Becky Parton, MSW, LICSW
is currently employed by the Dartmouth Trauma Interventions Research Center. This role combines her background of both mental health practice and child protection work. She is the project coordinator for the New Hampshire Adoption Preparation and Preservation project and works closely with the NH Division for Children, Youth and Families (DCYF). She provides training and consultation to DCYF and Mental Health providers across the state. Becky previously worked in community mental health providing family and child therapy. She is trained in Child Parent Psychotherapy, Dialectical Behavior Therapy and Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. Becky’s early career was working for child protection. Becky is the co-chair of the Children’s Issues Committee for NH NASW. She is also a part of the CEU committee and the Ethics Committee. In the past, she sat on SLAC as well. Becky is a Teaching Lecturer at Plymouth State University for the undergraduate Social Work program and is an Adjunct Professor for the University of New Hampshire for both their online MSW program and their Durham undergraduate program. Becky’s passion is working with children and families and she has been involved in statewide efforts to increase awareness and prevention of Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs).
John DeJoie, MSW*
John has a diverse background spanning four decades. A 1985 graduate of Simmons College School of Social Work, John is currently a lecturer at the University of New Hampshire, teaching at the graduate and under graduate level, both on-line and traditional classes. His teaching specializes in social policy, focused on effective legislative advocacy. His
teaching draws from his own advocacy work at NH Kids Count (2010-2016) and as a member of the New Hampshire House of Representatives (2002-2010). During this time, John focused on
Health and Human Services budgeting and the modernization of the Division of Children Youth and Families, focused on the Sununu Youth Services Center. John is a member of the Juvenile Reform Project, a multi-agency advocacy team working to improve interventions for children, particularly for children and color and lower socio-economic means. He is leading the conversation about the creation of an Office of the Child Advocate to provide oversight for the DCYF and child protection. He is recently retired from the Concord (NH) Fire Department (1995-2015) where he served the citizens of Concord as a firefighter and Emergency Medical Technician. Prior to joining Concord Fire, John worked at the Solomon Mental Health Center (Lowell, MA) (1986-1995) in the emergency department. This screening team served as the crisis intervention team for the Greater Lowell area. He continues to focus on effective legislative advocacy.
Mary Banach, LICSW***
Mary is an associate professor in the Department of Social Work at the University of New Hampshire, where she has taught since 1995. Prior to teaching, Mary worked in direct practice positions as a social worker in New York City. Her positions included work in child welfare, hospitals, and legal services. She was a faculty member of
Columbia Law School and Columbia School of Social Work immediately before moving to
New Hampshire. Love of teaching has prompted research exploring the effectiveness of different pedagogical strategies. Mary has served on a number of non-profit boards. Currently she is a member of the Waysmeet and Cocheco Academy for the Arts boards. She has been a member of NASW since 1978.
Kit DeVries, PhD, LICSW, Cert. Psych.***
As a perpetual student, Kit’s first 33 years were spent in
the business field beginning as a clerk typist and leaving after seven successful years in
management. Kit’s mid-life crisis was to continue her education in the mental health field; first as
a Masters’ level Social Worker from Springfield College in 1991, followed by a PhD from Union
Institute and University in 2004, a Certificate in Professional Coaching in 2009 and more recently
a clinical degree in Psychoanalysis from Boston Graduate School of Psychoanalysis in July 2016. Following a four-and a half year double field internship at NH State Hospital, a year- long internship in the prison system, several internships in local public schools including as assistant teacher with emotionally challenged youth, Kit entered Private Practice in Concord, NH. Today Kit works with most diagnoses including psychoses. Additional experience includes developing, organizing and conducting training programs to address individual and organizational development needs: Conflict Resolution, Dispute- Mediation, Communications, Listening, Anger Management, Working with Kids at Risk, Stress Reduction, Assertiveness, Meditation, Dreams, Love and Marriage, Problem Solving, and Time Management. Present and past community interests include National Association of Social Workers, Church Chancel Choir Member, UCC Church and Ministry Committee, Annual Meeting Planning Committee, State Wellness – team Leader, Women’s Health, College level Program Planning Committees, Volunteer – CRVNA, Concord Hospital Chair of Prenatal Partnership Event. Presently, Kit maintains a full-time practice at Two South Spring Street, Concord, NH.
Melissa Grudinski, MSW*
Melissa was a member of the first cohort of UNH’s Online MSW program, and received her degree in May of 2016. While at UNH, Melissa interned with the Division of Children Youth and Families for two years. Prior to receiving her MSW, Melissa worked as an advocate for survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence, and with families of homicide victims. Currently, Melissa is working as a Resident Therapist at PCS Counseling in Manchester. Melissa joined the NASW while a graduate student at UNH and was the recipient of the NH-NASW’s 2016 MSW Student of the Year award.
Kevin Keefe, LICSW, CAI
is the Chief of Service Excellence & Compliance with WestBridge, which means he is the Chief of first impressions and assures that WestBridge is in compliance with ethical standards as well as internal and external regulatory requirements. Having worked at WestBridge for more than 16 years, he has utilized his skills in almost every department of WestBridge. He is a Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker (LICSW), a Certified ARISE Interventionist (CAI), Trainer & Intern Supervisor as well as a NAMI-trained Connect-Suicide Prevention trainer. Kevin supports WestBridge in direct clinical care & family work, as a member of Leadership, and in overseeing all licensing, compliance, and facility management for WestBridge. Kevin believes in the power of Social Work and has supported the supervision of social workers for over 20 years. As a Social Worker, Certified ARISE Interventionist and Connect-Suicide Prevention trainer, Kevin understands and values that connections allow for greater protection and wellness for individuals, families and communities.
Anne Marie Olsen-Hayward, LICSW, CDP
is a clinician at Frisbie Memorial Hospital Outpatient Geropsych Clinic. Utilizing her 14 years of experience working as a medical social worker, she works with geriatric patients experiencing mental health concerns, specializing in
working with patients with dementia and their families. Anne Marie has a strong focus on the
marriage between macro and clinical social work, often using her clinical work to inform the
focus of her advocacy and program development work. Anne Marie is a member of the NH NASW Aging Committee, former chair of the PACE and SLAC committees. She is a graduate of the UNH BSW and MSW program and was a Title IVE-E recipient for both degrees.
Courtney Porter, MSW ***
Courtney currently works as the School Social Worker in Claremont, New Hampshire. As the first to hold this position in her school district, Courtney has used her 17 years of experience as an educator to work with other school professionals to create a program that brings social work services and supports to the students and families of her community. Courtney also serves as the President of the New Hampshire School Social Workers Association.After graduating with the first cohort of online MSW students at UNH in 2016, Courtney immediately enrolled in the M.Ed program. Courtney enjoys volunteering in her community and currently serves as the Vice President of the Kiwanis Club of Claremont.
Allison Rataj, MSW ***
Alison has macro social work experience in the areas of health and
aging. She is currently a Research Associate at UNH’s Institute for Health Policy and Practice (IHPP) and UNH’s Center on Aging and Community Living (CACL). She provides program development and implementation to support for person-centered, home and community- based, long-term care options for older adults and persons living with a disability. Alison is also adjunct faculty at UNH in the Social Work department. Alison attained her MSW from UNH, and has a BA in Psychology from Colby Sawyer College. She also volunteers within the community and is the secretary of the Friends of Rockingham ServiceLink Board. Alison chairs the NH-NASW Aging Committee and participates on the NH NASW Technology committee.
Kristina Lind *
Kristina is chair and associate professor in the social work program at Plymouth State University (PSU). She also coordinates the University’s Child Welfare Title IV-E program. Prior to starting at PSU in 2013, she provided over 30 years of direct practice and supervision to programs in Chicago, Baltimore, and Burlington. She has been teaching for over 20 years, most of those years as adjunct to public and private Chicago area universities where she was primarily responsible for teaching school social work practice and policy courses. Her (current) primary interest is in developing pedagogical approaches that meet the needs of the 21st century student. Related to this is her interest in engaging students in global and domestic professional pursuits. She is on the Nominations Committee.
Student Board Members
Nick D'Amore is a new addition the NH NASW Board, serving as a Graduate Student Representative. Nick attends the University of New Hampshire where he is a part of the school's unique MSW/MS Kinesiology program. He found his way into the program after a series of disparate opportunities seemed to naturally lead him there (or at he likes to think so). After studying literature as a Bachelor's student, he pursued a variety of positions in the world of education. He first worked as an Outdoor Educator for the Appalachian Mountain Club's Youth Opportunities Program, working to democratize outdoor access for urban teens. He then moved to New Hampshire to work at the Oliverian School, a supportive high school for teens hoping to find their way in less restrictive environments than their previous treatment facilities. There he served as both a Residential Counselor, Outdoor Educator, and Adventure Program staff. It was at Oliverian that he began to realize what Social Work might offer him: a way to support others while making earnest connections despite their varying differences. He interned at Becket Family of Services, a community-based mental health provider in northern Massachusetts (with partnering agencies all over NH) during his first year of graduate school. There he worked as both a Permanency Coach and Adventure Therapist. This stint solidified his commitment to community-based work so you can expect to see him continue moving in that direction as he plays the fine line between micro and macro Social Work. He is certain that his work on the NH NASW Board will fulfill the latter as he continues to hone his practice.
Emma Fuini is a junior at the University of New Hampshire. In her sophomore year, she was the BSW student representative on the faculty diversity committee. Here, she collaborated with her professors to improve the inclusion of race and culture within undergraduate social work courses. An honors in major student, Emma is also a member of the social work honors society, Phi Alpha. She is entering her second year as a volunteer advocate for the University’s Sexual Harassment and Rape Prevention Program (SHARPP) in which she supports survivors and provides them with resources. This upcoming spring, Emma is looking forward to studying through the School of International Training’s (SIT) Community Health and Social Policy program in South Africa. Her future goals include providing support to young patients and their families in navigating the health care system.
Morgan Maxner is a full-time, non-traditional senior at Plymouth State University. She will be getting her BSW in May of 2020. When not at school Morgan is the mom of a seven-year-old ball of energy. Morgan has been in the medical field for quite some time, and because of this, though she has many other interests, her future lies in hospital social work. She is currently employed by the local hospital and spends most days as a secretary in the pediatrics office. Morgan eagerly looks forward to her senior year and being part of the NH-NASW.