The Coordinating Center appoints Dianne Edwards-Barnes as first Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging Coordinator

August 1, 2022 – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Media Contact: Renee Dain, SVP, Strategic Partnerships and External Affairs, 410-987-1048, ext. 2350

Millersville, Maryland—The Coordinating Center, Maryland’s statewide, premier nonprofit care coordination organization for children and adults with disabilities and complex needs, is excited to announce that effective August 1, 2022, Dianne Edwards-Barnes will serve as The Coordinating Center’s first, Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging (DEI&B) Coordinator. Dianne, who has served as co-chair of The Coordinating Center’s coworker led DEI&B Committee since 2000, recently obtained her Certificate in Diversity and Inclusion from Cornell University in 2021, where she studied strategies to improve engagement, counteract unconscious bias, and create a more supportive and engaging place to work.

As DEI&B Coordinator, Dianne will work with coworkers across all levels of the organization to foster a culture of community and inclusion, identify opportunities for advancement and support coworkers by serving as a central point of reference for all things DEI&B related.

“We are excited to appoint Dianne into this new leadership position. Under her leadership The Coordinating Center recently released its public DEI&B statement and efforts to date, including the integration of gender neutral and anti-ableist language across all policies and practice at The Coordinating Center,” said Teresa Titus-Howard, PhD, MHA, MSW, President and CEO, The Coordinating Center.

“It is my hope that The Coordinating Center will become a leader in DEI&B initiatives, recognizing that it is not one person’s responsibility, but all of ours to ensure that we are making a difference and creating a safe and welcoming environment where everyone belongs,” said Dianne Edwards-Barnes.

Dianne has more than 15 years of experience in social and human services and 10 years in training and professional development. Since 2014, Dianne has served as Supports Planner at The Coordinating Center, coordinating home and community-based services for older adults and individuals with disabilities to maximize their independence in the community. Dianne has held numerous volunteer positions, with Arthritis Research Foundation, March of Dimes, United Way, American Cancer Society, and the AIDS foundation. Dianne was also a former Crisis-Care Foster Parent along with her wife for over 75 at risk children.

 

R. Colby Bearch, Chief Operating Officer appointed to serve on URAC’s Accreditation Committee

July 18, 2022 – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Media Contact: Renee Dain, SVP, Strategic Partnerships and External Affairs, 410-987-1048, ext. 2350

Millersville, Maryland—The Coordinating Center, Maryland’s statewide, premier nonprofit care coordination organization for children and adults with disabilities and complex needs, is excited to announce that R. Colby Bearch, BA, MA-SF, MA-M, RN, CDONA, Chief Operating Officer (COO), has been appointed by the Utilization Review Accreditation Commission (URAC) to serve on its Accreditation Committee for a three year term.

URAC is an internationally recognized accreditation organization providing accreditation and certification in multiple healthcare specialty areas. Dedicated to improving the quality of health care, URAC currently recognizes the quality of more than 1,000 healthcare organizations through its accreditation and certification programs. URAC’s standards keep pace with the rapid changes in the health care system and provide a Gold Standard mark of distinction for health care organizations to demonstrate their commitment to quality and accountability.

“Earlier this year, our organization was granted full accreditation under URAC’s vigorous 6.0 Case Management standards. Colby played a critical role in making this happen and we are thrilled that he has been selected to serve on URAC’s Accreditation Committee,” said Teresa Titus-Howard, PhD, MHA, MSW, President and CEO, The Coordinating Center.

The Coordinating Center has continued to maintain accreditation in Case Management for its Amerigroup, Rare and Expensive Case Management (REM) and Model Waiver programs since 2001.

Mr. Bearch brings more than 25 years of experience in healthcare administration and has been with The Coordinating Center since 2011. Mr. Bearch provides executive oversight for The Coordinating Center’s Population Health Division, Quality Improvement and Outcomes Management Division, Facility Operations, Staff Development and organizational policy and accreditation. Mr. Bearch also serves as The Center’s Corporate Compliance Officer. Mr. Bearch has substantial clinical management experiences in critical care, acute care, subacute care, long-term care and population health arenas in the for-profit and nonprofit sectors.

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Founded in 1983 and headquartered in Millersville, Maryland, The Coordinating Center is a nonprofit organization that provides care coordination for individuals with complex medical needs and disabilities and their families.

Commitment to Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging:
At The Coordinating Center we aim to dismantle inequalities within our policies, systems, programs, and services by embracing Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging (DEI&B) and leading with respect, acceptance and compassion. It’s what makes us exceptional in achieving our mission and drives us to deliver culturally competent and effective care coordination services. We believe we are stronger together.

 

Maryland Nonprofits awards Service with Distinction Awards to five coworkers at The Coordinating Center

Millersville, Maryland—The Coordinating Center, Maryland’s statewide, premier nonprofit care coordination organization for children and adults with disabilities and complex needs, is excited to announce that Maryland Nonprofits has awarded five Service with Distinction Awards to the following coworkers at The Coordinating Center: Amanda Dayton, John Cannistra, Beth Groves, Maureen Tabor, and Sheryl Nickel. Maryland Nonprofits’ Service with Distinction Awards recognizes nonprofit employees, in positions that are not often formally celebrated, but who are critical to our work and deliver significant commitment, integrity, compassion, and caring for their organization and their communities. Awardees will be recognized during an audiovisual presentation and in a printed booklet at the Maryland Nonprofits’ 30th Anniversary Celebration, ‘This is the moment to care…and CELEBRATE!’, on July 28, 2022, from 6:00 PM – 9:00 PM at the B&O Railroad Museum in Baltimore, MD.

“We are thrilled to honor the accomplishments of Amanda, John, Beth, Maureen and Sheryl at Maryland Nonprofit 30th Anniversary Celebration. The Coordinating Center is a long-standing supporter of Maryland Nonprofits. Since 2000, we have maintained certification under Maryland Nonprofits Standards for Excellence program, which certifies nonprofits according to measures of ethical practices and accountability. We are proud to be a sponsor of “This is the moment to Care…and CELEBRATE,” and look forward to celebrating other nonprofit professionals who are doing incredible work in Maryland to ensure individuals, families and communities have access to vital services and supports,” says Teresa Titus-Howard, PhD, MHA, MSW, President and CEO, The Coordinating Center.

Meet the Awardees:
Beth Groves is a Community Health Worker who has been with The Coordinating Center since 2005. She is a strong advocate for adults with complex medical needs and chronic conditions, helping them navigate life after being discharged from the hospital with dignity and grace. Beth does an amazing job of meeting people where they are, literally and figuratively, with absolutely no judgement. She is skilled at motivational interviewing, listening, identifying barriers to care, accessing resources to overcome social determinants of health, and supporting others to become self-advocates. She successfully guides her clients through application processes dependent upon their abilities and collaborates with multiple community partners to ensure client needs are met, providing warm transitions to appropriate long-term resources when needed.

Maureen Tabor is a Licensed Certified Social Worker – Clinical (LCSW-C) in Maryland, and a Certified Case Manager (CCM) with experience in trauma-informed care and community-based services. Since 2016, Maureen has served as a Clinical Care Coordinator at The Coordinating Center for the Rare and Expensive Case Management (REM) program, which provides community case management services to over 4,000 people with diagnoses rare and expensive to treat. Maureen’s ability to navigate her clients’ social determinants of health is exemplary. It is not uncommon to find her making an extra visit with a client to complete a housing application, advocating for community systems to think outside-the-box for the adoption of a foster child to be expedited, or locating funding resources for items not covered by Medicaid. As a Maryland Board of Social Work Examiner’s approved supervisor, Maureen volunteers three hours per month to provide clinical group supervision to newer social workers at The Coordinating Center who wish to advance their licensure.

Sheryl Nickel is a Certified Case Manager and Pediatric Nurse (licensed in Maryland and Washington, D.C.) with 14 years of nursing experience in pediatrics (hospitals and hospice). Since 2017, Sheryl has served as a Clinical Care Coordinator at The Coordinating Center, providing exceptional case management services and advocacy for Model Waiver clients. Clients and families report that Sheryl is kind, caring and willing to assist to overcome any barriers to support them. For example, Sheryl is assigned to a rural section of Southern Maryland where there is a significant nursing shortage. Proactively, she participated in a Maryland statewide Nursing Workgroup to seek resolution for the shortage and implemented an electronic notification system to match clients with available nursing services, by alerting nursing agencies when a client was in need of support. Sheryl goes above and beyond supporting her clients, attends weekly program meetings with our State Funder, is a member of The Coordinating Center’s Transitioning Youth and Bereavement Committees and Pay for Performance work group and participates in strategic planning meetings for transition of the program into a new documentation system.

Amanda Dayton is a R.N. Care Coordinator with VIPhysicians&Kids, a new medical home program at The Coordinating Center that was established in 2019 to improve health outcomes and quality of life for children and youth with special health care needs and their families. Amanda played an instrumental role in helping to develop the new program, improving the lives of the families she serves and engaging providers in their care. Her approach with providers is always polite, professional, and warm and her warm “bed-side manner” comes across through virtual meetings and phone calls. Amanda has a keen ability to lift others up through encouraging words and communication style (both verbal and nonverbal). Even under stress, she maintains her patience, calmness, and warmth. She is empathetic and is very good at meeting coworkers and clients where they are. Always wanting to give back, Amanda serves on The Coordinating Center’s Bereavement Committee and takes initiative to send sympathy cards to client and families and she enjoys sending birthday cards to coworkers.

John Cannistra, a Supports Planner II, has been at The Coordinating Center for one year. As a new Supports Planner for our Community First Programs, John had to quickly learn four complex Medicaid programs, which provide supports planning services to older adults and individuals with disabilities who live and want to remain in the community or are living in a Maryland nursing facility and want to move to a home. John has the unique ability to take what is complicated and simplify it so that he can do what he loves best – helping others thrive in the community of their choice. With a degree in psychology and experience in behavioral health, John is an asset to his team. John is motivated, passionate, knowledgeable, and caring. He is also a team player, sharing resources with coworkers and taking initiative when our team needs mentoring or assistance.

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Founded in 1983 and headquartered in Millersville, Maryland, The Coordinating Center is a nonprofit organization that provides care coordination for individuals with complex medical needs and disabilities and their families.
Commitment to Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging:
At The Coordinating Center we aim to dismantle inequalities within our policies, systems, programs and services by embracing Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging (DEI&B) and leading with respect, acceptance and compassion. It’s what makes us exceptional in achieving our mission and drives us to deliver culturally competent and effective care coordination services. We believe we are stronger together.

Megan Bazzett, MS, CPRP, CFRP, Appointed Director, Community First Programs

Millersville, Maryland—The Coordinating Center, Maryland’s statewide, premier nonprofit care coordination organization for children and adults with disabilities and complex needs, is excited to announce Megan Bazzett, MS, CPRP, CFRP from Harford County as its next Director, Community First Programs (CFP). As CFP Director, Ms. Bazzett will provide oversight of The Center’s supports planning services for more than 3,000 Marylanders statewide, enrolled in one of Maryland Medicaid’s Home and Community Based Services Programs (HCBS) and/or Waiver. HCBS enable people with disabilities and older adults to live at home and/or transition from nursing homes to homes in the community.

Previously, Ms. Bazzett served as Chief of Operations for a multi-jurisdiction community-based mental health provider offering comprehensive services to individuals across the lifespan. With 22 years of experience in behavioral healthcare and program management, Ms. Bazzett also has held leadership roles through two non-profit behavioral health organizations, serving as the Director, Community Outreach Programs and the Director, Psychiatric Rehabilitation Programs. Ms. Bazzett has a master’s degree in psychology from Walden University and holds the following certifications granted by the Psychiatric Rehabilitation Association (PRA), formerly USPRA: Child and Family Resiliency Practitioner (CFRP,) and Certified Psychiatric Rehabilitation Practitioner (CPRP).

“After a comprehensive search process, we found an accomplished professional, whose leadership philosophy and experience in behavioral health makes her the perfect fit for this position. Ms. Bazzett has a proven track record of success in program design and growth, as well as coworker cultivation and retention, critical skillsets, which will be leveraged to positively impact our Community First Programs team.” Sharyn King, SVP, Population Health, Care Management and Service Coordination.

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Founded in 1983 and headquartered in Millersville, Maryland, The Coordinating Center is a non-profit organization that provides care coordination for individuals with complex medical needs and disabilities and their families.

Commitment to Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging:
At The Coordinating Center we aim to dismantle inequalities within our policies, systems, programs and services by embracing Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging (DEI&B) and leading with respect, acceptance and compassion. It’s what makes us exceptional in achieving our mission and drives us to deliver culturally competent and effective care coordination services. We believe we are stronger together.

Visit www.coordinatingcenter.org for more information.

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging in the Workplace and to Improve Access to Care

The Coordinating Center Takes a Stand on Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging in the Workplace and to Improve Access to Care and address inequities in healthcare for people with disabilities and complex medical and social needs.

Millersville, Maryland – The Coordinating Center, Maryland’s statewide, premier nonprofit care coordination organization for children and adults with disabilities and complex needs is actively taking a stand to address diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging (DEI&B) in the workplace and to improve access to care and address inequities in healthcare for our clients. “In the midst of a global pandemic and as racial injustice continues to permeate through society—both in the United States and globally, it is clear that each of us must play an active role in fighting to eradicate systemic racism and standing up for equality in all its forms. Focusing on DEI&B, isn’t just the right thing to do, it drives innovation, and it establishes an environment where everyone feels welcome, irrespective of gender, race, ethnicity, national origin, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, education, ability, and any other characteristics that make a person unique,” said Dr. Teresa Titus-Howard, PhD, MHA, MSW, President/CEO, The Coordinating Center.

The following efforts have been put in place at The Coordinating Center:

  • Launch of new DEI&B Statement and Our Culture page: here;
  • Zero Tolerance Policy on bullying, harassment, and discrimination;
  • Reasonable accommodations in the workplace and for clients to ensure equal access to services;
  • Recognition of Juneteenth, recognizing the full emancipation of slaves on June 19, 1865, the first true day of freedom for all Americans;
  • Pursuit of cultural competency throughout the organization by creating substantive learning opportunities and formal transparent policies;
  • Required DEI&B training provided, inclusive of unconscious bias annually for all coworkers;
  • Deliberate focus on combatting inequalities in the workplace by sourcing diverse talent and promoting a culturally diverse pipeline in coworker and board leadership;
  • Intentional and conscious of personal bias during the hiring, promoting and evaluation process of coworkers;
  • Grievance policy and process to ensure a fair and objective system for raising issues without bias; and,
  • Continuous improvement, including periodic surveys of coworkers to ensure best practices in DEI&B are met and exceeded.

“It is important to engage leadership in these efforts. Leaders need to show commitment through proactive communication and collaborative goal setting with teams. This is why here at The Coordinating Center, our Corporate Development Team serves on our long-standing, coworker led DEI&B Committee, Co-Chaired by Octavia Peterson, Director, Community First Programs (CFP) and Dianne Edwards-Barnes, Supports Planner, CFP. In addition, our Board Chair, James Karpook, Principal with The Chartis Group, attends our coworker led DEIB Committee and serves as Chair of our new Board of Directors DEI&B Committee,” said Dr. Titus-Howard.

“I’m so proud to work for a company that encourages me to bring my entire, authentic self to work each day and am valued for what makes me unique. Co-chairing the DEI&B committee provides me the opportunity to utilize my passion for social and racial equity and to engage with coworkers in hopes of providing them the same feeling of belonging,” said Ms. Edwards-Barnes.

Our Commitment to Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging:
At The Coordinating Center we aim to dismantle inequalities within our policies, systems, programs and services by embracing Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging (DEI&B) and leading with respect, acceptance and compassion. It’s what makes us exceptional in achieving our mission and drives us to deliver culturally competent and effective care coordination services. We believe we are stronger together.

  • We are passionate about embedding DEI&B into everything we do for our coworkers, community and the people we are privileged to serve;
  • We respect all individuals irrespective of gender, race, ethnicity, national origin, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, education, ability, and any other characteristics that make a person unique;
  • We value individual identities and unique perspectives by creating safe spaces that invite courageous dialogue and embrace authenticity.
  • We recognize that equity must take centerstage by creating a culture that promotes understanding that people have different needs and wants.
  • We acknowledge unconscious bias; and,
  • We take an active stance against racism and social injustice. Being non-racist and impartial is not enough.

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Founded in 1983 and headquartered in Millersville, Maryland, The Coordinating Center is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to partner with people of all ages and abilities and those who support them in the community to achieve their aspirations for independence, health and meaningful community life. To learn more about The Coordinating Center and our DEI&B efforts to date, check out our webpage.

Meet The Team – VIPhysicians&Kids

Contact us here: 410-987-1048 ext 1650
VIPK@coordinatingcenter.org

Fay Alexander is a Certified Community Health Worker with VIPhysicians&Kids and brings 15 years of experience in social services. As a military spouse, Fay has lived and worked in several states and overseas. Fay has worked with people with disabilities and health care resource needs, including military families, seniors in long-term care and independent living facilities, and adults with traumatic brain injuries. Now that Maryland is home, Fay feels lucky to be working at The Coordinating Center where patient-centered care is a top priority. Fay serves on Maryland’s Community Health Worker Advisory Committee and chairs The Coordinating Center’s Fundraising Committee. She is also a member of the Quality Council and the Transitioning Youth Workgroup. In her free-time Fay enjoys hiking, working out, reading, watching movies, and playing games. Fay holds a master’s degree in human relations from The University of Oklahoma and a bachelor’s degree from Loyola University of Maryland.

Amanda Dayton is a Registered Nurse with VIPhysicians&Kids. Amanda has been with the program from its inception as a key component to where the program is today. Amanda worked at Johns Hopkins in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit for 14 years prior to moving on to focus on assisting families in their day to day lives to meet not only medical needs, but social, emotional and mental needs as well. Amanda is a volunteer for her local animal shelter and her church in the children’s ministry. She enjoys spending her time outside with her husband of 16 years and their four children.

Kim Oveson is a Certified Community Health Worker with VIPhysicians&Kids. Kim has been with The Coordinating Center for four years, previously providing Supports Planning services for people with disabilities and complex needs. Driven by a passion for helping others, Kim takes pride in providing a person- centered approach when assisting patients. Kim has been working in the health and human services field for 11 years. Kim holds a master’s degree in clinical health science from Saint Francis University and a bachelor’s degree in community health science from Towson University. She is married with two children. Kim enjoys spending time outside with family and hiking. Her favorite quote is “what lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us” by Ralph Waldo Emerson.

Laura Smith, RN, BSN, CHPPN is a Registered Nurse with VIPhysicians&Kids. Laura has 12 years of nursing experience working in the fields of Pediatric Hospice and Palliative Care, Pediatric Emergency Nursing, and Neonatal Nursing. Laura graduated from Johns Hopkins University with a Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing and from Brigham Young University with a Bachelor’s of Science in Psychology. Laura is dedicated to working with children and their families to promote physical, emotional, and social well-being, and encouraging families to advocate for their health and psychosocial needs.

 

Seeking A Strategic Planning Partner

Millersville, Maryland – The Coordinating Center, Maryland’s statewide, premier nonprofit care coordination organization for children and adults with disabilities and complex needs is seeking proposals from interested, qualified, and experienced professional strategic planning firms or individuals to provide strategic planning and facilitation services. The Center is seeking proposals, due no later than 4:00 p.m. EST on Wednesday, December 1, 2021, from consultants/firms to guide the organization with the development of a Strategic Plan.

The anticipated Period of Performance will include a six-month period (March-September 2022) to provide adequate time for participation by the Strategic Planning Committee, The Center’s Board of Directors, in addition to input and review by employees and key community stakeholders. The primary deliverable of this contract and process will be a written organizational strategic plan document that presents the planning process, research, analysis, opportunities, and strategies along with an implementation plan that will guide The Center activity for the next three to five years

Click the Icon Below to Review the RFP.


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Founded in 1983 and headquartered in Millersville, Maryland, The Coordinating Center is a statewide, nonprofit organization that provides care coordination services for more than 10,000 children and adults with complex medical needs and disabilities and their families. The mission of The Center is to partner with people of all ages and abilities and those who support them in the community to achieve their aspirations for independence, health, and meaningful community life. Visit www.coordinatingcenter.org for more information.

The Coordinating Center Names 2021 Compassionate Leadership Nominees and Winner.

Millersville, Maryland – The Coordinating Center, Maryland’s statewide, premier nonprofit care coordination organization for children and adults with disabilities and complex needs is excited to announce the 2021 Compassionate Leadership Award nominees and recipient. The Compassionate Leadership award was created in 2019 and established by The Center’s Board of Directors in honor of Karen-Ann Lichtenstein, former President/CEO of The Center for 26 years (with The Center for 35 years).

The Compassionate Leadership Award recognizes an extraordinary coworker not only for their outstanding commitment to the mission and values of The Center, but in the characteristics of compassionate leadership both at The Center and in their daily life.

The six nominees for this year are Laura Wagner, Sara Fewster, Priscilla Lisik, Ruja Luitel, Karen Twigg, and Erin Schantz. Nominees and the winner were announced by a special guest Karen-Ann Lichtenstein, at The Center’s virtual Coworker Appreciation event on October 13th, which is held annually in recognition of National Case Management Week and in honor of all coworkers who work tirelessly to support The Center’s mission.

“We are pleased to announce that this year’s winner is Priscilla Lissik, Program Director, Homeless Support Services. Priscilla has been with The Center for 16 years and has been instrumental in growing The Center’s Housing Initiative Program in Montgomery County. Under leadership The Center has become the organization to turn to for some of Montgomery County’s most medically vulnerable individuals. Priscilla and her team were steadfast in continuing face-to-face visits with clients throughout the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Teresa Titus-Howard, PhD, MHA, MSW, President/CEO, The Coordinating Center.

Ms. Lissik is currently a mentor in The Center’s Guiding Professionals to Success (GPS) mentoring program and recently participated in Montgomery County’s Continuum of Care Leadership Development Program – Lead for Impact in 2020. Ms. Lissik is a Board Member for Montgomery County Health Partners and is currently under consideration for a commissioner position on the Interagency Commission for Homelessness.

“Priscilla has always embodied the mission and values of The Coordinating Center. She has always showed compassion for both the clients and the coworkers, while allowing them to be autonomous. The clients are the center of Priscilla’s focus, and she has always advocated for the most vulnerable individuals, which only made it natural that she be leading the program for homeless individuals. While she has been a strong advocate for clients since the day she started, she has really focused on leading her team over the past few years and has made tremendous growth,” said Sharyn King, BSN, RN, CCM, Senior Vice President, Population Health, Care Management and Service Coordination.

About all of the nominees:

Lara Wagner RN, CPN, CCM, Clinical Care Coordinator in REM, has been with The Center for four years. “Laura has been assisting in the orientation of new Clinical Coordinators in REM by voluntarily conducting the REM Assessment training. This training is very instrumental, as the REM Assessment is the initial step in the work done with clients that will ultimately help to establish the case management plan and collaborative goals,” spoke Monica Dada LCSW-C, CCM, Team Manager/REM. Laura is active in her community, particularly with her children’s school and athletic pursuits. During the COVID‐19 pandemic when additional nursing support was potentially needed for administering vaccines to the public, Laura was eager to volunteer.

Sara Fewster, Human Resource Coordinator, has been with The Center for two years. Sara demonstrates compassionate leadership by always putting the needs and interests of others first. “Sara has designed creative approaches to engaging coworkers. For example, Sara was personally aware of the struggles and frustrations of parenting young children and working remotely this past year. She created, facilitated, monitored, and developed content for the Parent Discussion Group which met biweekly for nearly the entire first year our staff worked remotely with unanticipated and intermittent daycare and school closures due to COVID exposures and illness,” said Carol Duvall, Senior Vice President, Human Resources.

Ruju Luitel, Director of Quality Improvement and Outcomes Management, has been with The Center for more than four years. Ruja was instrumental in developing The Center’s Business Intelligence System, saving The Center thousands of dollars, studying on her own time to research the capabilities and developed the system in partnership with her coworker, Lane Williams. “Her leadership style has not only transformed the manner in which coworkers perceive quality measurement and performance improvement, but also has elicited a global buy-in within The Center which is propelling us to be a stronger organization that is data driven and impact aware,” said Colby Bearch MA-M, MA-SF, BA, RN, CDONA, Chief Operating Officer, The Coordinating Center. In addition to Ruja’s self‐directed learning, Ruja is investigating doctoral study and has also committed to complete her Lean Six Sigma Black Belt this year. Ruja participates in external volunteer activities to support The Center’s mission and values, including but not limited to the Montgomery County Homeless Population Count and has volunteered at the Polar Plunge.

Erin Schantz, Program Manager, Coordination of Community Services (CCS), has been employed with The Coordinating Center for 11 years and has been promoted, at least two times. “Erin encapsulates the title of servant leader. Firstly, she is ably qualified to do what she currently does, and she uses this academic acumen and other giftings, to model everything that she expects of a coworker. Erin is gentle, focused, soft spoken and competent,” stated Pamula Mills, Ph.D., Director, Coordination of Community Services. Erin was instrumental in getting the CCS/DDA program off the ground. Using her compassion and experience in the Autism Waiver to deliver an exceptional model of care for clients benefiting from Maryland’s Developmental Disabilities Administration (DDA) program and waivers. Erin is committed to learning and professional development and has participated in The Center’s leadership program and is currently in the Guiding Professional for Success, GPS program. Erin is involved in activities with other parents with young children, organizing camping trips. She is heavily involved in the school system, for professional and personal growth.

Karen Twigg MSM-HCA, BSN, RN, CMCN, Vice President of Population Health and Community Health, has been with The Center for two Years and was recently promoted from Assistant Vice President to Vice President. Karen has presented and received recognition for her development of innovative programs targeting avoidable readmission reduction, improving provision of quality care, and aligning patient advocacy with fiscal accountability. Ms. Twigg is involved in various healthcare‐related associations and Boards. She currently serves as Secretary, of the Board of Directors for Corsica River Mental Health Services, Inc., the Board Member and Finance Committee Chair for the Maryland DC Society of Healthcare Risk Managers (MD DC SHRM) Board and serves on the Education Committee for Maryland Chapter American Case Management Association and the Education and the legislative Committee for the Maryland Rural Health Association.

Fay Alexander MHR, CCHW, Community Health Worker, VIPhysicians&Kids says, “Karen offers encouragement when needed, she pushes (in a good way!) people to grow and think in other ways, and she supports the needs of her team members and the goals that they have for themselves. If criticism is needed, it is always done in a constructive way and it doesn’t feel like criticism.”

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About the Coordinating Center
Founded in 1983 and headquartered in Millersville, Maryland, The Coordinating Center is a statewide, nonprofit organization that provides care coordination services for more than 10,000 children and adults with complex medical needs and disabilities and their families. The mission of The Center is to partner with people of all ages and abilities and those who support them in the community to achieve their aspirations for independence, health, and meaningful community life. Visit www.coordinatingcenter.org for more information.

The Coordinating Center Promotes R. Colby Bearch to Chief Operating Officer, Jennifer Sears to Chief Information Officer, and Renée Dain to Sr. Vice President, Strategic Partnerships and External Affairs

Millersville, Maryland—The Coordinating Center, Maryland’s statewide, premier nonprofit care coordination organization for children and adults with disabilities and complex needs, is excited to announce

Mr. R. Colby Bearch, BA, MA-SF, MA-M, RN, CDONA, has been promoted from Senior Vice President, Quality and Outcomes Management to Chief Operating Officer (COO). Mr. Bearch brings more than 20 years of experience in healthcare administration and has been with The Coordinating Center since 2011. As COO, Mr. Bearch will continue to oversee The Coordinating Center’s Quality Improvement and Outcomes Management Division and serve as the Corporate Compliance Officer. Mr. Bearch will lead The Center’s Corporate Compliance Program, ensure on-going organizational adherence to contract and regulatory standards, lead the First-Impressions Team, and manage facilities. Mr. Bearch has substantial clinical management experiences in critical care, acute care, subacute care, long-term care and population health arenas in the for-profit and nonprofit sectors. Mr. Bearch has a Master’s Degree in Management, and is a certified Director of Nursing Administration/Long-term care (CDONA), The National Association of Directors of Nursing Administration in Long Term Care.

Ms. Jennifer Sears, MS, has been promoted from Vice President, Project Management & Communications to Chief Information Officer (CIO). Ms. Sears brings more than 15 years of experience in nonprofits, healthcare organizations and information technology and has been with The Coordinating Center since 2013. Ms. Sears will continue to direct, manage and execute senior level project management services related to new business, technologies, and infrastructure. As CIO and the Corporate Security Officer, Ms. Sears will oversee The Center’s Information Services (IS) Division, providing oversight of The Center’s information technology and computer systems, as well as manage all related subcontracts. Ms. Sears has her Master’s Degree in Applied Information Technology, and has participated in Georgetown University’s Nonprofit Management Executive Certificate Program.

Ms. Renée Dain, MSW, MA-AS has been promoted from Vice President, Business Development and Social Innovation to Senior Vice President, Strategic Partnerships and External Affairs. Ms. Dain brings more than 15 years of nonprofit management experience related to health and human services. As the Sr. Vice President, Strategic Partnerships and External Affairs, Ms. Dain works closely with The Center’s President/CEO on all aspects of The Coordinating Center’s business development and fundraising efforts, and serves as the Board of Directors Liaison. Presently, The Center is expanding care coordination services for people with developmental disabilities, and will soon be a provider of Coordination of Community Services for the Maryland Developmental Disabilities Administration. Ms. Dain also leads The Center’s Marketing and Communications Team, and supports The Center’s legislative and public policy agenda. Ms. Dain has a Master’s Degree in Social Work and a Master’s Degree in Management of Aging Services.

All three of these highly talented individuals have an exceptional record at succeeding in whatever they are asked to do. I know they will do just as exceptionally well in their new roles. I am so pleased and fortunate to work with such a strong leadership team at TCC that is committed to our mission, vision and values as an organization every day, commented Teresa Titus-Howard, PhD, MHA, MSW, President and CEO of TCC.