MEET THE PEOPLE BEHIND THE PROGRAMS
John Barli came to Gainesville in 1974 to attend the University of Florida, after 38 years in the for-profit world, John made the jump to non- profits after serving on The Catholic Charities Gainesville Advisory Board. “Transforming Lives is what we do, and that motivates me every day. “J. Barli
Director of Adoptions
Geralyn Ryan is a licensed clinical social worker and is the director of the Caring Choices pregnancy and adoption program. Being a member of Catholic Charities mission for the past 22 years motivates her each day to support others through life’s ups and downs. She has personally experienced the journey of adoption within her own family and is passionate to help others as they go through this life changing choice. Her belief is that with accurate information and a supportive non-judgmental ear, the right decisions come to light.
Laurie Porter has been a Gainesville resident for 25 years. She has over 17 years of fundraising, event planning and marketing experience and has been with the Catholic Charities Gainesville regional office since 2011. “We live in challenging times; Catholic Charities offers a variety of programs that help so many people in our community. I am proud to work in an environment that truly puts compassion into action.” L. Porter
Michelle I. Wilson
Director of Finance
Michelle Wilson was born in Maryland but moved to Lake Butler at a year old and has been in the Union/Alachua County area ever since. Michelle started off working in accounting at the age of 19 and after a few years decided to return to school where she received a diploma in Accounting. She has been at Catholic Charities for almost eighteen years now. “I’m dedicated to helping those in need and being a part of the Catholic Charities family allows me to do that on a daily basis.” M. Wilson
Nanette Duffy, RN
Pregnancy Counselor. Post Adoption Services, Information and Referral
Nan Duffy joined our team in 2019 as one of our pregnancy counselors. Nan is also a registered nurse. Even as a little girl, Nan recalls wanting to be a nurse, because she wanted to help others. Over the last 20 years of nursing, while working in the field of Women’s Health, Nan has seen the impact compassion and caring really does make in the lives of others. Walking side by side with her clients- learning about them and from them is what Nan says life is all about.
Rural Mobile Food Outreach
John Harris is an Army Veteran who has lived in Gainesville for over 10 years. John started as a volunteer for Catholic Charities. He became the Weekend Hunger Backpack Assistant in 2012 and in 2013 he became the Rural Mobile Outreach Coordinator. “Not only am I transforming the lives of struggling families in our rural communities but doing it with compassion and understanding.” J. A. Harris Sr.
Rev. James Dixon
Bridges to Prosperity Coordinator
James H. Dixon, Jr. is a lifelong Gainesville resident aside from a few years of military and career developments elsewhere, and has been employed with the Gainesville, FL office of Catholic Charities since August of 2011. He was consecrated as Bishop in a multi-denominational religious organization on April 7, 2016 and serves as Pastor of Greater Faith Baptist Fellowship in Gainesville, FL. The biggest lesson he has learned is to “take people where they are and not where you want them to be.” J. Dixon
Emergency Assistance Director
Denise Fanning is originally from Texas and has been in Gainesville since 2008. She is a Gator Grad, and Marine Veteran, with a bachelor’s in psychology, and has been working in the nonprofit community since 2011; joined the Catholic Charities family in November of 2020. “Catholic Charities is one organization that truly embodies an ethos of providing compassionate services to our communities. I am fortunate to be a part of such an amazing and caring organization.” D. Fanning
Regina Honorat became a Pregnancy Counselor for Caring Choices in the summer of 2020. Regina recently graduated with her Master of Science in Social Work and is using her knowledge and skills to support her clients facing challenging situations. Her passion is to help underrepresented people reach their fullest potential. She believes we can’t help everyone, but everyone can help someone
Eileen Beckler has lived in Florida for 30 years. She came to the Finance Department of Catholic Charities four years ago after a long career in insurance. “I love seeing peoples’ generosity transforming the lives of those in need. It’s especially heartwarming to see donations of gifts at Christmas time for entire families.” E. Beckler
Program Coordinator, HOPWA
and Eligibility Program
Susan Frizzell has been an employee with Catholic Charities since June 2001. She has over 25 years’ experience working with low-income individuals needing assistance. Susan coordinates two programs that provide support services for clients with certain disabilities. “I am very proud to work with the staff at Catholic Charities and be able to provide assistance for those in need.” S. Frizzell