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Leadership Team

Partner Organizations Provide


  • Staff release time for participation on the 0 to 8 Mental Health Collaborative Leadership Team
  • Expertise as one of the  local cadre of trainers, and/or
  • Contributions of funding or in-kind hours to support training efforts.


Some of the Leadership Team members are pictured below:

Meg Walkley, MSW, IFECMH Founder and Co-facilitator of the 0 to 8 Mental Health Collaboative

Meg works in a collaborative effort between the Humboldt County Office of Education and First 5 Humboldt as the Children and Family Support Specialist.  She founded the 0 to 8 Mental Health Collaborative in 2011.

Beth Heavilin, M.Ed., IFECMH, Co-facilitator of the 0 to 8 Mental Health Collaborative

Beth works in a collaborative effort between the Humboldt County Office of Education and First 5 Humboldt.  She is the Children and Family Mental Health and Inclusion Support Specialist.

Karen Athing, Co-founder of the 0 to 8 Mental Health Collaborative

Karen works for Northcoast Children’s Services as their Mental Health Coordinator, supporting Head Start children birth to 5 with their social and emotional development and well-being.

Cindi Kaup, Co-founder of the 0 to 8 Mental Health Collaborative

Cindi Kaup is the Regional Lead for the California Preschool Instructional Network, delivering trainings on the Preschool Learning Foundations to five counties.  She is also the Early Childhood Coordinator for the Humboldt County Office of Education, coordinating the Coregrowth Project, the transitional kindergarten consortium and the early childhood team at HCOE.

Mary Ann Hansen

Mary Ann is the Executive Director of First 5 Humboldt, working on behalf of the First 5 Humboldt Commission to create systems which better serve our youngest children and their families.

Connie Sundberg

Connie has been working with children and families in Humboldt County for the past 27 years.  As the Family Empowerment Services Director, Connie is responsible for the development and implementation of children’s mental health services provided by Changing Tides Family Services and is committed to developing and expanding mental health services provided to children birth to five and their families.


Julie Simpson, LCSW, PPSC

Julie works for the California Department of Social Services as an Adoptions Specialist, helping children and families through the adoption process. She also founded and is the Executive Director of the Mattole Valley Resource Center, a Family Resource Center in Petrolia. She is currently studying the Neurosequential Model of Therapeutics with Dr. Bruce Perry.

Carol West, Professor of Child Development at Humboldt State University

I have worked with and advocated for children and families for forty years as a family child care provider, preschool teacher, and consultant/trainer for early childhood programs.   Many of those have been at HSU’s Child Development department preparing professionals for work in a host of settings.  I am a parent and a grandparent, I am on the board of the Humboldt Association for the Education of Young Children (HAEYC) and I also serve on the Local Child Care Planning Council.

Star Mohatt, Training Coordinator for the 0-8 Mental Health Collaborative

Star is a Program Coordinator for First 5 Humboldt where in addition to working for the 0-8 MHC, she also supports F5H ECE activities and coordinates the Quality Counts Humboldt QRIS program for State Preschool programs.  She has worked as a preschool teacher for most of her career in the early childhood field and also serves on the board of the Humboldt Association for the Education of Young Children.

Leo Sousa

Fortuna Middle School

School Counselor