Leadership & Board
Michele Gehr, MSSW
A long-time resident of the Reno/Carson City area, Michele earned her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of Nevada, Reno and a Master’s of Science in Social Work from Columbia University in New York City. While at Columbia, Michele was accepted into the Management Fellows Program (MFP), an exclusive course of study that focused on high-impact non-profit management. Michele has spent many years working with young people, most recently at Wediko Children’s Services in the South Bronx where she taught social and emotional skills to over-age, under-credited middle and high school students.
Mariana Dubose, MSW
Mariana Dubose recently graduated with an MSW in International and Community Development from Monmouth University. “During my senior year in the social work program at the University of Nevada, Reno, I interned at The Eddy House. I really enjoyed connecting with the youth, hearing their experiences reminded me of growing up in a single parent family, moving multiple times, and sometimes wondering where our next meal would come from. I am at The Eddy House because of the compassion and determination Michele Gehr, Lynette Eddy, Board Members, and staff have towards providing the youth with the resources they need to reduce their chances of remaining on the streets. “
I am humbled and honored to be a part of this community as their Crisis Manager.
Michael is currently a senior at the University of Nevada, Reno, studying Criminal Justice and Sociology. Michael is originally from Davis, CA, and went to high school in Sacramento. He is looking forward to starting a career in law enforcement after college. Michael hopes to focus on community-public relations within the law enforcement field and community.
Community Outreach Specialist
Meredith Tanzer has been a community builder for over 20 years. Her interest with at-risk youth began while owing a business in downtown Reno and volunteering with NYEP at the Youth PIT Count. Meredith is now the event organizer of HUD Homeless Youth Point In Time Count that seeks to raise awareness and the conversation about services for young people in Washoe County. She is also the Vice President of Our Center and helped guide the organization to opening an LGBTQ Community Center.
Alexis is a recent graduate from the University of Nevada, Reno with a Bachelor’s degree in Human Development and Family Studies and a minor certificate in Addiction Treatment Services. She intends to pursue a Master’s in Marriage and Family Therapy, specializing in human sexuality. Currently, she is working toward her Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor Internship. Alexis has experience with adolescents in a counseling and group therapy setting. After volunteering at the Homeless Youth Count with Our Center, she became interested in working with homeless and at risk youth by providing support within this population.
Brandon is currently a junior at the University of Nevada-Reno studying Criminal Justice. He is originally from Las Vegas, Nevada and moved to Reno to attend University Nevada Reno (UNR). Brandon aspires to pursue a career in corrections with a focus on community-based corrections. He joined the Eddy House to provide assistance and guidance to youths, while investigating and reducing recidivism among the youthful offender population.
Eddy House Board of Directors
Lynette Eddy, Founder, MSW
Lynette has a Master’s Degree in Social Work from the University of Nevada, Reno. She has years of experience in working with teens in crisis. She founded and developed The Eddy House program model along with her son, Brian Eddy as a legacy for her late husband and Brian’s Father, Robert Eddy.
Mike Capello, President
Mike is the former Director of the Department of Social Services. He has made a huge contribution and commitment to serving individuals and families in Washoe County.
Ryan Cuddy, Treasurer
Ryan is the founder and CEO of Circle 8 Games Inc., a leading 3rd party producer of casino and social games. He has an BA in Secondary Education from UNR, is a Reno native, and has a passion for the progress of our youth. Ryan has a rich history of working with youth of all ages, educationally as well as coaching, and has a great appreciation for how volunteerism and nonprofits evolve the quality of life for our entire community.
Kevin moved to Reno, NV in 1991 from Grants Pass, OR and has seen Reno as his home ever since. He has been a Nevada Realtor for 5+ years with Keller Williams Group One Inc. Kevin also served as director of Project 150, a charitable organization founded in Las Vegas that helps keep high school kids in school by supplying necessary food, clothing and hygiene products. His goals are to give back to this community which has unseen needs.
JD Drakulich, Secretary
J.D. Drakulich was born and raised in Reno, NV. As a nephew to 8 aunts and uncles, and cousin to 22, his strong ties to the community run deep. J.D. has played sports all his life and the team mentality has followed him into Real Estate. He is a strong leader as it shows through his constant efforts to better himself as a professional Realtor.
A native Nevadan born in Las Vegas moved to Reno in 1965. Worked for Harrahs at modern Classic motors 1972 to 1977 at a Ferrari mechanic 1977- 1993 went into Construction for helms construction. I went from labor to operator to foreman to assisted general superintendent. 1993-2006 Q&D construction as operations manager overseeing all engineering. Boards, 2001-2003 Chairman, Associated General contractor board public works committee. 2003-2014 appointed by the City of Reno to the Washoe County Board of Health, 4 years as Chairman. 2004-2005 Truckee meadows water Authority water conservatory board. 2005-2006, President of the Prospectors club of Reno. 2014- present. Step 1 house.
Dennis Hellwinkel is the Regional Banking Officer for Farm Bureau Bank. He has a degree Agriculture Resource Economics and Business from the University of Nevada and works with 4-H and FFA students in the area of financial management and record keeping. He is the past president of the Nevada Farm Bureau and director of the Nevada Heritage Foundation. Dennis currently serves as the treasurer for the Nevada Jr. Livestock Show Board and he and his wife Judy reside in Yerington
Steve Shell, a seasoned healthcare leader with Signature Healthcare Services, has over 25 years of experience with not-for-profit and for-profit organizations. Steve has held a variety of roles including marketing, business development and CEO of several hospitals around the country. He has served on local and state boards and committees to help communities improve their services for individuals that are challenged with homelessness, addiction, and/or mental illness. He chose to make Reno his home in 2010 and is dedicated to expanding Northern Nevada’s access to healthcare, particularly behavioral health services. He joined Signature Healthcare Services, a national healthcare company, in 2013 to open a state-of-the-art hospital for addiction and psychiatric treatment in Las Vegas and is in the process of opening a new hospital in Reno.
Kristi Finney has a diverse employment background but found her niche managing the administration & special projects for an aeronautical engineering company in Reno. Her heart resides in understanding the human condition, empowering individuals to break through self-imposed barriers & connecting people to resources that improve their lives. After immersing herself in the Tenderloin in San Francisco, CA for a class project during college, she gained insight into non-profits as well as the people they served. The impact of that project planted a seed which years later grew into a desire to work with & dedicate her efforts to The Eddy House & its mission statement.
Originally from Hawaii, Janel Walsh returned to Reno in 1998 and is the Corporate Sales Manager for the Atlantis Hotel and Casino. Janel helps businesses, both local and national, with their corporate travel arrangements and has been with the Atlantis for 7 years. Janel has been blessed with two sons, a beautiful daughter-in-law, and two grandchildren who live in Reno. Janel is passionate about working with young and committed to helping them find their true potential, worth and value.
Jackie Lynch was raised in the outskirts of the Sacramento area in Northern California, but has called Reno her home since 2007. She graduated with the highest GPA in the College of Business at Northwestern State University of Louisiana in Natchitoches, Louisiana. Jackie has been a financial planner for 10 years, but built on her passion for financial education by achieving her Certified Financial Planners Certification in 2015. Jackie and her 13-year old son Jackson share great memories and adventures together and enjoy visiting Disneyland as often as they can. She is very active in the community and spends much of her philanthropy focused on helping local Veterans and children of all ages who are looking for the opportunity to become productive and happy adults.
Sean Nichols is currently the COO and a Co-Founder at Dragonfly Energy Corp, a clean tech startup headquartered in Reno and focused on lithium ion batteries. He has an extensive background in management, marketing, branding, product development and business strategy. Sean earned his Master’s in Business from the University of Nevada, Reno in 2014. In 2005 he started the Big Reno Coat Drive, over the last 12 years he has served as the President of this organization. The Big Reno Coat Drive has collected over 20,000 coats for those in need. Having had a few struggles of his own in life, he knows from personal experience what a difference a helping hand can make for someone in need. Sean moved to Reno in 2004 and is proud to call the Battle Born state home.