All Team Members

Jennifer Rodriguez

Jennifer Rodriguez is from the Tule River Yokuts Tribe in Central California. She is a graduate student in the Master of Social Work program at San Diego State University. She earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Social Science in 2021. She serves as the Chair for the Indigenous Social Workers Alliance for the 2022-2023 academic year as well as…

Olivia Thomas

Olivia Thomas

Intern

Olivia Thomas is from the Lummi Nation, which is located in Washington State. She is currently in her first year of the Master of Social Work program. She received her Bachelor’s degree in American Indian Studies from SDSU, and is interested in possibly pursuing her Doctorate in American Indian Studies after completing her Masters program, along with working directly with…

Tamara Strohauer

Tamara Strohauer

Training Specialist

Tamara Strohauer is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, SERVE Indigenous Social Workers for Change Project Coordinator for Southern California, Tribal Support Specialist and Lecturer in the SDSU School of Social Work, and is thrilled to join our team at Acorns to Oak Trees. Tamara has extensive experience in IEP/504 advocacy in schools for children with unique learning abilities, community outreach,…

Mindy Brueggemen

Mindy Brueggemen

Registered Behavior Technician

Mindy Brueggemen has worked professionally with children for over 10 years, four years specifically in the field of Early Intervention & Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA). She has her Associates of Science degree in Early Childhood Development. She has assisted tribal families and children specifically working with the Pala Band of Mission Indians.

Season Goodpasture

Acorns to Oak Trees’ founder, Season Goodpasture, is a marriage and family therapist and is Maidu and Paiute and a member of the Susanville Indian Rancheria in Northern California. Season’s husband, James Goodpasture, is Cupeno and he and their four children (Harley, Huntley, Holley, and Hudson) are members of the Pala Band of Mission Indians in Southern California. Season’s passion…

Robert Smith

Robert Smith

Chairperson

Robert H. Smith serves as Chairman of the Pala Band of Mission Indians, a position he has held since 1990. Chairman Smith successfully negotiated the first Tribal-State compact in California with Governor Pete Wilson in 1996, and subsequently supervised the opening of Pala Casino, creating thousands of jobs for tribal members and area residents. Chairman Smith’s work for the Pala…

Linda Ruis

Linda Ruis

Home Visiting Specialist

Linda Ruis is a member of the Iipay Nation of Santa Ysabel and has worked for her tribe for the last 20 years as the Director of Social Services. ICWA has been her life’s passion and she has worked to improve services to tribal communities and has proven to be one of the fiercest advocates for tribal children and families.…

Margaret Orrantia

Margaret Orrantia

Treasurer

Rose-Margaret Orrantia, Yaqui, and Tribal STAR Team Elder, completed her Bachelor and Master degrees at San Diego State University. She served in the Peace Corps in Peru from 1962-64. She worked at the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe, N.M. for 18 years. Returning to San Diego, she served as the Executive Director of Indian Child and Family…

Sara Dutschke

Sara Dutschke

Secretary

Sara Dutschke is currently serving as the Vice Chairperson of the CCTCA. Serving her second term as Chairwoman of the Ione Band of Miwok Indians, Sara’s career in Indian country has given her a keen awareness of the challenges facing Indian Country. Sara served as a staff member of the BIA’s Pacific Regional Office for nearly a decade, where she…

James Goodpasture

James Goodpasture

Council Member

James is Cupeno and a member of the Pala Band of Mission Indians. James serves as the tribe’s Fleet Manager and often finds himself working on a wide variety of special projects around the reservation, utilizing his trade skills in mechanics, welding, and machinery. James is married to Season Goodpasture, and together they have four children (Harley, Huntley, Holley, and…