Calm Sea

Our Story

We founded Cypress Resilience Project in 2019 because so many of us experience the impacts of trauma, mental health challenges and grief.

Meet Our Team



Program Director / Trainer

S. Brooke Briggance comes from a multi-sector background in health, direct impact programming for children, youth and families, and non-profit work. She began her career in healthcare in the Department of Neurology at SUNY Stony Brook in New York, and has experience in administrative leadership and public education advocacy and reform. She served as the Executive Director of an education foundation and has worked as a consultant assisting in projects ranging from school district redesign, community engagement and best practices for non-profits. She currently serves as the Program Director for the Cypress Resilience Project and as Deputy Director for the FACES for the Future Coalition – both programs at Public Health Institute in Oakland, CA. Brooke has a B.A. in World Religions and Comparative Religions from SUNY Stony Brook.  She is a Certified Grief Recovery Specialist, a Certified Mental Health First Aid Instructor (Adult, Youth and teen), and a Certified Trainer in Trauma Informed Systems and Practice.



Program Manager / Trainer

Jasmine Nakagawa-Wong holds a BA in Studio Art from Mills College, an MBA from the Lorry I. Lokey Graduate School of Business, and an Education Specialist teaching credential from the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing. Jasmine has spent most of her career working with underrepresented youth. She is a Certified Grief Recovery Specialist and a Certified Mental Health First Aid Instructor in the Adult, Youth, and Teen curricula.


Program Administrator / Trainer

Karen Lane is the Program Administrator for Cypress. She is responsible for its fiscal management and contracts, overseeing the program’s MHFA certification process, and supporting course scheduling.  She brings many years of program administration experience in corporate, higher education and non-profit organizations.  Karen received a BA in Human Development from Cal State East Bay.  She is currently a hospice patient support volunteer and served as a volunteer crisis counselor for 3 years at two bay area county crisis hotlines. She is also a Certified Mental Health First Aid Instructor.




Karina De Leon Montes is a Mental Health First Aid Instructor for Cypress. She graduated from the University of California, Santa Cruz with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology. During her time at UC Santa Cruz,  she created the Rigoberta Menchu scholarship to financially support students at Oakes College. Karina believes that everyone deserves equitable access to mental health resources, and is passionate about ensuring that community members have the skills to support each other during challenging times.


Administrative Assistant / Training Coordinator

Michell Williams is the Administrative Assistant for Cypress.  She graduated from the University of Phoenix with a Bachelor of Science in Management and a Masters of Business Management.  She has mentored college students from diverse academic and cultural backgrounds throughout California.  She enjoys working with individuals and families to navigate the challenges of life, whether they are personal, with family, or with peers.  Michell believes in cultivating and stimulating a supportive environment to help individuals reach their highest potential. Her areas of interest include anxiety, depression, transitions and adjustments, and family communication.