News & Events

Staff Spotlights

Rionna

Rionna Horton is a Case Manager for Talbert House’s Comprehensive Case Management Employment Program (CCMEP). Since joining the agency in February 2018, she quickly became one of the program’s top case managers. She has been instrumental in helping new staff learn processes and adapts quickly to the needs of the program. Rionna manages a specialty caseload of clients in drug treatment as well as ESL (English as a Second Language) individuals, influencing them to participate in activities and programs that will lead to self-sufficiency. Rionna recently completed hers Masters of Science in Forensic Psychology through Walden University and was able to secure an internship with the Forensic Service Team at Talbert House as part of her curriculum.
“Being able to help clients close to my age is what excites me about my work. I am able to actually help them prioritize their goals as they work to reach them.”

Mollie Flynn

Mollie Flynn was named the Talbert House Outstanding employee from the Community Corrections service line for 2018. She started with the agency at Spring Grove in 2015 as a Clinical Corrections Provider. Since then, she earned her License in Social Work and was promoted to Clinical Supervisor. She now works at Cornerstone, a halfway house for men reentering the community.

"Talbert House has provided me with the opportunities to grow as a professional while giving me the freedom to use my skills."

Mollie’s coworkers describe her as dedicated and reliable. She helps new staff settle into their positions and has built strong professional relationships with colleagues and the clients she serves.

"I’ve always felt called to advocate for others. Everyone deserves a chance. I am passionate about my work because I get to be a part of those chance for people."

 

Ray Rush

Ray was named Talbert House’s Employee of the Year for 2018. He serves as the Associate Director for Turning Point and 1617 Reading Road, providing programming to adults in the Hamilton County justice system. Ray has been with Talbert House since 1974. For the past 28 years he has occupied various positions within the Addictions service line and at Turning Point, from Service Provider to Associate Director. Described by colleagues as truly passionate about his work, Ray is happy to be in a position where he can pass along what he’s learned over the years to new staff coming in.

Ray says he likes being able to interact with clients as people, watch them grow, and in many cases see them go on to help others struggling with addiction. His attitude and approach has earned him a positive reputation among the individuals he has served and those he’s worked with over the years.

"I have really enjoyed working with our clients at Turning Point and seeing their lives change first-hand."

They in turn recognize Ray for changing, and in many cases saving, their lives.

 

Shericeia Scott

Shericeia was recognized as the Outstanding Employee from the Mental Health service line for 2018. She joined Talbert House in 2008 as a Youth Care Provider and now serves as the Operations Supervisor for the Girls Residential program. Shericeia’s passion for her work and dedication to her clients is evident to those she works with and can be seen in the quality of service she provides. Whether she’s bridging the gap between clinical and operational teams, or working extra shifts to ensure staff coverage, Shericeia enjoys each new challenge she faces and loves the fact that every day at Talbert House is different.

"I’m forever grateful that I have an opportunity to help shape and improve the quality of life for so many adolescent females, who are our future leaders."

 

Laura Schiele

Laura joined Talbert House over seven years ago as a Case Manager. She received her Master’s in Social Work in 2018 with the assistance of the McClain Scholarship available to Talbert House employees pursuing higher education. Laura uses her advance degree in her current position as a school based therapist for Winton Woods Elementary School.

Laura enjoys the dynamic experience of working in a school environment and engaging with students from all walks of life. Inspired by the quote, "be the person you needed when you were younger", she finds her purpose in teaching children that they have value.

"I am able to see the best in these children, help them feel heard, worthy, important, relevant, and connected. It is a great feeling to know that I am equipping children with the skills to become their own self-advocates."

 

Donald Jones

Donald has worked at Talbert House for 7 years. He started part time at Turtle Creek Center (TCC), a halfway house that assists men reentering the community. His compassion and desire to understand the difficulties his clients face has made him a valuable part of the Talbert House family. Donald is now the Operations Supervisor at TCC and continues to get excited about how he can best serve the clients in the program.

"Each day we are challenged to serve our clients and impact lives through our mission. Each day we are granted the ability to see hope in action, to see dreams become realities, and obstacles and fears become triumphs and successes."

 

Natalie Williams

Natalie came to Talbert House in 2003 working for 281-CARE, where she would ultimately become a Supervisor. She enjoys her work at the crisis hotline because she is able to help people, whether it’s a caller or co-worker.

This compassion is evidenced by one particular incident when Natalie was able to de-escalate a caller who said he had nothing to live for. Natalie talked to him, listened, and ultimately referred him to the Fatherhood Project and mental health services, where he started seeing a therapist and taking proper medication.

"I am passionate about the work I do because it’s rewarding. When a person calls and says ‘thank you’ or ‘you saved my life’ after providing them with a service, it fills my heart with joy."

 

Scott Elsbrock

Scott Elsbrock has been a Case Manager at Talbert House’s Western Hills office since 2012. Scott’s persistence and determination includes helping his clients find safe and secure housing, plan for a successful discharge from incarceration or hospitalization, and being persistent in making contact when they are unreachable. Scott collaborates with court personnel, police officers, medical services, mobile crisis and community providers to ensure clients get the care and services they need.

"I enjoy seeing the end result each and every day."

Scott was recently recognized by The Alliance on mental Illness (NAMI) of Southwest Ohio as Exemplary Case Manager of the Year at their 2018 Evening of Hope.

 

 

Gary Weiler

Gary has been with Talbert House for 24 years. He began as a Clinical Service Provider at Turning Point before moving to Princeton High School as part of the Agency’s school-based services.

Gary gets great satisfaction in working with the staff and students at Princeton High School, and has become a valued part of the school culture.

Gary’s supervisor says she regularly receives positive feedback, not just about the quality of Gary’s work, but the depth of his caring for his clients and their families.

"Every day gives me a new opportunity to do good things and make myself useful to others."

 

 

Margurite Jackson

Since joining the Agency in July of 2015, Margurite has worked in Community Corrections, most recently as an Operational Lead at the Community Correctional Center (CCC). Margurite completed her Associate of Arts in Social Work degree with the assistance of the McClain Scholarship available to Talbert House employees pursuing higher education.

"What excites me the most about working at Talbert House is the interaction I have with clients who are trying to turn their lives around for the better."

Margurite is passionate about helping clients realize their potential and reach their goals, and firmly believes that while they are at Talbert House their first job is focusing on their treatment and recovery. Margurite also created the first garden at CCC that allows the men to stay busy working with their hands.

"Holding the guys accountable for their actions and showing them better solutions really puts them in charge of the path they’re going down."

Steve Lawson

Talbert House has benefitted from Steve’s passion to help others for over 20 years. Starting as a part-time employee with the Agency’s Driver Intervention Program (DIP) in the 1990s, Steve has worked his way to being a CSP-Practitioner with DIP and Turning Point. He is responsible for running the 6/10/20 day DIP classes as well as education for the residential population at Turning Point and providing reentry support.

"I have worked at various treatment centers around the area and always just wanted to settle into a place where I felt I could fit in and do the best work helping those with substance use disorders."

Joan Van Epps

Joan was recently recognized for her impressive 25 year tenure with Talbert House. Currently, Joan works part-time as a Clinical Lead at the office in Walnut Hills despite having "retired" a few years ago.

"Absolutely the most satisfying thing about my work at Talbert House is when I experience clients making changes and moving onto constructive lives. Since I work exclusively with clients who have experienced extreme trauma, it is their progress and the challenges presented by their experiences that keeps me coming to work."

It's Joan's continuing passion for her work in helping victims of trauma, as well as her considerable expertise, that have made her an asset to the Agency and its mission for 25 years.

 

 

Maura Lang

Maura Lang

Talbert House's response to the opioid epidemic has been to offer numerous education and prevention training sessions throughout the neighborhoods of Cincinnati, thanks to city funding and help from staff like Maura. 

"I come to work every day knowing that Talbert House saves lives, which is an incredible feeling. I am passionate about helping our community's most vulnerable. I have grown particularly passionate about helping those in the community most affected by the opiate epidemic."

She has dedicated evening and weekend hours to educate and reduce the risk of harm inflicted through the use of opiates, as well as strengthen the agency's presence as a community provider.

"I feel called to help them, and I can't imagine a better place than Talbert House to be to answer that call."

Connie Foster

Connie Foster

"I have been passionate about Criminal Justice for many years, but working here and being able to make a difference in a client's life is priceless."

Connie oversees electronic monitoring through multiple corrections locations and has been with Talbert House since 2014. She was honored as an Outstanding Employee for providing exceptional customer service and dedication to her clients.

"To be able to give encouragement and positivity to the clients - to see that shine through them in hopes they can and will have a better, more determined and brighter future - that is what makes this job my passion."

Jill Toca, RN

Jill Toca

Recognized for her commitment to clients by providing the most accommodating care, Jill makes sure every client is able to succeed in their recovery. She is a Registered Nurse for behavioral health outpatient services in Georgetown and Mt. Orab in Brown County, working with patients struggling with addiction and mental illness every day. 

“Through my job, I get to make a difference in addiction recovery or the stabilization of a patient with mental health illness. As a nurse, you get to know your patients, and you truly want to see them get better and enjoy a productive, good life. If I can make a difference in one person’s treatment for the good, then I have done what I love to do.”

Jill has been with Talbert House since 2016 and also helps teach CPR for the agency.

"Working in this field, you get to know the person. They want to recover, they want to live a good life. I see the person, not their addiction. I love to see someone make a 360 due to the services we offer. This is what I love about my job!"

Keara Wrightsman

Keara Wrightsman

Watch Keara's video testimony

As an administrative specialist for Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) at Parkway Center, Keara commits to providing quality service to clients and her team through continuing education and connecting individuals with important resources.

"I left homelessness after 10 years on the streets and jumped straight into having a new baby, two teenage children, and a home to care for. I was unemployable and had no means to support us. Without Talbert House, I wouldn't have known what to do with myself, my daughters, or much else. Then Talbert House stepped in and gave me a chance to be an employee again."

Within her first year of employment, she became Chemical Dependency Counselor Assistant certified, an Ohio notary public, and certified to complete Social Security applications. She has been successful in placing several clients directly into employment through her work of bridging relationships with employers in the community and educating them about the program. Keara was recognized as the 2017 Employee of the Year.

"I believe in what we do, and I'm grateful for the agency and my job, and that makes all the difference."

Dena Landando

Dena Landando

Talbert House supports agencies like the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) that benefit our clients and their families. Staff show their support of NAMI each year by participating in the annual 5K fundraising event, NAMIWalks. Dena, Clinical and Operational Supervisor, has taken the lead to organize teams at our corrections sites in Warren County since 2015. Engaging both staff and clients in participation, she has helped to coordinate over $1,000 in donations.

“I like to get clients involved by walking with team Talbert House and showing them pro-social ways to give back to their community. This year clients are saving their empty pop cans that we will cash in and proceeds will be donated to NAMI.”

 

Eric Neefus

Eric Neefus

For 12 years Eric has provided quality care to Talbert House clients coping with mental health issues. He is a valued Case Manager who interacts professionally with adults who have complex needs and require a high level of assistance. He has a unique way of calmly managing emotions and helping clients in a way that builds their trust and buy-in.

His interactions with clients, family members, and peers alike are professional and consistent. Eric is an advocate for those he serves. He was recognized as the 2016 Employee of the Year for his dedication to providing care that leads to positive outcomes for his clients, their families, and the community.

"I am very grateful for the honor and appreciate all of the great folks I've worked with over the years at both College Hill and Roselawn."

Michael Allen, 2014 Employee of the Year

Michael Allen

Click Here to view Michael's video testimony

Michael is a supervisor for Adult Behavioral Health services and was recognized for his exceptional customer service and positive outcomes in working with severely mentally disabled adults. His exemplary case management skills have resulted in increased wellness, improved independent living, and overall stability through client-focused quality care.

"It is very rewarding to have the opportunity to work with Talbert House in affecting people's lives in a very impactful way. I believe the biggest impact that I can make on a client is to equip and empower them. I believe a client's ability to make a change in their own situation produces outcomes of endurance and longevity." -Michael

Michael exemplifies a daily commitment to improving the lives of clients and is always willing to go above and beyond to ensure clients receive the care they need. He is an excellent role model for others and is passionate about what he does. The agency is very lucky to have him.

Regina, Community Link

Regina Sandlin

Everyday, people equip themselves with the educational and technical resources necessary to become productive and contributing citizens.  Talbert House Community Link through collaboration with Easter Seals Work Resource Center and Hamilton County Job and Family Services helps decrease the number of families receiving temporary assistance by providing the resources, education, training and work opportunities they need to enter and excel in the workforce.   

"Community Link put me on track to full-time employment at Talbert House," says Regina, Administrative Specialist.  "I love working here... my coworkers are supportive and my supervisors care about my career."  Regina is now in a position to encourage and support others.  "No matter what the situation, Talbert House is here to help."

Carrie, Boy's Youth Residential

Carrie Kunzelman

Click here to view Carrie's video testimony.

While Carrie first aspired to become a high school counselor, she credits her internship at Talbert House for exposing  her to social services. “Drug and alcohol abuse brings problems, chaos and creates enabling. As an intern I learned the science and theory behind drug and alcohol abuse and how it affects lives and the human body,” says Carrie.

After her internship, Carrie obtained her master's degree and joined Talbert House full-time as a Continuing Care Specialist at Alternatives. Carrie was promoted to Clinical Service Provider before moving out of state. A few years later, she returned to Cincinnati. Her career came full circle when she rejoined Talbert House as a Master Clinical Service Provider driving the quality of clinical care for adolescents at Alternatives, The Bridge and Passages.

“Talbert House is the best place I have ever worked. The training and career opportunities are unbelievable and the  agency is focused on innovation with a strong emphasis on quality,” Carrie says. When asked what has been the most helpful in her career, Carrie affirms, “Talbert House offers lots of opportunities to become involved, to broaden  experiences, to drive for solutions, and to help facilitate change… at Talbert House I am appreciated.”