NAGC Board of Directors

Carly Woythaler Runestad MHA, NAGC Board President
Carly Woythaler-Runestad, MHA
NAGC Board President
Executive Director, Mourning Hope Grief Center
(Lincoln, NE)
Tina Barrett EdD, NAGC Board Vice President
Tina Barrett, EdD
NAGC Board Vice-President
Executive Director, Tamarack Grief Resource Center
(Missoula, MT)
Susan Giambalvo
Susan Giambalvo
NAGC Board Treasurer
Executive Director, Caring Unlimited - York County's Domestic Violence Resource Center
(Sanford, ME)
Darcy Walker Krause J.D. LSW
Darcy Walker Krause, J.D., LSW, C.T.
NAGC Board Secretary
Executive Director, Uplift Center for Grieving Children
(Philadelphia, PA)
Peter Willig LMFT ,FT, NAGC Immediate Past Board President
Peter Willig, LMFT, FT
NAGC Immediate Past Board President
Owner, Family Life Design
(Miami, FL)
Erin Bailey
Erin Bailey
Executive Initiatives, Gillette Children's Specialty Healthcare
(St. Paul, MN)
Scott Bauer
Scott Bauer
CEO, Prosper Trading Academy
(Chicago, IL)
Stephanie Dunn
Stephanie Dunn
Senior Vice President and SBA Division National Sales Manager, First Bank
(Wilmington, NC)
Bethany Gardner
Bethany Gardner, MA
Director of Bereavement Programs, The Moyer Foundation
(Seattle, WA)
Allison Gilbert
Allison Gilbert
Author, Speaker
Emily Brenner Hawkins
Emily Brenner Hawkins
Nonprofit Management Consultant (Philadelphia, PA)
Brian Hill MBA
Brian Hill, MBA
Director, Organizational Development, Military - International
Boys & Girls Clubs of America
(Atlanta, GA)
Peggy Pettit
Peggy Pettit
Executive Vice President, VITAS Healthcare
(Stuart, FL)
Will Reeve
Will Reeve
National Reporter, ABC News
Mary Beth Staine
Mary Beth Staine
Executive Director, Bo's Place
(Houston, TX)
  • Carly Woythaler Runestad MHA, NAGC Board President
  • Tina Barrett EdD, NAGC Board Vice President
  • Susan Giambalvo
  • Darcy Walker Krause J.D. LSW
  • Peter Willig LMFT ,FT, NAGC Immediate Past Board President
  • Erin Bailey
  • Scott Bauer
  • Stephanie Dunn
  • Bethany Gardner
  • Allison Gilbert
  • Emily Brenner Hawkins
  • Brian Hill MBA
  • Peggy Pettit
  • Will Reeve
  • Mary Beth Staine
  • Carly Woythaler Runestad MHA, NAGC Board President

    A music therapist by trade along with a master of health administration has led to nearly twenty years in the nonprofit field. This involvement has primarily been served in the areas of long-term care, health care advocacy and policy, and for the last decade as the executive director of the Mourning Hope Grief Center in Lincoln, Nebraska. While Mourning Hope quickly became an enduring passion, I also abruptly discovered that the life of a children’s grief center director can be particularly isolating – especially in the middle of a rural state! So engaging with the NAGC was a natural extension that immediately connected me with children’s grief centers and charismatic leaders throughout the nation. Not only has the NAGC developed into my primary location for professional education and information sharing, but engaging with the NAGC “tribe” has been personally rewarding as well; nowhere in the world will you find a more charming, spirited, talented and compassionate group of individuals! The field of childhood bereavement became much less isolating after finding my home with the NAGC, and the organization provides a nationwide platform to ensure that no child ever has to grieve alone.
  • Tina Barrett EdD, NAGC Board Vice President

    Tina Barrett, EdD
    NAGC Board Vice-President
    Executive Director, Tamarack Grief Resource Center
    (Missoula, MT)
  • Susan Giambalvo

    Susan Giambalvo
    NAGC Board Treasurer
    Executive Director, Caring Unlimited - York County's Domestic Violence Resource Center
    (Sanford, ME)
  • Darcy Walker Krause J.D. LSW

    The story of why I chose NAGC starts with my mom dying when I was 15 years old. My hometown did not have a children’s bereavement center, and for so many years, even after I sought professional and familial support, I felt alone in my grief. I knew that grieving kids needed more support. As a young professional, I began to volunteer with organizations for grieving children and decided to leave the law in order to pursue this passion. As the Executive Director of The Center for Grieving Children in Philadelphia, my job is my passion as we help provide free grief support to the children in the City of Philadelphia.
  • Peter Willig LMFT ,FT, NAGC Immediate Past Board President

    Peter Willig, LMFT, FT
    NAGC Immediate Past Board President
    Owner, Family Life Design
    (Miami, FL)
  • Erin Bailey

    I joined the NAGC Board of Directors in 2013 after leading a project aimed at increasing access to resources that support bereavement services in tribal and urban Indian communities as the inaugural Executive Director of the Center for Native American Youth at the Aspen Institute. Prior to this position I worked in the US Senate and a few other nonprofit advocacy organizations in Washington, DC. I now work at a specialty children’s hospital in Minnesota, where I reside with my family. There are a few losses — especially that of my father — in childhood that played a significant role in making me who am and drive my passion for the work of the NAGC.
  • Scott Bauer

    Along with family and friends, I founded the Lauri S. Bauer Foundation shortly after my wife Lauri passed away of a sudden heart arrhythmia on January 5th, 2011. Lauri was a healthy, beautiful 43-year-old wife, daughter, sister, friend and mother of three sons. The foundation, a not-for-profit 501(c)(3), was founded in her honor to give HELP, HEALING and HOPE to children and their families that have suffered a sudden loss or crisis.

    As we quickly learned, the range of issues and emotions ran from difficult to near impossible. What we couldn’t understand at the time was the breadth of the support network required to move forward with our lives. Fortunately, we were blessed with access to resources, a strong family and incredible friends who helped us begin the long and difficult journey of healing. We also quickly understood that many others are not so fortunate.

    Through the generosity of friends, family and the community at large, we have been able to make a difference for thousands of grieving children and their families. We have now raised over $1,200,000 and these funds are being put back into the community every day in a variety of programs designed by our Foundation in conjunction with our recipient organizations. However, the common thread in everything we do is grief support for children and families.

    My first-hand experience with grief in addition to building a successful, meaningful and necessary foundation dedicated to helping grieving children and their families was the driving force behind my interest in serving on the Board of the NAGC. My goal is to provide insight and counsel to the NAGC and be able to expand the “business model” of the Lauri S. Bauer Foundation to other areas of the country.
  • Stephanie Dunn

    Stephanie Dunn
    Senior Vice President and SBA Division National Sales Manager, First Bank
    (Wilmington, NC)
  • Bethany Gardner

    My life was transformed in a MA in Counseling Psychology program that emphasized personal storytelling and grief work as a primary means to healing and growth. Though my mind and heart were primed for the work ahead, I could not have predicted a career in youth and family bereavement support. Through a friend and a good bit of luck, though, I was hired as a program coordinator in a Seattle-based hospice grief support program during my final year of grad school. After almost four years in that role, I transitioned to The Moyer Foundation to oversee the national Camp Erin network.


    When I joined TMF’s staff, I became a member of NAGC and attended my first Symposium in Orland, FL, in 2012. I was new on the job and had no idea the amazing community I was (literally) about to dance my way into. NAGC educational offerings and my relationships with NAGC members around the country have elevated my work and provided me with a smart, caring, fun, and growing crew of colleagues – a necessity to sustain each of us in this field. I am a better human and provider because of NAGC. My gratitude is BIG! I am honored give back and help with the work of creating welcoming, relevant spaces for learning, connection, and best practices development for supporting our communities. We are better together!

  • Allison Gilbert

    Allison Gilbert
    Author, Speaker
  • Emily Brenner Hawkins

    I first became involved with the NAGC when I served as Executive Director of Kate's Club, a children's bereavement support center in Atlanta, Georgia. At the time, I was an experienced nonprofit professional, but entirely new to the field of children's grief support. The NAGC provided the educational programs, best-practice resources, and network of professional colleagues that made all of the difference to me personally, and to our rapidly growing organization. I have been on the NAGC board since 2014, serving as Treasurer for three years, and at various times on the Finance, Governance, Fundraising, and Executive committees. Even after a job change and a family move took me out of direct professional engagement in "the field," I have continued to treasure my involvement with NAGC and believe strongly in the critical importance of our mission. Grief is a universal human experience, but is far too often experienced in isolation. This is especially true for children. At a time when social emotional learning is increasingly recognized, I believe that all children and families deserve access to quality grief support, and that a growing societal openness toward issues of death and grief is a necessary component of our education system and social support networks.
  • Brian Hill MBA

    In November 2009, my 32-year old wife, Jennifer, died after a six month battle with stomach cancer. Our boys were 9 and 11 when our world was turned upside down. Soon after, I found a grief support group for adults, but I had a hard time finding support for my sons. In January 2010, my organization – Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) – started its first youth and grief initiative. I immediately asked to work on the initiative, hoping I could learn some things to help my own kids while working to help kids across the country. That June, I represented BGCA at the annual symposium for the National Alliance for Grieving Children (NAGC). By this point in the year, I still had not found the type of support I felt my sons needed. We dabbled in therapy, but they were very reluctant to go and didn’t talk very much. Maybe I could learn about better resources at the symposium. Boy, did I.

    The first symposium session I attended was a presentation on grieving teens. My oldest was 12 at the time, and I was experiencing many of the things with him that were being described in the session. The presenters were from a children’s grief center in Portland, Oregon. I sat there thinking, “Why doesn’t Atlanta have a place like this? This is what my kids need. That’s it…I’m going to have to build one. I’ll call it the Jennifer Center.” My mind and heart were bursting with frustration and hope. By the end of the session, I was in tears.

    I spoke to one of the presenters afterward, and during that conversation, I learned that Atlanta DID have a dedicated center for grieving children – Kate’s Club. It had been seven months since my wife died and no one – not the cancer center, not the hospice, not the school system – told me about Kate’s Club. Finding our local center for grieving children put my family on the road to healing. The main reason I decided to accept the invitation to sit on the NAGC Board of Directors is to do whatever I can to ensure another family doesn’t have to wait seven months to find the resources they need for the kids in their lives after the death of a loved one.
  • Peggy Pettit

    The month I turned 7, three days after Christmas, my Dad died of a heart attack in the early morning hours. It was very sudden, he had not been ill, and my Mom and eight siblings and I, after the shock wore off, were devastated.

    I remember sitting on the stairs with my 8 year old sister, giggling and playing, confused by all the commotion in the house. We had no understanding of what had happened, and the adults around us (being stoic, Irish Catholics), thought it best to not dwell on his absence, but to just keep on going. It wasn't that we weren't allowed to talk about him, I think we all just did not want to upset our Mom, so I don't recollect there being much conversation about him over the years.

    As I got older, I heard more about him from relatives, and my brothers and sisters started to share stories, funny, sad, and touching. I started to get a picture of who he was to them.

    I felt like I did not know my Dad at all, and that void did much to shape who I was to become, in ways both positive and negative. It was when I became a teenager that I felt the pain of his absence most acutely. I know it greatly impacted all my brothers and sisters as well.

    For years, until I was about 12 or 13, I would slip away every weekday evening at 6 pm, and run to the train station right behind our house, because I was sure my Dad was going home to another family every night... In talking with my siblings as adults, I recognize that we all have very different recollections of our childhood, and how our grief took us all in different directions.

    I was 22 when my Mother was dying of cancer, and had the gift of caring for her in her last months. In my early 30s I became a hospice nurse. I felt like I had ended up in the best place possible. I knew something of what these families were going through, and believed I could help them at the worst times in their lives. I had found my purpose, my passion.

    About 4 years ago, through my work with VITAS, I was fortunate enough to be introduced to the NAGC... what an incredible organization. Here was what had been missing when my family and I were younger. Here was a group of individuals and organizations from around the country, committed to providing hope and healing for bereaved teens and children across the country.

    I am so proud to be a Board member of the NAGC, and salute the important work they do and their dedication to kids who need to understand and work through their grief, so that they can live the best life possible. I am hopeful that my participation will advance the mission and promote awareness of the wonder that is the NAGC.
  • Will Reeve

    Will Reeve
    National Reporter, ABC News
  • Mary Beth Staine

    My name is Mary Beth Staine and I am a proud member of the Board of Directors of the NAGC and the Executive Director of Bo’s Place, a Houston-area bereavement center. I became involved with Bo’s Place and then the NAGC because I believe that together we can ensure that no child ever has to grieve alone. I choose to invest my time, energy and resources in this cause as a tribute to my brother, Jeff Williford, who lost his battle with cancer at far too young an age. I do so to honor the courage and resiliency of my brother’s wife and three sons. And, I do so in solidarity with my sisters to ensure that we will never forget our baby brother, the sibling that made the Williford kids complete.

    I have a BBA in Finance from the University of Texas in Austin and a JD from the University of Texas School of Law, as well as over 20 years of experience in the nonprofit sector. Prior to taking the Executive Director role at Bo’s Place in 2010, I served as the Executive Director for The Periwinkle Foundation which develops and provides programs that positively change the lives of children, young adults and families who are challenged by cancer and other life-threatening illnesses and are cared for at Texas Children’s Hospital.
  • Carly Woythaler Runestad MHA, NAGC Board President
  • Tina Barrett EdD, NAGC Board Vice President
  • Susan Giambalvo
  • Darcy Walker Krause J.D. LSW
  • Peter Willig LMFT ,FT, NAGC Immediate Past Board President
  • Erin Bailey
  • Scott Bauer
  • Stephanie Dunn
  • Bethany Gardner
  • Allison Gilbert
  • Emily Brenner Hawkins
  • Brian Hill MBA
  • Peggy Pettit
  • Will Reeve
  • Mary Beth Staine