About

About

Our Mission

To improve the quality of healthcare by providing up-to-date, objective genetic information to patients, providers, and healthcare organizations, supporting those in need of genetic services, and facilitating the adoption of best genetic practices.

We have a passion for genetics, and we are dedicated to our mission of providing objective information about genetic testing and how it impacts your health. Genetic testing technology is changing rapidly, and there are a growing number of genetic testing options available.

We’re here to help you sort through the wealth of information in this new age of genetics. Our goal is to provide objective expertise and information on the latest developments and guide you through the genetic health decision-making process.

Our Team

The Genetic Support Foundation team members are experts in the field of genetics. Collectively, we have decades of experience in genetic counseling and medical genetics.

  • Katie Stoll, MS, CGC
    Executive Director

    Katie Stoll received her Bachelor of Science in Biology from Colorado State University, and her Master’s degree in Genetic Counseling from Brandeis University. She brings a diversity of clinical experience in the areas of prenatal, cancer, adult, and pediatric genetics. She has worked in a variety of settings including military healthcare systems, health maintenance organizations, community hospitals, outpatient clinics, and research.

    Katie has been an active contributor to the profession of genetic counseling through her work with the National Society of Genetic Counselors (NSGC) and participation in various projects developing educational tools for patients and providers regarding prenatal genetic tests.

    At Genetic Support Foundation, Katie is focused on developing resources and programs to expand the availability of quality information about genetics, and to improve access to genetic counseling services. She is especially interested in the intersection of genetics with primary care. She is excited about identifying innovative ways to engage with patients and healthcare providers through telehealth, grassroots outreach, and education. Katie lives with her husband and two kids in Washington State. She loves gardening, kid’s weekend soccer games, and camping in the beautiful Pacific Northwest.

  • Kelly Donahue, MS, CGC
    Director of Business Development

    Kelly Donahue received her bachelor’s degree from Allegheny College, and her master’s degree in genetic counseling from University of Pittsburgh. She has more than 20 years of experience in clinical genetics and is passionate about providing information and counseling that empowers patients to make decisions about genetic testing that are consistent with their personal needs and values. In addition to her experience in the clinical setting, Kelly has worked in the molecular laboratory setting and brings a depth of understanding regarding the potential benefits, drawbacks and limitations of new molecular technologies. Kelly has given numerous invited presentations on topics related to prenatal genetics. She is an active volunteer with the American Board of Genetic Counseling and also provides leadership and support multiple genetic counseling training programs.

  • Julie Simon, MS, CGC
    Director of Clinical Operations

    Julie Simon earned a Bachelor of Arts in Biology from the University of San Diego in 2007, and a Masters in Genetic Counseling from the University of California, Irvine in 2010. After graduation, she created the Lysosomal Storage Disorders Program at UCI and worked with graduate students before moving to the beautiful Pacific Northwest.

    Prior to joining the Genetic Support Foundation, she worked at MultiCare for 6 years expanding their genetics services in oncology, metabolic, and general genetics. Julie also helped pilot the clinical exome testing program. Her other experiences include coordinating outreach programs and managing student interns for future genetic counselors, doctors, and other healthcare professionals.

    Her interests include cancer genetics, pediatric genetics, metabolic genetics, personalized medicine, and utilization management. In her spare time, with her husband, she enjoys reading, hiking, amateur photography, and playing with their two corgis.

  • Chase Beeler, MS, GC
    Genetic Counselor

    Chase Beeler received his Bachelor of Science in behavioral neuroscience from Drury University in 2021. He received his Master of Science in genetic counseling from Boise State University in 2023. Chase has a diverse set of interests within the field of genetic counseling including working with patients in oncology, neurology, and pediatric genetics. Other interests include developing materials to make genetic information more accessible and increasing patient access to care. Prior to graduate school Chase worked within the field of patient advocacy and this continues to be another passion. Chase began working at Genetic Support Foundation while in graduate school in 2021 as a genetic counseling assistant. After graduating, Chase was excited to continue at GSF in a genetic counseling role to help further the mission of improving access to quality health care and genetics services. Outside of work Chase enjoys hiking, biking, watching and playing soccer, and spending time with his wife and border collie, Darby.

  • Jerri Fook Yee Cheung, MS, CGC
    Genetic Counselor

    Jerri received her Bachelor of Science from the University of Washington in 2015, and her master’s degree in genetic counseling from the University of Minnesota in 2018. She was born in Hong Kong and moved to the States as a child. She now resides in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. Prior to joining Genetic Support Foundation, Jerri worked as a research assistant for LawSeqSM, a project focused on mapping and shaping the law on genomics. As a bilingual Chinese American, Jerri is interested in studying cultural implications of genetic counseling and is passionate about expanding genetic services to minority and underserved populations. In her spare time, Jerri enjoys traveling, doing jigsaw puzzles, and watching football.

  • Jennifer Eichmeyer, MS, CGC
    Genetic Counselor

    Jennifer Eichmeyer has been a genetic counselor for the past 15 years serving in prenatal, pediatric, and oncology subspecialties. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Genetics from Iowa State University and her Masters in Genetic Counseling at the University of Texas at Houston. She established the first cancer genetic counseling clinic for the state of Idaho in 2004 and subsequently lead a team of 3 full time genetic counselors staffing 6 sites across the state.

    Jennifer has been heavily involved in expanding genetic services in the state of Idaho through the development of a High Risk Breast Clinic, NICU genetics, implementation of universal screening for Lynch syndrome, launching telehealth genetic counseling services, and developing a chart review program that helps identify patients needing genetic counseling. She co-chaired a project to improve oncofertility referrals, and was involved in successfully getting state licensure for genetic counselors passed in the legislature.

    She has collaborated with other health care providers to bring pharmacogenetic testing to oncology patients. She has received numerous awards including the the ACCCP Innovator award in 2013, St. Luke’s President’s award in 2014, and the ISCO Thomas M. Beck recognition award in 2016. Jennifer continues to be interested using the unique skill set of genetics professionals in non-traditional ways to improve access and understand of genetic information.

  • Alena Faulkner, MS, CGC
    Genetic Counselor

    Alena Faulkner (she/her) grew up in the East Bay Area, California and attended Sonoma State University, earning a Bachelor of Arts in Biology and a minor in Psychology. Later, she attended the University of South Carolina School of Medicine where she earned a Masters of Science in Genetic Counseling. Shortly after, Alena moved to the Pacific Northwest to begin her genetic counseling career. Prior to joining Genetic Support Foundation, she served the Oregon and Southwest Washington communities for 3.5 years providing hereditary cancer risk assessment for patients and families with personal and/or family history of cancer and/or hereditary cancer predisposition.

    She currently resides in Portland, Oregon and is excited to be join the Genetic Support Foundation team to contribute to the collective mission of improving the quality of healthcare by providing support to patients, providers, and healthcare organizations with current and objective genetic information. While her clinical career has focused on cancer genetic counseling, other professional interests include mental illness/health, psychiatric genetics, pharmacogenomics, direct-to-consumer testing, patient education/advocacy, and public health genetics.

    In her spare time, Alena enjoys finding balance between mindful movement, cooking, spending time with family, finding new shows or podcasts to binge, and exploring the Pacific Northwest.

  • Christie Jett, MS, CGC
    Genetic Counselor

    Christie earned her Master of Science in Genetic counseling from Virginia Commonwealth University in 2009. Upon graduation, Christie practiced as a pediatric genetic counselor at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, VA. In 2016 she moved to Winchester, VA and joined Valley Health at the Winchester Medical Center, where she was instrumental in setting up genetic counseling services for Shenandoah Valley Maternal Fetal Medicine and the Oncology service line. Starting April 1st of this year, Christie joins Genetic Support Foundation where she will continue to support the genetic counseling needs of Valley Health system and patients. 

    Christie believes strongly that all patients deserve access to quality genetic counseling that is free from industry influence but also recognizes that this is a difficult task for some hospital systems, especially those serving rural areas. As a provider who struggled for years with that reality, Christie is excited to join the Genetic Support Foundation team and continue their work bringing quality care to patients and much needed support for solo genetic counselors. 

    Christie’s genetic counseling interests include hereditary cancer, pediatric genetics, utilization management, and teaching. Over the years, she has given lectures on genetic counseling and advancements in genetic testing to students at the University of Virginia, Shenandoah University, and public outreach events in Winchester, among others. In her spare time, she enjoys rock climbing, camping with her family, writing, and is always up for a good board game.

  • Sharisse Jimenez, MS, CGC
    Genetic Counselor

    Sharisse obtained her Master of Science in Genetic Counseling and Master of Arts in Bioethics from Case Western Reserve University in 2019. Sharisse has worked in a variety of roles since graduation including as a cancer genetic counselor at a community cancer center, for a genetic testing laboratory where she provided post-test genetic counseling to patients who had hereditary cancer genetic testing, and for a major insurance company reviewing genetic testing cases to determine medical necessity for all specialties. Sharisse is excited to join Genetic Support Foundation to work with patients and in medical outreach.

     

    Sharisse’s family is from Puerto Rico and she is proud to be a bilingual genetic counselor. She is passionate about providing access to genetic counseling and genetic testing to Spanish-speaking patients. Her graduate student thesis project was recently published in the Journal of Genetic Counseling and focused on the relationship and communication between Spanish-speaking genetic counselors and patients. She continues to do work with Spanish-language counseling as a part of the National Society of Genetic Counselors and regional genetics networks. She is also on the Board of Directors for the Colorado Ovarian Cancer Alliance where she is actively working on increasing awareness and providing education about genetic testing to Colorado’s Jewish and Spanish-speaking populations.

     

    In her free time she enjoys hiking, mountain biking, hot yoga, and traveling with her fiancé.

     

    Sharisse obtuvo su Maestría en Ciencias en Consejería Genética y Maestría de Artes en Bioética de Case Western Reserve University en 2019. Sharisse ha trabajado en una variedad de funciones desde que se graduó, incluso como consejera genética de cáncer en un centro oncológico comunitario, para un laboratorio de pruebas genéticas donde proporcionó consejería genética a pacientes que se hicieron una prueba genética de cáncer hereditario y, más recientemente, para una compañía de seguros donde revisa casos de pruebas genéticas en múltiples especialidades para determinar la necesidad médica. Sharisse está emocionada de unirse a Genetic Support Foundation para trabajar con pacientes y en alcance médica.

    La familia de Sharisse es de Puerto Rico y ella está orgullosa de ser consejera genética bilingüe. Le apasiona proveer acceso a consejería genética y pruebas genéticas a los pacientes hispanohablantes. Su proyecto de tesis de estudiante de posgrado se publicó recientemente en el Journal of Genetic Counseling y se centró en la relación y comunicación entre los consejeros genéticos hispanohablantes y los pacientes. Continúa trabajando con consejería genética en español como parte de la Sociedad Nacional de Consejeros Genéticos y las redes regionales de genética. También forma parte de la Junta Directiva de Colorado Ovarian Cancer Alliance, donde trabaja activamente para aumentar la conciencia y proveer educación sobre las pruebas genéticas a las poblaciones judías e hispanohablantes de Colorado.

    En su tiempo libre, disfruta de caminatas, ciclismo de montaña, yoga caliente y viajar con su prometido.

  • Austin McKittrick, MS, CGC
    Genetic Counselor

    Austin McKittrick grew up on the plains of South Dakota, and migrated to Colorado to get his Bachelors in Journalism and Mass Communication and in Psychology at the University of Northern Colorado. After a lengthy academic break spent working primarily in healthcare, he enrolled in the genetic counseling program at Sarah Lawrence College in New York, and graduated in 2014. Prior to starting at Genetic Support Foundation, he worked in prenatal genetics for Oregon Health and Science University in Portland, OR. Other areas of interest are cancer, education, fertility, personalized medicine, and alternative clinical service delivery models.

    Austin joined the Genetic Support Foundation in March of 2016 because he was inspired by the organization’s mission statement, and identified with the observation that there is a gap in information and education between the genetics community and providers and patients. With genetics being such a broad field, he appreciates the opportunities that the Genetic Support Foundation can offer to do work with many different areas.

    In his spare time, he enjoys reading, cooking, spending time with family and his two dogs Charlie and Murphy (last name Brown), camping, going to the beach, and probably watching way too much TV.

  • Viviane Pederson, MS
    Genetic Counselor
    Viviane Pederson (she/her) grew up in Oregon and earned her Bachelor's degree in Human Physiology from the University of Oregon in 2020. She then completed her Master's degree in Genetic Counseling at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2023. During her graduate training, Viviane became passionate about combining her love of art and science to create accurate, accessible, and inclusive medical illustrations. After graduating, Viviane joined the GSF team as a genetic counselor and graphic designer. In this role, she sees patients in cancer and prenatal settings and creates educational resources for community health centers. In her free time, Viviane enjoys crafting, playing instruments, and exploring new cities and the outdoors.
  • Jada Roberts, MS, CGC
    Genetic Counselor

    Jada is truly “Sooner born, and Sooner bred,” having received both her Bachelor of Science in Biology and her Master of Science in Genetic Counseling from the University of Oklahoma. Since graduating with her master’s degree in 2019, Jada has worked in both pediatrics and adult genetics with areas of particular interest including cancer and neurodegenerative disease. As an ardent supporter of the next generation of genetic counselors, Jada acts as supervisor, lecturer, and thesis chair to students through the University of Oklahoma Master of Science in Genetic Counseling program. Jada also volunteers as a local facilitator for SibShops – a respite program dedicated to reminding the siblings of children with rare conditions of their own uniqueness. In her free time, Jada enjoys weekly team trivia, theatre, reading and the *idea* of baking.

  • Jennifer Rietzler, MS, CGC
    Genetic Counselor

    Jennifer Rietzler obtained her Bachelor’s degree in Cytogenetics from Saint Mary’s University in Winona, Minnesota in 2012 and completed her Master’s degree in Medical Genetics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Medicine and Public Health in 2016. Shortly thereafter, she moved to Washington State to begin providing care as a Genetic Counselor.

    During her graduate training, Jennifer obtained a MCH LEND Certificate through participation in a leadership education program funded by the Maternal and Child Health Bureau which allowed her to gain experience in providing services and improving systems of care for individuals with neurodevelopmental and related disabilities. She also holds a certification in Consumer Health Advocacy through the Center for Patient Partnerships affiliated with the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

    Her clinical career has focused on prenatal genetic counseling with professional interests in women’s reproductive health, patient advocacy, public health genetics, outreach, and the teaching/supervision of genetic counseling graduate students. She is an active diplomat of the American Board of Genetic Counseling, is a full member of the National Society of Genetic Counselors, and is licensed to practice genetic counseling in the State of Washington and New Mexico.

  • Devin Shuman, MS, CGC
    Genetic Counselor

    Devin Shuman (she/her) received her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Smith College in Northampton, Massachusetts in 2014 and her Master’s degree in Genetic Counseling from the University of California, Irvine in 2017. She currently resides in Bellevue, Washington and is excited to join the Genetic Support Foundation team.

    In addition to her role at Genetic Support Foundation, Devin currently serves on the Medical Advisory Board for the GRIN2B Foundation and volunteers as the Young Adult Coordinator for the United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation. Prior genetic counseling roles have included working at a telehealth genetic counseling company, a high-risk maternal fetal medicine clinic, a neurodevelopmental clinic, and an autism family registry.

    Devin resides in Bellevue, Washington and is passionate about rare disease advocacy, public speaking, and inclusive care for LGBT and disability communities. On a typical Friday night, you’ll find Devin running a virtual support group for teens with mitochondrial disease – often with her Flemish giant rabbit or African grey parrot making an appearance.

  • Alyssa Stringfellow, MS, CGC
    Genetic Counselor

    Alyssa Stringfellow grew up in Northwest Indiana and obtained her Bachelor's degree in Genetics from Purdue University in 2017. She then completed her Master's degree in Genetic Counseling from the University of South Carolina School of Medicine in 2019. Shortly after graduating, Alyssa moved to Seattle, WA to begin her Genetic Counseling career. Alyssa's clinical career has focused on a diverse set of indications, including pediatric, general adult, neurology, cardiology and cancer genetic counseling. She has professional interests in patient education, health disparities, patient outreach/advocacy and supervision of genetic counseling graduate students. Alyssa joined the Genetic Support Foundation in August of 2021 because she resonated with the organization's mission to provide objective genetic information to patients, providers and healthcare organizations to improve quality of healthcare and access to genetic services. In her spare time, Alyssa enjoys camping/hiking, powerlifting, baking and spending time with her husband and two rescue dogs, Newman and Winston.

  • Amber Volk, MS, MA, CGC
    Genetic Counselor

    Amber Volk received her bachelor of science in genetics, cell biology and development from the University of Minnesota. Upon graduation, Amber began a diverse career in the technical service and sale of various genetic technologies in the molecular and diagnostic laboratory space. Continually drawn to the field of genetic counseling, Amber left industry with a desire to assist patients in understanding and interpreting their own genomic information. Amber obtained her master’s degrees, one in genetic counseling, the other in medical humanities and bioethics, from Northwestern University and began her career at Mayo Clinic in a multidisciplinary clinic.

    Amber is currently providing direct patient care services, both in person and through telehealth, in the Midwest. Beyond patient care, Amber enjoys providing education through blog posts, publication, or lectures, on genetics and surrounding ethical issues.

  • Rachel Westman, MS, CGC
    Genetic Counselor

    Rachel Westman received her bachelor’s degree in biology with a minor in bioethics from the University of Idaho in 2009, and her master’s degree in genetic counseling from the University of Pittsburgh in 2011. Prior to joining the Genetic Support Foundation, she worked with St. Luke’s Medical Center in Boise, Idaho helping develop and expand their general genetics, metabolic, & PKU clinics.

    Her focus has been on pediatric and adult general genetics, with a special interest in metabolics, newborn screening, and neuromuscular genetics.  In addition, she provides care in the prenatal setting.  Rachel resides in Boise, and is interested in expanded access to genetic counseling services in rural and underserved populations. 

Board of Directors

Dan Bellissimo, PhD President
Mark Johnson, PhD Treasurer
Jessie Conta, MS, CGC Board Member
James Hagstrom, PhD Board Member
Mary Norton, MD Board Member
Jacob Hogue, MD Board Member
Cobie Whitten, PhD Board Member
Stephanie Meredith Board Member

Our Story

Genetic Support Foundation (GSF), a charitable nonprofit 501c3, is the result of a vision that our president and founder, Jon Wolff, MD, dreamed of throughout his lengthy career in medical genetics. Dr. Wolff’s passion for genetics and advances in the field, along with a deep appreciation for genetic counselors, led to the formation of the only nonprofit devoted to genetics.

On April 17, 2020, Dr. Jon Wolff passed away following a journey with esophageal cancer. Learn more about his life and legacy.

GSF has been serving clinics and patients in need of genetic counseling services since 2012.

Genetic Support Foundation really comes down to three main elements: genetics, decision-making, and you. These elements are reflected in our logo and help tell our story.

Genetics

Genetics

The DNA strand running through the middle of our logo highlights our core. GSF’s primary focus is genetics. We strive to be up-to-date on advances in genetics and genetic testing and bring that information to you.

Our depth of expertise and our objectivity set us apart from other leading online resources about genetics. You won’t find surface information — we dig deep. And unlike genetic testing companies, we are not selling you a product so we can be objective about the information we provide.

Decision-making

Decision-making

The arrow in the upper right corner of our logo reminds you that GSF’s goal is to provide you the objective information you need to make decisions that are right for your health and that of your family.

You

You

The DNA is surrounded by parts of circles and squares. Like in a family history chart, those parts of our logo represent the way that your unique genetic makeup is connected to your family and the way that genetic health requires a holistic approach to care.

Whether you are a patient, provider, or part of a healthcare organization, GSF is here to support you.

Careers

Job Title: Patient Services Coordinator (Hourly, Non-Exempt)
Location: Olympia, WA  -OR-  Remote Position (Must reside in Washington or Oregon)

About Genetic Support Foundation:
Do you dream of doing something new and different? Genetic Support Foundation (GSF) is seeking dedicated, caring people to build our team and further our mission. GSF is a small telehealth and patient advocacy nonprofit dedicated to improving the quality of healthcare by providing up-to-date, objective genetic information to patients, providers, and healthcare organizations. We are a growing team of professionals that value compassionate care of our patients.

Purpose of Job: 

This administrative position supports and assists Genetic Support Foundation’s genetic counselors with clinical work and outreach projects.

Essential Functions: 

Assist genetic counselors with duties as follows:

*Support with scheduling patients.

*Communicate with patients and referring providers regarding scheduling and insurance questions. 

*Coordinate gathering relevant patient records from other medical facilities.

*Assist with insurance pre-authorization, and other insurance needs.

*Maintaining records in our electronic EHR. 

*Answer and resolve routine phone inquiries and triage calls to genetic counselors.

*Perform associated administrative or clerical tasks, which may include special projects and correspondence.

Necessary Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities to Perform the Job:

*Organized with good attention to detail.

*Ability to work independently and develop office standard operating procedures.

*Dependable and reliable.

*Willingness to ask questions and work as a part of a remote-team.

*Comfort with learning new technology.

*Ability to maintain patient confidentiality, as guided by HIPAA. 

Requirements:   

Minimum of 2 years of related healthcare and/or administrative experience

Conditions of Employment:

Successful candidates must submit to a post-offer criminal background check.

Working Conditions:

*Full-time position - 8:00 am-5:00 pm Pacific Time Zone

*If working in person, a shared office location in Olympia WA will be provided

*If working remotely, must have private, secure space with reliable internet access. Technology (phone, computer, etc.) needed to perform duties will be provided.

Pay and Benefits

Wage Range:  $18-25/hour, depending on experience

 Benefits:

*Health and dental insurance

*Paid time off, sick leave and paid holidays

How to Apply: 

Please email a cover letter and resume to info@geneticsupport.org. Incomplete applications will not be considered.

Genetic Support Foundation is committed to a working environment that prohibits discrimination and harassment of any type and affords equal employment opportunities to employees and applicants without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law. If accommodations are needed to participate in the job application or interview process, to perform essential job functions, and/or to receive other benefits and privileges of employment, please include details in your contact to info@geneticsupport.org.

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