Our Staff

Liz Osborn, CEO

Liz Osborn
Chief Executive Officer

Bio

Liz did not always hold the value for life that she does now. As an LPN, Liz worked for an abortion clinic in the early 80’s, believing she was helping women. As she began to recognize God speaking to her heart, she found herself whispering to a woman on the abortion table one day, “You don’t have to go through with this.”

Tragically, Liz had also made her own decision to have an abortion. While dealing with the emotional aftermath of having made that choice, Liz received the forgiveness of Jesus Christ for her own abortion and the countless ones with which she directly assisted during those four years.

After coming to faith in Jesus Christ and receiving His forgiveness, Liz recognized that every life matters to God and every unborn child is worth saving...that He is the Creator of life and that He has a beautiful plan for every life. This revelation drew Liz to serve at Care Net beginning in 1985, first as a volunteer and then as CEO since 1986.

Liz has chosen to be pro-abundant life because being pro-abundant life goes beyond saving the lives of unborn children – as critical as that is.

“We’re about rebuilding lives and families. Redemption starts when we give life a foothold – but it doesn’t stop there. Children need flourishing families where they can be nurtured toward their full potential. Young parents need to be empowered to build a healthy family and dads are an important part of the equation – to empower them to become the fathers their children need them to be,” said Liz.

Liz finds co-laboring with the Lord in the lives of the people He loves the most rewarding part of being invested in Care Net. She loves witnessing God at work in the lives of people...changing hearts and minds and seeing lives saved both physically and eternally.

Liz and her husband, Dan, are part of City Church. In her spare time, Liz enjoys being with her four grandchildren, boating with her family and friends, and exploring God’s amazing creation through travel and hiking.

Julie Bennett, COO

Julie Bennett
Chief Operating Officer

Bio

Julie has been a part of the Care Net team since September 2011. She first learned about Care Net when a fellow church member invited her to a fundraising banquet. She began receiving Alternatives, and through it learned of the position opening. Julie was nearing completion of her master’s degree at that time. She believed this position at Care Net would allow her to use the skills and knowledge she had gained though her education as well as work experience to serve God and grow in her professional life.

Julie appreciates Care Net’s unflinching stance as a life-affirming ministry, enhanced by the ways we wrap women and families in need of care with support, love, and the truth and hope of our Lord.

Julie holds a Master of Arts in Servant Leadership from Viterbo University and a Bachelor of Business Administration from the UW Madison School of Business. She previously served as the Coordinator of Religious Education for Christ the King Catholic Church in McFarland and was on the Madison Diocese Revolution of Love Committee.

Julie finds many parts of her job extremely rewarding. She says, “My faith has grown more than I could have imagined through the loving mentorship of my colleagues.” Other very rewarding parts of working at Care Net include seeing God in action over and over again, seeing women or couples transformed from hopelessness to hope and then watching them grow in their preparedness to become parents and helping people who like the idea of places like this to fall in love with and become committed to Care Net.

Julie is pro-abundant life because “Life is the first and most sacred human right. We are each created uniquely in all of human history in the image and likeness of God. His unconditional (agape) love teaches us and allows us to love. We must do no less for all of those He has created, particularly the most vulnerable.”

Julie enjoys reading, learning, meeting new people, cooking and sharing time with her husband, Dennis, their three grown children, and dear friends.

Julie is a part of Christ the King Catholic Church in McFarland where she serves during Mass as a Lector, Commentator and Communion Minister. Outside of Mass she is a member of the prayer team, a small group leader and an occasional speaker for children’s or adult education on the Sanctity of Human Life.

Tanis Jean-Louis, Clinic Director

Tanis Jean-Louis, RN
Clinic Director

Bio

Tanis has been working for Care Net part time since 2003. She first volunteered for a pregnancy center in Canada, helping to teach Childbirth Education classes. When Tanis and her family moved to Madison, Care Net was looking for a Nurse Manager. Tanis heard about the position from the husband of a physician who volunteers for Care Net’s clinic. Even thought she was not looking for a position at the time, God was tugging on Tanis’s heart to get involved. She wanted to use her nursing skills for something that she knew was close to God’s heart.

Tanis is a Registered Nurse with 32 years’ experience which includes community health nursing in developing countries, labor and delivery, post-partum care, intensive care, hospice care and school nursing. She is also trained as a nurse sonographer.

Tanis finds this position particularly rewarding because it isn’t just a job, it’s a ministry.

Tanis is pro-abundant life because she believes all life is valued by God. “I want to come alongside of those who are struggling with pregnancy decisions, to love them like God would love them,” she said.

Tanis and her husband, Garry, have two grown children. They are members of Blackhawk Church and part of a Blackhawk Church Life Group.

Billie Jo Larsen, Nurse Manager

Billie Jo Larsen, RN, BSN
Nurse Manager

Bio

Billie Jo joined the Care Net team in 2017 as our part time Nurse Manager. She and her husband have been supporting Care Net for several years. They first learned about pregnancy centers when living elsewhere and heard about Care Net Pregnancy Center of Dane County through their church.

Billie Jo attended a volunteer session both to learn more about the organization and as part of a homework requirement for school. She learned of some job openings within the nursing department. She felt God was calling her to this ministry and job opportunity.

Billie Jo is a Registered Nurse with 16 years’ experience including 15 years working in labor and delivery and post-partum care. She completed her clinical training as a nurse sonographer in November 2017. She also completed her BSN from Marian University in December 2017.

“The most rewarding part of my job is providing holistic medicine! Being able to present the gospel, as well as serving women in a professional, medical capacity.”

Billie Jo says she is pro-abundant life because God has knitted each individual together, for a purpose. “Psalm 139 says it all! This unformed body that he so expertly put together explains his greatness! He is the ultimate provider of all things hopeful and great!”

Billie Jo has five “amazing children, one already residing in heaven with our make and a loving and awesome husband (of 15 years this past summer).” Their family enjoys having two dogs, two rabbits, fish and lots of chicks. “Oh and a pet calf, named Spunky!”

Billie Jo and her family are part of GraceWay Church in Sauk City, the church she grew up in. She is an Awana ministry director and small group leader. She also volunteers in the nursery and helps with youth group and women's ministries.

Katie Casey, Education Manager

Katie Casey, CLD
Education Manager

Bio

Katie joined the Care Net team in 2017 as our Education Manager. She has been a labor and postpartum doula since 2009 and is a Childbirth Educator. She previously taught Childbirth Education at Meriter Hospital. She was drawn to Care Net because she missed being in ministry and really enjoys working in childbirth, postpartum and parenting education.

Katie first volunteered for Care Net as a Childbirth Educator in 2011-2012.

Katie has enjoyed sitting in on client education appointments and looks forward to working with the women we serve.

Katie is pro-abundant life because she “believes each baby is a gift from God and created for a purpose.”

She and her husband have been married for 21 years and they have three teenage children. They have one dog, named Baby, who is a 7-year-old Bichon/Shih Tzu mix. “I am an animal lover! I also love music, reading, writing, and art,” said Katie.

Katie and her family are part of a small non-denominational home church where she leads music and plays piano. They also are connected with many people from the predominantly Lao congregation, The Salvation Army Madison Genesis.

Mitch Freeman, Fatherhood Specialist

Mitch Freeman
Fatherhood Specialist

Bio

Mitch began as Care Net's Fatherhood Specialist in January 2018. He has a BS in Interpersonal Communication from Appalachian State University and a Masters of Divinity from Southeastern Seminary. He has been in ministry for about twenty years, serving as a pastor for ten years.

Mitch expects the most rewarding part of his job will be talking to men who are struggling with the reality of fatherhood, like his own biological father.

"My biological father left when my Mom told him she was pregnant, leaving her to make hard decisions and become a single parent. The first and biggest decision she made was to choose life. Two years later she married an incredible man who adopted me as his own. Now I'm a husband and the father of five wonderful kids."

"On the one hand, I can empathize with birth fathers because I understand that finding out you're a father unexpectedly can be a scary time. I understand why the first reaction would be negative. But on the other hand, I can give them a message of hope, namely that if they hang in there, the reward of being a father will be far greater than they now realize. It is truly a gift from God."

"I also know that when my Mom weighed her options, she chose me because she wouldn't be alone. She had the support and love of her family. Having a strong network of people who love and care about you is invaluable. So I want to be a part in developing the same life-giving networks in local churches, creating partnerships that support fathers who choose life.”

Mitch is pro-abundant life because every life is a gift from God, who creates us in the womb so that we might know and love Him outside of the womb. "That's the abundant life Jesus spoke of. This means that we care about children in the womb, and also work hard to create a loving and healthy environment for them to grow up in. This is what I love about Care Net: we provide services far beyond childbirth such as offering housing during and after pregnancy. All of these services represent a holistic approach to being pro-life."

Mitch loves spending time with his family and attends Blackhawk Church.

Cassie Pollen, Relief Residential House Staff

Cassie Pollen
Medical Office Manager
Relief Residential House Staff

Bio

Cassie served as an intern for Care Net during the summer of 2016 and returned to volunteer in January 2017 after finishing school. She began as part time Relief Residential House Staff in September 2017, while continuing to volunteer in our clinic. Cassie continued to volunteer in our clinic and took on the added role of Medical Office Manager in April 2018.

Cassie got acquainted with the work Care Net does through her internship. She relates, “God put a special place in my heart for the people Care Net serves.” Cassie attended the University of Northwestern-St. Paul for a degree in Ministry and Bible.

Cassie finds building relationships with moms, seeing them reach goals and learn to be great parents the most rewarding aspects of working and volunteering at Care Net.

“I am pro-abundant life because I believe that each life is precious and created in His image. Our job as Christians is to value and support abundant life.”

Cassie enjoys spending time exploring Madison and any place outdoors with her husband. She and her husband are part of High Point Church.

Tia Rice, Residential Operations Manager

Tia Rice
Operations Manager

Bio

We welcomed Tia to our staff in December 2017. Tia had not been familiar with Care Net or The Elizabeth House. She was drawn to this ministry, when she saw the job posting, by her heart for the population that we serve.

Tia has always worked for non-profits. She has a passion to serve people, especially youth and young adults. She has a Bachelor of Science in finance. Although this may sound like an unusual degree for someone who works with underserved populations, her background in finance helps Tia to do her job at a higher level.

What does she find the most rewarding part of her job? “Supporting the residents of The Elizabeth House as they work toward reaching their goals in parenting, housing, career and spiritual growth,” Tia said. “And,” she adds, “Of course, seeing the babies every day.”

Tia is pro-abundant life because God created us. “We are uniquely and wonderfully made. God has given each of us a unique purpose and talents to use for His glory.”

When asked what she enjoys outside of work, Tia replied, “I love my husband, Vincent.” Tia and Vincent are now empty-nesters and are enjoying that life. They have two adult children and recently welcomed their first grandchild. Tia and Vincent do a lot together. They serve together at church. They both like to read and they love jazz music.

Tia is in a book club with other women who are all from different African countries. “I’m the only one from the United States,” she said. “I really like learning about different cultures. And they’re the best cooks!”

Tia is part of Mount Zion Baptist Church. She and her husband serve in the marriage ministry and the homeless ministry.

evonne-for-web

Evonne Walsh
Residential House Staff

Bio

Evonne began volunteering for The Elizabeth House in 2006 and joined Care Net staff in 2008. She has experience as a parent and likes to say that she has a double MA (mama).

Evonne says that the most rewarding part of her job is, “watching God move on hearts, change lives and lead women into whole, healed generation-changing moms.”

She is pro-abundant life because of how deeply God knows each of us -- from the time we are in our mother’s wombs and beyond -- described in Psalm 139.

Evonne and her husband, Dan, attend The Vine church. She and her husband, Dan, live at The Elizabeth House and love sharing Jesus and living life with the women of The Elizabeth House.

Evonne loves family time and was thrilled to add a “bonus” son and daughter in 2016 as both of her children got married. She also enjoys water aerobics and a new-found hobby as a cake pop maker and cookie decorator.

CJ Grahn

CJ Grahn
Relief Residential House Staff

Bio

CJ first worked for Care Net as a Respite Worker for The Elizabeth House in 2006. Since then, CJ went on to obtain her Master’s degree in Social Work from UW-Madison and has worked in the areas of adoption, caring for the developmentally disabled in their homes, and as a parent educator in an in-home family therapy program.

CJ returns to The Elizabeth House as an on-call residential relief provider overnights and weekends when needed. CJ also currently works as a counselor at another local pregnancy resource center.

CJ is abundant pro-life because she believes in the sanctity of life from conception until natural death. All life is precious and we are all created for a specific purpose in this life. “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you.” – Jeremiah 1:5

CJ attends the Cathedral Parish in Madison and is an active member there, teaching children two days per week during the school year.

When not at work, CJ enjoys being with family and friends, reading, going to live music events, shopping, and attending Badger games, especially hockey.

Being back at The Elizabeth House feels like a day has not gone by and she looks forward to spending time with the residents and their beautiful children.

Photo coming

Lisa Hensler
Relief Residential House Staff

Bio

Lisa joined our staff part time working as relief staff for The Elizabeth House in August 2018.

Lisa's bio coming soon.

Amanda Kane, Relief Residential House Staff

Amanda Kane
Relief Residential House Staff

Bio

Amanda started working part time for Care Net as relief staff for The Elizabeth House in March 2018. She had started volunteering for Care Net in February as a Peer Advocate and spent time helping behind the scenes preparing for Care Net’s Baby Bottle Campaign. Amanda was first drawn to Care Net because it would give her experience working with pregnant mothers through a Christian organization. She was very interested in The Elizabeth House position because of her desire to work with pregnant women in her career.

Amanda has experience working with parents and young children as well as high school students. She has a degree in Biology from UW-Madison.

The most rewarding part of her job, Amanda said, “is connecting with women and fostering their relationships with God.”

Amanda is pro-abundant life because, “I think everyone should have a chance to live the life that God wants them to live. We don't have the power to take that away from people.”

Amanda is newly engaged and is working on planning a summer 2019 wedding. She enjoys working with children.

Amanda is part of Saint Paul’s University Catholic Center on the UW-Madison campus. She was involved with putting on high school retreats and community hospitality as an undergraduate. Recently she has become involved in a supporting role for St. Paul’s missionaries.

Sara Patterson, Advancement Director

Sara Patterson
Advancement Director

Bio

Sara joined the Care Net staff in 2016. A recent Florida transplant, she has over 15 years’ experience working in the nonprofit field. She graduated from the University of Central Florida with a bachelor's degree in Pubic Administration.

One of Sara’s happiest childhood memories is when her family made a decision to bless a struggling family after learning they had decided not to celebrate Christmas due to financial difficulties.

She said, “To this day, I still remember the intense pleasure I felt as we purchased, wrapped and secretly delivered all the presents, fixings and trimmings the family needed to make their Christmas special.”

Since then, Sara has been addicted to the joy of doing good in the community. She looks forward to working with our supporters to create their own giving stories here at Care Net.

Diane Feest, Outreach Manager

Diane Feest
Outreach Manager

Bio

Diane’s role as part time Outreach Manager is to help connect individuals, volunteers, churches and organizations to Care Net. Diane has been with Care Net since February 2014. She has an undergraduate degree from UW-Eau Claire in Health Care Administration and some courses in Public Health studies.

Diane and her husband, Andy have been part of RidgeWay Church for over 17 years. Diane has previously served in Women’s Ministry leadership and now is part of a worship team that practices worship and the Word.

The most rewarding parts of Diane’s work are seeing God reveal Himself in the hearts and minds of men and women, connecting people with resources that bring them to God’s will for their lives, and rejoicing when God brings about a decision for life in our clinic.

“God put a stand for life in my heart as a young child, as the response to Roe v Wade rippled through churches and I saw my mother become an advocate for life in the 70’s. As an adult, God drew my heart to places where I stood with others for life. God drew me to Care Net, where through the love of Christ, we reach to women and men, and God responds, drawing His people to Himself,” said Diane.

Kristine Fischer, Finance Director

Kristine Fischer
Finance Director

Bio

Kristine started working full time at Care Net in 2015 because she believes in Care Net’s mission. She has a 12 year career in the financial field and has obtained her Series 7 and Series 63 licenses. Kristine transitioned to small business accounting and finance management.

The most rewarding part of Kristine’s job is seeing hope poured into people’s lives.

She is pro-abundant life because, “I believe in the sanctity of all human life beginning at conception. We are all made in God’s image.”

Kristine and her husband, Mark, attend City Church.

Kristine enjoys one-on-one time with family and friends, watching old movies, playing board games, running and drawing.

Aaron Osborn, Facilities Manager

Aaron Osborn
Facilities Manager

Bio

Aaron started working part time for Care Net in May 2016. He has known about Care Net since he was young and has volunteered for various painting projects before he was employed here. He has also been a part of various Walks for Life and Golf Fundraisers for Care Net in the past.

Aaron has an Agricultural Business Degree from W.P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University with a concentration in Professional Golf Management. He worked previously for Terra General Contractors from Rodgers, Minnesota.

One of the most rewarding parts of Aaron’s job is “making things look good and keeping them looking as good as they possibly can.”

Aaron is pro-abundant life because he believes all life is sacred and is a gift from above.

He most enjoys snowmobiling and watching his two nephews play hockey for their respective teams. Aaron attends City Church.