Meet The Team
Branch Director - Richmond
Jana McDermott is an enthusiastic leader in the field of child safety and social justice, bringing with her ten years of leadership to the child advocacy center movement whose mission is to reduce trauma to children and families during coordinated physical and sexual abuse investigations. She earned her bachelor’s degree in sociology from the College of Charleston and her master’s degree in social work from the University of Buffalo. Jana is married to Mac, her love of 38 years. They have four children, three “daughters in love,” and one granddaughter.
Administrative Assistant - Richmond
Brenda has been the administrative assistant since April 2012. On any given day, Brenda is at the front desk waiting to greet clients and guests—assisting anyone who enters our doors. She loves the fact that she gets to meet new families with their adopted children. Brenda has her certificate in early childhood education and manages the office in its daily operations.
Pregnancy Counselor and TVAP Advocate - Richmond
Kelly joined the Bethany team in 2020 as a bilingual pregnancy counselor and advocate for victims of human trafficking. Kelly graduated in 2019 with her Master’s degree in Social Work from Florida Atlantic University. She has over 6 years of experience working in social services with families to achieve housing and financial stability. She advocates for her clients and is passionate about supporting you as you make a choice for the future of your family.
Adoption Specialist - Richmond
Laura joined Bethany Christian Services in September 2019 as a pregnancy counselor and adoption specialist. She brings 11+ years of experience in the child welfare field through foster care, waiting child adoption, and domestic adoption. Laura is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and holds her Master of Social Work degree from the University of Michigan. Her passion is to equip and prepare families for the lifelong journey of adoption.
SFFC Church Engagement Coordinator - Richmond
Lisa joined Bethany in March 2020. She is our Safe Families for Children Church Engagement Coordinator and her passion is bringing ministry from the church to the community. Lisa's background includes a decade of youth ministry, Christian education, and Christian camp management. She has served from the local church classroom up to managing state-level youth retreats and facilitating youth leader mentorship programs. Lisa is a passionate volunteer in the Virginia 4-H horse program. She has coached youth in Virginia to many national championships in public speaking and horse judging.
Wraparound Stabilization Services Therapist - Richmond
Abby joined the team in 2022 after relocating to Virginia from New York. She holds her Master of Social Work degree from New York University and is a licensed social work supervisee (LMSW) in New York and Virginia. Abby is passionate about supporting individuals and families who have experienced trauma and has experience providing therapy and clinical case management to survivors of human trafficking, torture, sexual assault, and intimate partner violence. She also has a certification in perinatal mental health (PMH-C) and is trained in EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) as well as other evidence-based modalities for treating trauma. Abby believes wholeheartedly in the resilience of the human spirit and in each client’s inherent dignity and worth.
Pregnancy Counselor & Adoption Specialist - Richmond
Ashley joined the Bethany Christian Services team in March 2020 after working as an intensive community-based mental health counselor in the Richmond area. Ashley is currently a resident in counseling and holds a bachelor's degree in psychology and a master's degree in counselor education from Virginia Commonwealth University. She is dedicated to offering supportive and compassionate counsel to expectant mothers and families experiencing unplanned pregnancies. As a pregnancy counselor, she walks alongside expectant parents in the decision-making process and ensures their needs and the needs of the child are being met.
Office Manager - Richmond
Audrey started with Bethany as a volunteer board member in June 2003. That same year she joined the staff as a secretary. Audrey is currently the Office Manager overseeing the Virginia administrative staff, managing day to day administrative needs, and assistant to the branch director.
Kristin O'Dell, LMSW
HS/PRS Supervisor and Post Adoption Social Worker - Richmond
Kristin has served with Bethany since 2003. She worked as an international adoption social worker for over 18 years seeing firsthand how children thrive in a loving, safe, and permanent family. Her involvement with the ministry continues today as a supervisor for the Home Study/Post Release Services program and a social worker with post adoption services helping members of the adoption triad connect and develop meaningful relationships with one another. Kristin has a bachelor’s and master’s degree in social work and is a licensed social worker in Virginia. She is blessed to be Ben’s wife and Norah and Brea’s momma.
Case Manager, Home Study and Post Release Services - Richmond
Patricia joined Bethany in 2021. She brings a wealth of experience and knowledge from previously working with the Office of Refuge Resettlement where she worked as a case manager to reunite unaccompanied refugee minors with their sponsor in the U.S. Patricia earned a Bachelor's Degree in psychology from the Dr. Jose Matias Delgado University of El Salvador, C.A. Patricia brings great joy and compassion to her work to support the vulnerable children that Bethany serves.
Ruth J. Maul
Case Manager, Home Study and Post Release Services - Richmond
Ruth joined the Bethany team in January 2022. She is an alumna of George Mason University, and an International Exchange Alumni of the U.S. Department of State. Ruth has over seven years of experience providing language services in legal settings for Latinx migrants, and three years of experience as a housing case manager for vulnerable groups who had experienced homelessness. Ruth is dedicated to creating a more equitable world for all, through social justice advocacy and community volunteering work. She is a proud member of both the citizen corps program of DC CERT, and the National Language Service Corps program of the Department of Defense. She is also the proud mother of three wonderful human beings and the grandma of four amazing grandbabies.