Kathryn C. Boles (Kathy), the President, CEO of the Valley Area Agency on Aging (VAAA) has worked in the field of aging 1990. Kathy began her tenure at VAAA as a consultant for the nutrition programs. In 1991, she became the Senior Program Coordinator, having oversight of the agency’s Multi-Year Plan development, contract management, as well as continued oversight of the nutrition programs. In 1998, she prepared the grant application which expanded the MI Choice (Medicaid Waiver) program to Valley Area Agency on Aging. Later she was designated as the MI Choice Waiver Director, having oversight of all aspects of developing the “Waiver” program, including hiring Waiver staff and provider pool development.
In 2001 she was named Deputy Director of VAAA, and appointed President, CEO in FY 2004. Since then she has moved the Agency forward by raising community awareness of VAAA and implementing several unique programs serving older adults and their families in Planning and Service Area (PSA) 5. VAAA’s service area consists of Genesee, Lapeer and Shiawassee Counties.
As the President, CEO of VAAA, Ms. Boles has been responsible for implementing the following:
- A Quarterly Valley News e-newsletter
- Valley Alerts
- Vacation Respite Program
- Big Wheels Deliver Meals – Elected officials and community leaders delivering meals to Home Delivered Meal clients in Genesee County
- Senior Power Day (over 2,000 seniors attend each year)
Ms. Boles has brought into VAAA an unprecedented number of grants and additional funding opportunities which have benefited the region:
- Keeping Independent Senior Safe (KISS)
- MI Capable Pilot Project
- Michigan Health Endowment Fund for Evidence-Based Programs
- Care Transitions 3026 funding opportunity through CMS.
Ms. Boles has made great strides in stepping up VAAA advocacy efforts by increasing participation of the “Senior Power Day” event, making it one of the largest senior events in the State. In 2005, Governor Jennifer Granholm attended this event, resulting in the highest attendance in the history of this yearly event.
Ms. Boles is active in civic and professional organizations serving at the local, state, and national level, such as the Zonta Club of Greater Flint, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. – (a public service sorority), and the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging, serving on its Board of Directors and elected President for 2017-2018. Other organizations include the Board of Directors for the Alzheimer’s Association of Michigan, the Board of Trustees for the Flint Institute of Arts as a secretary for 2017, a Board Member of the McFarlan Charitable Corporation, a Board Member of the PACE program, and Board Member of the Genesee Health Plan.
Ms. Boles served as guest lecturer on aging programs at the University of Michigan – Flint, as well as Mott Community College.
Ms. Boles holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration from Central Michigan University.
Vice President of Operations
Yaushica Aubert holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work and Master’s Degree in Public Health Administration. She has worked in the field of aging since 1999. Ms. Aubert has held many positions during her tenure at VAAA beginning as a Social Worker Care Manager, then lead Care Manager. In 2002 she became the Director of the MI CHOICE Waiver Program until 2008 when she became the Director of Planning and Contract Management, having oversight of the agency’s Multi-Year Plan development, contract management, Senior Wellness Services and other programming. In 2016 she was promoted to Vice- President of Operations and has been responsible for implementing the following:
- Successful application submission to bill for Medicare-covered services
- Medical Nutrition Therapy (Medicare-funded program)
- Implementation of the SilverSneakers programming within VAAA
- Keeping Independent Senior Safe (KISS) – winner of the 2017 n4a Aging Innovations Award
- Retired and Senior and Volunteer Program (RSVP) – winner of Governor’s Service Award for Outstanding National Service Program
Community Service Director
Lea Quinn serves as the Community Services Director where she is responsible for overseeing federal, state and local grant funding that provides supportive services for older adults living independently in the community for as long as they choose. Ms. Quinn is a graduate of the University of Michigan where she received her Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work and has a Master’s Degree in Public Administration received through Capella University. Ms. Quinn has worked at Valley Area Agency on Aging (VAAA) for 18 years, and during that time, she has held many different positions that have allowed her to become an expert on aging issues. She is currently working on new business development to further the agency’s reach to the elderly and disabled adult populations in our region.
Director of Eligibility and Outreach
Patti Kerns holds Licensed Bachelor of Social Work from the University of Michigan. (LBSW) and is a MMAP certified counselor. Patti Kerns has been employed with VAAA since 2008. During her tenure, she has held multiple positions within the agency. In response to the Water Crisis, Patti has developed the Senior Lives Matter program, a program targeted for people 60 years of age and older. She has implemented programs that directly focus on the needs of seniors affected by the water crisis. Patti conducts public presentations and speeches on behalf of VAAA and is a viable resource to the community. She has worked as a Supports Coordinator for the Home Delivered Meal program, MI Choice Waiver program, and developed and implemented the first Care Transition program in Region 5. Patti has been the Director of Eligibility and Outreach for the last four years. During that time, she has made significant improvements to the Information and Assistance Department, as well as, implemented several new programs such as Independence by Choice and Valley Community Connect. She has oversight of the Medicare and Medicaid assistance program (MMAP) for Region 5, recently awarded as the best MMAP program in the State of Michigan for 2018.
Director of Human Resources
Katrina Royster is the Director of Human Resources at Valley Area Agency on Aging. She has been with the Agency for over two years. Some of her duties include recruitment, compensation and benefits, training and development, employee performance management, employee relations and safety and security. She has worked in the Human Resource field for over seven years.
She graduated from the University of Michigan-Flint with her Bachelors in Health Care Administration in 2006 and graduated from Spring Arbor University with her Masters in Organizational Management in 2010.
She is married with children and enjoys spending time with her family.
Chief Financial Officer
Deborah J. Mellinger (Debbie), the Chief Financial Officer of Valley Area Agency on Aging (VAAA), has worked in the field of accounting since 1979. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from Cleary University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration in 2003. Debbie has been with VAAA since 2010 and was promoted to Chief Financial Officer in 2016.
As the Chief Financial Officer, some of her responsibilities include the following:
- Managing and integrating all financial activities of the Agency
- In conjunction with the President, CEO and the Executive Staff, develop and monitor all Agency budgets
- Present monthly Financial Statements to the Board of Directors
- Manage the annual audit process with the outside CPA firm as well as Federal, Stat, and local audits
Joanne Chemo has been employed with VAAA since September 2008. I started as a temporary employee at the front desk, then I became Case Assistant in the MI Choice Waiver Department in March of 2009 and officially became a Valley employee.
In December of 2009 I was promoted to Executive Assistant to the President, CEO. Included in those duties was to coordinate the Annual Meeting, Senior Power Day, implement and administer a new telephone system and supervise the clerical staff.