Board Members

Board Members

Evelynn Smith, Founder

Evelynn SmithThe founding angel of Project-Angels Bearing Gifts, Evelynn Smith, is the parent of a developmentally disabled adult. She is employed as a Marriage and Family Therapist (MFT) in Santa Barbara, California. Evelynn has helped many parents of children with disabilities and many adults with the grieving process and accepting the diagnosis. Evelynn is a past board member of New Directions, which sponsors travel experiences for individuals who are developmentally challenged.  She is also an honorary member of the California Advisory Board of Devereux in Santa Barbara, an agency that operates residential facilities across the country for children and adults who are developmentally challenged.  She is a past board member of Cornerstone House, an agency which sponsors homes and summer camps for individuals with developmental disabilities.

Board Members:

Mary Gibson, co-chair

Mary Gibson

Mary Gibson  has a Bachelor's degree in Speech & Hearing, her Teaching Credential and Special Education Credential from UCSB.  After graduating, she stayed in Santa Barbara and has been a Teacher for the Santa Barbara County Education Office for the past 27 years.  Currently, she teaches a Special Day Class for students, grades 4-6, with special needs.  Mary is married and has a son attending college.  Mary is currently supporting the Board and mission in the role of co-chair.

Julie Sorenson, co-chair

Julie SorensonJulie Sorenson has lived in Santa Barbara for 20 years.  Julie was raised up the coast in San Luis Obispo and graduated from Cal Poly.  She has a Bachelor's degree in Human Development/Family Studies with a minor in Psychology.  Her work experience began with direct care and management in group homes.  She worked at Devereux for ten years, working primarily as a medical case manager.  She worked for doing Marketing/Sales for seven years. She is married with two daughters.  She performed Development work for the Santa Barbara Education Foundation for over a year and most recently, she has been doing customer service for Sprigeo, an on line bullyiing reporting software used in schools across the country. 

Linda Cowen, immediate past co-chair

Linda CowenLinda Cowen has a Bachelor's of Social Science  degree from University of Cape Town, South Africa and a M.A. Special Education degree from the University of Northern Colorado. She have been teaching special education students for 27 years and currently is the Resource Teacher at Santa Barbara Charter School. I have 2 daughters, one of whom is autistic and lives in her own home with supported living.

Linda Grand 

Linda GrandLinda Grand, a native of California, graduated from Cal State Northridge with an Elementary Teaching Credential in 1980. She is currently a school librarian at Adams School. She enjoys hiking in the beautiful canyons around town, making art, and building community. She has two daughters who are studying law and nursing.

Joe Boris

Joe Boris Joe Boris has lived in Santa Barbara for the past 6 years, relocating   from Charlotte, NC. He has a B.A. from the University of Maryland with a duel major in Political Science and Sociology and a M.A. in Guidance and Counseling from Eastern Michigan University. He served on the Fraser, Michigan, City Council for 14 years, eight of those years as Mayor. Joe retired from the 16th Judicial Circuit Court of Michigan where he was the Program Director for the Prevention Section of the Juvenile Division. Joe and his wife, Pat, retired to Santa Barbara to be near their son,  daughter-in-law, and two grandchildren.

Ellen Stoddard

EllenPhotoEllen Stoddard holds a MA in Human Development from Pacific Oaks College, along with early childhood and parent education teaching credentials. She is a parent education instructor for Santa Barbara City College and the director of the Lou Grant Parent Child Workshop.  Ellen has two adult children and lives in Santa Barbara with her labradoodle, Ziggy.

Jennifer Sills

 Jennifer SillsJennifer Sills moved back to Santa Barbara 15 years ago. She graduated with a B.A. from UCSB and has had many interesting fields of employment since then, the last 16 years with UCP/WORK,INC. as Director of Independent and Supported Living. Jennifer also works part-time with the Santa Barbara City Adapted Programs. Jennifer joined the Angel’s Bearing Gifts Board in 2010. She enjoys hiking in the beautiful Santa Barbara Hills and spending time with family and friends.

Katie Moses

Pamela Gilbert

Kristi Morris

Debra Marasco-McNulty

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