Chris Weiss

Executive Director

Chris joined the Second Wind Fund team in April of 2016 as Development Director, and became Executive Director in November 2019. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science in 2007 from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. After college, he served in the United States Peace Corps in the country of Belize from 2008-2010. Upon returning to the U.S., he worked for Urban Peak – a Denver non-profit that provides a variety of services to youth experiencing homelessness – in the Education & Employment Department as a Job Retention Specialist then the Development Department as the Development Manager. Chris brings a passion for making the world a better place and serving those in need.

Michelle Aquino

Development Director

Michelle joined the Second Wind Fund team as Development Director at the end of August 2021. In 2006, she received her Bachelor of Arts degree in International Management from Manhattanville College in Purchase, NY and in 2009 received her Master of Science degree in Non-Profit Management from The New School University in New York, NY. After graduate school, Michelle worked on the development team at The Michael J. Fox Foundation from 2009-2015 where she planned, produced, and executed the Foundation’s five annual benefit events, raising approximately $6 million per year. From 2015-2019, she worked as the Events Manager for several nonprofits such as buildOn, the One Love Foundation in honor of Yeardley Love and Americares where she continued to produce and plan events across the country. Michelle is passionate about raising critical funds for nonprofits and serving the community to help those in need.

Bill Heaston

Program Director

Bill joined the Second Wind Fund in November of 2021. With fifteen years of non-profit management experience, his passion is serving children and families through their most difficult of times. An Omaha native,  Bill attended Creighton University (2005), where he received his Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work. Upon graduation, Bill worked in Boston’s Dudley Square at a family homeless shelter and eventually at a non-profit called Friends of the Children where he mentored youth in the public school system and supervised other mentors. Bill completed his Master’s Degree in Social Work at Loyola University Chicago in 2010 and worked with the State of Illinois handling abuse and neglect cases on the Southside. Prior to joining SWF, Bill was an integral member of the management team for ten years at Completely KIDS, an Omaha non-profit that serves vulnerable children and families in the afterschool setting. During his tenure, he saw major agency growth and development including the expansion of mental health services to children in afterschool programs. Bill is an avid Creighton Bluejay’s fan and a happy dog dad to two pups, Millie and Phineas.

Shelby Creech

Provider Engagement Manager

Shelby joined Second Wind Fund as the Provider Engagement Manager in May of 2022. She received her Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Colorado State University and her Master of Social Work degree from the University of Denver. Before joining Second Wind Fund, Shelby worked at the Colorado School of Mines supporting college students and their mental health needs. She also worked as a substitute teacher, primarily with elementary school-aged children, for the Cherry Creek School District. Shelby is passionate about creating a community where every voice is heard and empowered. 

Elyse Baumgardner

Referral Specialist

Elyse joined the Second Wind Fund team in March of 2021 as Referral Specialist. After graduating from the University of Michigan with a Bachelor’s degree in Criminology and Criminal Justice Studies, she began volunteering in the nonprofit sector. At the Rose Andom Center in Denver, she supports survivors of intimate partner violence by connecting them with resources to aid in their healing process. Elyse is driven by a passion to empower others as well as the desire to make a difference in the community.

Olivia Pilcher

Western Slope Community Manager

Olivia joined Second Wind Fund as the Western Slope Community Manager in March of 2022. She received her bachelor’s degree in political science and international affairs from Northern Arizona University in 2011 and a master’s degree in social work from University of Denver in 2015. Prior to joining Second Wind Fund Olivia worked in various capacities in the social work field including positions in community resource navigation, substance use treatment, and disability rights advocacy. Olivia lives in Grand Junction and enjoys spending time outdoors and enjoying all Western Colorado has to offer.

We believe that all communities and people are affected by suicide and that open, honest communication about the pervasiveness of suicide is critical to reducing its incidence.

Together, we can work to eradicate youth suicides.

Board of Directors

Orrick Nepomuceno
HR Business Partner, Becton, Dickinson, and Company
Board President

John Schliep
Retired Finance Director, RMHC — Denver

Jane Lineman, PhD, NCSP
Student Safety Coordinator, Denver Public Schools

Tad Deering
Director of Change Management, Compassion International
Board Member

Barbara Downing, Ph.D.
Student Equity and Discipline Manager, Denver Public Schools
Board Member

Dani Duggan
Implementation Manager, Engageli
Board Member

Cynthia Giffen, MA, NCC, LPC
Therapist, Synchronicity Counseling LLC 
Board Member

Andy Kerr
County Commissioner, District 2 – Jefferson Board of County Commissioners
Board Member

Michael Juba
Attorney, Juba Law Office LLC
Board Member

Marjorie Laird, Ph.D., LMFT, LPC
Therapist, Marjorie Laird LLC
Board Member + Co-Founder

Madelon Lapidus
Attorney, Holland & Hart LLP
Board Member

Paul Reich
Community Relations Liaison, Axis Health System
Board Member

Tammy Teitscheid
Chief People Officer, Elevations Credit Union
Board Member

Bryan Wallace 
Managing Director, Bridgepoint Investment Banking
Board Member

Ken Wiig
Advisory Board Member

Kathy Valentine, M.Ed.
Chairperson, HOPE Coalition of Boulder County
Advisory Board Member