our staff

L. Renée Couture, MSW, Executive Director

(Lisa) Renée joined Krempels Center in May of 2009. As executive director, she is responsible to the board of directors for leadership and management of the organization and its programs and managing financial and human resources. Renée's prior managerial positions include executive director of Fair Tide, outreach program director for Rockingham Community Action, and program coordinator of The Birchtree Center. She earned her master’s degree in social work from the University of New England in 2000 and her bachelor’s degree from the University of New Hampshire in 1994.





Heather Gilbert, MS, OTR/L, Program Director

Heather joined Krempels Center in May of 2021. She is an occupational therapist who formerly interned at Krempels Center in 2014. She started her career in mental health, working with adults in both inpatient and community-based settings before returning to her roots in brain injury as the director of a human services agency's developmental disability and brain injury services division. Heather has always maintained her occupational therapy lens within her management roles, seeking opportunities to infuse meaning and function into all aspects of the programming she oversees. She has also served as adjunct faculty at Regis College, where she is a member of the occupational therapy program's external advisory board. Heather enjoys guest lecturing and is an active presenter at occupational therapy conferences.




Becky Kates, Development Director

Becky joined Krempels Center in February 2018. Becky has held several roles in various nonprofits, including most recently as the Development Director of Prescott Park Arts Festival in Portsmouth, NH, and the Grants, Events and Marketing Manager at New Hampshire Public Radio. With a strong belief in building stronger communities through the work of nonprofits, Becky is thrilled be a part of an organization with such a profound impact. Working with her team, she is responsible for fundraising, events and communications that reflect the mission of Krempels Center. Becky is an alum of UNH, SNHU and Leadership Seacoast as well as currently active with the Portsmouth Chamber Collaborative, Leadership Seacoast, and the Association for Fundraising Professionals of New England.





Barb Kresge, OTR/L, CBIS, Director of Strategic Program Initiatives

Barb, an occupational therapist since 1991, joined Krempels Center in 2006 and served as Program Director through May 2021. Her work as an occupational therapist has spanned the treatment spectrum from acute care through home care, working with adult clients with a wide range of diagnoses. Barb has worked at Tufts University as a lecturer in the occupational therapy department and is a Certified Brain Injury Specialist. In her role as Program Director, Barb worked to develop and implement a program that has a profound and lasting impact on the quality of life of brain injury survivors.  Barb is an Assistant Affiliate Faculty member in the Department of Occupational Therapy at the University of New Hampshire.  She is involved in brain injury research via Krempels Center’s Program Evaluation Committee and as a member of Supportive Living Inc.’s Brain Injury Wellness Center Research Council.




Katie MacKinnon, Director of Communications and Outreach

Katie joined Krempels Center in January 2020. Formerly serving in various roles at the Greater Dover Chamber of Commerce, Katie is excited to bring her experience creating marketing strategies for local businesses and nonprofits to Krempels Center. Prior to the Chamber, she worked in business development and marketing for two emerging small businesses in Massachusetts. Katie is an alum of UNH and proud graduate of Leadership Seacoast and Dale Carnegie.





Carli Caceres, Program Assistant

Carli joined Krempels Center in March 2020. She earned her bachelor's degree in public health from the University of Massachusetts Lowell. She is a certified Health Education Specialist and has devoted her time to improve the health of individuals and communities starting her career in social justice. Carli is looking forward to working with the Krempels Center staff and community.






Lisa Kopecki Thompson, Executive and Operations Associate

Lisa joined Krempels Center in June 2021. She studied Organizational Leadership at Southern New Hampshire University and recently retired from Liberty Mutual where she worked for 25 years in various customer service and IT roles. Lisa also brings with her knowledge and empathy from a caregiver's perspective as her husband has been living with TBI since his near fatal accident in October of 2014. Lisa is excited to join the Krempels Center team because of the strong vision and meaningful mission of the organization geared towards those living with acquired brain injury.




Jay Lancaster, Member Services Coordinator

Jay joined Krempels Center in September of 2021. He earned his Master's Degree in Communication Disorders from Emerson College in 2018. As a speech-language pathologist in private practice and early intervention, his treatment focused on the "whole person" by connecting family members to community resources and providing ongoing education about communication disorders. His role as Member Services Coordinator involves intake and integration of new members into the program, supporting outreach efforts, and assisting with the supervision of the online program. He is excited to be joining Krempels Center to bring his perspective as a speech-language pathologist to the staff and community.




Susette Milnor, MSW/LICSW, Program Coordinator

Susette joined Krempels Center in July of 2015.  She is a licensed, independent, clinical social worker who earned her Master’s Degree from Simmions School of Social Work in 1986.  Susette has 30 years of experience working as a psychotherapist in a variety of mental health settings.  For the past 24 years she was a co-director and staff psychotherapist at Womankind Counseling Center, a non-profit, outpatient psychotherapy agency providing mental health services to women, men, children and families.





Betsy Oski, Development Associate

Betsy joined Krempels Center in April of 2015. Betsy brings ten years’ experience as a Human Resources professional, including recruitment, talent management, and systems administration. Betsy earned a Bachelors degree in Psychology from William Smith College, Geneva NY. Betsy is looking forward to working with Krempels Center staff, board of directors, donors and members.





Natalie Pavlov, Events Coordinator

Natalie joined Krempels Center in September 2021. Natalie has held myriad roles in various industries, including public education, private aviation, and publishing. Across all industries, Natalie has focused on event and people management, always with a strong commitment to community collaboration and communications. Diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis in 2011, Natalie has experienced firsthand the life changing power of Krempels-style programming which offers unmatched support, validation, inspiration, and connection to people impacted by brain injury.




Kelly Redwine-DePierre, MS, OTR/L, Program Coordinator

Kelly joined Krempels Center in October 2012. She has a Master’s of Science in occupational therapy and worked in the field of mental health for more than seven years. Kelly interned at Krempels Center four years ago and now enjoys her role as educator and mentor to the many students who complete their internships at the center.