Who We Are

Board of Directors

Cait Schneider (she/her)

Co-President

Cait is a longtime Eastside Lansing resident, where she co-parents two amazing kids, renovates houses, and runs a community garden. She is passionate about LGBTQIA+ empowerment and creating healing through shared spaces of joy. Currently, she is the garden director at a low-income housing nonprofit, where her work addresses the intersectional barriers to healthy food access. You can frequently find her at the Allen Farmers Market or Babe's Corner, laughing very loudly.

Chelsea Fristoe (she/her)

Chelsea Fristoe grew up in Lafayette, Indiana and came to Michigan for her Master's program at MSU in 2008. She decided Lansing was a pretty cool place, and has lived here ever since. Chelsea is passionate about community, dogs, and the power of strong communication. Outside of work, she enjoys being outdoors, renovating her 1927 home, traveling, and spending time with her wife and their many fur children. She is thrilled for the opportunity to serve on the Salus Center Board of Directors and looks forward to continuing to expand the resources available for the LGBTQIA+ community of Greater Lansing.

Emily Hill (she/they)

Emily Hill is a social worker and therapist with her own practice, Rising Tide Wellness and Education, in East Lansing. Outside of work, Emily enjoys sharing meals with loved ones, snuggling cats, listening to and writing music, and going for hikes.

Frank Vaca (he/they)

Frank is an autistic and LGBTQ+ person who is a seasoned advocate championing for disability justice and LGBTQ+ equity & inclusion in the workplace. They are a sexuality educator for the Michigan Developmental Disability Council, and they also work in the Michigan Disability Rights Coalition.

Jae Puckett (they/them)

Jae Puckett is an Assistant Professor of Psychology at Michigan State University. They also direct a research team (Trans-ilience) focused on the experiences of stress and resilience in transgender and gender diverse communities. As a clinical psychologist they also provide therapy services at Wild Ferns Wellness. In their spare time, Jae enjoys gardening and spending time outdoors.

Julia Kramer (she/they)

Secretary

Julia Kramer is a queer white person who lives and works in the Eastside neighborhood of Lansing. She is currently employed as the Farmers Market and Food Pantry Manager at Allen Neighborhood Center. She serves as a board member of the Capital United Land Trust and the Michigan Farmers Market Association, and she serves as the chair of the Capital Area Food Council. They are interested in cultivating queer joy, interdependence, and strategies to move us towards a more equitable and pleasurable community.

Karalyn Grimes (they/them)

Karalyn Grimes is a fifth-generation Lansing resident on lands maintained for generations by the Anishinaabe people. They hold a BA in Environmental Studies from Oberlin College and currently work as the Strategist and Storyteller for Michigan Student Power Network. Karalyn loves queer farming, queer Midwesterners, and queer joy. They have learned deeply from adrienne marie brown, Malcolm X, Marsha P Johnson, Bayard Rustin, eli claire, and bees. Talk to them about tabletop roleplay games, building out a van to live in, crip theory, and whatever makes your heart hum.

Lauren Wiklund (she/her)

Lauren is a cisgender queer woman of color and first-generation graduate student currently pursuing a PhD in Clinical Psychology. Her research and clinical work is committed to empowering LGBTQIA+ people of color to lead healthy and joyful lives. She is grateful to be able to serve Salus Center and the greater Lansing community as a member of the executive board.

Mercuri is white with short brownish hair. They are wearing glasses and a green bowtie.

Mercuri Rose (they/them)

Co-President

Mercuri has worn a number of figurative (and literal) hats around the center over the years and they’re honored to volunteer as a board member today! Mercuri’s previous figurative hats: deeply enthused volunteer hosting Bingo and game nights (2017-19); first MSW Salus Center Intern (2018-19); part-time Salus staff as volunteer and event coordinator (2019); TRUE group facilitator with Child and Family Charities’s Gateway Division (2019-21). Mercuri is currently working to build their therapy practice at Transformative Therapy through Wild Ferns Wellness. When not working you might find them in the woods, snuggling their cat, reading queer YA fiction, or chatting around a bonfire with friends.

Rizza Benton (they/them)

Rizza Benton is the owner of an inclusive hair salon named Roots Hair Lounge. The salon is located in Wild Ferns Wellness, an LGBTQ wellness center. When not doing hair, they are relaxing with their cat or having fun and doing family things with their partner Sydney and kid Oliver.

Rosalie Esquivel (she/they)

Rosalie is a queer woman residing in Old Town Lansing with their loving partner and lively Australian Shepherd x Border Collie mix puppy. Rosalie has served the public in a variety of volunteer and educational roles, including AmeriCorps and Peace Corps. They enjoy getting to know their community through involvement in organizations like the Salus Center. In their free time, Rosalie likes to experiment with cooking new recipes, and explore the beautiful nature and delicious craft beer that Michigan has to offer.

Scotty Secrist (no 3rd-person pronouns)

Scotty Secrist grew up in Rochester, Indiana but currently resides in East Lansing with a sassy English Bulldog named Brody. Scotty attended Purdue University, Loyola University Chicago, and most recently earned a Ph.D. from MIchigan State University in Higher, Adult, and Lifelong Education. As a university administrator, Scotty is passionate about making the world a more just place through education and community organizing. Scotty is thrilled to join the Salus Center team, and looks forward to making many meaningful connections.

Tyler Dyke (he/him)

Treasurer

Coming Soon!

Staff

Claire Leslie (they/them)

Graphic Designer

Claire is trilled to pour their creative energy into digital design for Salus. They plan on becoming a family therapist to work with Transgender and genderqueer youth. Most days, Claire can be found burning pancakes or reading queer books.

Claire is a white person wearing glasses and rainbow tie-dye. They are standing in front of Salus Center.
Frank is a white person with short dark hair. He is wearing glasses and a blue button up.

Frank Heveran (he/him, they/them)

Event and Volunteer Coordinator

Frank joined the Salus team as a coordinator. He spends his time outside of work playing Dungeons & Dragons, hanging out with his cat Bailey, and trying to learn banjo left handed. He’s always happy to share some of his sourdough starter (named Salamander or Sal for short).

Linden Brown-Wren (they/them)

Communications Director

Linden lives in East Lansing and spends their time as a proud spouse and a stay at home Mapa to 3 kids. They have been with Salus Center since its opening and currently act as communications director. They are passionate about LGBTQIA+ families, youth, and general community outreach.

Linden is a white person wearing flannel. They are in a garden with their young child.
Amber is a Black person wearing glasses and a blue gingham button up.

Nico Wormsley (they/them)

Financial Advisor

Nico received their BS in accounting from Florida A&M University and has 10 years of accounting experience. Most of their career was spent with Fortune 500 companies and has since transitioned to help smaller companies understand their financials and implement financial processes.