PLAN’s service coordinators, trust-administration staff, and executive leadership have extensive experience working with, and on behalf of, disabled individuals and elders with limitations.
Indeed, PLAN is unique in having a veteran team of social-work trained Service Coordinators who support and advise our beneficiaries on a continuing basis.
Licensed Social Workers
Director of Beneficiary Services Kathy Vitello, LSW, is a Licensed Social Worker with more than 35 years of experience working with the geriatric, disabled, and chronically ill populations. She has broad experience and insight—drawn from her work in hospitals, in skilled nursing, rehabilitation, and psychiatric facilities, and in home care and hospice settings. Kathy holds a degree in Mental Health from Northern Essex Community College; has studied Applied Mental Health at University of Massachusetts, Amherst; and earned a certificate in geriatric and mental health assessment from Boston University Institute for Geriatric Social Work.
Service Coordinator Jean Brisson, LSW, is a licensed social worker with more than 30 years of experience working in the public sector. Jean has worked as a consultant for PLAN since 2014 within the Western Massachusetts Region, where she has served disabled elders and adults with chronic mental illnesses, intellectual disabilities, and physical limitation. Jean is an Adult Foster Care Provider, and is certified in Caring for the Alzheimer’s Patient. She previously worked as a Case Manager and Residential Director through the Massachusetts Department of Disability Services. Jean has a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst in Public Health Advocacy. She is a member of the National Association of Social Workers.
Service Coordinator Jim MacKenzie, LICSW, is licensed as an Independent Clinical Social Worker by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. He has more than 35 years of experience working in a multitude of health care settings, including Acute Hospitals, Rehab, LTAC, Sub-Acute, SNF’s, Assisted Living and Outpatient facilities. Jim has served in multiple roles, including as a clinician, department head, administrator and executive director, working with patients of all ages, their families and support systems. He holds a Masters Degree from Boston University School of Social work and a Bachelor’s degree from Boston State College.
Service Coordinator John Scott, LSW, is a Licensed Social Worker with more than 20 years’ experience working with the disabled and the elderly in skilled nursing facilities and long-term acute care hospitals. John also worked with Alzheimer Care Services in coaching, marketing, and program development. His connection to PLAN dates back to the 1990s, when he served as a companion visitor. John holds a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work from Eastern Nazarene College.
Service Coordinator Valerie Vernon, LSW, is a licensed Social Worker. Valerie brings five years of experience working with a nonprofit organization and the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families helping to stabilize and support high-risk families. Valerie also brings almost 20 years in auditing and public safety experience for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Valerie volunteers in her community, and holds a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Framingham State University.
Assistant Service Coordinator Shani Walker, LSWA is a Licensed Social Work Associate by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Shani has worked for years to resolve conflicts and stabilize at-risk youth and families in crisis. Her experience on various treatment teams spans residential programs, in-home support and community-based practices, where she helped to develop and participate in individualized service plans. Shani served as a mediator on select cases in the Quincy District Court, while earning a Graduate Certificate in Conflict Resolution from University of Massachusetts Boston. Shani also holds a bachelor’s degree in History from University of Massachusetts Boston.
Service Coordinator Danielle Zenus, LSWA is a Licensed Social Worker with more than 20 years of experience serving people of varying abilities and ages. Danielle has worked for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in many social service capacities with clients of the Departments of Mental Health, Developmental Services and Public Health. In the private sector, she was a Manager of a residential program and Medicaid Specialist. Danielle earned her Bachelor of Science degree from Worcester State University and a Master’s degree in Criminology from University of Massachusetts at Lowell
Intake & Service Specialist Cynthia Calixte has almost ten years of experience assisting people with disabilities and their caregivers in understanding and accessing Medicaid benefits. During this time, Cynthia has served in a variety of roles – outreach, intake, care coordination and case management and settings – Medicaid, Senior Care Options, and Adult Foster Care. She is committed to and takes pride in connecting with her clients and advocating for their positive outcomes. Cynthia is pursuing her Bachelor’s degree in Social Work at Regis College.
Executive and Administrative Staff
Executive Director Pamela C. Tames, Esq., has more than 20 years’ experience developing and leading programs for vulnerable individuals and families—across the nonprofit, health, legal, and human services sectors. Her career has been defined by passionate efforts to advance the health and wellbeing of others, particularly people with disabilities. A thought-leader in the field, Pam has engaged in individual and policy advocacy, presented at professional conferences, and published on policy and programming. She holds a law degree from New York University School of Law and a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Binghamton University. Pam has also been named one of the Top Women in Law by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly, and received a President’s Award from the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, Massachusetts Chapter.
Director of Finance and Administration Joan McGrath Coulter has more than 25 years’ experience in professional accounting and finance. She has been an Auditor with a “Big Four” public accounting firm, where she focused on high growth, emerging business clients; and has led her own private consulting practice, where she worked with nonprofits, service organizations, and venture capital startups. Joan earned her Bachelor’s degree in Accounting from Boston University School of Management.
Trust Operations Assistant Anne Marie Wall handles general inquiries and provides operational and administrative support for PLAN’s special needs pooled trusts. She has more than 10 years’ experience working in the trust-operation units of major banking and insurance institutions. Anne Marie earned her Bachelor’s degree in Finance from Boston College.
Accounting Assistant Margaret Galvin provides administrative support in trust operations and finance. Margaret also greets visitors and callers.
Administrative Assistant Lorraine Mackun provides administrative support in trust operations, finance, and service coordination—and is often the first person to greet visitors and callers.
Accounting Specialist Tom Stettner ensures the accurate and timely recording of PLAN’s accounts payable and the trust accounts’ disbursements. Tom comes to PLAN with more than a decade of accounting experience in nonprofit organizations and several years of experience supporting students with special needs. Tom earned a Bachelor’s degree in History from Clark University.