Jenn is an associate professor at the University of Washington School of Social Work. Her teaching and research priorities are in mental health and prevention policy, building community capacity in suicide prevention, and responsible and proactive news media coverage of mental health and suicide. After losing her husband to suicide in 2011, Jenn turned her sorrow into public service by helping pass the Matt Adler Suicide Assessment, Treatment and Management Act of 2012.

With over 20 years of social justice, non-profit management, public policy, program development, and direct service delivery experience, Melissa was previously the Director of Programming at the IF Project – implementing reentry programming at the Washington State Women’s Prison. A vocal advocate for people with HIV/AIDS since the 1990’s, she led an innovative LGBTIQ youth program at Boulder County Public Health. She earned Boulder County PFLAG’s activist of the year award in 2011.

Prior to joining Forefront, Jennifer worked as the Deputy Director of the Youth Suicide Prevention Program (YSPP), where she supervised grassroots coalitions across the state and conducted statewide training on suicide prevention. Ms. Barron has more than 20 years of experience managing programs in support of an organizational mission.

Formerly the executive director of Communities in Schools in Seattle, Shira joins the Forefront team with extensive school experience. She also brings a keen knowledge of fundraising, budgeting, and personnel management to her new role managing the education programs.

Marny leads Washington higher education suicide prevention task force and manages organizational needs for the June 2016 higher ed conference. Since losing her college-age son to suicide, Marny has worked tirelessly for suicide prevention and depression awareness. She received Forefront’s 2015 Tina Orwell Public Service Award for her service to Forefront, Zero Suicide in Eastern Washington and related efforts.

Donn is a trainer for the American Association of Suicidology and for the Suicide Prevention Resource Center, leading continuing education seminars about suicide assessment and management for mental health professionals nationally. He is engaged in research examining the effectiveness of a specific suicide intervention protocol. Donn taught sections of Introduction to Counseling and developed the Suicide Prevention, Assessment and Risk Management course.

Kristen is a nonprofit professional who has been working in the Greater Seattle Area over the past decade in program management, development, marketing and communications, grant writing, direct social service, and volunteer management. In her various roles, Kristen has engaged in direct social service with individuals from diverse backgrounds and life experiences, including incarcerated men and women, adults living with mental illness and addiction, and youth experiencing homelessness.

Kristen coordinates Forefront Cares’ outreach to Washington state residents recently bereaved by suicide. Kristen is a poet, professional gardener, Forefront volunteer and comforter of many who have, like her, lost a loved one to suicide.

Prior to Forefront, Angela worked as a temporary executive assistant at Jolkona, a Seattle non-profit, and spent a couple of years in the private sector. She graduated from Goucher College in Baltimore, MD with a bachelor of arts degree in Anthropology/Sociology and Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies.

Phoebe serves as a Forefront liaison to six of our schools in the FIS project. She was previously the Student Assistance Prevention Coordinator at the Snoqualmie Valley School District, as well as the team lead for the Mt. Si High School’s suicide prevention team.

Elaine Walsh is an ANCC Certified Clinical Specialist in Child and Adolescent Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing. She has a Master of Nursing from UCLA and a PhD in Nursing from the University of Washington. Dr. Walsh’s research interests include prevention of suicide and co-occurring behaviors, program evaluation, and translation of research interventions to community settings. She is a member of the King County Suicide Prevention Coalition and an affiliate faculty member of Forefront Suicide Prevention, based at the UW’s School of Social Work.

Sarah is a third-year PhD student in the Department of Health Services at the University of Washington. Her research focuses on evaluating team-based, transdisciplinary approaches to solving complex public health problems, with a focus on community engagement and vulnerable populations. Sarah joined the Forefront team in April 2018 to apply her skills in mixed-method evaluation to projects that aim to address the burden of suicide in Washington state.