The staff at Douglas C.A.R.E.S. is a team of professionals with unique backgrounds, advanced training and many years of experience that come together to serve kids and families in crisis in Douglas County. Each has a story, a reason why they are passionate about their work here in our community.
The staff at Douglas C.A.R.E.S. brings more than 100 years of combined
experience in forensic interviewing and therapeutic skills.
“Our current staff is made up of some of the most caring and professional people I have ever worked with. They work in a team setting which is very important in our mission and our goals for the agency and the families of Douglas County.” - Douglas C.A.R.E.S. Former Executive Director Mike Nores
Sarah Wickersham, Executive Director
Sarah Wickersham, Executive Director, holds a BS in Health administration and a MS in Developmental Psychology. She has 15 years of experience in service to children and families experiencing poverty, mental health and behavioral challenges, substance use disorders, trauma, and child welfare involvement. She worked as a Skills Trainer, guiding youth and their parents through understanding their mental health challenges, learning to accept them and work together to build resilient systems which helped the whole family to be healthier and support each other.
She has also done extensive Parent Training, including Raising Highly Resilient Kids, Collaborative Problem Solving, Developmental Milestones and Nutrition Education. She believes trainings are best completed by bringing the training full circle to include supervised practice with the children in a fun and engaging environment.
Sarah has 10 years’ experience in program management and systems development first as the Health Manager at UCAN Head Start, overseeing one third of the organization's operations, including producing 1000 meals per day to feed the children, staff and parents who attended during the day, overseeing all health and mental health-related screenings, treatment provision, and referrals to providers, providing and facilitating training for staff and families, and overseeing safety and emergency operations.
As the Treatment Services Manager at Douglas County Juvenile Department’s Residential Treatment Programs, she was responsible for designing and implementing trauma informed treatment programming for the most behaviorally challenging youth in Oregon, most of whom were in the custody of Child Welfare. She is certified in Collaborative Problem solving and engages in extensive staff training, coaching and support along with providing training and support to other treatment programs working to implement trauma informed care.
Strengthening children and families and building resilience while honoring the unique strengths of each family are at the heart of Sarah’s personal mission to her community.
Becky, Executive Assistant / Financials
My background consists of several years in the fields of administration, human resources, and financial services.
Working at Douglas CARES has opened my eyes to the high level of childhood trauma and abuse that occurs in Douglas County. I support what Douglas CARES and our community partners do for the children in our county and feel honored to be a part of the team, making sure kids are safe and happy!
Rhonda, Medical Billing Specialist
I joined Douglas CARES in 2014 as a Medical Billing Specialist. It did not take me much time to realize what a special place Douglas CARES is for our community. Working for Douglas CARES has made me realize being a parent is one of the most important things in my life.
I came to realize that when I was a child in the seventies I experienced childhood trauma and was eventually adopted by my grandparents. I was very fortunate to have caring, loving grandparents to open up their home and take my brother and I in. The only issue back then is they did not have places like Douglas CARES to help my brother and I through our trauma and new life transition into a new home. Knowing how much it could have benefited my brother and I, makes me understand what a valuable place Douglas CARES is for our children and communities. I am so thankful to get to be a part of such an amazing group of caring people.
Jeanie Curphey, Therapist
Kelsey, QMHA - Mental Health Advocate
Kelsey joined Douglas CARES in 2020 as a Skills Trainer and has recently taken on the role of Mental Health Advocate. Before working at CARES, Kelsey worked for Douglas County Mental Health, CHA , and Compass for a total of 9 years. Kelsey has an extensive background in dealing with mental health disorders and trauma. She is very passionate about her work in mental health.
Jake, Forensic Interviewer
I was hired in 2020 as a Forensic Interviewer. I have been serving in law enforcement since 2000, when I got my start with the Douglas County Sheriff's Office. I now work with the Sutherlin Police Department, since 2008. I currently am the department's sole School Resource Officer and operate within the Sutherlin and Oakland school districts. I greatly enjoy my position as the SRO, interacting with students, sharing my experiences, and helping guide them through their school years. Now I have the added bonus of working at Douglas C.A.R.E.S and joining such an incredible team that wants to help children and their families.
Sophie, LCSW - Child and Family Therapist
Sophie’s career in social work – professional MH counseling began when +15 years ago, in Oklahoma at Sunbeam Family Services she worked with Vietnamese refugees from Vietnam. Her work experiences with this refugee population have opened her eyes to the reality of a myriad of transcultural issues and challenges that were also related to traumas such as domestic violence / abuse/ neglect besides traumas related to experiencing displacement from one’s native land and traumatic disruption from one’s usual way of life.
As a graduate with MSW from University of Oklahoma, and an LCSW, Sophie has an extensive professional background and clinical experience in MHBH counseling. She has worked with diverse populations – children, teens, and adults either in outpatient or inpatient settings – while respecting individuals’ needs (i.e., for safety, respect, self-determination, opportunities for awareness, growth, empowerment, solution-finding) and utilizing eclectic therapeutic interventions servicing the needs of clients/ patients with whom she worked.
Amanda, Administrative Assistant
As the Administrative Assistant here at Douglas C.A.R.E.S, I bring to the table an extensive background in customer service and administrative support. An ardent supporter of human and animal rights, I stand for those who are unable to stand for themselves and provide a voice for the unheard. I knew I needed to be a part of this program the moment I became aware of it. I am amazed every day by the compassionate people involved with Douglas C.A.R.E.S, and the outstanding services they provide to those who need it most.
“The purpose of human life is to serve and show compassion and the will to help others.” Albert Schweitzer
Markelle, Child and Family Advocate
Markelle joined CARES in 2021 as a skills trainer and has recently taken on the role of Child and Family Advocate. Markelle can be seen at both the Roseburg and Canyonville CARES offices. Markelle received her bachelor’s from Southern Oregon University. She has a background in juvenile justice, social services and mental health, involving children and their families. Growing up in rural Douglas County, Markelle is thankful to have the chance to give back to the community, providing them with the support and services they need.
Erin, Skills Trainer, QMHA, B.S.- Psychology, Sociology, Anthropology
In the past, I have worked with Options Counseling and Family Services, assisting families to identify goals and providing them the tools that they need to reach those goals and remain a strong family unit. I have a long history working in child development and health care. Joining Douglas C.A.R.E.S. this year is an important opportunity to impact the children and families of Douglas County which is also my home community.
“Character is how you treat someone who can do nothing for you”
Bernie, QMHP - Child and Family Therapist
AA in Human services, BA in Psychology, and a MA in Organizational Management.
Bernie joined the team at Douglas Cares in March of 2023 as a Qualified Mental Health Associate, but he is now a Child and Family Therapist for our organization as a Qualified Mental Health Professional. Bernie brings over 25 years of experience working with children and families. Bernie has worked in a variety of organizations ranging from pre-schools, mental health facilities, residential treatment, and juvenile corrections. Bernie sees clients for therapy as well as mental health and CANS assessments.
Tami Terry, Deputy Director
Tami has over 15 years in law enforcement where she led extensive investigations into allegations of homicide, rape, kidnapping, child physical abuse, child sexual abuse and elderly abuse. She attended the FBI Crisis/Hostage Negotiation training and was an active member of the Lane County Hostage/Crisis Negotiation Team and worked collaboratively with other county agencies to ensure the safest outcomes for all involved parties according to each individual incident. She was also an investigator as a member of the Interagency Deadly Force Investigative Team (IDFIT) where every incident of deadly force conducted by all branches of law enforcement were investigated to ensure all state and federal laws were adhered to.
"I am very excited to start this new journey with Douglas CARES and to be part of a growing community of people who can make a difference in a child’s life." - Tami
Nikole, Forensic Interviewer
My name is Nikole - I am from the east coast and found my way to the wonderful west coast for my job here at CARES. I have my masters in Conflict Analysis and Dispute Resolution and an undergraduate degree in Law and Society and Psychology. I am a Forensic Interviewer and am responsible for providing developmentally sensitive, culturally appropriate, legally defensible forensic interviews of children and adolescents when an allegation of abuse has been made or a traumatic event witnessed. My passions are cooking and being outside and I love exploring all the waterfalls in the Pacific Northwest.
Anita Cox, Board Chairman