Meet Ayesha Bajwa Holmes, Executive Director
Ayesha Bajwa Holmes joined Grassroots in February 2017. She holds a Master’s Degree in Clinical Community Counseling from Johns Hopkins University and has over 20 years of experience leading community based non-profit organizations serving individuals, youth and families in various mental and behavioral health community based settings.
Prior to joining Grassroots, Ms. Holmes co-founded Stratigix Consulting, LLC as a way to offer technical assistance, coaching and consultation to communities and private organizations that wanted to see improved outcomes for individuals, youth and families.
Earlier, Ms. Holmes grew Maryland Choices from a single county project to its position as the Statewide Care Management Entity in less than eight years. Ms. Holmes also earned an Executive Certificate in Juvenile Justice and Child Welfare Multi-System Integration, from Georgetown University and worked in Baltimore City developing a continuum of care between substance abuse treatment and workforce development. In Baltimore County, Ms. Holmes developed and implemented Welfare to Work Transitional Daycare for young mothers.
Prior to her work in Baltimore County, Ms. Holmes worked at the Washington Village/Pigtown Neighborhood Planning Council (WPNPC) in Washington Village/Pigtown (WV/Pigtown), an Empowerment Zone neighborhood in Southwest Baltimore City. At WPNPC she lead the Family Support and Career Center as well as the Substance Abuse Program and the Youth Center.
Ms. Holmes serves as board member at the Center For Adoption Support and Education (C.A.S.E.), where she volunteers her time to develop services to support families and children through the challenges that sometimes come with adoption.
Meet Marcia Reichert, Business and Finance Manager
Marcia Reichert joined Grassroots in November 2016 as the Business and Finance Manager. Marcia has over 25 years experience working in Business and Government Accounting. Previously she worked as Senior Accountant, Controller, Account Manager, and Accountant with other companies. Marcia earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration and an MBA at Columbia Union College, and a Associate Degree (AA) and Certificate in Accounting from Montgomery College. Marcia is also a CPA Candidate and a member of the American Institute of Professional Bookkeepers (AIPB). She is currently Lead Accountant and Board Member at Jesus Tabernacle Church, and Treasurer for Jesus Tabernacle Holdings. Marcia was a former Treasurer for Christ Community Church for six years. Marcia is very passionate about helping less fortunate girls and women excel in the workforce. She utilizes her business skills on a volunteer basis to mentor, train, and prepare women to be ready for change and to be empowered in the workforce.
Meet Kathie DiNoto, Director of Shelter Services
Kathie DiNoto has 30 years experience working with homeless individuals and families. After graduation from Towson State University in 1977, she joined VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America) and worked with the chronically homeless population at Project PLASE in Baltimore City. She has coordinated the shelter programs at Grassroots Crisis Intervention Center since 1981. Ms. DiNoto has also volunteered at Sheppard-Pratt Hospital, Baltimore New Directions for Women, and Baltimore Neighborhoods. She is serves and the SOAR Program leader for Howard County.
Meet Sara Smoley, Director of Clinical and Crisis Services
Sara Smoley is an LCSW-C in the state of Maryland and has worked with a variety of populations including people with mental illness, people with substance usage disorders, and victims/survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault.
She received a Bachelor’s Degree from Concordia College, New York in Behavioral Science in 2000. Sara went on to receive a Master’s in Social Work with a Clinical Concentration and Mental Health Specialization from the University of Maryland at Baltimore in 2005.
Her work experience includes the following: psychotherapist in an Intensive Outpatient Program for individuals dually diagnosed with mental illness and substance usage disorders; Assistant Director of a Targeted Case Management Program providing services to individuals experiencing mental illness and homelessness; psychotherapist in private practice providing outpatient therapy for individuals and couples; and Clinical Director at an agency providing services to victims and survivors of domestic and sexual violence. Sara has been the Director of Clinical and Crisis Services at Grassroots since June 2018.