Amanda Heier, Executive Director
Karen Booth, MFTi, Senior Clinical Case Manager
Development, Communications & Marketing
Academic and Youth Enrichment
Vong Sokham, Staff Accountant
Jerry Maynard, Facilities Manager
Robert Benavidez joined Raphael House as Director of Finance and Operations on October 2010. He received a B.S. from the University of San Francisco in Applied Economics. Robert comes to Raphael House from New Leaf Services for Our Community where he served as Director of Finance and Human Resources. Prior to New Leaf Robert was Director of Finance and Administration for First Place for Youth. He has over 20 years experience in finance for both non-profit and for profit firms with experience in the areas of risk management, auditing, financial management/reporting, and investments. Robert’s key role is to manage the areas of financial administration, facilities, kitchen operations, and all information technology operations. He has volunteered over the last fifteen years for various non-profits in the Bay Area, the San Francisco Marathon and previously served as Chair for Bay Area Youth Running Partners currently known as Youth Run4Fun.
Karen Booth, a recent transplant to San Francisco, originally hails from Orange County, California. She studied Psychology at the University of California Santa Barbara, where she mentored peers in nutrition and eating disorders, and was instrumental in the management of the Peer Health Education team. Karen received her Masters degree in Clinical Psychology from Antioch University Santa Barbara. At the inception of her Marriage & Family Therapist career, Karen interned at two Santa Barbara-based programs - one working with the severely mentally ill, and another counseling clients in an eating disorder out-patient program. Karen enjoys music and volunteering, and combined these two passions for several years as an usher at the Santa Barbara Bowl. She has been enthusiastically exploring her new home San Francisco, and working as a Clinical Case Manager at Raphael House.
Victor Cobo is a Spanish-American artist from the San Francisco Bay Area. He was raised in Madrid, Spain and Santa Rosa, California. He has a BFA from California State University, Chico, where he was trained in life-drawing, painting and photography. Cobo's work is included in the collection of the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, the Berkeley Art Museum & Pacific Film Archive, The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, as well as many public collections.
Kate relocated to San Francisco from the east coast, where she was born and raised. She received a B.A. in Art from Marymount University and her M.A. in Counseling from The George Washington University. Kate worked as teacher for 7 years, is a National Certified Counselor, and has experience in both the school and community settings. She believes in the healing power of the arts and makes them an integral part of her work with children and families.
Karen is a passionate and committed advocate for those in need. She has a BA in Anthropology from San Francisco State University. Born and raised in Chicago, Karen has traveled the globe extensively to satisfy her wanderlust, an unquenchable curiosity to know and understand others, and to sample as many sweet and savory vegetarian delights as possible. Karen has taught ELL and Life Skills to Bhutanese refugees – she also became their housing advocate. Karen has worked extensively with individuals to assist them to reenter the workforce. She and her rescued cats are more than pleased to be returning San Francisco to be closer to family and friends, and to be part of the Raphael House of San Francisco team.
Chef Jay DiMaggio joined Raphael House in December 2012. Before joining our culinary team he was an event chef for Paula Le Duc Catering Services of Emeryville for six years. Before moving to San Francisco in 2002, Jay had trained in Chicago with such culinary luminaries as Toni Mantuano of Spiaggia Restaurant, David Burk of the Park Avenue Cafe and Le Meridien Hotel. Jay is a 1988 graduate of Le Cordon Bleu Culinary School of Chicago.
Ralitza is the Educational Enrichment Coordinator at Raphael House. She joined Raphael House 11 years ago as the Tutoring Club and Children’s Outings Coordinator leading the academic tutoring, filed trips and children’s festivals and events for several years. She now heads Academic Tutoring and Enrichment for children and ESL tutoring for adults. Ralitza holds a Master’s Degree in Education and a B.A. in English.
Clara recently relocated back to San Francisco after a two year hiatus in Denver, CO, during which she received her Master of Social Work and Master of Arts in International Studies degrees from the University of Denver. Prior to joining the Raphael House team, she worked at the Cooperative Restraining Order Clinic, connecting Latina women to the agency's legal services. While in Denver, Clara continued her work with survivors of domestic violence, providing counseling and advocacy services. She is continually amazed by the human capacity for recovery and growth, and is thrilled to be working as Bilingual Clinical Case Manager. Clara loves coffee, fabric arts, and aspires to one day be a great home chef.
Kimberly Fisher graduated from the University of San Francisco in 2009 with a major in Sociology and a minor in Psychology. At USF, Kimberly participated in various programs within the San Francisco community such as the Martín Baró Scholars and the Erasmus Program. In addition, for two years Kimberly was a Youth Case Manager, Resident Advisor and participated in the Residential Council for mostly freshmen and sophomore college students. Kimberly has worked for Raphael House since May of 2009 and enjoys working, interacting, and helping families. Kimberly plans to be a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner and enjoys visiting her home country, Belize.
Amanda Heier has over nine years’ experience leading the development of supportive housing and homeless services for low income adults in San Francisco. Before coming to San Francisco to specifically work in non-profit administration, she received a Bachelor of Social Work degree from the University of Texas at Austin. Prior to Raphael House, Mandy was the Executive Director for The Mary Elizabeth Inn. Her combined professional experience is focused on strategic planning, optimizing fiscal operations, developing organizational capacity, and increasing mission impact. Previously the Personnel Chair at Laurel Hill Nursery School, she currently sits on the Auction Committee for Creative Arts Charter School. Mandy lives in San Francisco with her husband and two young children.
Anna Hurtado joined Raphael House in 2008 as the ChildReach Program Supervisor. Since then, she has expanded AfterCare Services for both adults and children. Anna holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the Dominican University of California in English Literature and a minor in pre-law, a Master of Arts degree in Comparative Politics from San Francisco State University, and is currently working on a Master of Public Administration degree. Anna’s experience with families and children includes teaching literacy in Guyana, South America and volunteering at a summer camp for disadvantaged youth.
Camille grew up in the Los Angeles area, moving to the Bay Area to attend the University of California, Berkeley and received her B.A. in Economics. In 2007, she moved to San Francisco and began working in the Raphael House Development Department. Camille provides support for special events, helps manage our donor database, produces Newsletters and Annual Reports, and assumed the role as Grants Officer in January 2010. While in college, she interned at the Alta Bates Summit Foundation and later spent a semester abroad in Spain. In her free time, she enjoys camping with family and friends, and traveling to other countries, most recently spending two weeks in Panama.
Clif has recently started his 7th year at Raphael House. He first came to volunteer for the summer of 2003 while in graduate school in New York. He did various jobs, but mostly cooked breakfast. Upon completing his MDiv, he returned to Raphael House Christmas of 2004 to live and work. Clif received a position with the Residential Department, which guides the families through the daily life of Raphael House. The community here, as well as the families that seek shelter, helped him decide to make social services his career choice.
Kim came to Raphael House in September 2010, from California College of the Arts, where she managed media relations and promotions, and served as a member of the editorial team for the alumni magazine and website. Before CCA, she was a publicist for Jossey-Bass, an imprint of Wiley, specializing in books in nonprofit management, education, and psychology. Her interest in nonprofit advancement began when she interned abroad in the press office for Sadler’s Wells Theatre in London. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Creative Writing from San Francisco State University and an Associate in Arts in Communication from Endicott College. She grew up in Southern New Hampshire, just north of Boston, and enjoys traveling, writing poetry, and sharing a good meal with family and friends.
Preeti was born in England, and raised in Southern California. She moved to the San Francisco Bay Area nine years ago to attend the University of California, Berkeley. Since 2009, Preeti has provided support to many facets of the Children's Program, including Tutoring Club and Children's Evening Program. She currently supervises the ChildReach Program providing scholarships for extracurricular activities, organizing and hosting weekly field-trips and annual special events for the children of Raphael House. In her spare time, Preeti enjoys baking cakes, watching Masterpiece Mysteries, and strolling through Golden Gate Park.
India was born in Louisiana and moved to San Francisco at the age of two. In 2005, she began working as a part-time receptionist at Raphael House which later grew into a full time position. India attended Carrington College in San Leandro, Ca. which is where she received my certificate as a Licensed Vocational Nurse. Nursing has been a passion for her since the 5th grade. Helping people is something she is most passionate about which is why she enjoys working at Raphael House. Her goal is to continue her studies in nursing to become a Registered Nurse.
Serving as the Residential Program Coordinator since 2004, Elena strives to maintain a tranquil, home-like atmosphere in which our diverse families can overcome crisis and find stability. For many of those years, she lived at Raphael House alongside the residential families, an experience she finds to be crucial in learning how to foster a successful healing environment. Prior to her work at Raphael House, Elena studied music at a post-graduate level in her home country of Russia, taught children of various ages both privately and in academies, and performed with several musical groups.
Mauricio has been working for more than ten years in the non-profit sector, which incloudes six years of experience in working with homeless families in San Francisco. Mauricio has a Bachelor of Arts Degree in psychology from San Francisco State University with a minor in counseling. He is currently working in his Masters in Counseling Psychology at the Wright Institute in Berkeley and hopes to become a Licensed Marriage and Family therapist in the future. Mauricio is the proud father of a six-year-old boy which provides him with a deep understanding of the struggles of new and single parents. On his time off, Mauricio enjoys reading, exercising and playing with his four pets.
Harry recently joined Raphael House team of Chefs from Cabo Fresco in California’s Central Valley. Harry’s culinary experience began 7 years ago as a line cook leading to a position as a trainer which makes his an excellent candidate to lead our weekend baking club. He eventually worked as Sous Chef for both Elite Catering and Selectos Catering before joining Cabo Fresco. Harry graduated from the Culinary Arts Institute in 2005.
Vong came to San Francisco in 2007 and quickly felt at home professionally and personally. Born in Laos and raised primarily in the mid west, Vong has a passion for international travel. She graduated with a B.A. in English Literature and African American Studies from Purdue University. Vong comes with over a decade of experience in Administration & Finance and is excited about the opportunity of training and mentoring international Finance interns. In her spare time, she enjoys exploring the culinary diversity of Northern California, and being a new mom.
When visiting Raphael House, it is likely that Darlene will be the first person you will see. She will always greet you with a broad and warm smile and make sure that you find your way around our home. Darlene joined the Raphael House team on March of 2004 as a Residential Floor Manager after working at the Salvation Army as a House Manager for recovering addicts. After managing the second floor for two years, Darlene moved into her current position and has become a pillar of Raphael House.