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Meet the staff: featuring AJ and Leah, clinical team members

Each month, we are featuring two of our staff members as a way for you to get to know the good folks who make up our community. This month, we're featuring two of our clinical team members, AJ and Leah. More about them below!

Leah Puffer, RN, BSN (she/her)


Leah joined Gould Farm in October 2023, bringing with her a wealth of experience and a passion for community-based mental health care. With a background rooted in fostering connections within community settings, Leah was drawn to Gould Farm's unique approach to mental health recovery. Having previously served on a Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)-based Assertive Community Treatment (ACT) team at Maine Behavioral Health and later as a nurse at Ellenhorn, a community-based residential treatment program, Leah understands the importance of integrating individuals into supportive communities.

What particularly captivated Leah about Gould Farm was the therapeutic community and its integration with the diverse work program in a natural setting, providing a refreshing departure from the isolation often experienced by those receiving services in the mental health field.

Leah's role as a nurse at Gould Farm encompasses a diverse range of responsibilities, from managing medications and addressing injuries to providing vital medical care. Additionally, Leah serves as a vital link between medical providers and the clinical team, ensuring seamless coordination of care along with other nursing office staff. With a commitment to holistic wellness, Leah also offers invaluable support to guests on their journey toward healing.

Academically, Leah pursued studies in psychology and biology at James Madison University, where her interests in healthcare were nurtured through various shadowing experiences and hands-on medical care roles. Her journey led her to obtain her EMT license and eventually pursue nursing, completing an accelerated BSN program at the University of New England. Leah's practicum experiences on psychiatric units further solidified her dedication to mental health care, ultimately shaping her career trajectory.

Certified in pain reprocessing therapy, Leah brings a nuanced understanding of chronic pain management to her role, enhancing the support offered to guests at Gould Farm. Outside of her professional endeavors, Leah finds solace in walking her beloved dog, Frances, amidst the tranquil woods of Gould Farm.

AJ Metthe, LICSW (he/they)

Social Worker

AJ was drawn to Gould Farm in August 2023, captivated by the Farm’s unconventional approach to mental health care. With a background rooted in public and community service, AJ's academic journey began at Providence College, where he explored societal interconnectedness and developed his philosophy of service.

Continuing his education at Smith College School for Social Work, AJ deepened his understanding of psychodynamic theory and its practical application in person-centered care. Guided by his experiences within marginalized communities, including LGBTQ groups and those affected by gun violence, AJ firmly believes in the importance of lived experiences and collaborative decision-making.

As a clinician at Gould Farm, AJ prioritizes fostering therapeutic relationships based on mutual respect and understanding. His commitment to challenging norms and embracing a dynamic environment is evident in his approach to supporting both guests and staff.AJ finds inspiration in Gould Farm's mission to reclaim community values and combat societal isolation. Living on the Farm, he experiences the profound significance of sharing meals and growing food together, evident in our daily meals crafted from homegrown produce, prepared collaboratively, and then shared at our community dining room three times a day, seven days a week.

In addition to his work at Gould Farm, AJ shares his life with his loyal companion, Raven the Rescue, a black lab mix.


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