An Open Door Adoption : Our Staff

There are 153 million children in the world who have lost one or more parents, while some 8 million children live in institutions. At An Open Door, our heart is to serve these children with the love of Christ through adoption. Looking for a career with a life changing mission? Call us today and consider being a part of our team!



Walter Gilbert
Chief Executive Officer

Walter earned a Masters Degree in Business Administration from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill following a Bachelor’s Degree in Industrial Engineering from Georgia Tech.  He has forty-two years of business management experience including three years as business consultant to An Open Door Adoption Agency and as CEO since 1996. He initiated the International Adoption Program for the agency and continues to initiate and oversee all international and humanitarian programs as well in his role as CEO.






An Open Door Domestic Adoption Program Staff

Jane Gilbert, MPA
Executive Consultant

Jane holds a Bachelors degree in Clinical Psychology and Master’s in Public Administration. She has worked with the agency for 25 years in both international and domestic departments.  During these years she has served as Adoption Consultant, Director of the International Program and Director of Domestic Adoption Services. Prior to her work with An Open Door she was Director of the Community Treatment Center in Thomasville associated with Youth Services (DHR)



An Open Door International Program Staff

Amy Burger, LMSW

Director of International Social Services,

International Adoption Consultant: Peru


Amy has a Master’s degree in Social Work from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and joined An Open Door Adoption International team in January 2020. Along with her role as Director of Social Services she is also a consultant for the Peru program and provides supervision for international home studies. She has years of experience working in child welfare. She has a passion for supporting families and advocating for the best interest of vulnerable children. She is driven by our agency mission to find loving, permanent, Christian families for orphaned children.

Cathy Sawyer

Director of International Operations ; International Adoption Consultant, El Salvador,  Lithuania and Mexico

Cathy holds a BBA degree in Marketing and has been working with An Open Door Adoption Agency since 2002. She is responsible for the operations of the international program, new  program development and is the consultant for Lithuania, Mexico and El Salvador. Cathy has experience preparing home studies, counseling birth mothers and adopting families, helping families navigate the international adoption process and new country program development. She believes that every child deserves a loving family and has a passion for helping orphan children find the forever family that God has chosen for them.

Olga Klatt
International Coordinator, Bulgaria, Poland, and Ukraine

Olga holds BBA degree in Management. She was born in Russia and speaks Russian fluently often serving as a translator for many of our international cases. She assists families through the adoption process for traditional Ukraine adoptions and Bulgaria, and Poland. She loves children and helps orphans find their forever home in the US.



Amelia Elola
International Adoption Consultant

Amelia is from Argentina and has a passion for working with children. She studied Criminal Justice at Georgia State University, with a minor in Psychology, to better understand the psychological aspects of human behavior and help impact the children in the criminal justice system. Amelia has experience interning at a youth detention center as a counselor and working as a victim advocate for the city of Atlanta alongside the Atlanta Police Department. In her free time, she enjoys working out, traveling and experiencing different cultures. Her aspiration is to continue making a positive impact on the lives of youth for a better future.




Debbie Tinsley
International Administrative Assistant

Debbie has worked for over 23 years as a domestic and international administrative assistant for our agency. She currently serves the International Department. She is very knowledgeable in both the domestic and international file management processes. She handles many clerical tasks to ensure the staff can work efficiently. She is a minister’s wife and a mother to two boys and considers working at An Open Door more than just a job for her.

International Adoption Programs

An Open Door Domestic Program Staff


Director of Domestic Adoptions

Dawn began working with the agency as the Director of Domestic Adoptions in April of 2022. Dawn has been married for 33 years and has four children, two by birth and two by adoption. She has four amazing grand-babies and another on the way! Dawn’s husband is retired military and both her and her husband are mental health therapists. Dawn’s specific area of expertise is post-adoption and trauma therapy in children and families. She looks forward to seeing where God is leading and working with An Open Door in this capacity!


Margaret Bass
Assistant Director of Domestic Adoptions/
Domestic Home Study Supervisor

Margaret is the Assistant of Director of Domestic Adoptions and Domestic Home Study Supervisor at An Open Door Adoption Agency. She has worked with the agency since 2010 and has a Master’s degree in Marriage and Family Therapy. She enjoys working in a Christian environment where faith and commitment to the Lord are a priority. Margaret feels blessed to work in the adoption field; to see families brought together by the Lord, and assist women in crisis situations.

Deanna, Atlanta Team Leader/Domestic Caseworker

Deanna has a degree in social services and has been with An Open Door Adoption Agency, Inc. since 2019. She has worked in various wonderful fields within Social Services but has really found her calling working with birthmothers and adoptive families. She says it has been a pleasure for her to guide our expecting mothers and birthmothers through the difficult, but beautiful, journey of adoption. Deanna has three beautiful children who keep her life fun and entertaining. She enjoys spending time her her family and friends, and loves to travel.



Shadonna, Domestic Caseworker

Shadonna has built her career around servicing the needs of children and their families. Children, being totally reliant and subject to the actions and behaviors of their parents and other caregivers, have always tugged at her heart. After receiving degrees in early childhood education and sociology, she worked as a social worker for many years servicing her surrounding communities. Feeling the need to have an impact in a more personal way, she prayed for a job/career that would allow her to serve in a space where she could openly serve and praise God as well.



Laura Leigh, Domestic Caseworker

Laura Leigh has been with An Open Door since January of 2022. She graduated from Liberty University with a Bachelor’s in Christian Counseling. She has a true passion for helping people. She is confident that the Lord has orchestrated her life events to shape her for this position with our agency.



Ashlyn, Domestic Caseworker

Ashlyn has been with An Open Door since October of 2019. She graduated from Point University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology with a specialization working with women and teens. When Ashlyn was 15, the Lord laid on her heart a passion to work with women and teens. Before coming to An Open Door, she volunteered at a local crisis pregnancy center for 10 years. She has a heart and a passion to help women who are struggling and be a person they can trust to help them. She knows she is right where the Lord wants her and has given her a heart to love and help the moms she works with.



Shontelle, Domestic Caseworker

Service is Shontelle’s passion and she has been blessed to provide service in every aspect of her life and careers for over 25 years. She is married to an amazing man, James, and in their union they have been blessed with two young men, Kaleb and Jacob. Her formal education varies from Sociology to Healthcare/Business Management, to Education, and to Real Estate. She enjoys spending time traveling, educating herself and others, and hanging out with her family. Shontelle says that it is her goal to leave this world better than she found it, one person at a time. She says, “An Open Door Adoption Agency allows me to me melt my knowledge, skills, and talents together to create relationships and connections to change others lives one by one.”



Candace, Domestic Caseworker

Candace has been an adoption consultant with An Open Door Adoption Agency since July of 2022. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology with a concentration in childhood and adolescence. She has three children who are active in sports, which makes life fun and not boring. She also works with Babies Can’t Wait as a Special Instructor. She works with special needs children between the ages of birth and three years old. She has a passion for people and she loves to be able to help anyone she can!


Brittany, Domestic Caseworker

Brittany is originally from Chicago but grew up in the Atlanta Metropolitan area. She is the youngest of three. Brittany attended Valdosta State University where she received her Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology & Anthropology. She has experience working with The Georgia Department of Juvenile Justice, The Georgia Department of Behavioral Health, as well as The Georgia Department of Family & Children Services.

Brittany is a fitness enthusiast who enjoys strength training as well as boxing. She has a deep appreciation for the game of chess and is a member of Toast Masters International where she learns the art of public speaking.

Brittany has a passion for the family unit and loves working with children of all ages.

Vasheta, Domestic Caseworker

Vasheta holds a Bachelor of Science in Family Studies & Gerontology from Southern Nazarene University. She also holds a Master of Science in Marital & Family Counseling from Mid-America Christian University. She has worked in the wonderful and rewarding fields of counseling & social services. She has years of experience counseling families & individuals as well as years of experience working in a teenage maternity home. Vasheta has a passion and desire to help others.





Georgia Counselors

Waiting Couples


An Open Door Administration Staff

Dominique Waldrep

Dominique has worked as the paralegal for our agency since 1999 in the domestic program. Prior to joining the agency, she worked with the agency’s attorney for six years.  As the paralegal, she coordinates ICPC (Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children) between the State of Georgia and the adoptive couple’s state of residence; files and attains the termination of parental rights of biological and legal fathers; and assists the adoptive couple with the finalization process of their adoption.

Jami Lyn Frisbie
Bookkeeper, HR Manager,
Internet Marketing Coordinator

Jami Lyn has been with the agency since October 2018. She started with the agency as a second bookkeeper, and eventually grew into the positions of Human Resources Manager and Internet Marketing Coordinator. Jami enjoys all of her job duties with An Open Door, but what she holds very dear to her heart is handling all financial responsibilities for the birthmothers that place their children for adoption, and assisting in the financial responsibilities in bringing home international orphans to their forever families.

Cindy Pafford
Marketing Coordinator

Cindy serves as Marketing Coordinator. She has been with An Open Door for three years. She is a retired educator and enjoys meeting people and sharing how An Open Door supports expecting mothers and birthmothers as well as adoptive families. She is a Georgia native and lives in the Atlanta area and markets the agency throughout the state.

Kristin Johnson
Secretary, Administrative Assistant

Kristin has been with An Open Door Adoption Agency since August of 2018.  She started as an intern and has grown into the positions of Secretary, Administrative Assistant, and assisting with Internet Marketing.  Kristin enjoys all of her job duties and enjoys being able to help birthmothers and adoptive families.  Kristin loves to spend time with her family and her dog Ginger during her free time!