Staff Members

Executive Staff


Joyce Mahr is the Chief Executive Officer for Betty Griffin Center.

Joyce was born in St. Augustine and has raised her family here.  While in banking, Joyce became a board member for the Betty Griffin Center.  This is where she found her true calling to advocate for survivors of domestic and sexual violence.  She has worked for Betty Griffin Center for 21 years and in 2008 became the Chief Executive Officer.  

Joyce believes domestic and sexual violence is not an individual issue, but a community issue.


Kelly Franklin, Chief Operating Officer

Kelly, who received her Master in Social Work from Florida State University and a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from the University of North Florida, joined Betty Griffin Center as its Shelter Director in 2002.  She has since served as outreach director for the agency (2008-2011) and became Chief Operating Officer in 2011.

Kelly says she’s honored to have been the voice for so many survivors of domestic violence and sexual abuse, and continues to be honored to witness adults and children finding their own voice to heal – and her hope is to be honored to “witness the day when everyone uses their voice so that domestic violence and sexual abuse no longer exists.”


Lauren Carpenter, Chief Financial Officer

Lauren joined Betty Griffin Center in 2013, providing experience gained from a background of non-profit finance in differing sectors, wth a passion for serving her community.

Lauren received a Bachelor of Science in Finance from University of Florida and an International Master of Business Administration from University of Denver after serving in the Peace Corps in Togo, West Africa.  

Outside of work, Lauren enjoys yoga, travel, spending time with her husband and three children and volunteering in her community.


Nicole Pece, Development Director

Nicole Donnelly Pece brings nearly 20 years of experience in fundraising, development and as a major gifts officer. A resident of St. Augustine, Pece previously served as the director of development for both the Carpenter Library and the College of Education and Human Services at the University of North Florida (UNF) for almost three years.

Before joining UNF, Pece served as director of development at Flagler College in the office of institutional advancement from 2010 to 2014. Pece worked in a variety of fundraising positions at the college prior to that, including serving as capital gifts officer, director of the annual fund and special giving, and as assistant director of development from 2000 to 2004.  She initially joined Flagler College in 1997 as director of student housing.

Pece received a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Boston College, received a Master of Arts in Teaching from Jacksonville University, and also completed doctoral coursework toward her Higher Education Administration Degree at Florida State University in Tallahassee, Florida.


Beverly Smith, Human Resources Director

A long-time resident of Connecticut, Bev has been with Betty Griffin Center since 2015  — after moving to Northeast Florida in 2013.

Bev spent much of her previous career at The Hartford in Hartford, Connecticut, after graduating from Central Connecticut State University with a Bachelor of Arts in English. In her 20-plus years at The Hartford, Bev was fortunate to have held a number of titles:  Technical Writer, Management Consultant, Grassroots Lobbyist, Ombudsman and Human Resources Director.  

Before moving to Florida, Bev became the first and only HR professional in an electron-beam welding company.    One of her responsibilities was to recruit electron-beam welders, a highly-technical specialty for which there is virtually no talent pool.  She does not consider that effort to be a rousing success, often joking that “it would have been easier to find Sasquatch.”