Our Team

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Sahra Cahoon

Executive Director, Founder, and Lily’s Mama

Sahra is a life coach, entrepreneur, wife and mama to 3 girls. Kindness, Empathy, Compassion and Hope, this is humanity and no one should have to go throug the dark times alone. Love for Lily is our way of bringing a little light into the darkness. My hope is that we change the conversation around grief and drop the shame and stigma of loosing a child. Together we can change to the conversation.

Love for Lily began serving families in 2012, collaborating with families and hospitals to develop new programing to support the needs of parents in the Neonatal ICU. Sahra’s love for her daughter and the families served through Love for Lily can be felt in every fiber of the organization. She has a unique ability to “sit in the puddle” with anyone and allow them to tell their story, she always says, “At Love for Lily we see people as whole, we are not here to fix them. Everything they need is already inside of them. We are just here to hear them and support them in finding what is already inside.” Since Love for Lily began in 2012 Sahra has directed the development and evolution of the organization.


Mike Welsh

Discharge Coordinator

Mike is a NICU nurse and former NICU dad himself and is motivated to support others through this journey. “I have walked this path…my why is to help ease the burden, to minimize the stress, to quiet the fear and to extend a hand and help guide other families along this amazing journey.”
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John Holmberg


John is a clinical psychologist by training and has been supporting dads facing stressful circumstances since 2002.  John is a father of two and his spouse is a NICU graduate.  His research lab focuses on fathering in the perinatal period, dads’ NICU experiences, as well as serving fathers to improve child and family resiliency and thriving.  John has been a paternal consultant to the Colorado NICU Collaborative since 2016 and regularly facilitates healthcare provider training on paternal support in NICU and post-discharge. John is also the director of the Caring for yoU and Baby (CUB) Clinic which provides outpatient mental health, prevention, and well-being services on the University of Denver campus and through telehealth.
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Patti Smith

Volunteer Coordinator

Patti is a mother of premature twins and a lifetime Coloradan. At Love for Lily, she connects interested volunteers with opportunities to get involved and leads volunteer events.

Madde Horn

Digital Life & Administrative Coordinator

Madde has a master’s degree in Digital Marketing & Data Analytics. In her current role, Madde takes charge of growing our online footprint, preparing newsletters, managing social media content, maintaining our website, and anything else related to our digital presence. She is passionate about connecting NICU parents with the support they are seeking. Madde is committed to making a lasting impact and expanding our reach online to help more families get connected. Outside of her work, she enjoys painting, reading, and running.

Board of Directors

  • Laura Heller, JD, MA (Education), LLM (Environmental Law): Secretary. Licensed Colorado attorney. Adjunct Professor at Colorado School of Mines. Partner with her husband Ian Schwendy in two small businesses within the City of Boulder. Boulder County resident for 16 years.
  • Tonushree Tyagi: Director Mama of two NICU babies. 20 years experience in research and consulting for hospitals and health systems nationally. Currently a Vice President at Optum/Boulder Community Health. 
  • Emily Fawaz: Director, Parent Representative
  • Elizabeth Black: Treasurer Pediatric Physical Therapist for over 25 years, PT for all ages in Denver Public Schools, Manager of Adam’s Camp Early Start for kids with a variety of abilities, NICU Developmental Therapist for 15 years, Baby Lily’s therapist in the NICU.
  • Amanda Slater: Director, Parent Representative. Government Attorney, Former President and Board Member at Rocky Mount Alliance. NICU Mama to an amazing little girl.
  • John Murphy: Director, Grant Committee Co-Chair. Founder and Executive Vice President of Advanced Systems Group. Boulder resident for 35 years.
  • Lana Brennan, MBA, RSN, RNC-NIC: Director. Clinical Manager NICU/Well Infant Nursery, Avista Adventist Hospital in Louisville.
  • Patti Smith: Director, Volunteer Committee Chair. Mother of premature twins, lifetime Coloradan. Retired after 30 years employment at Pinnacol Assurance. Member Board of Directors, My Fairy Dog Mother (dog rescue group).
  • Chris Finer: Director, Grant Committee Co-Chair. 30 years experience in real estate finance. Expertise in construction finance. Service with California Association of Realtors. Extensive nonprofit and corporate board of directors service. Rotarian. Lily’s Nana.
  • Valerie Dye, RN: Director, NICU Nurse Representative. University of Colorado Health (Anschutz) liaison. NICU nurse for 30 years. Baby Lily’s nurse.