Our Staff

Jon Kerschner,MA
Executive Director

Jon holds a Master's degree in Clinical Psychology. He came to Sierra Family Services in 2000 versed in both the clinical and administrative aspects of mental health. He has over 23 years experience in substance abuse treatment and mental health services in residential, outpatient and private practice settings. Management of multiple mental health and substance abuse offices while with The University of Pittsburgh Medical Center rounds out the experience Jon brings to Sierra Mental Wellness Group. Jon enjoys scuba diving and tactical training in his off time.
Mary O'Mara
Director of Finance and Human Resources

Mary is an experienced business professional with a solid background in managing all aspects of the business environment – finance/accounting, operations and human resource management. To her vital role at Sierra Mental Wellness Group she brings over 20 years expertise in financial reporting, budgeting and contract negotiations, as well as managing payroll and benefits administration.  During tax season, Mary volunteers to prepare tax returns, and she also enjoys hiking, swimming and spending time with family year round.
Nicole Vanneman, Functional Family TherapistNicole Vanneman, MFT
Operations Manager

Nicole is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and has been with Sierra Mental Wellness Group since 2008. As Operations Manager, Nicole is responsible for supervising and coordinating the programs and clinical services offered by the agency, including oversight and program functions, intake, client services, regulatory compliance and quality assurance, identification and development of new programs and coordination with providers in the community. Nicole enjoys traveling, reading and spending time with her friends and family.
Ixel Morell
Contracts Manager

Ixel is an experienced health care professional with over 14 years in the public and private sector. His experience includes program, operations, personnel, budget and contract management. In addition he possesses a healthcare Business Development acumen. Ixel directly handles the contracts for the crisis and mental health services provided by Sierra Mental Wellness Group. When not working he enjoys coaching his children’s sports teams, attending sporting events and spending family time in the great outdoors.

Roseville Office


Malaika Hill-Jones, MFT-Intern
Staff Clinician

Malaika has been with Sierra Mental Wellness Group since 2010, starting as a student trainee. After completing her school practicum requirements and earning Intern status, Malaika became a permanent part of the SMWG team. Malaika enjoys facilitating the 52-week Domestic Violence group as well as the Parenting Group. She also works with children, adolescents, adults, couples and families. Malaika is passionate about her career and the opportunity to work with clients to enhance their lives. Malaika is a die-hard Pittsburgh Steelers fan and enjoys football and being physically active.
Debbie Campbell, MFT
Staff Clinician

Debbie operates out of the Auburn and Roseville offices and provides therapy to adolescents, adults, couples, and families. Debbie is certified as a Firesetter Intervention Specialist I. She is becoming certified in Emotion Focused Couple Therapy to help couples seeking greater fulfillment in their relationships. Additionally, she specializes in treating anxiety disorders, mood disorders, and enjoys working with clients wanting a Christian-based therapy experience. Debbie’s hobbies include sewing and craft projects, gardening, cooking, and spending time with friends and family.
Lynne Thomson, MFT-Intern
Staff Clinician

Lynne began working at Sierra Mental Wellness Group in 2010. She has since earned her Masters Degree in Counseling and is a registered Marriage and Family Therapist Intern. She works with adults, adolescents, and children. She has experience working with domestic violence and sexual assault issues. Although she works primarily in Roseville, she works in the Auburn office one day per week. She currently facilitates the Level I Drug Treatment group. Lynne enjoys music, theater, and reading.
Jaime Graves, LCSW
Staff Clinician

Jaime has over 10 years experience helping children, families, and individuals build healthy coping skills to address many of life’s challenges including anxiety and depression, low self-esteem, anger issues, school challenges, behavioral problems, parenting and co-parenting issues, and adjusting to various life transitions. She is dedicated to helping you understand the challenges you or your loved one are facing and to developing a plan of action to better support you through these challenges. Jaime enjoys spending time with her family and friends, doing anything related to the outdoors, and watching a great movie.
David Rogers, MFT-Intern
Staff Clinician

David holds a Master’s degree in Marriage and Family Therapy. David
believes his job with clients is to work himself out of the job. He uses creative, yet scientifically sound, treatment modalities custom tailored to client’s needs. David’s interests include communication, spontaneity, hypnosis, intimacy, emotion, self concept, mindfulness and occupational identity. David is currently researching common factors or mechanisms of change that cut across all effective therapy models. He enjoys travel, Japanese culture, art, toys, music and spicy food.
Melissa Freitas, MFT-Intern
Staff Clinician

Melissa has been with Sierra Mental Wellness Group since 2011, starting as a student trainee. After completing her school practicum requirements and earning Intern status, Melissa became a permanent part of the SMWG team. Melissa enjoys facilitating the Parenting Group. She also works with children, adolescents, adults, couples and families. As a therapist, Melissa seeks to join with clients in a respectful way that acknowledges their own wisdom through practical, supportive, and empathetic connection. She recognizes the unique challenges of each individual and seeks to integrate their emotions, thoughts, and actions to enable fuller, happier lives. Melissa enjoys cooking, playing with her Schnoodles and gardening.
Stephen Simonson, Psychological Trainee
Staff Clinician

Stephen is a Psychological Trainee working on his doctorate in Clinical Psychology. Stephen conducts psychotherapy and testing with adults, adolescents, children and families and also facilitates the adult Anger Management group at Sierra Mental Wellness Group. While away from work, Stephen is busily researching and writing his dissertation examining the psychological impacts on parents following the disclosure of their child’s extra-familial sexual abuse. In what little time he has left Stephen enjoys painting, playing the drums, watching movies and spending time with friends and family.
Allison Hess, MFT-Intern
Staff Clinician

Allison is excited to be the newest clinician to the SMWG Roseville team, joining in 2013 following her practicum training in Sonoma County. She holds a Master’s Degree in Counseling and is a registered Marriage and Family Therapist Intern. She conducts therapy with adults, adolescent, children and families. She believes the opportunity of change begins within a relationship, and is honored to participate in her clients’ self exploration and growth. Along with her passion for her career, Allison is an avid skier and is often found on her yoga mat.
Sandra Toste
Technical Services Specialist

Sande is a 27-year employee of SMWG who prepares billing, accounts payable, gathers statistical information, tracks grant funding and usage, and ensures quality assurance of client files. Sande loves Golden Retrievers and volunteers for Homeward Bound and enjoys travel and reading.
Tammy Crosthwaite
Office Assistant

Tammy is one of the welcoming faces you will first see at SMWG. Tammy serves the agency as an integral office assistant, supporting the staff and clinicians with various administrative needs, providing excellent customer service to clients and serving in any capacity needed. Outside of work, Tammy enjoys spending time with family and friends, scrapbooking and photography.
Lexie Sandwell
Scheduling Secretary

Lexie is an exceptional addition to the SMWG team, having joined us in the fall of 2013. Lexie has extensive customer service and administrative experience which helps her excel in our office. Her cheerful and sociable demeanor, in addition to her thorough scheduling and professionalism, make Lexie a perfect fit for the vital role of supporting our staff clinicians and serving our clients and community. She is currently in school pursuing her psychology degree and has a passion for helping people. On her free time, Lexie enjoys trying new restaurants, listening to music, reading and spending time with loved ones. 

Auburn Office


Debbie Campbell, MFT
Staff Clinician

Debbie operates out of the Auburn and Roseville offices and provides therapy to adolescents, adults, couples, and families. Debbie is certified as a Firesetter Intervention Specialist I. She is becoming certified in Emotion Focused Couple Therapy to help couples seeking greater fulfillment in their relationships. Additionally, she specializes in treating anxiety disorders, mood disorders, and enjoys working with clients wanting a Christian-based therapy experience. Debbie’s hobbies include sewing and craft projects, gardening, cooking, and spending time with friends and family.
Lynne Thomson, MFT-Intern
Staff Clinician

Lynne began working at Sierra Mental Wellness Group in 2010. She has since earned her Masters Degree in Counseling and is a registered Marriage and Family Therapist Intern. She works with adults, adolescents, and children. She has experience working with domestic violence and sexual assault issues. Although she works primarily in Roseville, she works in the Auburn office one day per week. She currently facilitates the Level I Drug Treatment group. Lynne enjoys music, theater, and reading.

Tahoe Office


Paula Lauer, MA
Staff Clinician – Bilingual/Bicultural Therapist

Paula obtained her Master’s Degree in Clinical Psychology in 2000 from Universidad de Belgrano, in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Paula joined Sierra Mental Wellness Group in June, 2011 as the bilingual and bicultural therapist working directly with the diverse population of North Lake Tahoe. Paula works with children, adolescents, adults and families. She has experience with mood disorders, anxiety disorders, trauma, parenting and relational problems. Paula is dedicated to serving the community where she lives and believes everybody deserves to have a balanced, joyful and fulfilling life. She enjoys skiing, camping, water activities and playing field hockey.
Nancy McDonald, MFT
Staff Clinician

Nancy has a Master’s Degree in Counseling Psychology from John F. Kennedy University and is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist. She is a member of the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists. She has worked in the Adoption and Foster Care field for 10 years and her specialties are in the areas of grief and loss, attachment, childhood trauma and LGBTQ issues. Nancy feels honored to be able to work with clients and help them lead more fulfilling and productive lives. Nancy has raised 6 children who are all adults now and sees them as her proudest achievement. She enjoys reading, running and gardening.
Shelby Singer
Staff Clinician

Shelby has her Master’s Degree in Social Work and has over ten years experience helping children, adults, and families. Shelby has worked with youth in the foster care system, specifically teenagers who are transitioning into adulthood. Shelby also has over four years experience working with the Wraparound Program where she assisted severely emotionally disturbed children and their families build healthy coping skills in and around dealing with depression, anxiety, and behavioral challenges. Shelby’s calm demeanor, kind nature, and nonjudgmental attitude are utilized in her work with youth and adults. Shelby enjoys backcountry skiing, running, reading and spending time with her family.
Jaena Bloomquist
Office Manager

Jaena is pivotal in managing contact with clients, referral sources and staff clinicians to meet any administrative or scheduling needs with excellence. Jaena's exceptional work ethic, organization and attention to detail are essential to the functioning of not only the Tahoe City office, but to SMWG as a whole.

Family Support Counselors


Megan Heath, MFT-Intern
Family Support Counselor

Megan completed her Master's Degree in Marriage Family and Child Counseling in October 2012. She has experience working with people of all ages with developmental disabilities, specifically children with autism. Megan likes to mix behavioral techniques from her previous career experience along with a well-rounded family systems approach to help clients get the specific help they need. Megan is also bilingual, has experience working with Spanish-speaking clients, and has lived in Spain and Mexico.

Therapeutic Behavioral Support Specialist


Jennifer Stewart, MFT-Intern
Therapeutic Behavioral Support Specialist

Jennifer completed her Master’s Degree in Psychology with a specialization in Marriage and Family Therapy in June 2013. She has experience working with clients of all ages using a blend of therapeutic approaches. She completed her MFT trainee experience counseling a wide variety clients experiencing difficulties associated with grief and substance use. Jennifer practices with a belief that something magical and wonderful happens when she creates a therapeutic alliance with her clients and describes herself as always being open to new ways to flourish in life.

Functional Family Therapist


Kathleen "Katy" Beckman, MFT-Trainee
Functional Family Therapist

Katy received a Bachelor of Art's Degree in Psychology and a minor in English from the University of California at Davis. She is currently working on her Master's Degree in Marriage and Family Therapy while working as a Functional Family Therapist. Katy also volunteers for an anti-bullying program for Child Advocates of Nevada County called "Steps-to-Respect" in which she implements an evidence-based curriculum to elementary school children throughout the school year. Her outside interests include reading, hiking and spending time with her family.