OUR STAFF

cathy.png
CATHY CHALMERS, MA, LPC, NCC, LMFT
Executive Director

Cathy Chalmers began her career working in the first psychiatric treatment center for children and adolescents in the United States, Shadow Mountain Institute, in Tulsa, OK.  Her thirteen years at the inpatient hospital and residential treatment center led her to specific work treating families, children and adolescents: working in the field of adoption, attachment, trauma and advocating for permanency placements for children.  

 

Cathy helped co-found an international organization, ATTACh (Association for Training on Trauma in the Attachment of Children) in 1987, initially serving on their board of directors and now is a member of the advisory board.  She has also worked at Tulsa Developmental Pediatrics and Center for Family Therapy, alongside a treatment team of developmental pediatricians and psychologists, providing individual and family therapies.  She served on the board of CASA and was president of The Attachment Network, a local board advocating for attachment concerns of families and children. 

 

After the birth of her children, Cathy conducted domestic and international adoption home studies and worked in the legal system to secure permanency placements for children, tackling the complex issues of best interests and placements of native children.  She is the co-author of Nurturing Healthy Attachment: Building Parent-Child connections to Last a Lifetime, with Dr. Barbara Sorrels and has been a contributing writer to Fostering Families magazine. 

 

Cathy has worked in the field of adoption, attachment and family therapy for 40 years as a therapist, trainer and home study provider.  She is a member of the Oklahoma Bar Association, family section and National Indian Child Welfare Association.  Cathy is a qualified expert witness in child development, attachment and ICWA and has testified in court cases involving best interests and the Indian Child Welfare Act, in numerous counties in the state of Oklahoma. She is the proud mother of two adult daughters.

Anna headshot3.JPG
ANNA KELTNER
Program Development & Curriculum

Anna Keltner has been an educator for 15 years, working with children ages birth to 6th grade. During her years of service, Anna has worked in the classroom and in the community to create effective, safe learning environments for all children.  

She received her B.S. in Elementary Education from the University of Oklahoma. During her time in Norman, working at a local crisis shelter for women and children, she discovered her passion for advocating for children from hard places. She went on to earn her M.S. in Educational Studies with a Graduate Certificate in Mind, Brain, & Teaching from Johns Hopkins University.

In 2016 Anna joined Connected Kids as a teacher at their therapeutic preschool. She now focuses on program and curriculum development for Connected Kids.

Anna has been married to the love of her life for 15 years and is the mother of three young boys. 

krista-connected-kids.png
KRISTA MACIAS
Administrative Assistant

Krista Macias is the daughter of Dr. Barbara Sorrels.  While growing up Krista became passionate about working with children, especially children from hard places, through the example and inspiration of her mother.   She received her B.S. in Early Childhood Education and graduated Summa Cum Laude from Texas Christian University.  Krista served as an elementary teacher for four years in the Ft. Worth Independent School district.  She currently is currently homeschooling her two young children, leads a nature club for children in her neighborhood and is the host of the podcast, Nurturing the Heart of the Child, which she produces with her mother.  Krista has also served as a children’s pastor for a church plant in the metroplex. 

 

Her favorite things include relaxing on the porch with a latte, enjoying the outdoors, watching children fully emersed in play-based learning and creating outdoor learning experiences for children. 

Krista has been married to her wonderful husband for 9 years and they have two incredible kids whom she is currently homeschooling.