Those involved with COJ as staff, board members, and volunteers have endured the death of a loved one and hold compassion, understanding, and confidentiality as their core values. We would not be the service organization that we are today without them. Companions on a Journey bereavement specialists include:
Founder and Executive Director of Companions on Journey Grief Support. She is a Bereavement Support Specialist, lector, educator, facilitator, nationally published writer. Her education includes Miami University, American Academy of Bereavement- Nationally Trained/Certified Bereavement facilitator, Nationally Trained Advanced Bereavement Facilitator who was trained and worked with specialists and families after the Oklahoma City Murrah Federal Building bombing and in New York City after “9/11”. She is a commissioned trainer for the National Catholic Ministry to the Bereaved; Nationally Trained Facilitator through the American Foundation of Suicide Prevention for adults, children and teens, a Certified QPR Gate Keeper Instructor. She is a member of, Association of Death Education and Counseling, The National Alliance for Grieving Children, The American Academy of Bereavement and Grief Works, the Tri-State Suicide Prevention Coalition, The Partnership for Mental Health, Inc and The Association of Suicidology. She co-leads the bereavement ministry at St. Maximilian Kolbe parish and the Parish Bereavement Network. She has lead support groups for since 1996. Currently Sheila is part of a Development team with Cincinnati Children’s Hospital for her pioneering work in field post-vention to suicide and has been a keynote speaker for several Mental Health organizations to help in the prevention and post-vention of suicide. She has been recognized for her work with several awards which include: Women of the Year Award; Athena Award Finalist; Woman of Excellence; West Chester Chamber GBI award for outreach work to the community, Moeller Founder’s Day Award.
Ann Marie Kahwaty-Bogan, MSW, LISW-S:
An independently licensed social worker and child and family therapist, Ann Marie has worked in the community, working as Director of Social Work at Millcreek Psychiatric Center for Children and as the was the Director of Anchoring Families Together-(AFT) a Children’s Mental Health Center for crisis stabilization and community services in Cincinnati. Ann Marie has extensive experience in crisis intervention services with both adults and children. She has also served on the Board of Education in New Jersey.
John A Dorger M.Ed Retired School Psychologist:
John received his Master of Education in School Psychology and Counseling from the University of Cincinnati in 1991. He retired from Southern Ohio Education Service Center, Wilmington Air Park, Wilmington, Ohio in 2010. John was the education provider to school psychologist in 18 school districts. His experience is in counseling children, crisis response, special education and ongoing professional educator. John currently co-leads our Mending Hearts program for Grieving Children and is a member of our Crisis response team.
Tom is trained through the American Academy of Bereavement as an Advance Grief Facilitator. Leads Young Widowed and Men’s Grief groups for Companions. Employed at General Electric and is currently a Project Leader. Tom also retired in 2012 from Air Force Reserves as a SMSgt in Logistics after 33 years. He is certified in Statistical/Analytics through the Six Sigma Academy and holds a Government clearance. Tom is a Certified Communicator through Toastmasters, was Parish Council President for St. Maximillian Parish and has published articles about his and men’s grief. He holds AS and BS degrees in Mechanical Engineering and Industrial Management from the University of Cincinnati.
Patricia Buckley, BSW:
Bereavement Specialist trained through American Academy of Bereavement, certified QPR instructor. CMI crisis trained. She and Sheila Munafo-Kanoza founded the Teens in Grief Program at Moeller High School and Mt. Notre Dame High School. She provides support for the victims of violence as they work through the judicial system.
COJ Trained Facilitators
Julie Leonard Barnard