Cornerstone Montgomery's Board of Directors
Our volunteer Board of Directors meet monthly. If you are interested in joining the Cornerstone Montgomery Board of Directors, please contact Cari Guthrie Cho at 301-896-4238 or via email: Cari.Cho@cornerstonemontgomery.org.
Ms. Catherine Costopoulos
RMR Real Estate Services
“I love property management, every day is an adventure. I look forward to working with the Cornerstone Montgomery team and assisting them in any way I can with their commercial and residential property management needs.”
Ms. Costopoulos is a seasoned Real Estate Professional with over 25 years’ experience in Property and Construction Management. Ms. Costopoulos has worked for the RMR Group since 2009 and manages over 1.5M square feet of commercial and flex space. She is a Certified Property Manager (CPM) with the Institute of Real Estate Management (IREM) as well as an Real Property Administrator (RPA) with the Building Owners and Managers Institute.
Mr. James Washington
Mr. Washington is a Wealth Advisor with Seventy2 Capital in Bethesda, Maryland. There he offers tailored advice and customized service employing goal based investing to help mitigate his clients’ life risk and give them peace of mind. He identifies their specific needs, goals and objectives and make sure they are taken care of as they transition through the different phases of life. Born in Washington D.C. and raised in Silver Spring, Maryland, he graduated from the prestigious DeMatha Catholic High School in 2004. Mr. Washington enjoys spending his free time with friends and family. He is an avid Washington Redskins and Washington Wizards fan. His other hobbies include running, playing in recreational basketball and flag football games, watching movies and volunteering with a local Boy Scout Troop in Washington D.C.
Mr. Moe Abutaleb
UltiStat, Inc. (Retired)
“Cornerstone Montgomery's programs support the most vulnerable in our community and are so important during these challenging times, and I am honored to joing the board. Its success over the years has been highly impressive and I look forward to leveraging my entrepreneurial background in helping to fulfill the organization's aspirational future goals.”
Mr. Abutaleb is a seasoned telecom and aerospace industry executive with 40 years’ experience in the development and implementation of advanced satellite and wireless communications technologies and services. His career includes the formation of several start-ups that were organically built and grown and subsequently sold to publicly listed companies. With a strong sense of customer service, his businesses have prioritized the client’s objectives, developing innovative best-value solutions in response to unique application requirements. While developing many industry-first technology solutions, he also co-authored a number of patents related to satellite and wireless technologies and network security solutions, and in 2011 was presented with the Technology Council of Maryland's prestigious Executive of the Year Award. Mr. Abutaleb holds a Master of Science in Electrical Engineering degree, with an emphasis in communications and microelectronics, from the University of Maryland. He serves on several corporate and non-profit boards and is an active member of the National Association of Corporate Directors (NACD). Mr. Abutaleb is married with three grown children and his family has resided in Montgomery County since the early-80’s.
Ms. Briana Liston Black, Esq.
“I am inspired by Cornerstone Montgomery’s innovative, evidence-based programs and dedicated staff. I, like many other people, have family and friends who have struggled with mental illness. I joined the Board to support the organization’s mission to provide resources to people living with mental health disorders so they can integrate successfully within our community and live a meaningful life of their choosing. I feel privileged to work with an organization that has such a tremendous impact on the lives of people in our community.”
Ms. Black is an attorney at Hogan Lovells US LLP in Washington, DC. In her practice, Ms. Black helps healthcare providers, insurers, pharmaceutical manufacturers, and other companies in the healthcare sector develop creative, real-world strategies in a wide array of civil litigation and healthcare-related compliance matters. She also provides pro bono representation, including serving as counsel to a court-appointed receiver of a public charter school and participating in Street Law, Inc.’s legal educational programs for high school students. Ms. Black’s longstanding interest in health sciences and mental health treatment started in high school, when she spent a semester conducting basic research at the National Institutes of Mental Health. And, before attending law school, Ms. Black worked at major academic medical center, managing the department of psychiatry and assisting with a variety of hospital operations and strategic and budgeting projects. Ms. Black currently serves on the Governance Committee.
Ms. Jenica Cassidy, Esq.
Lerch, Early, Brewer
Jenica Cassidy is an elder law attorney who helps seniors and their families with legal issues relating to aging. She also works with health care facilities and their residents to secure benefits to pay for the cost of care. Her clients appreciate her empathetic approach to difficult and highly personal discussions about aging and end of life, which pave the path for plans that lead to peace of mind. Ms. Cassidy works with older adults of all income levels and their family members to plan for and resolve legal issues related to aging, such as long-term care needs, disability, and incapacity. These include guardianships (of the person and of the property), Medicaid benefits and appeals, and special needs planning. She also helps them with estate planning and probate. Ms. Cassidy received her law degree from Wake Forest University School of Law and her undergraduate degree from the University of Oregon. She is admitted to practice in Maryland. Prior to joining Lerch Early she practiced at an elder law boutique firm. Ms. Cassidy and her rescue spaniel, Harper, volunteer at People. Animals. Love. (PAL), where dogs and their owners visit and provide comfort to nursing home residents, hospitals, and lower-income schools throughout the DC area. A Seattle native, Ms. Cassidy enjoys outdoor activities like hiking and skiing with her husband. She is also a fierce sports fan, cheering for her beloved Oregon Ducks and Seattle Seahawks, along with her adopted hometown favorite, the Washington Capitals.
Mr. Joey Chambers
Joey Chambers is Vice President of Business Development, Non-Profit Banking at Capital Bank. He has work in the financial services for over 30 years. Mr. Chambers started his career with Equitable/Maryland National bank and retired with successor Merrill Lynch. He has work in Consumer Bank, Human Resources Business Banking and Global Wealth Banking during his career. Mr. Chambers has hosted series of Lunch & Learn Seminars for the Non-Profit Community. In his free time Mr. Chambers serve as a Football Official for youth football in the Washington area.
Erkan Erdem, PhD
Dr. Erdem is a Principal at KPMG, LLP with training and experience in program evaluation, policy analysis, statistical modeling, econometrics, and data analytics. He has extensive experience with health care reform, Medicare payment systems, risk adjustment, value-based payment models, and analyses based on health care claims databases. In recent years, Dr. Erdem has led health care projects for many Federal and state clients, including the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), New York State Department of Health, and Health Services Cost Review Commission (HSCRC) in Maryland, which involve program evaluation, data analytics, economic analyses, and development of tools and visualizations to. Dr. Erdem has authored many peer-reviewed journal articles and has presented his research at national conferences. Dr. Erdem holds a Ph.D. degree in Economics from the Pennsylvania State University.
Ms. Amanda Freeman
St. Luke's Episcopal Church
"Working with Cornerstone Montgomery is important to me as a memeber of St. Luke's Episcopal Church that was part of Cornerstone Montgomery's founding. I want to support the needs for behavioral health in Montgomery County and help St. Luke's be a good neighbor for the Southport Hub.”
Ms. Freeman is a D.C. native and a retired high school history teacher. She is an active member of St. Luke's Episcopal Church, one of the founding members of Cornerstone Montgomery. Coming from a family that has struggled with mental health challenges and substance use disorders, Amanda is excited to support Cornerstone Montgomery's mission. Amanda is actively engaged in anti-racism work. Her other interests include spending time with family and friends, reading and being active outdoors.
Ms. Ashley Freeman
DON'T DIE AFRAID
Ms. Christine Fruehwirth
"Cornerstone Montgomery continuously makes a major impact in the lives of some of the most vulnerable people in our community. I admire the organization’s dedication to providing holistic services that address the needs of housing, vocation, and psychiatry. I have worked as a mental health advocate for several years in my local community so I am honored to have the privilege of serving on the board so I can contribute to Cornerstone Montgomery’s mission.”
As a resiliency activator, Ms. Freeman empowers individuals to realize that their circumstances don't hinder the future, instead they are stepping stones to success to reveal how resilient a person truly is. Her parents were substance users so her 72-year-old Nana raised her. The void left by her parents led to depression and suicidal ideation until realizing obstacles aren’t meant to hold you back, they propel you forward.
Ashley utilizes her platform, DontDieAfraid.com to create inspirational content, facilitate mental health workshops, and advocate for the de-stigmatization mental health. Ashley finds joy in impacting the lives of youth through re-assuring them that someone believes in them, sharing her journey, and providing resources to help them achieve their goals. She transforms her life experiences into a message of resiliency to act as a catalyst to encourage others to "Don't Die Afraid."
"In my coaching practice and within my own family, I have seen the benefits to those suffering from mental illness when those individuals have access to, and engage in, mental health treatment services such as those offered by Cornerstone Montgomery. As a career services professional, I am excited to see this outstanding organization’s commitment to helping clients find and keep employment to stay on the path to recovery. I look forward to joining this board and giving back to the Montgomery County community that I am honored to live in.”
Christine Fruehwirth has had more than 15 years of career counseling and life coaching experience through her successful business, FlexCareers Consulting. Her focus and passion has consistently been helping stay-at-home parents return to the workplace and working parents who are looking for more balance in their lives. From 2009 to 2019, Christine also worked as a Career Consultant and Instructor of a Career Management Strategy course at George Washington University, and most recently at Georgetown University in Washington D.C.
She developed an expertise in helping undergraduates of all majors recruit for and successfully obtain internships and full time positions in the Financial Services industry. She spent a decade in that industry focused on consumer and later investment banking, working for major financial institutions including Bank of America, Capital One and Wells Fargo. Her last few years in the industry were spent at Lending Tree on the senior leadership team.
Christine earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Business from Villanova University in 1991 and an MBA from the Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia in 1996. She currently volunteers as a consultant through Compass Pro-Bono non-profit organization and as a Parent Ambassador for the Blue Ridge School where her youngest son attends.
Ms. Soma Ganesh
Grant Thornton, LLP
Ms. Laura Kay-Roth
Ms. Ganesh, CPA, has over 15 years of public accounting experience working with a wide variety of industries, She has developed a niche in the nonprofit industry serving various types of tax-exempt organizations, associations, and private foundations. Ms. Ganesh is committed to achieving success for her clients by thoroughly reviewing, executing, and following through on the completion and delivery of all tax returns. Ms. Ganesh has continuously been recognized by her peers for her ongoing leadership capabilities. Ms. Ganesh gives back to the organizations she serves by organizing various voluntary projects for her team throughout the year. When she is not at work or giving back to the community, she enjoys running, learning Indian classical dance, and spending time with her boys.
Ms. Kay-Roth is pleased to be a client of Cornerstone Montgomery, which has given her the opportunity recently to appear as a patient advocate on Capitol Hill. She has been both a consumer and shaper in the behavioral health field for many years, having served in key staff roles with the American Psychological Association and the American Society of Addiction Medicine. She is originally from New Jersey, where she enjoyed a long career in state and local governments, including managing health services for the state inmate population. Her education includes both a B.A. in Political Science and a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from Rutgers University, and she has taken courses toward a Graduate Certificate in Nonprofit Management at American University. Currently she serves as a docent at the National Museum of Health and Medicine in Silver Spring. She enjoys life with her husband, two wonderful stepdaughters, and two cats. They are fans of the Orioles and the Ravens.
Dr. Tami Mark
“Cornerstone Montgomery is dedicated to ensuring that their clients receive the services that will allow them to reach their full potential. I joined the board to support their mission of continuous innovation and quality improvement in the delivery of effective, patient-centered mental health and substance use disorder treatment.”
Dr. Mark is an internationally known expert on behavioral health care financing and services. Dr. Mark has authored 95 scholarly peer-reviewed journal articles and numerous government reports. She was a contributing author to the report Facing Addiction in America: The Surgeon General’s Report on Alcohol, Drugs, and Health. She has served on technical expert panels for the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), National Institute on Mental Health (NIMH), National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), National Quality Forum (NQF), and other organizations. She directed the development of the SAMHSA Behavioral Health Spending Accounts. She has led numerous projects for SAMHSA, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE), and other agencies to support the development, implementation, and ongoing evaluation of the Mental Health Parity and Addictions Equity Act (MHPAEA). Under contract to CMS and SAMHSA, she contributed to the development of substance use disorder quality measures. She has worked with state governments to improve their substance use treatment systems through analytics and technical assistance. She is frequently asked to speak at national conferences and with the press about behavioral health policy.
Ms. Rebecca Urland Monzi, Esq.
Friedlander Misler, PLLC
“Cornerstone Montgomery has a mission that people from all walks of life can relate to, as mental illness affects all races, cultures, ethnicities and social classes. I am excited to serve on the Board of an organization that sees the import of treating multiple diagnosis simultaneously andempowers individuals.”
Ms. Urland is a partner at Friedlander Misler, PLLC where she concentrates her practice in real estate development, working with developers, investors and financial institutions in all aspects of the acquisition, development, sale and financing of commercial, industrial and mixed-use property, multi-family housing, affordable housing projects, construction lending, mezzanine financing, bridge financing, syndicated loans, securitized financing, like-kind exchanges and leasing matters. She enjoys sharing her knowledge of the ins-and-outs of commercial real estate.
Mr. Steve Ritter
“I have witnessed some of the challenges and hardships associated with mental health disorders and I am grateful for organizations like Cornerstone Montgomery that make it their mission to empower people living with mental health disorders to live full and meaningful lives.”
Mr. Ritter is a Controller at Surescripts LLC. Surescripts operates a data network for physicians to send prescriptions and medical records electronically. Mr.Ritter was previously an Assurance Manager at Ernst & Young. He is a Certified Public Accountant licensed in the state of Virginia. He serves on the Finance Committee.
Mr. Mark Robins
" I believe in the Cornerstone Montgomery mission and that services provided to people with mental health disabilities are imperative to our local society, and can be life changing for the client. The postive community impact provided by Cornerstone Montgomery is inspiring."
Mr. Robins is a manager with Aronson, LLC. He works in the firm’s Nonprofit and Association Industry Services Group. Mr. Robins specializes in assurance and consulting services for foundations, public charities, schools and service organizations. His experience with fair value concepts, investment portfolios, federal compliance and revenue recognition issues allows him to be a valued resource for nonprofit organizations. He enjoys sharing his knowledge of financial reporting and internal controls. He is a member of the Finance Committee.