Sarah House Board of Directors/Trustees

Join the Sarah House Board of Directors

We are currently seeking individuals to join the Sarah House Board of Directors. If you are interested in becoming a board member or for more information, please click on the attached application form.

Crystal Decker, Chairperson

Senior Public Relations Specialist, VITAS Healthcare

Crystal Decker is a seasoned public relations expert with more than a decade of experience in marketing and communications in local, regional, and national markets. Crystal’s board membership with Sarah House marries her previous professional work in the nonprofit sector at Talbert House, the largest social service agency in Southwest Ohio, with her current role at the nation’s largest hospice provider, VITAS Healthcare.

A Pennsylvania native and University of Pittsburgh graduate, she has called Northern Kentucky “home” since 2011. In her personal time, Crystal enjoys traveling, playing volleyball, attending live music events, sharing culinary experiences, and spending time with loved ones.

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Vacant, Vice-Chairperson

Ariel Schmid, Secretary

Strategy Analyst, VITAS Healthcare

Ariel Schmid is a Cincinnati native, receiving her undergraduate degrees from the University of Cincinnati and graduate degrees from Xavier University. She has healthcare experience ranging from EMT training, direct primary care clinic back office, and an administrative residency at VITAS Healthcare, one of the nation’s leading hospice organizations, where she now works as an analyst in the Innovation & Strategy department, creating tools to ease business processes, train staff on new applications, create business models and payment policy participation plans.

Ariel appreciates the integral yet undereducated end of the healthcare continuum that hospice and palliative care fall into and looks forward to contributing perspectives and ideas backed by experience and passion for patient experience and creating a dignified, peaceful care experience.

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Michelle Locey, CPA, Treasurer

Managing Member, Locey, Mitchell & Associates

Michelle has a Bachelor’s in Accountancy from Wichita State University and over 30 years of public accounting experience, five of those with a Big Four Accounting Firm.

Michelle has dedicated her entire career to public accounting, focusing on the needs of the nonprofit and affordable housing industries. Michelle volunteers actively with Junior Achievement, Little Miami school district, and the Animal Friends Humane Society.

Zach Bohannon

Senior Field Representative, U.S. House of Representatives

Zach Bohannon is a Southwestern Ohio native and joined the Sarah House Board in January 2023.  Zach first met Sarah Zepernick at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center while undergoing chemotherapy treatment for advanced stage IV non-Hodgkins lymphoma.  The two friends’ treatment schedules often coincided, and Zach was forever touched by Sarah’s bright smile, infectious joy, positive outlook on life, and resolve in the midst of hardship.

After the miraculous completion of his cancer treatments, Zach graduated from Cincinnati Hills Christian Academy (CHCA) High School and went on to receive his Bachelors degree in Mass Communication/Radio Broadcasting and a Masters of Religion/Theology from Olivet Nazarene University in Illinois.  His professional background includes non-profit, teaching and speaking at various levels, Christian higher education, and government/politics.  He currently serves as Senior Field Representative for a United States Congressman from Ohio.

A resident of Lebanon, Ohio, and a member of Springdale Nazarene Church in Cincinnati, Zach enjoys spending quality time with friends and family, going to the gym, singing locally, being a connoisseur of 80s/90s pop culture, attending concerts, and experiencing the heartbreak and triumph of Cincinnati sports.

As a grateful cancer survivor, Zach hopes to honor Sarah’s legacy by serving children and families in need of compassionate care through his role on the Sarah House Board.  

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John Francis - Sarah House

John Francis

Retired, Executive Director and CEO of Redwood

John and his wife, Mary Nell, live in northwest Georgia near their three grandchildren.  John retired at the end of December 2020 from Redwood in Fort Mitchell, KY, where he was Executive Director and CEO for nearly six years.  John’s employment history includes inpatient and outpatient mental health and substance abuse services; children’s residential treatment; foster care; special education; intellectual and developmental disabilities; clinical and administrative roles; and being a COA (Council on Accreditation) reviewer. 

John enjoys paddling one of the cedar-strip canoes he has built, hiking, photography, camping, reading, playing banjo, and spending time with his family, especially the grandkids.

Amber Humphrey

Lead Analyst, Strategic Market Development, VITAS Healthcare 

Amber Humphrey is a strategic development and communications leader with over ten years of experience leading strategic partnerships. Amber is a Cincinnati native who received her undergraduate degree from Xavier University and her law degree from Salmon P. Chase College of Law. She has worked in the nonprofit sector assisting wounded, ill, and injured veterans, first responders, and their caregivers. She currently works for VITAS Healthcare, the nation’s largest hospice provider.

Amber enjoys boxing, cycling, hiking, and spending time with her family and dogs.

Sarah House Advisory Board

Kim Marcum-Mercier, RN, Founder

Founder, Sarah House; RN Home Health Care and StarShine Hospice of Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center

Rebecca R. Stringer, RN

Hospice Case Manager (27 years), All Caring Hospice

Rachel Thienprayoon, MD, Clinical Liaison

Medical Director of StarShine Hospice, Assistant Professor of Anesthesia, Member of Palliative Care Team, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center

Norbert Weidner, MD, Co-Founder

Past Medical Director of StarShine Hospice, Assistant Professor of Anesthesia, Member of Palliative Care Team, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center