Jami Hayes


Jami Hayes, as the Executive Director at YouthZone, brings over 20 years of hands-on working experience with youth and families. Her various roles in schools as kindergarten, first grade, special education, instructional coach and leader provide a unique perspective into the needs of communities. Through the lens of social justice and equity, she truly understands that health and wellness begins at the heart of our communities with our youth and families. Jami believes that positive community engagement is the driving force in behavior and mindset change. All youth are worthy and capable of growth which leads to positive generational change for families and communities. 

Jami has supported youth and families through her work as a restorative practitioner, behavioral interventionist, school administrator, and advocate for youth with disabilities. Currently, she is working toward revising systems to increase YouthZone's overall effectiveness through feedback, development of annual listening tours, and analyzing data. This is more important than ever as YouthZone is the leading organization for diversion in the 9th Judicial District in Colorado.

Jami earned her degrees in Organizational Leadership, Cultural and Linguistic Diversity, and Reading Specialist at numerous universities. She has been trained to facilitate professional development in restorative practices, responsive and proactive circles, and conferencing in high conflict with youth. When Jami is not serving her community as a nonprofit leader, she can be found trail running, mountain biking, and rafting with her 2 boys, Sam (16) and Levi (12) and her dog, Tucker.

Phone: 970-930-6545

Email: [email protected]


Lyn Willams


Lyn Williams joined YouthZone in June 2023 after working the first part of his career in public education. He has worked with teens for over 20 years in many diverse settings, ranging from the backcountry to public-school classrooms. Lyn always does his best to bring presence, compassion, and a “how can I help” ethic to his work within Youth Zone and beyond. He firmly believes that life is a journey with no set path, and we can always change course when necessary.

I firmly believe that when we're solely on our own, we don't have a chance; together we're stronger.

Email: [email protected]


Ali Naaseh-Shahry


Ali Naaseh-Shahry is a Colorado native who holds degrees in international public policy from University of Colorado (BA) and University College London (MSc). He moved to western Colorado in 2015 to teach six-and-under ski school at the Aspen Skiing Company. Ali has taught a wide variety of academic and experiential subjects to people of all ages. Most recently, he worked as a special education teacher with the Roaring Fork School District, where he used data-driven decision making to improve his delivery of specialized instruction. Ali enjoys lift-access powder skiing, raft-access fly fishing, and spending time with his cats.

Working for YouthZone is exciting because I get to play an active role in the development of our beautiful mountain communities and the people who live, work, and play here.


Tania Beltran


Tania Beltran grew up in the Roaring Fork Valley and graduated from RFHS back in 2009. She has a wonderful son (Santiago) with whom she loves spending her free time with.

I choose to work with Youthzone because I love being a part of a team that focuses on building strong families and providing a safe community for our youth. I am blessed to work with such a caring organization.


Vanessa Otero


Vanessa Otero is a long time local of the Roaring Fork Valley. She enjoys spending time with her daughter and continuing to perfect her makeup skills as a licensed cosmetologist, loves the colors Colorado has to offer in the fall, and being out in nature. Vanessa is super excited to be part of an organization that promotes equity and inclusion and focuses on strengthening families and their youth.

"Be one percent better than yesterday."  -Unknown


Airen Goodman


Airen is the Program Director at YouthZone and the CYDC Senate Bill 94 Coordinator for the Ninth Judicial District.Airen holds a Masters Degree in Psychology with an emphasis in Mediation and Conflict Resolution. Airen’s background and skills include mental health counseling, crisis intervention, restorative justice, and mediation. Airen moved to Colorado from Utah and started working with YouthZone in August, 2018. She enjoys spending time with her family and playing in the outdoors.

I feel privileged to be a part of YouthZone’s amazing work.

Phone: 970-930-6550

Email: [email protected]


Paula Johnson Hall, LPC, LAC, NCC


Paula Hall is an experienced leader with a dedicated focus on improving the lives of young people, families, and communities. Her professional experience includes working in multiple community settings: hospitals, public schools, crisis response, foster care programming, and substance use disorder treatment. In addition to community building and support, Paula has worked with employee assistance programs, residential treatment centers, multiple military installations, and other contract and private practice work. Paula loves living in the RFV, and tries to spend as much time outside as possible.

Paula holds a B.S. in Psychology and Criminology from Arkansas State University, M.S. in Counseling Psychology from Southwestern University, and completed the required post-graduate clinical studies at Henderson State University. She also holds a certification in Organizational Leadership, with an emphasis in diversity, equity, and inclusion from Rice University. Her professional credentials include: Licensed Professional Counselor-Supervisor (LPC-S) in Arkansas and Colorado, Licensed Addiction Counselor (LAC), Distance Credentialed Counselor, and she is a Nationally Credentialed Counselor (NCC).

Email: [email protected]


Sarai Quintana


Sarai Quintana was born in Chihuahua, Mexico, raised in Dallas, Texas, and moved to the Roaring Fork Valley in 2014. For the last 9 years, she has worked closely with youth and their parents in her communities. Some of Sarai's background and skills include Prevention Work Models, Motivational Interviewing, Trauma Informed Care, Case management, and adopting a multi-generational approach when working with families. Sarai is also bilingual and bicultural; and understands the different cultural views within the Latino Community. In her spare time, Sarai enjoys practicing her photography skills, hiking, and trying out new restaurants.

Email: [email protected]


Chelsea Smith


Chelsea Smith has been working with children and teens in diverse settings for over 10 years. Her curiosity around Restorative Justice Practices first sparked while in social work school. During that time, she took a course with Longmont Community Justice Partnership which further developed her passion for finding creative solutions to heal communities. Most recently, Chelsea worked as a district social worker within Roaring Fork Schools. Chelsea brings a collaborative approach to her work and is excited to join the Youth Zone team. When not practicing social work, you may find Chelsea on the slopes, on her yoga mat, with her family, or doing improv.

I believe authenticity is key to connection, in the words of Fred Rogers, “I think children and adults long to be in touch with what’s real. Don’t you?”


Erin Greenwald


Erin Greenwald has over 14 years of real-life practice in the recovery community. She has experience facilitating groups and mentoring young women. She is a Certified Addiction Technician and holds a bachelor's degree in Sociology from CU Boulder. Erin was raised in the Roaring Fork Valley and both her kids graduated from Coal Ridge High School. Erin is a passionate mother dedicated to helping and making a difference in her community.

"Your greatest contribution to the universe may not be something you do, but someone you raise" - Unknown


Michelle Lopez


Michelle Lopez has a bachelor's degree in Human Behavior and is currently enrolled in a graduate program for Mental Health and Wellness with Grand Canyon University. Michelle’s background includes working in schools and substance work in the mental health field.

I happy to be at YouthZone as I love working with youth and families. It’s also a privilege to be able to give back to the same community that I grew up in and gave so much to me in my youth years.


Keri Sorenson


Keri Sorenson,an associate degree holder with a minor in psychology, has devoted over seven years of her life to the recovery community, serving as a mentor and active member. Witnessing the struggles of individuals dealing with addiction and trauma from an early age, Keri felt a potent drive to help others on their healing journeys. She put this passion into action as a Recovery Technician for a women’s inpatient treatment center for two years. In her free time, she loves having fun with her 2 daughters, going to concerts, traveling, camping, cooking, scrapbooking, watching the Denver Broncos play, hiking and basically doing anything outdoors!

At YouthZone, I eagerly tap into her robust experience and expertise to remind teenagers that they are WORTH IT and can realize any dream they uphold.


Travis Wilson


Travis Wilson will be supporting YouthZone clients alongside our Direct Service Staff and coordinating the expansion of The Space. He is originally from Western Georgia and has lived in the Roaring Fork Valley for seven years. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Sustainable Studies from Colorado Mountain College with a focus in Human Relations. Travis’ work with youth began as a counselor/mentor for a local children’s theatre summer program and eventually becoming a theatre teacher for youth at Colorado Mountain College. When he is not working with youth in some form, you can find Travis performing on stage throughout the Roaring Fork Valley or enjoying the beautiful nature of Colorado.

I chose to work for YouthZone because of my love for working with children and desire to see them thrive in their lives with all the support they need. To quote a brilliant performer, “I believe the children are our future. Teach them well and let them lead the way. Show them all the beauty they possess inside.”.

Phone: 970-309-4634

Email: [email protected]


Silvia Barragan


Silvia Barragan was born in Mexico, raised in Washington state, and moved to Colorado in 2000. She has over 20 years experience working in the Social Services field in the Roaring Fork Valley, is bilingual, bicultural, and culturally informed of our large Latino population. As a mother of three kids who grew up and attended school in the valley, Silvia is very invested in the community and helping young people be successful.

I like working with YouthZone, because YouthZone has an understanding of the challenges youth have and provides youth a safe place to be able to be themselves.

Email: [email protected]


Mariah Dickson


Mariah Dickson started her career as a teacher, determined to do everything possible to provide an outstanding education for EVERY kid.  She taught high-school English for 10 years, coached teachers and developed Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessments in a wide range of schools for the next 22 years, and then returned to teaching at Glenwood Springs High School in 2019.  She has a B.A. from Stanford University and an M.A. from Tufts University.

YouthZone provides the perfect opportunity for me to expand my lifelong mission of supporting teenagers in every way possible. As I learned from Winston Churchill, I should “never, never, never give up.”.

Email: [email protected]


Dewann Jones


Dewann Jones was born in Chattanooga, TN, and comes to Youth Zone from Memphis, TN. After obtaining his GED, he earned his associate degree from Southwest Community College. He later received his bachelor's degree in psychology with a minor in communication from the University of Memphis. Dewann is currently enrolled in their graduate program to obtain his master's degree in social work. In addition to having a bachelor's degree, Dewann is also a certified life coach. He describes himself as a determined man with a no-quit attitude. His professional background includes years of working as a functional skills teacher in the Shelby County public school system. He also worked as a teacher-counselor at a high-level at-risk youth facility. Dewann enjoys staying active. You can find him walking trails with his dog, biking, training for a marathon, or volunteering as a youth mentor in his free time.

"I see the world in all its beauty. I just see it in darkness. I will carry on; a new day will come."

Email: [email protected]