Burket Kniveton – Executive Director

burket-picTo be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

What was your nickname growing up? My first name is unique. When I was younger all I wanted was to fit in. I went by my middle name, Michael. Michael turned into Mike, Mikey, and ‘Spike’. I started going by my first name -Burket- once I graduated high school.

If you could be one for just 24 hours, which cereal box cartoon character would you be? Why? Without question, I would go with Cap’n Crunch. I imagine that he is in charge of a pretty rad ship which sails a vast sea. I must have been a sailor in a past life…

What CD is in your CD player right now? Wait, what is a CD? Do they still make CDs? The most recently played album in my iTunes is: ‘An Awesome Wave’ by alt-J.

His past professional experience includes working to support the emotional growth of teenagers at a therapeutic boarding school, developing a mountain sports academy for adolescents, and advocating for teens as a volunteer. His role at CRYJ is to support youth and families as they navigate the often challenging realities of being human.

Next time you are at CRYJ, see if Burket is available for a game of chess or Dominos. Contact

Shareen Springer – Director of Training and Consulting

 Shareen_photo“I would like my life to be a statement of love and compassion — and where it isn’t, thats where my work lies” – Ram Dass

Who inspires you and how are you a bit like them? Fred Rogers (Mr. Rogers) is one of my all time favorite humans on the planet.  I would like to think that in addition to my love of cardigans…that my curiosity and belief in community are pieces that would make Mr. Rogers proud.

If you had a “theme song” that played whenever you walk into a room full of people, what would it be? Sometimes I like to imagine bursting through swinging doors perfectly timed with the intro music of “Kiss” by Prince.

What is set as the background on your computer? A photo of my babes (I have 3 year old twins), who are the center of my universe and the greatest inspiration behind my work in the world, and who I hope to be as a human.

Shareen had the life changing honor of serving as the Executive Director at CRYJ for 8 years, transitioning in 2017 to help the organization shift to serve new communities and individuals in the expansion of restorative practices through training and technical assistance. Shareen brings strong collaborations (state & nationally) in the field of restorative justice and school justice partnerships – as well as a background in training and community engagement.  Contact

Catherine Gunderson – Director of Community Engagement

catherine“Said the river: imagine everything you can imagine, then keep going” – Mary Oliver

If you could have one superhuman power, what would it be?Definitely teleportation. Instantaneous free travel? Yes, please.

What inspires you?I love to visit the edges of things. Where a river meets the ocean, a forest begins or ends on a trail or in the moment where ideas come together and people understand each other for the first time.

If you could have been told one thing you weren’t told as a teenager, what would it be? The things that seem to make you stumble have the potential to serve you well in life if you pay attention.

Catherine has been with CRYJ since 2008, in a variety of roles, and has learned much along the way. She is currently enjoying her position of Director of Community Engagement as an opportunity to share the story of CRYJ and finding the many ways we overlap and make connections. Her favorite part of it all is being able to have an endless curiosity–about how things work, about how people feel and things they believe and the fact that there’s always another good question waiting to be asked. Contact

Tracy Roberts – Trellis Program Director

IMG_1358“Out beyond ideas of wrong-doing and right-doing there is a field. I’ll meet you there”  – Rumi

When you were in grade school, what did you want to be when you grew up? Why? I was pretty set on being a doctor. I went through a sixth-grade stint of wanting to be a marine biologist and a seventh-grade stint of wanting to be a brain surgeon.

What did you like best about your hometown? The landscape and kind-hearted Midwestern folk. I am a mountain and river kid at heart – passionate, playful, adventurous, and driven. I grew up in the sacred and vast lands of western and central South Dakota. The Black Hills and Missouri River paint the canvas for most of my childhood memories. I have traveled extensively and lived in many places since my time there, but the land and people in South Dakota will always have a special place in my heart.

What do you keep in the back of your car? A plethora of outdoor gear and my Bernese Mountain Dog, Mowgli – although he prefers to ride up front. He’s a pretty cute and not-so-effective co-pilot.  

As the Trellis Program Director, Tracy uses her brain power, passion, and love of working with youth to dream up creative ideas and projects, create amazing opportunities for teens, and attempt to make our wish-list projects a CRYJ reality. She is currently working on expanding and developing CRYJ’s Trellis Project. Tracy’s expertise is largely grounded in integrative mental health, outdoor education, wilderness therapy, creating meaningful opportunities for growth and development, rite of passage work, and empowering youth to be become their most authentic and wonderful selves. Tracy is currently working towards her Ph.D. in Mind-Body Medicine: Integrative Mental Health and is a licensed clinical professional counselor in the state of Montana. Contact

Kelsey Gockenbach – Communications Director

lupine 2“Mistakes are almost always of a sacred nature, understand them thoroughly.” -Salvador Dali

Just like “Everybody Wang Chung tonight!”, what would your action be if your name were a verb? Breaking into a full body roll mid conversation with someone, while maintaining eye contact.

What was your nickname growing up or now? Yeslek – It’s “Kelsey” backwards. For some reason my brother and I started calling each other by our backwards names when we were kids. I was Yeslek, he was Bez.

What were your best/worst subjects in school and what would you like to learn now? Even though I am almost always the kid in the back of the class, I love school. My worst subject was math, by far. I still have dreams that I’m failing math class. My best subject was English, but I’ve always been fiercely curious about ancient history and dead languages.

Kelsey is in charge of all aspects of CRYJ outreach, including managing all social media channels and our website, graphic design, volunteer coordination, and is the reigning Mayor of Frontlandia. Before stumbling into the welcoming arms of CRYJ she worked in the lobbying world of Wisconsin and lived in Melbourne, Australia for a spell. She has her B.A. in English from the University of Washington. Contact

Board of Directors

  • Katy Brooke, Board President
  • Claudine Johnson, Vice President
  • Marj Dezort, Secretary/Treasurer
  • Dave Bailon
  • Valeri McGarvey
  • Betsy Cummings
  • Rick Flink
  • CJ Cummings

Retired Flavors

Processed with VSCOBri Lescher

“When we love, we always strive to become better than we are. When we strive to become better than we are, everything around us becomes better too.” –Paulo Coelho

Processed with VSCO with c3 presetAnders Olson

“Yesterday is not ours to recover, but tomorrow is ours to win or lose.” – Lyndon B. Johnson

Processed with VSCO with c2 presetWhitney Pratt

“Make the world a bit better and more beautiful because you have been in it.” – Edward Bok

pic 2Kate Kanter Berry

“My optimism wears heavy boots and is loud.” – Henry Rollins