families, as well as help the fantastic volunteers that are an integral part of our grief support mission. Serving the families at Dougy Center feeds my soul, along with time spent in nature, camping, beach combing, gardening, traveling, doing art, and spending time with my beautiful children.

Photo staff Brennan Wood The Dougy Center

Brennan C. Wood

Executive Director

she/her/hers
brennan@dougy.org

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