John Glover, Executive Director
John Glover brings decades of social change management, advocacy, and public health experience to his role as Executive Director at Well House.
Most recently, Glover served as director of the Open Door Program at Fort Street Presbyterian Church of Detroit where they serve some of the City’s most vulnerable populations.
“I am excited to join Well House—an organization that boldly challenges the major problem of homelessness and so doggedly pursues its solution with clarity of purpose. ‘The solution to homelessness is housing’ is more than a philosophical framing. It is a declaration that social problems are, by definition, socially constructed; so too are the solutions.”
With a Masters in Urban Policy Analysis and Management, from the Robert J. Milano Graduate School of Management and Urban Policy at the New School University and a Bachelor of Arts with a Concentration in Behavioral and Social Sciences, John self-identifies as a social change agent determined to bring added value to any environment that welcomes his input.
“The answer to homelessness is still housing and that is what we do here.”
Carla Fernández-Soto, Communications and Resource Coordinator
Carla Fernández-Soto is a social change agent with a deep commitment to our planet and our collective liberation and legacy. She has worked in North and Central America on a wide range of issues including conservation, immigration advocacy, youth and women’s leadership development, and access to education for immigrant and indigenous youth. Having worked in small grassroots organizations as well as national organizations, she has experience in program implementation and delivery, fund development, leadership development, and organizational administration at different scales.
She’s excited to be back in her home state of Michigan and proud to be a part of the Well House team. Carla enjoys traveling, learning in community, exploring creative outlets, and anything having to do with the ocean. She graduated from the University of Michigan with a B.A. in Women’s Studies and Latina/o Studies and is a Master Scuba Diver Trainer.
Jean Olds, Housing Specialist
Jean started at Well House in July of 2013. She comes to Well House with a wealth of knowledge and expertise of social services and community support services that are available in Kent County. Jean has a degree in Family Studies from Western Michigan University. Jean is a hard worker, extremely dedicated, and cares deeply for each and every Well House tenant.
David Patillo, Resident Supervisor
David is the Resident Supervisor at our Youth Home. He has always had a passion for mentoring young adults within the Grand Rapids Community which is why he jumped at the opportunity to work for Well House after seeing the advertisement on television.
When David is not mentoring young adults at Well House or through his football program, he works full time at a local factory and enjoys spending time with his family.
Jodi Smith, Housing Specialist & Outreach Coordinator
Jodi started at Well House as an intern in January 2013 and became a full-time staff member only 4 months later. Jodi has a background in early childhood education and a degree in human development. She brings an incredible amount of high energy, creativity, and passion to the organization.
Board of Directors 2019
Derek DeVries, Board President, Digital Strategist,
Lambert, Edwards and Associates
Derek DeVries is a digital strategist at Lambert, Edwards & Associates (LE&A). His areas of expertise include social media marketing, crisis communications, online reputation management, digital branding, web development, and counsel on all things Internet-related. Prior to joining LE&A, Derek worked for PR/marketing agencies including 834 Marketing and Design and spent 11 years in higher education providing public relations, social media marketing and communications support for Grand Rapids Community College. In addition to his duties at LE&A, Derek also teaches advertising/public relations part-time at Grand Valley State University.
Heather Cronkright, Mortgage Loan Officer, Lake Michigan Credit Union
Heather has a significant professional history with Steelcase, in sales and customer service, Clark Financial as a mortgage broker, and Polaris Home Funding in underwriting and pre-closing roles. She is also an entrepreneur, owning and operating Gallery Allure beauty salon of Grand Rapids.
I am a major SOCCER mom and enjoy watching my boys play. My youngest, Mason, is a Freshman for Jenison and has made the Varsity team for his first high school career of soccer. My oldest, Isaiah, was playing for Trinity Christian College but came back home to attend GRCC full time. I enjoy movies, music, the arts, trying new cuisine’s and local restaurants and cooking/baking. I am at most peace in my life when I’m near the water or onstage leading praise and worship wherever I attend church. I am currently at Fair Haven Church in Hudsonville.
I am filled with a servant’s heart and love helping people achieve their potential and realize their worthiness – no matter where their life choices have taken them. It’s never too late to find yourself!
Brent Geers, Estate Planning Attorney/Owner, Geers Law
Brent Geers specializes in helping people empower those they trust and provide for those they love. Brent has been an attorney since 2012, working with individuals and families to marshal their time, talent, and treasure for the benefit of their children, family, and community. He is a Grand Rapids Business Journal “40 Under 40” honoree, and currently operates his own practice, Geers Law.
Brent is married to an educator, who employs his services as a chaperone for various school functions. He is also a father to a daughter determined to break down barriers for women everywhere.
Jenifer Jackson, VanBelkum Company, IT Sales Consultant
Elsa Kerr, Retired Marketing Communications Professional, Workforce Development
Elsa Kerr has worked in both the corporate and non-profit sectors of marketing and community relations. Her non-profit focus has been on helping individuals develop the skills and tools to become self-sufficient through employment. Recognizing that stable housing is the foundation to building independence, Elsa has joined the 2016 Well House Board of Directors and is ready to support and build upon the organization’s mission and goals.
Elsa has also served on the Board of Directors of the YWCA West Central Michigan from 2004-2012, fulfilling the role of Board Chair from 2008-2010. She continues to actively support the organization today.
Sharon Koop, Mortgage Lending
Bryant Mitchell, Realtor & Owner, Sunday Dinner, A Real Estate Company
In 2014 my wife and I were blessed with twin boys, with this change came a change of thought process, goal setting and overall spirituality. As a company BRYANT| Real Estate Group has always been focused on giving back within our community. As our organization continued to grow in volume and size we noticed that the impact we could be initiating within our local communities was being looked over. Instead of relaying our marketing dollars towards auxiliary lead sources, which have no local impact, let’s shift our marketing monies to benefit local community. For our organization that looked like our SUNDAY DINNER| initiatives program. This program gave each agent the ability to contribute 10% of their commissions directly to a passion that drives their particular client. This Movement went so well that as a company the SUNDAY DINNER| Initiatives raised over $11,000 our first year. When that year came to a close the decision was made to focus our business entirely on the impacting of communities. SUNDAY DINNER, a real estate company; was launched on May 16, 2016 and we look forward to the benefiting our community exponentially.