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457 South 4th Avenue
Brighton, CO, 80601
United States


We are driven by the loss and love for our son and ambition to craft a better world than the one we inherited. We do this work with the hope of comforting, supporting and providing affordable grief counseling and support to families in need of healing, following the loss of a loved one.


Our Team


Our team

Susan Chavez
Executive Director

Susan is the founder of the Richard Lambert Foundation and has served as the Executive Director since 2013. Susan oversees the daily management of the Grief Center and it's programs. Her commitment and belief that our community needs a place solely to support those that have experienced a death and are grieving has led the organization to new growth. Her vision is larger than our current capacity and we are excited to see her dream grow. Susan is a native to Brighton, Colorado and has been married to her husband Jaime for 20 years. She enjoys golfing, camping, reading and spending time with their children and eight grandchildren.

meet our counselors who specialize in grief


Karl Shackelford, M.Div

Karl is a Board Certified Clinical Chaplain, CPSP Counselor that specializes in grief counseling. Karl has partnered with the Richard Lambert Foundation Family Grief & Healing Center since 2014, by leading the centers grief workshops, seminars, monthly support groups and seeing new clients for grief counseling. Karl has been a Clinical Chaplain and Educator at the Denver Hospice for 9 years and has a passion to help people through their grief journey. Karl will address your loss with sensitivity and compassion. He has been counseling teens and adults for 30 years and in his private practice Peaks and Creeks Life Development, Karl is highly experienced in grief and loss, relationship issues, individual and couples therapy and pre-marital counseling. We are thankful to have Karl on our team.

Counseling Credentials
-Master of Divinity, Southwestern Theological Seminary
-Bachelor of Science in Education, Baylor University
-Board Certified Clinical Chaplain, College of Pastoral - Supervision and Psychotherapy
-30 Years of Counseling Teens & Adults through life decisions, grief & loss, relationship issues and pre-marital counseling


Rita Coalson, MA, NCC, LPC

Rita is a Licensed Professional Counselor specializing in Bereavement Counseling.  Rita joined Richard Lambert Foundation Family Grief & Healing Center in 2016 where she leads various grief support groups and self-care workshops. In addition, Rita leads our Teen Grief Support and Camp Forget Me Not for bereaved children. When ones grieving process can benefit from personalized support, Rita is available for individual counseling for children and adults. Currently, Rita shares her personal time as a grief counselor at Agape Healthcare Palliative Care & Hospice Services. She has served her community as co-director of Camp Erin, a children's grief camp near Denver, Colorado. Rita creates a safe place in which individuals can process and express grief wether from the loss of a loved one or another major life changing event. We are excited to have Rita's expertise and have her join our team.

Counseling Credentials
-Masters of Arts in Counseling, Regis University
-Licensed Professional Counselor
--National Certified Counselor
-Member of the American Counseling Association
-ASIST - Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training
-Psychodrama Training

lin cressey,
grief workshop facilitator

A combination of educational background and life experience brought Lin Cressey to the Richard Lambert Foundation and to the work of facilitating grief support groups. A graduate of Colorado State University with a degree in Vocational Home Economics, Lin began her professional career as a classroom teacher. During her career as an educator, she taught students of all age ranges as a Consumer and Family Studies teacher, an elementary school library media specialist and an academic coach working with teachers in their classrooms and facilitating staff development. Trained in Cognitive Coaching, Lin also mentored teachers new to the profession. Lin retired from teaching in 2010 and performs wedding ceremonies, memorial and funeral services. In 2012, following the suicide death of her beloved husband, Lin was given a book, The Mourner’s Book of Hope, by Alan D. Wolfelt, Ph. D. She began taking classes through the Center for Loss and was certified in Death and Grief Studies in December, 2014. Lin began leading support groups in 2015 and joined the Richard Lambert Foundation in 2016. Her 12-week classes are based on the work and curriculum of Dr. Wolfelt paired with Lin’s sensitivity, 30 years as an educator and own her personal grief experience. Her goal is to walk beside and support others as they actively mourn their loss and share their grief with a small group of strangers who soon become good friends and fellow mourners. Lin believes that active mourning is key to living after loss, an experience that comes to each of us, in time. A mom and a grandmother, Lin shares her home with two rescue dogs. We are delighted to have Lin join our team.

Indications Professional Help is Needed:

  • Feel like life isn't worth living
  • Wish you had died with your loved one
  • Blame yourself for the loss or failing to prevent it
  • Unable to perform your normal daily activities
  • Avoid speaking about the person who died
  • Excessive anger
  • Turning to substance abuse
  • Depression

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