Our Providers

  • David Garcia, LMSW

    Behavioral Health Director

  • Josette French, MD

    Physician

  • Steve Ware, LMSW, CAADC, CCS

    Behavioral Health Clinical Supervisor

  • Jesse Klebba, DO

    Medical Director

  • Violeta Donawa, LMSW, MA

    Behavioral Health Therapist

David Garcia, LMSW

Behavioral Health Director

David is of Native American and Mexican American heritage. His father is from the Lipan Apache Tribe of Texas. His mother is from Mexico and would be related to the Tarahumara tribe of Copper Canyon, Mexico. He has his Bachelor’s and Master’s in Social Work from Michigan State University. His journey on the Red Road began in June of 1994 and he practices the Lakota Teachings of Spirituality. He has been privileged to participate in teachings and ceremonies with Elders from the Dakotas, Canada, Central American, the Andes and the Amazon. He is a Fire keeper, Piper carrier, Sundancer and Water Pourer of the Inipi ceremony. Dave grew up in a Mexican community in Saginaw until he was 5 when his family moved to rural Chesaning. He currently lives in Bay City and has two adult children, Elizabeth and Aaron and 3 dogs. Dave has over 25 years of sobriety and believes that through indigenous teachings and ceremonies, we can help heal the indigenous people. Dave’s idea of a vacation is to travel and spend a week with an Elder participating in ceremony. Mitakuye Oyasin

Josette French, MD

Physician

Josette French, MD is a member of the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians in Michigan. Her tribal roots are tied to Sugar Island on her grandmother’s side and Saint Ignace on her grandfather’s side.

She is a board-certified family physician and earned her ten-year recertification in 2015. Dr. French received her Bachelor of Science degree from Yale University in New Haven, CT in 1991 and her Doctor of Medicine degree from the University of Florida, College of Medicine in Gainesville, FL in 1995. Dr. French completed her family medicine residency at Oakwood Hospital in Dearborn, MI in 1998. She has worked at AIHFS since 1998 and is dedicated to trying to lessen the health disparities seen in the Native community.
In her leisure time, she enjoys spending lots of time with her family, getting outside to walk and bike as much as possible, relaxing on Michigan’s beautiful beaches, and staying centered with daily meditation and yoga.

Steve Ware, LMSW, CAADC, CCS

Behavioral Health Clinical Supervisor

Steve (he/him) specializes in treating trauma and addiction. He uses techniques such as mindfulness skills training, motivational interviewing, behavioral activation, and Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) to support personal growth and recovery. Steve earned his Master’s in Social Work (MSW) from the University of Michigan. He is originally from Michigan, but he has also lived in Chicago, New York, and Nicaragua where he worked in the Film and Television industry. He uses daily meditation to center his personal and professional wellness practices. He is an educator and a lifelong learner.

Jesse Klebba, DO

Medical Director

Jesse Klebba is a board-certified family physician who joined American Indian Health and Family services as the medical director in February 2022. Born and raised in south east Michigan he graduated from Wayne State University with a bachelor’s degree in biology followed by medical school at Michigan State University. After graduating medical school, he pursued a career in Indian health working with the Puyallup tribe. He attended the Puyallup tribal health authority for residency and later signed on as a full spectrum family medicine faculty member. As a faculty member he worked and trained residents in both inpatient and outpatient medicine including obstetrics. He also worked as the tribal correctional facility doctor and was actively training to become the lab Director. He was a member of the EHR committee and the core competency committee working to both to improve the medical records and enhance resident training. As an osteopathic physician he approaches health with a mind, body, and spirit perspective and plans to bring his experience as a mentor with him into his position as medical director.

Violeta Donawa, LMSW, MA

Behavioral Health Therapist

Violeta Donawa LMSW, MA, is a fully-licensed clinical social worker inspired by the teachers in her life who keep her accountable to personal growth, collective care, and joy. She is a longtime co-organizer of community healing spaces which also informs her approach to therapeutic care with individuals and families. She specializes in holistically treating clients whose mental health has been impacted by various forms of systemic harm or discrimination, and its relationship to patterns of addiction and other forms of trauma. She uses techniques such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Motivational Interviewing, and Somatics to support client care.

 

Violeta earned an MSW from the University of Michigan School of Social Work (’19) where she specialized in African-centered social work and integrative behavioral health focused on substance use and related disorders, an MA in Sociology with a specialization in Afro-Latin American Studies from Michigan State University (’14), and a BA in Sociology with a specialization in Chicano-Boricua Studies from Wayne State University (’08). Her professional work has led to guest lectures and board service focused on capacity-building and equity within higher education and in the field.

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