1. How long have you been a CASA volunteer?

I first got involved with other CASA charities as far back as the late 2000s, but I’ve officially been an advocate in Monroe County since 2022, which was a major accomplishment for me!

2. What brought you to apply to become a CASA volunteer?

The first time I was introduced to CASA was nearly 20 years ago when I was in foster care myself. I remember being skeptical of meeting just another adult “in the system” during a time when I didn’t trust a lot of people. But starting with our first meeting, my CASA was so open and positive that she quickly gained my trust and always showed up to support me. Ever since then, I’ve aspired to volunteer and give back with the same authenticity and genuine devotion to others.  

3. Besides being a CASA volunteer, what do you like to do in your spare time?

In my spare time, I cook, go on walks or a hike in nature, listen to true crime podcasts, travel with my husband, nap with my cat, and aim to live in “quiet luxury”, but outside of work I simply like sitting on the couch and reading or watching a good movie.

4. What do you love the most about being a CASA?

What I love about CASA is that the program is made up of volunteers researching and advocating for what’s in the best interest of the child. When children learn that their CASA is the only person outside of their family who isn’t paid to be in their life, it provides them with a sense of normalcy and stability. While other agencies sometimes lose sight of the child’s deeper interests, CASA’s mission remains consistent and reminds those of us who are here to help children to actually focus on the child first.

5. What’s a hidden talent or unusual fact that most people don’t know about you? 

There are no federally mandated laws to help foster children obtain higher education in the US, and aging out of foster care is still an extreme hardship for youth who are degree-seeking. My dream is to someday get my degree in Bilingual Speech Therapy, live in a tiny, renewable home, and retire in New Zealand with my husband and cat (whom I’m convinced is going to live forever). I’m also related to Exene Cervenka, the singer for the punk band, X, by marriage, and she has a son with my high school celebrity crush, Viggo Mortensen.

Click HERE to learn more about becoming a CASA volunteer.