Meet Our Board!
The super heroes behind the scene
Elizabeth Evans lives in the Ann Arbor area and is the current Chair of our Fresh Start Board of Directors. She has her master’s in social work and does evaluation and research at the University of Michigan. Elizabeth is also working on her doctorate in health administration. She is a member of the Keweenaw Bay Indian Community in Michigan’s beautiful upper peninsula, loves adventure, and has two miniature dachshunds Crosby and Lenny.
My name is Nick Dubs and I currently serve as the Treasurer on the Board of Directors. I have been involved with Fresh Start for a year and am very proud to be a part of an organization so resolute in assisting and empowering those with mental health concerns. I look to continue to grow the impact we make upon the residents of Washtenaw County. My profession is as a Consultant at Ally Financial. In my free time, I enjoy traveling stateside and internationally to explore new cultures and cuisines. I have a beautiful Norwegian Forest Cat named Princess who creates joy in my life. I enjoy volunteering with Fresh Start as well as local organizations supporting those in need during the holidays.
Kara Krause was born and raised in Ann Arbor. Kara earned her bachelors degree from the university of Michigan and her law degree from the university of Illinois. Kara is a licensed attorney and practices employment law with a law firm in Ann Arbor. In her spare time, she enjoys reading , cooking, watching movies and hanging out with her cat!
Ann Jeffers is an Associate Professor of Civil and and Environmental Engineering at the University Of Michigan in Ann Arbor. She is an advocate for mental health and uses creative writing and public speaking to teach others what it is like to live with mental illness. Her forthcoming memoir, Can you hear the music? A memoir about Mental Illness in the academy, describes her experience being diagnosed and recovering from bipolar disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder. She has volunteered with Fresh Start Clubhouse for several years and served as Chair of the advisory board from 2018-2021.
Hello my name is Taylor Martel and I have been a member of Fresh Start Clubhouse for 3 years. I also enjoy participating as a member of the board of directors. Professionally I work as an activities assistant at a local nursing home. I enjoy doing anything creative -like painting and sewing as well as spending time with my husband and two cats. While I live with mental health challenges I am most grateful I have found my fresh start through the clubhouse and I enjoy finding ways to give back to the community.
My name is Robert Johnson I am very excited and optimistic to be serving Fresh Start Clubhouse at this time on the board. I have degrees in Social work from Eastern Michigan University and Columbia University. My career and life have taken me across North America, in clinical and managerial social work mainly in adult mental health the field psychiatry, and child welfare. I have had the privilege of supervising Social Work students in the field, at more than ten colleges and Universities in the United States and Canada. My present employment is at Avalon Housing as a Support Coordinator where I recently started after five years at Home of New Vision a Substance Use Disorder (SUD) serving agency. I am a person in recovery from an SUD, I am a biracial person and a Canadian citizen. When away from vocational pursuits I enjoy music, sports, biking, hiking, bird watching and photography. I have two adult children who live in Washington state and Yukon Territory, Canada.
Brenda Nicholson worked in Learning Assistance at Schoolcraft College for a number of years before relocating to the Chicago area.
She is now retired and back in Michigan. She enjoys time with family, journaling, and camping.
Hi, my name is Abigail! I learned about Fresh Start in 2018 through my work in Pediatric Respiratory Care at the University of Michigan. Mental health advocation is very personal me, and I'm grateful to be active in this vital community resource. In my free time, I like to stay active and care for my many pets and plants.