Meet Our Team


Eugene T. Cook, Sr. 

Owner

Before starting Gene Cook Supports, LLC in 2014, Gene obtained years of experience working with children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities in Westmoreland and Allegheny Counties.  His vast experience and knowledge was obtained via work as a Direct Support Professional, TSS, Program Specialist, Regional Program Director, and Support Coordinator.  Furthering his commitment, Gene attended Westmoreland County Community College and The University of Pittsburgh at Greensburg where he earned his Bachelors Degree in Psychology. His experience and education, coupled with his vision for increasing quality support and staff morale, led to the creation  of Gene Cook Supports, LLC in 2014. In his free time, Gene enjoys spending time with his family, the outdoors, and antiques.


Heather Thomas

Chief Executive Officer 

Heather joined the Gene Cook Supports team in 2017 as the Human Resources Director and became the CEO in 2022.  Over the course of her career, Heather has held a variety of roles in the Human Services field ranging from Mental Health Technician, Nurse’s Aid, Unit Secretary all the way up to Administration.  She has experience working with children/adolescents, aging adults, and individuals with MR/IDD and Autism, both in a residential setting and in the home.  She has earned both an Associate’s and Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and has a Master’s in Human Resources.  When she is not working, Heather enjoys spending time with her family and is passionate about fitness.


Leigh Ann Davis

Compliance Officer

Leigh Ann joined Gene Cook Supports in September of 2014.  Leigh Ann’s current role is the Compliance Officer for Gene Cook Supports LLC. Leigh Ann provides support to individuals and families during the intake process. She provides compliance and quality management support to the agency and ensures that families receive high quality supports and services.  Leigh Ann is a certified investigator for Gene Cook Supports LLC, she provides support during the investigatory process to individuals and families. Leigh Ann ensures the incident management department is maintained for Gene Cook Supports LLC. ensures that the agency remains compliant with the process & procedures. Leigh Ann has been in the human service field for over 2 decades and is passionate about making a difference in our individuals and families lives we support.  Prior to joining Gene Cook Supports, LLC, Leigh Ann worked with various providers in Allegheny County.  She previously has worked in a supervisory role in the day program and residential setting.  In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her family and gardening.


Brittany Brueckner

Director of Operations

Brittany began her career with Gene Cook Supports, LLC in November 2014 and has over 10 years of experience working with individuals with autism and developmental disabilities in home, community, and school settings. Brittany works closely with GCS staff to oversee documentation systems, supporting staff and management in their roles, and ensuring quality supports through coaching and training. Brittany possesses a passion for helping others achieve success and enjoys working together as a team to overcome challenges. In her free time, Brittany enjoys traveling, hiking with her dogs, fishing, and watching the Pittsburgh Penguins.


Halee Krisfalusi, M.Ed.

Executive Director of Behavioral Supports

Halee joined Gene Cook Supports in 2017 as part of our management team. Halee attended the University of Pittsburgh and obtained a Master’s Degree in Education with a focus in Applied Behavior Analysis. She brings 18 years of experience supporting children and adults across all settings. Halee strives to offer exceptional, practical, and relatable training when working with others. She enjoys the opportunity to collaborate and learn from each individual, caregiver, and professional she works with. Halee also is a Certified Investigator and Sexuality Educator. When Halee is away from work, she and her family enjoy cooking together, spending time outside, and cheering on the Pittsburgh Penguins.


Pamela Giebel

Clinical Director of Behavioral Supports

Pam joined the team at Gene Cook Supports LLC in 2018. She attended the University of Pittsburgh where she received a Master’s Degree in Special Education and holds PA teaching certificates in Elementary and Special Education. Pam brings over 15 years of experience working with children and adults with exceptional needs. She’s held various positions in the fields of human services and education including TSS, Program Specialist, Autistic Support Teacher, Director of Education, and Behavior Support Professional. Pam participated in the PaTTAN Autism Initiative ABA Supports Program where she received 6 years of intensive training in applying the principals of ABA and Verbal Behavior. During her spare time, Pam enjoys watching her two sons play sports, camping, cooking, and thrift shopping.


Jenny Walker

Director of Behavioral Supports

Jenny joined Gene Cook Supports in 2017 as a Behavioral Support Professional and has served as the Director of Behavioral Services since June of 2019. Jenny has a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work from Bloomsburg University and a Masters of Arts degree in Clinical Counseling from Indiana University of Pennsylvania.  She has over twenty years of experience providing community counseling and rehabilitation services to individuals and families dealing with mental health issues and other behavioral needs.  Her career experiences have given her a deep understanding of obstacles people face within our society and the impact it can have on individuals and families. Jenny’s training in mental health and behavior analysis has given her the opportunities to support individuals and the behavioral team to best serve the needs of the individuals. Jenny gains immense personal rewards from her work through the growth she witnesses within the family and the individual’s she serves. Jenny enjoys spending time with her family, cooking, and gardening.


Cliff Leggett

Regional Program Director

Cliff, a senior employee of Gene Cook Supports, LLC, holds over 10 years of experience working with individuals with autism and developmental disabilities in community, day program, and residential settings.  In addition, Cliff is skilled in the medical field, having an Associates Degree as a Medical Assistant Specialist.  In the role of Regional Program Director, Cliff will be supporting the Director of Operations by attending annual ISP meetings, reporting changes to SC’s, individuals, families, and staff, coordinating services provided to individuals, and supervising, monitoring, and evaluating services provided to the individuals.  He will also coordinate the training of DSP’s in the content of health and safety needs relevant to each individual, conduct meet and greets with potential staff and families, as well as handle issues and concerns with families and staff.


Janette Hanson

Regional Program Director

Janette started with Gene Cook Supports, LLC as a DSP in 2016. She has since moved up to the position of Regional Program Director for Westmoreland County. Janette oversees all of Westmoreland County, bringing on new referrals, staffing, attending all ISP (Individual Supports Plan) meetings and communicating with the clients and families to ensure they are happy and taken care of. Prior to that, Janette worked at an IDD residential group home with Wesley Family Services for five years. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her family and friends, baking and playing games. 


Melissa O’Brien

Regional Program Director

Melissa joined the GCS team as a DSP in 2017 and transitioned to the leadership team in September 2019.  With over 20 years of experience working with children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities, as well as eight years in the educational system, her background includes providing support to individuals in home, school, and community settings, training staff, enhancing community relations, and grant writing.  As a Regional Program Director, Melissa assists individuals and families with managing their GCS services, as well as supervises staffing and serves as a resource and support for DSPs.  Spending time with her three children, kayaking, and creating gourmet chocolates are Melissa’s favorite things to do with her leisure time.


Tanner Brown

Regional Program Director

Tanner started his GCS career in January 2018 and became the Program Coordinator for Allegheny County in November 2019.  He has a Public Health Degree from Slippery Rock University.  Tanner has worked as a direct support professional in personal care home settings and developed and coordinated programs for people with disabilities for the entirety of his professional career. As a member of the GCS team, he hopes to use his professional background in combination with his degree in Public Health to provide quality services to the individuals and families we serve.


Brittany Kowalewski

Regional Program Director

Brittany started with Gene Cook Supports in 2016 as a DSP before moving into her role as a Regional Program Director. Prior to GCS, Brittany worked at NHS where she had the opportunity to work with children diagnosed with varying disabilities. Brittany has a degree in business and plans to continue her education. In her free time Brittany does CrossFit, spends time with her kids, and likes taking spur of the moment road trips.


Erin Centofanto

Director of Health & Wellness/Activities Coordinator 

Erin joined the Gene Cook Supports team as Health and Wellness Coordinator in 2018.  Erin has a degree in Physical Education/Exercise Physiology from Indiana University of Pennsylvania.  In her career, she has worked at our local hospitals, schools, businesses, and personal care home settings developing programs and educating individuals on the importance of overall health and well being. Erin is a certified BLS Instructor and Yoga Fitness Instructor, as well as being certified in Health & Wellness coaching and therapeutic massage.  Through Gene Cook Supports, LLC, Erin hopes to incorporate all aspects of health and wellness to improve not only physical health, but mental and emotional health as well. Erin loves spending time with her family, friends, and working on personal growth. Her best days are the days she spends with her daughter.


Lindsay Whisler

Mobility Coordinator (OT)

Lindsay has a Bachelors in Fine Arts from Edinboro University and her Associates of COTA (Certified Occupational Therapist Assistant) from CCAC.  She has experience working as a counselor with adolescents, activities with seniors, and as a paraprofessional in autistic support at Sunrise School in Monroeville.  Lindsay has been a habilitation aide for GCS since 2015, and has been teaching our GCS Arts and Crafts class since 2017. Lindsay hopes to make a difference in the lives of our clients through class time opportunities and therapeutic interventions.  In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her dog, friends, and family.


Marquel Formato

Mobility Coordinator (PT)

Marquel joined the Gene Cook Supports Health and Wellness team in 2021 as a Mobility/Health & Wellness Coordinator. Marquel attended Penn State University where she majored in Physical Therapy Assistance. She has experience in both the skilled nursing and clinic settings. Marquel is also certified as a Health and Wellness & Nutrition coach. Marquel hopes to use her knowledge and experience to help guide others into living their fullest and best lives. In her free time, Marquel enjoys outdoor activities, being with her family and going to Top Golf with friends.


Michael-Patrick Buckley

Financial Officer 

Michael-Patrick (MP) joined the Gene Cook Supports team as a DSP during the winter of 2015.  MP earned his degree in Accounting from Seton Hill University, along with a Master’s degree in Management, while also being a member of the baseball team. He joined the management team as the Payroll/HR Representative during the early winter of 2019.  In early April of 2022, he moved into a new role as the Financial Officer.  MP is an extrovert with a charismatic, majestic and loving personality who fondly enjoys the presence of individuals with ID.  In his spare time, he enjoys working out, running & biking, hanging with friends & family, playing sports, and eating plants.


Autumn Krisfalusi

Human Resources Generalist

Autumn joined the Gene Cook Supports team in 2020 as the Supplies Coordinator, and moved into the position of Human Resources Generalist in March of 2021. She earned a Bachelor’s Degree from Penn State University, and has over 10 years of experience in the Human Resources field. In her free time, Autumn enjoys camping, taking road trips, and spending time with her family.


GCS Staff

At Gene Cook Supports, we value our staff and the diverse skills and extensive experience they bring to the company. We value each employee for their dedication and commitment to ensuring our individuals can have meaningful, everyday lives.  Staff are known for going above and beyond with their individuals to work on every aspect of their lives they would like to change or improve. Our staff are invested, dedicated, caring, and compassionate, bringing true heart to our GCS team!