Our Staff at BrightStar Care® Santa Barbara County

Our experienced and compassionate staff is dedicated to caring for your loved one as if they were family. Get to know our team.

  • Sharon Perez, MSW

    Owner/Director of Operations

    As far back as I can remember my family was in the business of helping people. I bring almost 40 years of experience and education. With a degree in Ultrasound, a degree in Hospital Administration, a Master of Divinity, and a Master of Social Work, I feel I have combined my love for the physical, emotional, as well as psychological needs of the clients and families whom we are privileged to care for. I love the beach, the ocean, and doing anything together with my family.

  • Michael Perez

    Owner/Sales Manager
    Most of my career I have been in Sales, Marketing and Finance. I have started several businesses over the years, but never found one that had such a positive impact on people's lives.

    Personally, I have experienced the difficulties of being a sole caregiver for a loved one with a terminal illness. During that difficult time, I felt that there was a great need for quality care to help provide rest for those who stay home and care for others. I served four years in the United States Navy, and am a proud veteran. 
    michael perez
  • Heather Borgatello

    Sales Representative
    I have over twenty years of experience in the medical industry. As I have collectively developed my expertise in this industry, I have increasingly developed a passion in assisting others. This has given me a great sense of fulfilment, and has led me to BrightStar Care!

    In addition to my profession, I have raised three children and I have a Shih Tzu dog, Tobias. They are all of the great joys of my life. I take great delight in exercising, cooking, interior decorating, and creating unique floral arrangements and wreaths. I savor vacationing with my family and aspire to join the Peace Corps someday. I was born and raised in Madison Wisconsin and went to college at the University of Colorado in Boulder.
  • Taylor Davis, RN

    Nurse Manager

    I grew up in Goleta and went to high school at Dos Pueblos, where I played water polo and worked as a lifeguard over the summers. After completing my undergraduate studies at UCSD, I decided to return to Santa Barbara to pursue a career in EMS. I received my EMT certification from SBCC and went on to obtain my paramedic license while working for the local ambulance service.

    After responding to the tragic Montecito Debris Flow in 2018, I realized I could provide a higher level of care to my community by becoming a registered nurse. After graduating from the nursing program at SBCC, I worked as a Critical Care RN at Cottage Hospital. I am excited to now be a part of the Brightstar Care team, where I can continue to provide exceptional care to the valued members of this great community.

    Outside of work I enjoy hiking, surfing, and backpacking in the beautiful Sierra Nevada mountains.

    Taylor Davis
  • Amber Gilliam, LVN

    Clinical Supervisor

    I have been in the healthcare industry for over six years in many capacities. These various roles have shaped me into a well-rounded employee who understands the individual needs of each client. I strive to deliver client-centered medical attention in various clinical and residential environments. My experience includes countless hours of hands-on patient care as a Vocational Nurse, Certified Nursing Assistant, and Home Health Aide. I possess an excellent track record of professionalism, patience, and outstanding patient care coupled with strong written and verbal communication abilities.

    I receive personal fulfillment when I build a personal connection with each individual patient and their family.

    amber gilliam
  • Carmen Gomez

    Recruiter, Onboarding Coordinator
    I love meeting new people, making corny jokes, and most importantly hearing other people’s stories! I especially love to hear what inspires them to become healthcare workers and professionals who have so much compassion for others. 

    Some might say I took the scenic route to my destination as a Recruiter with BrightStar Care.  On my journey I have worked in many diverse fields, from producing television to sales management, each of which has prepared me for my current role.

    Although the extent of my healthcare experience was my role as a student athletic trainer for my high school football team, I understand the importance of having a compassionate care team! My goal is to add team members whose drive is to help and serve others.
  • Annie Gonzales, RN, MSN

    Director of Nursing/Patient Services
    I have been a nurse for 15 years in the Santa Barbara County area. I have received a Bachelors and Masters degrees in nursing. The experience that I bring to BrightStar Care includes Surgical Trauma Nursing, OR Nursing, Critical Care Nursing, Home Care Nursing, Travel Immunization Nursing, advanced skills in IV Therapy, Care of open heart patients and Neuro Critical care patients, along with many other complex nursing skills. I am passionate about the impact I bring to my patients' lives. The reward in helping others is great.

    My strengths include the ability to start an IV on any patient, my ability to teach fellow nurses, and my strength to adapt, learn, and handle stressful environments. I can critically think and problem solve in any situation.
    Annie Rivas
  • Rachel Holland

    Customer Care Manager

    My role is to oversee the scheduling and caregiver assignments. I have been a Certified Nursing Assistant working in Facilities and in homes for the past nine years. As the Customer Care Manager, I provide the communication between the scheduling team, the caregivers, and the clients, providing a higher standard of care always in mind. I am very passionate about what I do and thankful to be a part of BrightStar Care of Santa Barbara County from its beginning.

    I am the mother of Riley Mae, who often comes in to help Grandma (Sharon) at the office. Riley's official title is Chief Child Executive, and she always brings a smile to everyone at the office.

    Rachel Holland
  • Arthur "Artie" Lopez

    Home Health Administrator

    I was born and raised in Oxnard, California. I have been helping people in my community since I was in Elementary School.

    Following my collegiate baseball career, I decided to pursue my passion for helping others, this chapter being in the medical field. Successfully aiding clinics and all levels of the medical staff throughout Ventura County, the past ten years of experience has led managing and running private medical practices. Now I have joined BrightStar Care of Santa Barbara, and I am truly excited to continue my journey as our Home Health Administrator.

    Outside of work, I am an outdoors person, spending time with family at the beach, camping, and going on hikes. I also love to golf, as well as paint rocks as an artistic outlet!

    Artie Lopez
  • Hugo Lopez

    Scheduling Coordinator
    I am Hugo Lopez, originally from Magdalena, Mexico and raised in Ventura, California. As the eldest among my four siblings and a first-generation high school graduate, I am currently pursuing an associate's degree in telecommunications, driven by a passion for leveraging technology to empower communities.

    Beyond academics, I dedicate my time to volunteering at a local animal shelter and participating in ride-alongs with our local police department. With experience as a former Ventura County Sheriff Explorer and volunteer for the Oxnard Police Department, I am committed to serving and supporting others, embodying a dedication to compassionate assistance and reliability.

    I am excited to be part of the BrightStar Care team, contributing to our collective success and fostering a dynamic team environment, while striving to provide exceptional care to our clients and patients.
  • Amanda Marsango

    Training Coordinator/CPR Instructor
    My experience working in health care started when I was responsible for providing care for my mother who was terminally ill. This experience inspired me to go back to school to pursue a career in this field, and in 2006 I completed a Medical Assistant Program. In 2007, I decided to switch my focus and began working in Residential Facilities, and in homes specifically with clients who have Dementia & Alzheimer’s Disease.  I bring this experience to my role at BrightStar where I oversee the Training Program for our caregivers and I am a certified CPR Instructor.
    Amanda Marsango
  • Laurie Maxwell

    Home Health Coordinator

    I have a Bachelor's degree from University of California in Santa Barbara, and an MBA from the University of Washington in Seattle. My most recent background was a 20-year career in the staffing industry, overseeing various departments within the corporate headquarters. 

    As BrightStar’s Santa Barbara County operation continues to grow and diversify, I will lend my expertise in communications, logistics, and operations. Realizing how important this industry truly is, I am very pleased to be a part of BrightStar Care. I escorted my aging parents through their final years, learning what it means to provide care for others. BrightStar was one of the important tools in my eldercare journey! After seeing the level of care they provided,  I am excited to join this organization as an employee with passion and enthusiasm.

    Laurie Maxwell
  • Laura Nielsen

    Branch Manager/Human Resources
    My passion for helping people drives what I do at BrightStar Care of Santa Barbara County. I have over 30 years of professional experience working at various colleges, with 10 of those years in leadership positions. 

    I have a Bachelor's degree in Business Management, and a background in technical recruiting, public relations and social media management. Personally, I helped with hiring caregivers for my parents, and I know first-hand, the importance of finding great, trustworthy, quality caregivers for loved ones. This experience motivates me daily to ensure our clients and families are provided the same care and understanding that was provided to my family.
    Laura Nielsen
  • Melisa Ocampo

    Client Care Supervisor

    Ever since I was young, I knew I wanted to help people. Taking care of patients and making a positive difference in their lives brings me a strong sense of fulfillment. It’s a passion that has made my time as a Certified Nursing Assistant and my years working for Brightstar Care are a very enjoyable experience.

    Prior to being promoted to my new role as a Client Care Supervisor, I worked in the field for a year and a half with our clients. Now I focus on making sure our caregivers are providing the highest standard of care for our clients and providing the excellent service that they can expect from BrightStar Care of Santa Barbara County. Additionally, I work closely with our nurses and communicate with them on any clinical needs. I’m thrilled to be part of this team and I believe that we will make a difference in countless people's lives.

    Melisa Ocampo
  • Susan Parry

    Human Resources Assistant
    My life has always been helping others, coming from a family in the health care field. I started with a father who owned an ambulance company, and my own children have followed the path as well. I have a daughter who is a phlebotomist leader / trainer, a daughter who is a CNA while taking MA courses, while my youngest wants to be a traveling nurse. Meanwhile, I teach Red Cross courses including Wilderness First Aid, Babysitting Fundamentals, Advanced CPR/First Aid/AED, and one of my favorites: Pet First Aid!  

    I have a Bachelors degree in Technical Sales and bring 30 years of experience. One of my life’s missions is to help others and bring a positive and loving imprint on other people’s lives, not only our customers but to our awesome staff as well! After helping to take care of my aging parents, helping others through this important time has become even more important to me. I am so thankful and grateful to work with the Santa Barbara BrightStar Care team and continuing with my passion. 

    I have a beautiful mini Husky and four amazing kids. I love going to concerts, being at the beach, going out boating, and most of all – spending time with family. Since the sea calls my soul, one day I hope to wake up every morning hearing the waves!
  • Sam Platt

    Digital Marketer
    I am a marketing specialist and multimedia artist with a focus on graphic design. I graduated from UC Santa Barbara in 2021 with a Bachelor’s degree in Film and Media. I have worked as an in-house as well as a freelance designer for companies primarily based in California and New York. I enjoy bringing creativity and unique experiences into my work, with an aim on helping others achieve their personal and professional goals.   

    As a digital marketer for BrightStar Care, I am excited to use my skills to assist with the continued success and growth of the company – with the ultimate goal of improving the lives of even more people in our community!

    Outside of work I enjoy surfing, hiking, and anything else outdoors. I also spend a lot of time working on my art and designs, with an effort to lead both an active and creative lifestyle. I am excited to make an impact on the Santa Barbara community and beyond while being part of the BrightStar Care team!
    Sam Platt
  • Javan Quinones

    Finance Manager/Assistant to Owner/DOO

    I was born and raised in Brawley, CA and moved to Santa Barbara County back in 2015 to pursue higher education. During this time, my primary job was as a Nursing Assistant providing in-home care for the elderly. Additionally, I worked remotely for a criminal law firm and held the position of legal secretary, assisting with clerical tasks, payroll, and scheduling.

    My previous knowledge and experience as a caregiver allows me to understand the importance of our clients well-being and the hard work and dedication it takes for our employees to provide a “higher standard of care.”

    My role as Finance Manager for BrightStar Care of Santa Barbara County is to process weekly payroll/billing, oversee and assist the Owner/Director of Operations with account receivables/account payables and financial reporting for the business. 

    Javan Quinones
  • Jordan Rodgers

    Caregiver Specialist / Office Assistant

    From a young age, I knew I had a passion for helping others. It warms my heart when I can make someone’s day and see a smile on someone’s face. I’m an aspiring nurse in the making. I love meeting new people, making others laugh, and being someone to count on. 
    Prior to my promotion to become a caregiver specialist/office assistant, I have worked as a caregiver since joining BrightStar last year. Prior to BrightStar, I have experience working at a hospital in the nutrition department, answering phones, and taking/delivering orders. I look forward to continuing making an impact in people’s lives however I can! As someone who loves being a part of a team, I’m excited to be a team player in the office as well as out in the field. 

    In my free time I love to spend time with my puppy – teaching her new things and going on adventures! Her name is Princess and she is half white German Shepherd and half Golden Retriever. Besides spending time with my dog, I love spending time with family and friends, traveling, and learning new things.

  • Jillianna Sims

    Scheduling Coordinator

    I grew up with a single mother who was constantly helping people, and this drove me to find a career where I could use the skills she helped me develop in helping others. I am a graduate of UCSB, where I triple majored in English, Sociology, and Black Studies.

    I have thought of many pathways that I could go into to help people; but I found my way into the healthcare field and have since decided that this is the path that I would love to continue! I started working within the healthcare community at a drug addiction rehabilitation center and fell in love with the field of healthcare. I am excited to join such a caring, customer-driven team here at BrightStar Care to support people during all phases of life.

    I am originally from Lodi, CA. I am the middle child of an older and younger brother. I love to read, go on hikes, listen to music, and play with my dog Sadie in my spare time

    Jillianna Sims
  • Julie Stuster, RN

    Home Care Nurse
    I was born and raised here in Santa Barbara. I got my RN license and have been working as a registered nurse for the past 5 years. So far I have specialized in allergy and immunology and pediatrics, though I have been in the medical field for the past 15 years – I started as a CNA during my senior year in high school. I have hands-on experience and understand the mental and physical effort from a caregiver's point of view as well as the emotional factor of clients. 
    I got into the medical field so I could help people and make a positive difference in people's lives. I have struggled with my own health problems as a young girl and saw many types doctors and therapists over the years. This fact ignited my passion for nursing. I am very compassionate and truly feel happiest when I assist others.

    I am so glad to be part of the BrightStar Care team, and sincerely care about my patients and their family's well-being. In my spare time, I love to be with friends and family…and I absolutely love to sing!
    Julie Stuster
  • Darren Turgul

    Community Relations & Accounts Receivable
    I am a California native, born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area. I recently moved down to Santa Barbara. I have four years of customer service experience and more than three years of sales experience.

    I am thrilled to become a member of the BrightStar Care team! My job is a challenging blend of community relations and accounts receivable management. Balancing my commitment to work and school, I am also a student at the University of California at Santa Barbara.

    Outside of my academic pursuits, I indulge my passion for cars by customizing and creating car-related content. I also like going to the gym and watching movies.
    Darren Turgul
  • Michael Yamasaki

    Operations Manager
    Although I was born in Milwaukee, I grew up in Goleta. Growing up locally instilled a sense of community and camaraderie, values that I carry with me in both my personal and professional life. Throughout my professional career, I have managed and led Health & Wellness teams; for more than 30 years I have been committed to improving the lives of others. I am so glad to be a part of the BrightStar Care team, as it fits right into my experience and personal mission!

    Outside my professional endeavors, I am passionate about giving back to the community by coaching kids, imparting valuable life skills, and encouraging teamwork and the resilient spirit in them. I’m the proud father of two sons and in my spare time, I enjoy playing softball and golf.
    Michael Yamasaki

Our Caregivers and Nurses

Our team of care professionals thoroughly screened and trained to provide the highest quality care to your family or your patients. Learn more about our compassionate and trustworthy nurses and caregivers.

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Please contact us today to schedule a complimentary consultation or call BrightStar Care Santa Barbara County at 805.335.1200.

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