Our Staff

The strength of the team is each individual member. The strength of each member is the team

Phil Jackson

Our Staff and Advocates

Evett Ellis – Executive Director

Originally from Coolidge, Arizona, Evett graduated from Central Arizona College with an Associates of Arts in Liberal Studies, studied Psychology at Northern Arizona University, and went on to receive her Bachelors of Science in Sociology from Arizona State University. Mother of 4, Evett came to Support Within Reach with over 15 years of professional experience from working with the Gila River Indian Community Tribal Social Services in various roles including: Acting Administrator to Youth Services Coordinator and working with partnering local agencies, such as the GRIC Police Department and local Government. She has experience as a Case Manager/Health Care Coordinator, working with High and Low needs, SMI Adults with Mental Disabilities, and Psychiatric Hospital as a Health Unit Coordinator working with Acute High needs Adults and Youth also. Evett was a trainer/Group Facilitator of Residential Child & Youth Care Professional Curriculum, Mood Management, Managing Aggressive Behaviors, IOP (Intensive Out Patient Groups), and SOP (Substance Outpatient Groups).

Fun Fact: I drove on snow and ice covered roads for the first time in 2021 when I moved to Minnesota.

Elizabeth Brown – County Supervisor

Sherry Shadley – County Supervisor

Sherry is responsible for supervising staff and programs in Itasca and Aitkin County.  She is based in the Grand Rapids, MN office. She has facilitated a number of prevention education collaborative projects with other community partners, served as agency leadership on sexual and domestic violence Community Coordinated Response teams, and, successfully organized a number of special events, such as sex trafficking community forums, topic-focused conferences, trauma-informed trainings for law enforcement and county prosecutors, candidate forums and Annual Fiesta Fundraiser.

Fun fact: Purple is one of my favorite colors, which is fitting since I share my birthday with Prince.

Leslie Arndt – After Hours On-Call Advocate

Leslie Arndt has been with Support Within Reach since August of 2021. She is an After Hours Advocate for Northwestern Mn, covering 4 county service area. Leslie graduated in 2020 from Lake Superior College with an Associate of Applied Science in Legal Studies and a Legal Secretary Certification; she is currently pursuing a Bachelors in Social Work with an emphasis in Addictions and LADC certification pathway from Bemidji State University. 

She came to Support Within Reach through a requirement of the Social Work program, first as a volunteer and then as an After Hours Advocate, facilitating professional and personal growth within her degree path. Leslie is a survivor of childhood abuse, sexual violence, and domestic violence. She unites her experience as a survivor within her role as an After Hours Advocate. She deals firsthand with the victims of sexual violence through a lens of compassion and understanding.

Fun fact about Leslie: She grew up outside Bemidji on her family’s golf course, which they still own and operate today.

Gabrielle Congrave – Northwest Regional Navigator

Gabrielle Congrave Baggenstoss has been with Support Within Reach since December of 2019. She is the Safe Harbor Regional Navigator for Northwestern MN, covering a 14 county service area. Her work includes professional trainings, community awareness presentations, consultation, referrals, and outreach. She chairs the HAASTE task force (Headwaters Alliance Against Sexual Trafficking and Exploitation). Gabrielle is a survivor of commercial sexual exploration and trafficking. She incorporates her experience as a writer and yoga teacher into her work with clients.

Fun fact about Gabrielle: I live in the middle of a 40 acre forest named Urskog (Norwegian for primeval forest or wildwood) with my husband, 2 sons, and 3 cats. I hope to eventually offer camping, yoga, and art retreats for survivors and the providers who serve them.

Mercy Webber – Cass County Coordinator; Advocate

Marcy has been with Support within Reach since May of 2017. She works in the Walker Office and is the Cass County Sexual Violence Services Coordinator. As in all outlying offices, Marcy does all client services in Cass County, which includes peer counseling and medical, law enforcement and prosecution advocacy. Marcy chairs a multidisciplinary team to help ensure victim centered responses in Cass County and she also gives presentations to schools and other community members.

Fun Fact: Marcy graduated from the University of Minnesota- St Paul and she has four grown children and three grandsons.

– SEY and Clearwater County Coordinator; Advocate

Angie Ness-Byer – Hubbard County Coordinator; Advocate

Riley Irish – BSMART and Criminal Court Coordinator; Advocate

Riley has been with SWR since January, 2020 and works in the Bemidji office as the Criminal Court Advocate and the Coordinator of the Beltrami County Sexual Assault Multidisciplinary Action Response Team (BSMART). As this coordinator, he organizes and facilitates monthly meetings to over 20+ local organizations and agencies located throughout Beltrami County Riley provides our clients legal assistance, whether it’s filing for a Harassment Restraining Orders (HRO) or Order for Protection (OFP), preparing them for Court, attending Court Hearings with them, walking clients through the Criminal Court process, and being an advocate for our clients by helping them in any way he can.

Fun fact: I competed in Archery for 7 years and made it to Nationals 3 times.

Kortney Carlin – Outreach and Prevention Coordinator; Advocate

She has been with Support Within Reach since February, 2020 and works in the Bemidji office as the Outreach and Prevention Education coordinator. Kortney also is the Bemidji State and Northwest Technical College Advocate and work closely with the University, as well as the others in the area, to assist students who have a history of sexual assault before or while attending the school. She does presentations within the community to help raise awareness. Kortney also go to schools within Beltrami County to present to students of all ages to educate them on safe/unsafe touch and sexual violence. She also conducts the 40 Hour Mandated Advocate Training.

Fun Fact: I speak Spanish. I graduated from BSU with a BA in Spanish Language and culture.

Charlie McGregor – SEY and Criminal Court Coordinator; Advocate

Charlie has been with Support Within Reach since July, 2020 and works in the Grand Rapids office as the Court Advocate and Sexually Exploited Youth (SEY) Coordinator. They have previous experience helping both survivors and at-risk youth. When not assisting clients, Charlie works on CASE (Community Against Sexual Exploitation), a community-based group focused on raising awareness about the sexual exploitation of youth in Itasca county.

Fun Fact: I am obsessed with houseplants and dogs. I’m always ready to talk about houseplants and pet a dog.

Kori Nelson – Development and Outreach Coordinator; Advocate

Kori has been with Support Within Reach since April, 2021, after previously taking a break from advocacy and originally started in April of 2019. Through development and outreach, Kori develops fundraising campaigns, manages incoming donations, and provides basic outreach and Safe Bars training. Her main role as an advocate is to support victims and survivors of sexual violence through their healing journey for however long it takes. Kori maintains and recruits volunteers and interns for our Volunteer Program. She also conducts the 40 Hour Mandated Advocate Training.

Fun Fact: I love rats! I hate fish! My favorite color is purple!

Leah Laucamp – ICSAIC/SANE and Aitkin County Coordinator; Advocate

Leah has been working at Support Within Reach as the Itasca County Sexual Assault Interagency Council (ICSAIC) & Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) Programs Coordinator since August, 2020. She also coordinates programs for Aitkin County and is a sexual assault victim advocate. As the ICSAIC coordinator she facilitates meetings, programs, and trainings for agencies that are involved in responding to victims of sexual violence. As the SANE program coordinator, Leah trains nurses on performing sexual assault exams, maintains supplies at hospitals, and makes sure hospitals are up to date on sexual assault response protocols. Leah has an education background in nursing.

Fun Fact: Leah loves road trips and has been to both US coasts and Mexico multiple times.

Christina Jackson – IT and Office Assistant

Christina Jackson started her position as Support Systems Coordinator in March 2021. Her main roles are to assist the Executive Director and also serve as Technical Support for all the staff. She has lived in Bemidji since 1996 and received an Associate’s Degree from Bemidji State University. She is married and has 3 lovely children.

Fun Fact: She likes to hike, go camping, garden and make delicious food like Indian Curry.

Katy Carpenter

Board Members

  • Marian Barcus
  • Staci Jergenson
  • Paul Meyer
  • Jim Hodgson


  • Simone Intriago
  • Yvonne Parr
  • Alexis Bowland
  • Breanna Sistar
  • Jewel Kraus
  • Madison Weyker