Heather O’Malley is the Chief Executive Officer at SafeSpot. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business, and a Master’s degree in Human Resources from Towson University in Maryland. Heather has more than twenty years experience in nonprofits, most recently as a Director of a local organization supporting women and families experiencing domestic violence and homelessness. Heather leads SafeSpot’s fundraising and communications, and partners closely with Board and Staff to ensure the agency’s strategic growth and mission fulfillment. Heather serves on the Board of Directors for the Association of Fundraising Professionals DC Chapter.
Valeria Zanetti, Office Assistant
Valeria Zanetti is the Bilingual Office Assistant at SafeSpot. She is currently working towards her bachelor’s degree in communications from our neighboring campus, George Mason University. Valeria’s passion for writing and every child’s well being has lead her to soon self-publish her first children’s book.
Sergio Claudio-Silva, Program Coordinator
Sergio Claudio-Silva is SafeSpot’s bilingual Program Coordinator. Mx. Claudio-Silva studied in the University of North Texas and the University of Puerto Rico, obtaining a Bachelor’s degree in Arts and Education. They have worked in Mentorship and Foster Care programs serving unaccompanied immigrant children and other disadvantaged populations. Working in a myriad of these nonprofit programs has helped Sergio gain the knowledge and tools to aid children in need that come from a multitude of backgrounds. Mx. Claudio-Silva has dedicated themself to help stop injustices targeted towards children, one child at a time.
Angela Haslett, Manager of Forensic Services
Angela Haslett is the Manager of Forensic Services at SafeSpot Children’s Advocacy Center. Angela holds a Bachelor’s in Social Work degree from Eastern University. She has over 12 years of social work experience helping families and children who have experienced trauma. The majority of Angela’s social work career has been focused in the child welfare field investigating child abuse cases. Prior to Angela’s employment at SafeSpot, she specialized in investigating child sex abuse cases in Fairfax, VA for 5 years. During this time, Angela was a part of the multidisciplinary team and supported the child advocacy center model. Angela has been trained since 2013 in two nationally recognized, evidence-based forensic interviewing protocols. Angela has completed hundreds of forensic interviews and has testified in court on multiple occasions as an expert witness. Angela is dedicated to providing children a safe place and opportunity to tell their experiences so they can start the healing process.
Carla Claudio-Silva, Bilingual Forensic Interviewer
Carla is a Bilingual Child Forensic Interview Specialist. She completed her Master’s degree in Forensic Psychology at the George Washington University and has been trained in two nationally recognized, evidence-based forensic interviewing protocols, ChildFirst and NCAC. She has also received advanced forensic interview training specializing in individuals with disabilities. Carla has been working in multidisciplinary team settings serving local, state, federal, and military agencies since 2018, and has completed hundreds of interviews of children and individuals of varying cultures and abilities. As a native Spanish speaker, Carla is passionate about providing empathetic and culturally competent services to help vulnerable populations talk about their experiences.
Hannah Cordova, Forensic Interviewer
Hannah is a child forensic interview specialist at SafeSpot Children’s Advocacy Center. She holds a Bachelor’s in Psychology degree from James Madison University and is virtually completing her Master’s in Forensic Psychology at the University of North Dakota. Hannah is trained in APSAC and has written several literature reviews about forensic interviewing topics such as interviewing children with autism spectrum disorder and child forensic interviewing best practices. With over ten years’ experience with children of all ages, Hannah is driven to give children a voice and an opportunity to be heard.
Karina C. Pilinko, Bilingual Family Advocate
Karina C. Pilinko is a Bilingual Family Advocate at SafeSpot. She completed her master’s degree in psychology with a concentration in Forensics at Southern New Hampshire University and earned her BSW from Arizona State University. Karina has over six years of experience working with children, families, and survivors of domestic violence. Prior to SafeSpot Karina has worked with the police department in Nevada, women’s shelter in Georgia, and the Department of Child Safety in Arizona. Karina is passionate about seeking justice for families and providing services to children and families to help them succeed in their future.
Jennifer Weissberger, Family Advocate
Jennifer is a Family Advocate at SafeSpot. She holds a B.A. in Sociology with a concentration in Social Work from East Stroudsburg University as well as a Post B.A. certification in Child Advocacy from Montclair State University. Jennifer has amassed over 22 years of frontline experience investigating child abuse and neglect in New Jersey and Virginia. She is passionate about supporting families that are survivors of traumatic events and dedicates herself to assisting families with getting connected to resource needs during a time of crisis.
Natalie Lanchipa, Bilingual Family Advocate
Natalie Lanchipa is a Bilingual Family Advocate at SafeSpot. Natalie completed her bachelor’s degree in social work at George Mason University. Prior to SafeSpot, Natalie worked as a home visitor, bilingual parent liaison, and therapeutic day treatment specialist for non-profit organizations and public school systems within Northern Virginia. Natalie is dedicated to providing children and their families with support and resources needed to assure optimal healing and overall success throughout their time here at SafeSpot and beyond.
Lindsey Kerber, Clinical Director
Lindsey Kerber is an LCSW. She graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of Michigan and also holds a Master of Science in Social Work degree from Columbia University. She is trained in TF-CBT and has 4 years of experience conducting acute mental health crisis assessments in the community and hospital setting.
Leannah Farbotko, Therapist
Leannah Farbotko, MSW is a therapist at SafeSpot. She graduated from James Madison University with a Bachelor’s in Social Work and received her Masters of Social Work from George Mason University. Currently, Leannah is working towards her License in Clinical Social Work and registration in play therapy. She will be training to become a TF-CBT provider. Previously, she served as a CAC Family Advocate, Education, and Support Specialist working collaboratively with children and families who experienced domestic and/or sexual violence. At SafeSpot, Leannah strives to provide children with a safe environment to empower them to overcome challenges and discover their inner strength.
Angela Niblett, Therapist
Angela Niblett, MSW is a bilingual therapist at SafeSpot. She graduated from James Madison University with a Bachelors Degree in Political Science and earned her Masters of Social Work from the University of Pittsburgh. She is currently working towards her Clinical Social Work license and is training to become a TF-CBT certified provider. Previously, Angela worked with children and families in the school and community settings. At SafeSpot, Angela enjoys working with children and families to support their healing journey.
Emily Perez, Therapist
Emily Perez, MSW, Supervisee in Social Work, is a bilingual therapist at SafeSpot. She received her Bachelor of Arts from Marymount University and her Masters of Social Work from George Mason University. Emily is currently working towards becoming a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and is training to become a certified TF-CBT provider. Previously, she interned at the Arlington County Child Advocacy Center where she served as a Therapist and Family Advocate. She has six years of experience working with the Spanish speaking immigrant community in Northern Virginia. Emily is passionate about providing a supportive and compassionate space for children and families to begin the healing process and to find hope for the future.
Jharezee Villalba, Bilingual Therapist
Jharezee Villalba, MSW, is a Bilingual Therapist at Safespot. She has a bachelor’s degree in Psychology-Counseling and Human Development and a master’s degree in Human Services Counseling from Liberty University, and a master’s degree in Social Work from the University of Texas-Rio Grande Valley. Jharezee has 5 plus years’ experience in the CAC world as she previously worked at the Children’s Advocacy Center of Hidalgo & Starr Counties in Edinburg TX. She has worked as a family advocate and mental health liaison providing advocacy, crisis intervention, mental health screenings, training to staff, and resources to families. She is passionate about providing trauma informed psychoeducation and implementing an empathic approach when working with children and non-offending caregivers. Jharezee hopes to help families find healing and justice while also receiving support and resources from a trauma informed perspective.
Haley Padgett, Therapist
Haley Padgett obtained a bachelor’s degree from Harvard University and spent the first six years of her career as an elementary educator at various Title I public schools around the country. After witnessing the intense, unmet mental health needs of her students, she realized she wanted to serve in a different capacity as a mental health professional. She received a master’s in clinical mental health counseling from William and Mary in August 2023 as a Pat Tillman Scholar and is now working towards clinical licensure in Virginia as a Resident in Counseling.