Staff & Board


Our qualified and dedicated staff provides adoption counseling and information for a variety of situations involving Colorado parents and families (including but not limited to):

Contact Adoption Options at 303-695-1601 or 800-878-1601 for information specific to your adoption questions.

Adrienne Elliott, LCSW, Executive Director – Adrienne is the Executive Director of Adoption Options and has been with the Agency a total of five years.  Adrienne has worked in all aspects of the child welfare system including intake, child protection, permanency and adoption; including supervising an Adoption Unit for a Metro County in Colorado. Adrienne has been a child welfare trainer for the Colorado Training Academy; training on topics of abuse and neglect, permanency, and adoption. She currently teaches as adjunct faculty for the University of Denver and Metropolitan State University in subjects of Family Social Work and Foster Care and Adoption and also co-teaches a college level course for caseworkers and mental health professionals in Adoption Competence. Adrienne holds a Master’s Degree in Social Work from the University of Denver and a Bachelor’s of Science Degree from Purdue University. She brings with her over 20 years of child welfare and adoption experience.

Lori Devlyn, MSW, Assistant Director & Placement Supervisor – Lori was named the Assistant Director on March 1, 2014. She has been a Placement Supervisor since October of 2012 and prior to that was an Adoption Family Caseworker and Birthparent counselor.  Lori received her Bachelor’s degree from the University of Wisconsin at Stevens Point.  She began her graduate degree at the University of Loyola in Chicago.  While attending Loyola, she worked at the Adolescent Center at Rush University Medical Center where she provided counseling related to a full range of prenatal care, family planning and pregnancy prevention counseling and education services to teens and young adults ages 12 through 23 years. Lori and her family relocated to Colorado in 1992 where she continued her graduate work at the University of Denver. While attending DU, Lori interned with Adoption Options where she worked with Adoptive families and Birthparents and after earning her MSW, she continued working for Adoption Options in a variety of roles. After spending time at home raising her three kids, Lori returned to what she loves doing, working with individuals and families at Adoption Options since 2007.

Carol Lawson, Adoptive Family Caseworker/Consultant – Carol’s social work career started in Britain in the 1970s, where she worked for both Social Services Departments and a voluntary agency doing child protection and adoption and fostering. Carol has a Certificate of Qualification in Social Work and a Diploma in Child Care Law and Practice. Carol moved to the United States in 1993 to become Executive Director of Adoption Options, a position she retained until March 2012, when retirement saw her move to different areas of work, including training for the Consortium for Children in California. Returning to her love of working directly with families, Carol is now helping out at the agency as a part-time caseworker, assessing families and assisting with some of the education classes.

Leslie Wade, MSW, MPA, Adoptive Family Caseworker – Leslie joined Adoption Options in July 2015.  She has previous child welfare experience through working for the Iowa Department of Human Services as well as working with a non-profit child abuse prevention agency.  Leslie is a Colorado native, but previously lived in Nebraska for 17 years where she earned a Bachelor of Science and Social Work as well as Master of Social Work and a Master of Public Administration from the University of Nebraska at Omaha.  Leslie enjoys being back in Colorado.  She loves spending time on sporting fields with her children and taking trips with her family to the mountain. 

Jacinta D. Watkins, MSW, Adoptive Family Caseworker – Jacinta joined Adoption Options in January of 2012 as an intern. She was hired as an Adoptive Family Caseworker in September of 2012. Born and raised in Colorado, she earned her Bachelor of Arts Degree at Baker University in Baldwin City, Kansas. After earning her Bachelor’s Degree she worked in child welfare for two years in the state of Missouri before deciding to return home to Colorado. Once in Colorado, she earned her Master’s Degree in Social Work from the University of Southern California. 

Courtney Empson-Whaley, Flexible Families Case Manager – Courtney joined Adoption Options in July 2012.  A Colorado native, she graduated from the University of Northern Colorado in 2008 with her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Criminal Justice. She worked as a Victim Advocate for 2 years in Greeley, CO before moving back to Denver and starting her career in Social Work. Courtney has been in the field for almost 4 years working as a Foster Care Case Manager, Adoption Worker, Foster Home Coordinator and Mental Health Worker. In the future she plans on getting her Master’s in Clinical Counseling.

Abbie Hause, MA, Flexible Family Caseworker – Abbie joined the Adoption Options team in June, 2016. She graduated with her Bachelor’s degree in Child Psychology from the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities in 2013 and then went on to complete her Master’s in Counseling Psychology at the University of Denver in 2016. Abbie has worked with children, adolescents, and families in various capacities for over eight years. She started working with children with various disabilities in a therapeutic recreation capacity and then moved forward to counseling children and adolescents who had various diagnoses as well as history of trauma. Abbie is thrilled to move into being a part of the adoption and foster care world and looks forward to assisting in bringing new families together. In her free time, Abbie enjoys kickboxing, spending time with friends, and watching television with her dog, Leo. 

Laura Bonkiewicz, MSW, Flexible Family Caseworker – Laura joined the Adoption Options team in January 2017. She graduated with her Bachelor’s degree in Social Work from Colorado State University in 2011. After working in the field for three years, Laura pursued her Master’s in Social Work with a concentration in Children and Youth: Risks and Healthy Development from the University of Denver in 2014. In her free time, Laura enjoys playing volleyball, spending time outdoors, taking walks with her dog, and hanging out with her loved ones.

Leslie Dezendorf, LPC, Birth Parent Counselor/Adoptive Family Caseworker – Leslie joined Adoption Options in October, 2006. She does contract work for the southwestern part of Colorado, including Durango, where she lives. Previously, Leslie worked as a child and family therapist in a mental health center for ten years. Originally from Florida, she earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Teaching from Fort Lewis College and her Master’s Degree in Counseling from Adams State College.

Kelsey Reger Johnson, M.A., Birth Parent Counselor – Kelsey joined Adoption Options in May of 2016.  She has previous experience in higher education, working as a therapist and counselor with young adults.  Kelsey is originally from Minnesota and earned her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Luther College. In 2016 she earned her Master’s degree in Counseling and Psychological Services from Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota.  Since their move west, Kelsey and her husband have enjoyed exploring Colorado by way of scenic bike rides, dog walks, and ski trips to the mountains. 

Emily Seccombe, Birth Parent Counselor – Emily started working with Adoption Options in April. She was born and raised in Littleton and moved to Fort Collins to attend Colorado State University where she obtained her Bachelor of Science degree in Human Development and Family Studies. Emily interned for an adoption agency in Fort Collins her senior year of college, where she fell in love with the field of adoption. She stayed in Fort Collins after graduation and worked for the agency as an adoptive parent caseworker and birth parent counselor for the last two years. Emily is excited to be back in the Denver area and is passionate about providing birth parents with support and counseling. Emily's favorite things include spending time with her family, eating waffles, watching the "The Office", and hitting golf balls at the driving range.

Marianne Anderson, LCSW, Cradle Care and Foster Care Placement & Licensing Supervisor – Marianne has been working for Adoption Options since 1997.  She graduated from the University of Denver in 1990 with a Master's of Social Work Degree specializing in Mental Health with an emphasis in finance and management. She is LCSW licensed in both California and Colorado. Marianne has over 25 years of experience working with children and families in foster care with juvenile offenders and human services, residential centers and out- patient services for children and families. Marianne is married and keeps busy with her three boys.

Leah Klein, MSW, Fresh Beginnings Caseworker – Leah initially joined Adoption Options as an intern in August 2016 and joined the team full time in June 2017. Leah earned her Bachelors of Social Work from Colorado State University and her Masters of Social Work from Metropolitan State University. Leah is passionate about working in the field of adoption and enjoys working with families. In her spare time, Leah likes to watch movies, and spend time with family and friends.

Katie Hiner, Family Marketing Specialist and Outreach Coordinator – Katie first came to Adoption Options as an intern and joined the team full time in May of 2013.  She earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Human Services with an addictions concentration from Metropolitan State University of Denver.  Katie was adopted as an infant and enjoys working for an agency whose mission is so close to her heart.

Sarah Olsen, LCSW, Trainer/Program Evaluator – Sarah joined Adoption Options in April, 2008.  She has previous experience working for a county department of social services and a teen parenting program.  Sarah is originally from Wyoming and earned her Bachelor’s in Sociology from the University of Puget Sound.  In 2005 she received her Master’s of Social Work from the University of Denver.  Sarah has been a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in the state of Colorado since 2010.

Erin Groce, Office Manager – Erin joined Adoption Options in February 2106. Originally from Northwestern Montana, Erin graduated from Gonzaga University and then moved to Denver in 2006. Prior to joining the Adoption Options team, she worked in book publishing and marketing for several area advertising firms. Erin enjoys spending time with her husband and son especially if that time can be spent outside hiking, camping, biking, etc.

Cori Winchester, Receptionist – Cori joined Adoption Options in 2012.  Cori is a native of Colorado.  She also teaches classical ballet at the Denver Conservatory of Dance and is a certified yoga instructor.  Cori enjoys hiking, snowshoeing, practicing yoga and spending time with her three children.

Samantha Deebs, Finance Director – Samantha joined Adoption Options in May 2017.  Samantha has dedicated her career to nonprofit managerial accounting; supporting valuable missions by providing solid financial data and strengthening financial positions.  Samantha holds an Associates of Arts degree in Accounting from the University of Phoenix.  In her spare time, Samantha enjoys travel, hiking, tennis, and golf.

Jamie Buttermore, MA, Adoption Caseworker & Birth Parent Counselor – Jamie joined the Adoption Options team in August 2017. She graduated with her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Colorado Mesa University in Grand Junction, CO and earned her Master’s degree in Human Services from Northeastern University in Boston, MA. Jamie has previous experience working in child welfare through working for the Mesa County Department of Human Services as an assessment case worker, working for a non-profit residential youth facility for sexually reactive youth males, and working for a non-profit for Senate Bill 94 helping minimize the number of teens that end up in the juvenile delinquency system unnecessarily. Jamie is also a long-time volunteer for Girl Scouts of Colorado as a leader mentoring the girls in her community. In her free time, she loves to travel, spend time with her 3 daughters, run marathons, watch her husband play competitive softball, and anything outdoors. 

Steve Loux – Chair

Docia Michaels Myer - Vice Chair

Tyra Litzau- Treasurer

Helen Gibson - Secretary

Alex Beardsley 

Kimsoo Evenson

Bill Flynn

To express your interest in serving on the Adoption Options’ Board of Directors, please contact Adrienne Elliott at 303-695-1601 or 800-878-1601.