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Our Staff and Board Members

Our Amazing Team

Dedicated experts with a passion for family

Meet The Team
Erin S. Drew
Executive Director

Erin Drew serves as a dedicated advocate for families, utilizing over twenty-five years of experience in social work and the non-profit sector to provide support and strengthen families within the community.  A mother of two, she relishes the outdoor opportunities that Brevard provides. Erin's favorite engagement at The Family Place is Super Soaked Saturday, and she treasures moments spent outdoors on the back deck in Brevard or porch in Rosman, sipping coffee with both staff and families.

Suzanne Tully
Director of Resource Development

Suzanne is thrilled to be associated with The Family Place as she recognizes how much good work they do, and she hopes to make an impact in their resource development. Suzanne is a native Washingtonian, but moved to the mountains via Charleston where she studied at The Citadel and got a MS in Project Management. Formerly, she did fundraising in Washington DC for a Girls Scholarship Fund and several area independent schools.  Being here happily marries both those skill sets, and she is grateful for this. 

Suzanne is still trying to learn about winter clothing for the weather here! 

Ashley Hawk
Administrative Coordinator

Ashley grew up in Asheville, NC and has an educational and professional background in natural resources conservation and non-profit work. She shares her love for the flora of Appalachia with her husband and two young daughters and believes in the powerful benefits of nature in children’s lives.  Upon moving to Brevard in 2021, she was introduced to The Family Place where open play became an instant favorite.  She is forever grateful for the incredible staff, open play times and the parent group Circle of Security for providing a safe place to make connections and find community support.

Maggie Grimm
Volunteer and Special Events Director
Beth Ford
Director of TC STRONG

Beth wears many hats for TC STRONG – thought leader, social + network communications (her email notes are FANTASTIC!), resource development, YMHFA & teen MHFA instructor, building + nurturing relationships, strategic big-picture visioning– all colored with tones of playfulness, empathy, & connectedness. At her core she believes we are better & go further together, that we each can play a small (or large!) part of making the world easier & safer for all if we choose. With a BS in recreation & (accidental) minor in psychology, Beth has worked over the past 20 years with youth & families in a variety of roles, most with a common theme of mental, emotional, & social well-being. She and her husband Chris, & their three children have called WNC home for 10 years – the mountains called, and they came running.

Nicole Essenberg
Project + Training Manager TC STRONG

Nicole grew up in Hickory, NC and studied biology at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. She moved to Brevard in 2013 and now resides in Rosman with her husband and preschool aged son. She is a person with lived experience of mental health challenges, crises, recovery, and resilience and is passionate about mental health and suicide prevention education. Her favorite offering of TFP is Open Play because anyone can come in, have a cup of coffee, and connect with others which can be incredibly healing.

Leah Bush
Program Director
Jesse James
Child and Family Specialist

Jesse studied psychology at Metropolitan State University in Minnesota, taking many classes in child and family development, which cemented her passion for working with children. She has years of experience as a preschool teacher and as a community-based therapist and is excited to have found a career in which she can utilize both of these skills. Jesse loves creating a space that allows families to come together to learn through play and connect with one another. Having support in the community is immensely valuable and she is thrilled to be a part of that.

Mandie Kendall
Parent Chat Facilitator

Most likely to have coloring sheets on her.

Sarah Beth Schoenbachler
Child and Family Specialist 

Sarah Beth grew up in Florence, AL and moved to Western North Carolina in July 2020 after her graduation from Auburn University where she studied Human Development and Psychology. She has a professional background in mental health and foster care case management, where she found her passion for caring and advocating for individuals and their communities. She now calls Brevard home with her partner, two dogs, and two cats. What she enjoys most about The Family Place are the multiple Parent Chats and the support they provide for the families in the area.  

Ashleigh Gosnell
Children’s Team Lead

Ashleigh, a Transylvania County native, discovered The Family Place 7 ½ years ago as a participant with her son. Joining the team three years ago, she progressed from the children's team to a Children's Program Coordinator, leading various programs at both Brevard and Rosman locations.
Simultaneously pursuing a bachelor's degree in early childhood education, Ashleigh works full-time in an NC Pre-K classroom at BES. Despite her busy schedule, she remains part-time at TFP, contributing to children's programs.
Ashleigh's passion lies in the positive impact TFP has on local families, and she feels grateful to be part of this meaningful community initiative.

Nikki Parker
Circle of Security Manager

Most likely to be meeting someone new and introducing them to others.

Becky Columbo
IY and Navigating Needs Facilitator

Most likely to be seen walking around town with her dog.

Felice St. John
IY Facilitator

Most likely to sign up for every personal and professional development course.


Vickie Osborne
Children's Team Member

Vickie is a native of Hendersonville, NC and has been married to a Brevard native for almost 25 years.  She retired three years ago after working in banking for over 32 years. Retired life has given her the opportunity to join The Family Place, which she describes as a very rewarding place to work that fills her heart with joy.

Susan Huter
Circle of Security Parenting Facilitator

Susan is a Circle of Securities Parenting Facilitator. As a licensed social worker, Susan enjoys facilitating parent groups and the continued learning that happens! When not at The Family Place, she enjoys being outdoors with her family and dog.   

Judy Nebrig
Circle of Security Facilitator

Judy thinks the Circle of Security Parenting is the best program around, for parents of young children!! She is glad for the opportunity to facilitate it!

Charlotte Davis
CONNECT Outreach Coordinator

Charlotte is a native of Hendersonville, NC and graduated from Western Carolina University with a Bachelor of Science in 1989.  While in college she began working at a group home in Sylva, NC, which initiated her career as a caseworker. She lists her four children and four grandchildren as her big accomplishments, and family and culture are important to her. Her background life and work experiences have given her the opportunity to work with a range of ages and levels of people.  Charlotte enjoys working with families to encourage self-sufficiency, decrease neglect and abuse of children, and connect them with resources to become resilient. 

Robin Bolt
Children’s Team Member

Robin graduated from Western Carolina University with a degree in special-ed and is married and has two children and a grandson. After retiring from Brevard Academy in 2019 she was inspired by Director Erin Drew to come work at The Family Place.  She loves working with the Parent Chat program. The parents are awesome and she has the pleasure of caring for their children. Robin thinks The Family Place is “tops!” and feels so blessed to be a part of it!

Our incredible Board Members

Board Members
Jason Trent
Board Chair

Jason is a local business leader with Highstreet Guidelight Insurance.  He’s married with 4 amazing children, 3 adult boys in their 20’s, and their “2nd Round” daughter who is in elementary school. The local mountains of Transylvania is his backyard to enjoy hiking, camping, fishing, and so much more!  Foster Chat, Circle of Security, Play Groups, and multiple other events and programs are where Jason & his wife Kellie have found strength and resilience!


Tony Gillman
Vice-Chair

Tony Gillman moved to Brevard (actually Pisgah Forest) in 2018 after retiring from an in-house counsel position with Verizon for just shy of thirty years.  Tony and his wife Micki have been married for forty-one years and have four grown children and eight grandchildren (with two more on the way).  Tony loves the mountains of North Carolina, enjoys his grandchildren, and is a committed spiritual seeker.  He discovered The Family Place through his daughter who brought her children to the Brevard location and spoke glowingly of its commitment to strengthen and help build the resiliency of families in Transylvania County.  When asked, Tony says he jumped at the chance to be on the Board.    

Mike Clary
Secretary

Mike is a licensed real estate broker in North Carolina, as well as founder of a research, marketing, and business services consortium he led for 25 years.  That business specialized in analysis and evaluation of markets, customers and employees for companies and organizations, then translated the analysis into effective, customer focused plans, strategies and coaching.  Mike started his career as a sales representative for Oscar Mayer, Inc., and later joined Land O' Lakes, Inc. where he was a key member of its Foodservice and Deli sales and marketing management teams for a 15-year period. His LOL duties included volume growth responsibilities as sales manager for the 11 western United States, and national P&L responsibilities as marketing manager/director for multiple product lines, plus a promotions department.  Additionally, he led multiple training and coaching sessions in Eastern Europe in support of Land O’Lakes’ International Development Division and USAID.  Mike served on the Board of Trustees of the South Dakota 4-H Foundation for a dozen years, including several as an officer.  He holds a BBA in Marketing from the University of Georgia (GO DAWGS!). His life experience includes homes in eight states (three of them twice), four children, seven dogs, two cats, two guinea pigs, a sugar glider, and a wife who keeps him grounded.

Tara Jelley
Board Member

Tara Jelley has lived in Pisgah Forest since 2013, when she and her family moved from middle Georgia. Tara and her husband Richard have served together in ministry since 2000. They have 5 daughters between the ages of 24 and 10 years old. Tara is a certified registered school nurse and has worked at Brevard Academy since 2020. She and her family love living in Transylvania County and are passionate about serving and helping families and children. Tara looks forward to assisting with the supportive and positive influential role of The Family Place in our beautiful community. 

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