Community-based mental wellness, from prevention to treatment

So many mental health crises can be avoided when people have the tools to address their challenges before they become insurmountable. The added stressors of the last several years make it imperative that residents can turn to an expert that helps them learn how to cope with these situations in a productive way, allowing them to feel and function at their best.

 Every day, our staff and clinicians educate, support and inspire people to take charge of their mental well-being. With programs ranging from prevention to treatment, we’re here to make sure our community’s mental wellness flourishes.

 Because when we share our expertise on how to cope with life’s ups and downs, we empower our neighbors to live the lives they want to live.

 

HISTORY

Mentis was founded in 1948 just after World War II to help families to readjust to civilian life.  Napa County’s mental health needs have grown over the decades becoming more complex due to the added stressors of the last several years, especially in areas prone to wildfires.  Today we are working further upstream offering services from prevention to treatment to avoid mental health challenges before they become insurmountable.  

OUR TEAM

Rob
Rob Weiss

Executive Director

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Rob Weiss

Rob Weiss, Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW), is responsible for the management and oversight of all services, staff, and fiscal operations.  Mr. Weiss has been with Mentis since 1996 and brings 30 years of experience in a variety of mental health settings to this agency.  Previous to becoming the Executive Director in 2011, he was Clinical Director at the agency for 8 years.  Mr. Weiss holds a Master’s Degree in Social Welfare from the University of California, Los Angeles.  He has been a licensed clinician in good standing with the state of California since 1999.  During his mental health career he has worked as a clinician with a wide range of client populations in addition to being an administrator for a variety of programs serving people of all ages.  When Rob is not working he enjoys spending time outdoors riding his bike, playing frisbee disc golf, and hiking.

EMAIL ROB

Jeni
Jeni Olsen

Prevention Director

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Jeni Olsen

Jeni Olsen is the Director of our Prevention Division, which offers wellness programs for people of all ages living in Napa County. Prior to joining the Mentis team, Jeni founded Teens Connect with a mission to equip middle and high schoolers with tools to manage their stress and learn resilience, provide safe places and people with whom to connect, and give youth a voice in our community. Jeni manages these youth programs under the Prevention umbrella, along with programs for young children, adults and older adults, with a forward-thinking, collaborative approach in order to support our community’s wellness. She is a passionate advocate for mental health, wellness, and youth empowerment. When Jeni is not working, she can be found hiking or kayaking in the mountains with her dog, Nala.

EMAIL JENI

Liz
Liz Marks

Capital Campaign Director

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Liz Marks

Liz Marks BA, UC Davis-Economics, has been responsible for the management and oversight of development and marketing since 2016. Liz has 30 plus years of experience in sales and marketing starting her career in the high-tech industry, beginning with Oracle and transitioning to non-profits working for Cope Family Center and consulting for Sonoma State University, Salvation Army, Community Resources for Children and others. She has led the agency to over 200% growth in unrestricted donations from individuals and businesses during her tenure. She has also overseen a brand marketing campaign to recognize Mentis as the mental health champion in Napa County. Liz enjoys a lively game of pickleball and baking cookies when she is not working.

EMAIL LIZ

Heather
Heather Nations

Director of Finance & Operations

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Heather Nations

Heather is responsible for the management and oversight of all accounting and financial processes, human resources and IT for the organization. She has a BA from California Lutheran University in Business Administration. Ms. Nations’ 25-year background includes experience in the for-profit sector having worked for Hasbro and Starbucks in marketing and operations. After leaving corporate America she helped open a local small business and then found her calling working for nonprofits. In Heather’s spare time, she enjoys gardening and spending time with family.

EMAIL HEATHER

Mackenzie Headshot
Mackenzie Lovie

Director of Programs

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Mackenzie Lovie

Mackenzie Lovie is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) who has worked with nonprofits in Napa for her entire social work career. Mackenzie was motivated to pursue a career in social work after spending many years volunteering in the community, and received her Masters in Social Work from the University of Southern California. As the Director of Adult Programs, Mackenzie provides both clinical and administrative oversight of all agency programs serving adults, including the outpatient therapy clinic, older adult programs, and our housing programs. Prior to becoming the Director of Adult Programs Mackenzie worked as the Mentis Housing Program Manager for several years. Mackenzie has a passion for animal-assisted therapy and has been known to incorporate the healing benefits of animals into her work at Mentis. Mackenzie currently partners with her therapy Pig Obi to promote mental health in the community. Mackenzie’s love of animals is a large part of her life outside of work, she enjoys spending time with her Bulldog Bradshaw and caring for her myriad of rescue animals. 

EMAIL MACKENZIE

Charlotte Headshot
Charlotte Hajer

Development Director

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Charlotte Hajer

As Mentis’ Development Director, Charlotte oversees all strategies and efforts to engage the community and raise funds to support the agency’s programs. She has worked with nonprofits in San Francisco, Sonoma Valley, and Napa County, building a track record for increasing revenues and strengthening donor engagement through authentic, personalized relationship development. She is a strategic thinker with a decade of experience in fund development, Board management, team building, and impact evaluation. Charlotte brings to her work a deep commitment to social justice and a drive to address systemic inequities and build communities where everyone has the opportunity to live the life they wish to lead. Charlotte holds a PhD in cultural anthropology with a focus on cross-cultural mental health. Originally from the Netherlands, she has lived on three continents and speaks four languages.

EMAIL CHARLOTTE

Karina Aguilar Sanchez, ASW

Mental Health Therapist

Ricardo Arenas

Napa Valley College Outreach Specialist

Karina Arias, LMFT

Mental Health Therapist

Cynthia Avalos

Operations and Administrative Assistant

Ashley Awe

Communication Specialist

Nikki Clancy

Executive & HR Assistant

Blanca Cortes

Mental Health Therapist

Claudia Crespo

Senior Prevention Specialist

Adrian De Haro

Clinic Administrative Assistant

Edibel Deibert

Human Resources Manager

Allison De Lorimier

Senior Prevention Specialist

Luzviminda Del Rosario

Accounting Assistant

Maureen Findley

Housing Case Manager

Maya Frazier, MSW

Mental Health Therapist

Bobby Garrison

Clinical Case Manager/Mental Health Aid

Monica Haigh, LMFT

Outpatient Program Manager

Kellie Kennedy, LMFT

Senior School Programs Manager

Sebree Loveall-Hawkins

Senior Accounting Specialist

Lily Leiva, Registered Associate MFT

Mental Health Therapist

Adriana Martinez Chavez, LCSW

Mental Health Therapist

Miriam Medina

Prevention Specialist

Mecaela Meerholz

Senior Operations Manager

Lizzet Montañez, LCSW

Mental Health Therapist

Angel Pantoja

HMHA Case Manager

Fatima Peña Contreras

Development Associate & Schools Program Administrative Assistant

Alma Perez

HMHA Outreach Coordinator

Rubi Pelayo-Preciado, LCSW

Schools Program Assistant Manager

Miguel Ramirez, ASW

Napa Valley College Program Manager

Isadora Rivers, ACSW

Mental Health Therapist

Ruben Sanchez

Prevention Specialist

Roberto Sandoval, ASW

Mental Health Therapist

Hannah Wallenbrock

Donor Engagement Specialist

Ashlynn Webber

Housing Program Manager

Jessica Zepeda

Prevention Manager

Gloria Zimerman

Medical Billing Manager

Angelina Zuniga

Administrative Clinical Manager

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Kim Brown Sims, MBA RN

Board President & Chief Nurse Executive Officer, Dignity Health

Sarah Moore

Board Vice President & Director of Brand Strategy, Mission Minded

Julissa Marcencia

Board Secretary & Chief Visionary, Wine Down Media

Maria Cisneros

Principal, Valley Oak High School

Terry Wunderlich

Realtor, Corcoran Global Living

Christopher Barefoot

Vice President of Public Relations, Opus One

Bret Johnson PhD

Clinical and Forensic Psychology

Regina Weinstein

Director of Marketing, Honig Vineyard & Winery

Sonja Farley

Retired Owner, Greenhaus European Day Spa

Judd Wallenbrock

Chief Executive Officer, Somerston Estate & Priest Ranch Wines

Kate Smith

President, St. Francis Foundation

Gwen McGill

Founder, GEM Collective

Carrie Maloney Robertshaw

Interim Chief Operating Officer, Kaiser Permanente

TEENS CONNECT COUNCIL

Julia Bui

President: Senior, Napa High School

Jessica Cullen

Secretary: Senior, Vintage High School

Juan Puentes

Communications Manager: Senior, Justin Siena High School

Andrew Dillon

Volunteerism and Civic Engagement Committee Chair: Senior, Napa High School

Lourdes Lopez

Volunteerism and Civic Engagement Committee Chair: Senior, New Technology High School 

Ariatna Navarrete

Arts and Wellness Committee Chair: Senior, Napa High School

Maya Prouty

Arts and Wellness Committee Chair: Senior, Napa High School

Sofia Richart

Youth Voice and Advocacy Committee Chair: Junior, Vintage High School

Lina Neeb

Youth Voice and Advocacy Committee Chair: Senior, Justin Siena High School

Max Smith

Events Committee Chair: Senior, New Technology High School

Maya Aaen

Events Committee Chair: Senior, New Technology High School

STORIES OF IMPACT

The Right Combination

Carlos is 17 years-old, he is a kind and caring brother to his two younger siblings. Carlos dreams of being a video game designer when he grows up. Through our partnership with OLE Health, Carlos was referred to us when he witnesses significant violence between his parents. As a result, Carlos’ father was sent to jail, leaving Carlos to feel he had to take care of everyone in the household including his aging grandparents.

This change in family dynamics, coupled with the trauma he witnessed, caused his grades to drop significantly. As if that wasn’t bad enough, he was removed from his high school to attend alternative school, sent away from his circle of supportive friends.

At Mentis, we know involving parents in treatment can yield better results for the entire family. We paired Carlos with a bilingual therapist, so that his Spanish-speaking mother might participate in his therapy as needed. Carlos worked hard in therapy. He came to realize he was not responsible for his parents’ difficulties. Perhaps most important, he even began to feel some empathy for himself. He used the skills he learned at Mentis to move forward, which resulted in an improved environment for his whole household, better grades for him and a chance to re-connect with his friends.

Leveraging the right combination of our considerable expertise, partner connections and empathy to give clients like Carlos exactly what they need, when they need it means supporting one resident truly impacts many!

The Knowledge to Navigate

Leila is a vivacious high school senior with big plans! Active in Mentis’ Teens Connect program, she was a model for other young people; driven, confident, energetic. All this changed when her father died suddenly in the middle of her senior year.

Like anyone would after a loss, she struggled. Her participation in our programs had taught her that she might benefit from therapy, but unfortunately that was an expense beyond her family’s budget.

Fortunately, Mentis offers free, onsite therapy at Leila’s school, which she had learned about through her participation in Teens Connect. She began her work with Rosie, a clinician trained to work with adolescents, and committed to moving through her grief so that she could be there for herself, her Mom, and her younger brothers.

Four months later, she felt strong enough to complete therapy. She knows Mentis is there for her if she needs to check in, and she in turn helps others see the value of good mental health by continuing her leadership role in our Teens Connect program. Because Mentis works to educate young people on good mental health habits before they become paralyzing, we are able to help Leila and others like her navigate the hurdles life can throw at us.

A Path Well Trod

Cherie has much to be grateful for. She’s worked hard throughout her 76 years to contribute to her family’s well-being. But age can take its toll on anyone’s mental health, and Cherie was finding her days more isolating and difficult now that her family ‘needed’ her less.

Early in 2020, she had been introduced to our Healthy Minds, Healthy Aging program. She’d previously found our therapists to be so helpful in managing through some sad periods of her life. Yet this time, as her isolation and depression magnified over the winter, her lonely thoughts turned to suicide.

Tapping into the strong work ethic she had always been known for, she knew it was time to go “back to work” with her Mentis therapist. Our therapist created a suicide assessment and co-created a detailed safety plan with Cherie, who wanted so much to truly feel better and enjoy the time she has.

Re-engaging with a program with which she was familiar, and a therapist she’d connected with made all the difference! She learned additional skills to create boundaries managing her moods and thought. She even updated her own safety plan. She knows this program and this therapist have, literally saved her life. Because Mentis looks at the whole community’s health, we create partnerships and channels to make sure no one, from young students to older adults, falls through the cracks when it comes to their mental well-being!

PARTNERS

Thanks to collaboration with our partners Mentis provides services from prevention to treatment up and down Napa County.

FUNDERS

Thank you to all the Foundations & Organizations that support mental wellness.

JOIN OUR TEAM

Mentis is one of Napa’s oldest non-profits and provides bilingual affordable mental health services to people of every age (5+) and income level.  Everyday our staff and clinicians educate, support and inspire people to take charge of their mental well-being. If you want not only a fulfilling career with growth and training opportunities, but also to make a lasting impact on the community, apply today. When you join the Mentis team you will be welcomed by our dedicated team from administrative support to licensed clinicians that will support and encourage you in our mission to impact our community’s overall mental wellness!

Please see our Careers page for current openings. If you are interested in applying for a position, please send a cover letter and resume to jobs@mentisnapa.org