Michelle Brown, Opening Doors' Executive Director

Michelle Brown has been with the agency since its inception. She is a licensed social worker with over 27 years’ experience in the human service field working with adults and children. Five years were spent working for the Department of Human Services in the former Aid to Dependent Children Program, where she developed sensitivity to the problems of poverty. She worked 10 years for the former Gannon Mental Health Center Community Support Programs serving the chronically mentally ill. Additionally, she worked closely with her former clients on housing issues and saw firsthand the need for transitional housing in Dubuque for women and children. Michelle has her license in Intensive Psychiatric Rehabilitation and has a Certificate in Nonprofit Management from Iowa State University. She is an active member of the local chapter of AFP (Association of Fundraising Professionals), as well as Women’s Leadership Network.

Ann Lorenz, Development and Marketing Director

Ann Lorenz has been the Opening Doors Development and Marketing Director for 5 years. Ann has a Bachelor of Communications degree from Clarke University and a Bachelor of Business degree from the University of Dubuque. Prior to joining the Opening Doors staff Ann worked a total of 9 years at the Dubuque Regional Humane Society as the Development & Marketing Director and Community Outreach Director.  She is passionate about the mission of Opening Doors and she enjoys making a difference in the lives of women and children.  Ann has experience in marketing, event planning, volunteer and project management, fundraising, and more. She is a member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals and Women’s Leadership Network and she enjoys singing, dogs, and the Cubs (win or lose!)

Jessica Bleile, Maria House Director

Jessica Bleile, Maria House Director, has worked for Opening Doors since 2008. She previously worked as a Family Support Worker for Lutheran Services in Iowa. Jessica Bleile has a Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work from Clarke College and has a strong background in family services. Jessica works with the women on creating structure in their lives and becoming self-sufficient. She is also responsible for the daily operations at the Maria House.

Heather LuGrain, Teresa Shelter Director

Heather LuGrain started at the Teresa Shelter as a Program Advocate in April 2010. Before becoming Teresa Shelter Director, she was the Case Manager for over three years. She graduated with her Bachelors in Social Work from the University of Northern Iowa in 2009.  She has a wide variety of experience in social work including working for a child abuse prevention agency in Waterloo, IA and BHIS services work with children and their families. Heather’s key job is to empower each and every woman and child that walks through the door and to oversee the daily operations of Teresa Shelter.

Cozette Oberhoffer, Office Manager

Cozette Oberhoffer joined the Opening Doors staff in January of 2017.  She previously worked as the office manager and event coordinator for the Dubuque County Fairgrounds for seven years, and as a manager and event coordinator at Clarke College prior to that.  Cozette grew up in the Keywest area of Dubuque, then moved to Cedar Rapids and graduated from Kennedy High School.  She moved back to Dubuque in 1987 where she married her husband Dan and raised their three children.

Brittany Beesecker, Maria House Case Manager

Brittany Beesecker started at Opening Doors as the Maria House Case Manager September 2016. Brittany received her Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice from University of Wisconsin-Platteville. Before coming to Opening Doors, Brittany worked at Orion Group Home in Platteville for almost two years working with troubled adolescents.

Kiresten Bauer, Teresa Shelter Case Manager

Kiresten Bauer started at Opening Doors as the Teresa Shelter Case Manager in August 2016. Kiresten received her Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology with an emphasis in social work from University of Wisconsin-Platteville. Before coming to Opening Doors, Kiresten worked at Orion Group Home in Platteville for almost two years working with troubled adolescents and managed an Orion group home in Madison. Afterward, she worked as a social worker in Milwaukee, WI.


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