Geoff reports to the Board of Directors. He is responsible for overseeing all facets of the organization including program development, fundraising, marketing, strategy, policy, collaboration and personnel. He graduated from Hobart College in Geneva, NY and came to Montana in 1972. After six years working with youth and social policy, Geoff became the 1st Executive Director of Youth Homes in 1976. He has been involved in the growth of the Youth Homes from a 7 boys group home in 1971. Geoff and his wife, Nancy, have been foster parents a number of times and he has been coaching high school aged soccer players for 28 years. They have two grown children and grandkids.
Beth is a non-profit professional with 19 years’ experience working as a director. Beth spent 13 years working for a statewide health care provider and most recently was Associate Director for Five Valleys Land Trust, a well-respected conservation organization. Beth holds degrees in English Literature and Journalism. She and her husband Rick have two teenage sons, Finn and Sam. In her spare time, she likes to read, cook, listen to music and go on long walks with her standard poodle, Harry.
Dann has been the Controller of the Youth Homes since 1998 and oversees the financial operations of the organization. Dann has degrees in both Developmental Psychology and Accounting, making him a unique fit for our organization and his position. Dann and his wife, Lisa, have two 20-something sons and a golden retriever. When they’re not out enjoying the mountains and lakes of Montana, they can be found seeking diving or trekking on their next international adventure.
Amy started working for InnerRoads Wilderness Program as field staff in 2008. After seeing how essential the program is for struggling teenagers, she wanted to help grow the program to be more sustainable and accessible, first as program manager and later as program director. Amy is inspired by the youth that Youth Homes serves and is excited to share their stories with others in the community. When Amy is not in the office, she likes to stay active by exploring Montana’s wilderness.
Jennifer joined Youth Homes in May of 2015 as the Development Coordinator for the Linda Massa Youth Home in Hamilton; however she is based in Missoula. She is originally from Bigfork, MT and is excited to be back in the area putting her skills to use in the community. Jennifer loves connecting with people and is looking forward to hitting the ground running with Youth Homes community outreach and fundraising. When she is not in the office she enjoys skiing, rock climbing, drinking coffee, and a good game of cribbage.
Chris has had the position of Marketing Manager since 2006. He enjoys putting his creative skills to work in all facets of nonprofit technology, marketing, fundraising and event planning. Prior to joining Youth Homes’ Development Team, Chris filled marketing roles with other agencies in Montana and with the California Film Commission in Los Angeles, CA. When not working, Chris enjoys being outdoors running, mountain biking, skiing and hiking with his wife, son and their two dogs.
Hannah has been working as the Development Coordinator at the Flathead Youth Home since 2006. In that position, she keeps busy organizing fund-raisers like the multi-sport relay, the Glacier Challenge, the Bibler Garden party, and other events throughout the year. She works with the FYH Advisory Board and enjoys talking with the community about the work of FYH with area kids in crisis. When she is not keeping pace with the many challenges of her work at FYH, Hannah may be found kayaking one of the many beautiful water ways in and around the Flathead Valley.
Kathryn joined the Youth Homes team in the fall of 2014. Originally from Coeur d’Alene Idaho, Kathryn moved to Missoula to attend U of M and quickly lost her heart to the beauty of Montana. Now based in Helena, she is the Development Coordinator for the Jan Shaw Home for Girls and the Margaret Stuart Youth Home. She is dedicated to promoting a healthy and well-informed community by volunteering at Exploration Works! and promoting Montana Girls in STEM. When not at work, you can find Kathryn outside hiking, skiing, running and keeping honeybees with her husband.
Rachelle joined the Youth Homes team in January of 2012. She is the Assistant to the Executive Director. Originally from Spokane, she has lived in Missoula for 8 years. Rachelle has certified training in Computer Operations and Information Management from Interface College. She enjoys spending time with her family and friends, dancing, hiking, sporting events, camping, volunteer work, scrapbooking, and the occasional Flash Mob.
Katie joined Youth Homes in 2007 as a Fiscal Assistant II. She received her Associates of Applied Science degree in Accounting in May 2005. She has been involved with and worked around abused and neglected children for 7 years including serving as a Mental Health Aide for an attachment-disordered and traumatized child. She enjoys floating the river, boating, kayaking, camping, snowboarding, scrap booking, and spending time with family, friends, and her dog.
Erin was raised in Missoula, studied French and Linguistics at the University of Montana and is thrilled to be back at work for Youth Homes after taking five years off to be a stay at home parent. Outside of work Erin is likely to be found volunteering for local events, making art with (or without) kids or exploring the wilderness with her family and their high-energy dog.
Joining Youth Homes in 1993, Melissa Arno, LCSW remains passionate about working with youth and preparing them for adulthood. She has been the Program Director at the Tom Roy Youth Guidance Home since 2000 and prior to that she worked in Youth Homes’ shelter care as well as long term therapeutic group care. Melissa was an integral part of establishing the Youth Farm in 2009 as an opportunity for youth to gain valuable work skills and an understanding of sustainable agriculture.
Gabe started working for Youth Homes at the Tom Roy Youth Guidance home in 2008 after graduating from the University of Montana. Gabe worked at the Tom Roy home for 6 years before moving to California to supervise a boy’s cottage at a residential care facility. After starting a family, Gabe made the decision to return to Montana and joined the Talbot Home for Girls team to continue his passion of helping young people navigate the world.
Alec has worked with Youth Homes since 2007. He has held a variety of positions within the Dennis Radtke Home for Boys, and is currently serving as Program Manager. Alec thoroughly enjoys being witness to the growth evidenced by both youth and staff. His time is often occupied with motorcycles, mountain biking and skiing. He graduated from the University of Montana with a degree in Psychology and Human & Family Development.
Kelli is a proud native of Butte, where she was born and raised. She started her undergraduate degree in Idaho. After transitioning back to Montana and taking time away from school to travel and work, she earned her BA degree from the University of Montana in Psychology along with a minor in Studio Arts. She has worked in different positions at both of the Talbot Homes and is now enthused by the new challenges of Program Manager at Talbot Boys Home. Kelli enjoys creating jewelry, sketching and working on house projects; she is inspired by her mother. In 2013 she ran the Missoula Half Marathon to raise funds for Youth Homes. She hopes to run the full marathon some day and raise even more money for the kids she gets to work with.
Lance is responsible for overseeing programs at the Flathead Youth Home. He has a B.S. from South Dakota State University. He has worked in various capacities for Youth Homes since 2000 and has been the Program Director since 2004.
Anna Green is the Program Director of the Linda Massa Youth Home in Hamilton, Montana. She has worked for the Youth Homes in several different capacities since 2007, mainly in shelter care at the Shirley Miller Attention Home in Missoula. Anna has a degree from the University of Montana in Social Work and Spanish. She enjoys the energy and resilience of the kids and families she serves as well as spending time with her family, snowboarding, fly fishing, traveling and telling jokes.
Patrick was born and raised in Helena, MT. He graduated from the University of Mary with a degree in English and history for secondary education. He joined Youth Homes as the Transitional Living Service provider for the Lewis and Clark, Jefferson, and Broadwater counties. In conjunction to being a TLS provider, he also manages the Youth Crisis Diversion program in the Helena community. He has worked with youth in a variety of settings including the school system, residential programs, youth home settings, and mentoring services. He enjoys spending time in the backcountry of Montana, fishing, hiking, kayaking, and running.
I am Janessa Simonson, I am the Program Manager at Jan Shaw Home for Girls. I have worked with teens for a little over 5 years and was a Pre-school teacher prior to starting as a youth counselor in 2012. I graduated in 2012 with Associate of Arts Degree in Mental Health Direct Care. I worked as youth counselor and home manager while I got my second degree in Medical Administration. I absolutely love being a part of these young kid’s journeys as they grow and excel. I am also the mother to 2 beautiful girls, Brooklynn (8), and Layla (4). We love going for drives in the mountains, hiking, fishing, basketball, parks and swimming. I personally am a little eccentric and enjoy Astrology and I tend to day dream and joke a lot, it keeps me sane!
Carleigh began her career in the social work field as a family based services coordinator for a local human services organization. In graduate school, Carleigh did her practicum with Village Therapy so she has been involved with the Radtke boys for several years prior to becoming the Lead Clinical Staff at Radtke. In March 2013 she graduated with a Master of Social Work from Walla University.
After graduating college at Minnesota State University with a degree in recreational therapy, Curt worked with youth and families in Colorado, Idaho, Alaska, and Germany. His roles have included case manager, experiential educator, recreational therapist, and outdoor guide. With his enthusiasm for natural environments and working with youth, Curt has found his passion in wilderness therapy. He has been involved with InnerRoads since 2010. In his free time, Curt loves traveling and doing anything adventurous or challenging.
Erin received a Master’s Degree in Counseling through the Counselor Education Program at the University of Montana in 2003. Erin has worked for the Youth Homes since 1995 and is the Clinical and Program Director. In addition, she has a significant interest and experience in providing therapy for youth and their care givers. She sees preschool aged children through adolescents and their families. With a primary focus on strengthening relationships, connection and bonding; Erin’s uses Attachment Theory to inform her work. She has been trained in the evidenced based practice model of The Circle of Security, both as a facilitator and as a therapist. Erin works with clients who have Mood Disorders, Anxiety, Depression, trauma, parenting challenges, Oppositional Defiant Disorder and ADHD. Erin uses Cognitive Behavioral Therapy to help clients makes desired changes. Erin uses mindfulness and relaxation skills to help clients regulate their emotions. She also uses Motivational Interviewing skills to help all clients become active early in their therapeutic process. Erin is trained in therapy with children, adolescents, birth parents, foster and adoptive families. Erin is a Licensed Professional Counselor in the State of Montana.
Bill is a native Montanan and longtime Missoula resident. He has worked for Youth Homes, Inc. since 1993. He loves Montana’s outdoors, spending time with his family, and playing and teaching music.
Sara Fisher has worked for youth homes for 25 years after completing an undergraduate degree in Psychology and then studying for a Masters in School Psychology. She worked in therapeutic group care for 17 years before moving to the Dan Fox Family Care Program where she specializes as a Treatment Manager and Family Support Services Specialist. Sara is married, has a teenage son and a Dorgi dog named Shorty. Sara enjoys skiing, cycling, traveling, gardening, baking and baseball.
Kelsey is a therapist and the Services Coordinator for the Dan Fox Family Care Program. In addition to gathering and processing referrals, she does in home and outpatient therapy with children and families. She received her Master’s Degree in Social Work from the University of Montana in 2011 and has been licensed since 2014. She has worked with individuals, children, adolescents, and families facing various challenges, including trauma, grief, anxiety, depression, physical illness, end of life, abuse, neglect, poverty, and behavior difficulties. She is trained in Circle of Security, motivational interviewing, trauma focused cognitive behavioral therapy, and parent management training. In her spare time, Kelsey enjoys spending time with her dogs, skiing, hiking, riding four wheelers, and playing in the outdoors.
Zach is a doctoral student in the University of Montana’s school psychology program. Prior to coming to UM, he worked at the suicide hotline in Oxford, Ohio. His work there primarily focused on assessing risk and coordinating community resources. During his time at UM, he has worked as a school psychologist in the Missoula area, teaches undergraduate psychology courses, and provided child and family therapy at the Clinical Psychology Center on the UM campus. Currently, Zach’s research interests include: effectively treating Autism Spectrum Disorder using Evidence-Based Practices in Psychology, examining the School-to-Prison Pipeline in the state of Montana, and developing culturally responsive practices in school psychology.
Susan is a doctoral candidate in the University of Montana’s clinical psychology program. Prior to coming to UM, she worked with the Children’s Hospital of The King’s Daughters’ Child Abuse Program, a regional Child Advocacy Center partnering with Eastern Virginia Medical School. Her work there focused on research surrounding cognitive behavioral therapy for traumatized youth, caregiver and parenting capacity evaluations, and mental health needs screening of children referred for medical and forensic evaluations. During her time at UM, she has worked with the University’s Clinical Psychology Center and the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes’ Behavioral Health Department. She teaches undergraduate psychology at the university and parent psychoeducation courses with Families First. Susan is currently conducting research for her dissertation that will evaluate the impact of the Missoula County Youth Crisis Diversion Project on Missoula’s youth and their families.
Chelsea joined Youth Homes in 2009 at the Shirley Miller Attention Home, where she worked as a Senior Staff member until 2013. From there she went on to pursue her Master’s Degree in Social Work. Throughout Graduate school Chelsea fulfilled her practicum with The Shirley Miller Attention Home and the Missoula County Youth Crisis Diversion Project studying public policy development and implementation. She is currently a Family Care Therapist with the Dan Fox Family Care Program. Chelsea has a passion for working with Children and Families and hopes to one day work to improve public policies that dictate the social services families in need receive. In her free time, Chelsea can be found in her tiny garden, crafting and sipping tea with her cat Margot.
Melissa recently returned to work for Youth Homes as a Transitional Living Services Manager. She graduated from Purdue University in 1993, majoring in Psychology, and previously worked for Youth Homes as a Treatment Manager for children in therapeutic foster care. She is passionate about helping young people find their own worth, respect the diversity of others, succeed to the best of their abilities, develop connections, and build a support system of people that will strengthen and sustain them as they become adults. In her current capacity, she works with youth between the ages of 14 and 21 who are aging out of the foster care system and need to develop independent living skills.
Lori was hired as a Therapeutic Youth Care Worker at the Flathead Youth Home in August 2003, and remained there until November 2011. In this capacity, Lori provided guidance, structure and security to at risk youth struggling with issues such as chemical dependency, familial relations and academics. She also provided case management for youth coming out of Correctional facilities and placed with foster families called Guide Homes. In November 2011, Lori was hired full-time at the Dan Fox Family Care Program. She wears several different hats, continuing to provide case management for the Guide Home Program, Family Support Services for struggling families in the community and Transitional Living Services for youth aging out of foster care. Lori’s office is located in Kalispell, MT and when she’s not at work, you will find her spending time with family, friends and her dog in the great outdoors.
Linda was born in Great Falls and graduated from Montana State University. She worked as a State Child Protection Services worker in several counties and as a nursing home social worker for a number of years before starting her Youth Homes/Dan Fox Family Care career 14 years ago. Linda and her family enjoy outdoor activities and traveling. She is a supporter of community activities within the Polson area, including the Mission Valley Aquatics program.
Leigh received his Master’s Degree in Counseling and Human Services from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs. He has extensive experience providing therapy to youth pre-school age through adolescence and their families. His focus has been to help youth and families overcome significant life challenges that include, trauma, anxiety, mood dysregulation, social problems, family conflict, grief and loss. He has maintained a clinical interest in Play Therapy, The Collaborative and Proactive Solutions Model, and Family Systems Therapy. He has extended his clinical interest to trauma informed therapies and attachment theory. Leigh has been licensed as Clinical Professional Counselor in Montana since 2003. Leigh has over 20-years’ experience working with youth and families within the human services field. In his spare time Leigh enjoys spending time with his family, camping, and hanging out with his three Pug’s, Oscar, Zoey, and Barley.
In 1990 David completed the Rehabilitation Services Worker course at Clover Park Tech College. In 2005 he finished his BA in Human Services from Almeda University and in 2008 completed his MA in Social Services. David has been employed at Youth Homes since 2008 as a Treatment Manager and Family Support worker. David works with children ages 4 to 18. David is a trained facilitator of the Circle of Security parenting model. He is also trained in the Wraparound model. David has been working with adults and children in various social work capacities since 1990. Before coming to Youth Homes, David worked in the school system, mental health system, developmental disabilities system and vocational rehabilitation system.
Synda has worked for Dan Fox Family Care Program since January of 2016. Synda graduated from the University of Great Falls in 2002 and has worked in Mental Health/Social services since. She has been trained in many areas including the Circle of Security. She has worked with people of all ages and different cultures and enjoys giving back to the community. When she isn’t at work she is having family time which includes many outdoor activities like hunting, fishing, camping, hiking, etc.
Bio coming soon!
Becky has worked with the Dan Fox Family Care Program since 2012 as an office assistant. She performs background checks for prospective foster care and adoptive parents. Becky also does general office assistant work such as mailings and ordering supplies. In her off time, she enjoys volunteering for the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill and is on the board for Rocky Mountain Development Council. Becky also spends time camping and hiking with her family .