ElderTree Team

Over the last 12 years, ElderTree has built a team of highly qualified care managers with a combined total of over a century of experience and higher education in senior care management. Based on your needs, we will match you with the right care manager.

Kate Caldwell, MA, CMC

Kate H. Caldwell, MA, CMCAgingLifeCare_Member_Logo_Spot
Gerontologist / Executive Director
Fellow of the Aging Life Care Association

When I was in elementary school, I would visit my grandmother in a nursing home. I enjoyed our visits and meeting the other residents. When it was time to get my first job in high school, I knew I wanted to work with the elderly, so I found a job as an activity assistant in a nursing home. Working with the residents, I learned first-hand that loneliness, helplessness, and boredom often defined their experience. I was inspired to make a difference in elder care, to help seniors have the best quality of life with the dignity they deserved. To build the expertise I would need, I pursued a Master’s degree in Gerontology and Long-Term Care Administration, and in 2004 I founded ElderTree Care Management Services.

In 2014, I was proud to be recognized as a “Fellow of the Leadership Academy” by the Aging Life Care Association. The fellowship recognizes Aging Life Care Professionals™ who have demonstrated themselves to be advanced practitioners and experts in the field of Aging Life Care. I am currently the only Fellow in Northern Virginia.

I am passionate about honoring Elders in our community. Recently, it was my pleasure to spearhead and organize the first ever “Celebrate Centenarians” luncheon in Northern Virginia. This soon to be annual event recognizes area centenarians and offers the community the chance to learn from their collective wisdom.

I am most proud, however, of the work we do at ElderTree. At ElderTree, we consider elder care a calling. I personally hire and mentor our team members to insure that they are as passionate and knowledgeable about elder care as I am. All of our team members are highly trained, experienced professionals who combine their expertise with heartfelt compassion.

Sarah Collins photoNancy Fagan, CMCAgingLifeCare_Member_Logo_Spot
Director of Care Management

Nancy has been involved in long-term care for over 25 years. She comes to ElderTree having operated her own consulting service, specializing in strategic planning and crisis management for seniors and their families. Nancy’s previous experience includes senior facilities management, legislative advocacy, continuing care accreditation, and overall quality assurance.

“When I was 10 my great-grandmother was in a nursing home. Looking back, it was not a well-kept facility, but the staff was lovely and did their best with what they had. My family would go to visit, and I loved meeting all the older adults and was drawn to comfort them. I have worked for and with older adults for my entire career and can’t imagine doing anything else.”

Nancy Dezan photoNancy Dezan, CMCAgingLifeCare_Member_Logo_Spot
Director of Education
Care Manager

Nancy has worked in the field of aging for more than 35 years. Nancy has served as Executive Director of two different adult day health programs in the Washington, D.C. area. She also created a nationally recognized social program for those in the early stages of dementia. Nancy worked for the Alzheimer’s Association, where she developed education programs for family caregivers and facility staff as well as provided oversight for more than 80 caregiver support groups. Nancy has spoken on a broad range of dementia related topics both locally and nationwide.

“My first job at age 16 in a nearby nursing home led to my career as a social worker and administrator with older adults. Early in my career, I was drawn to helping individuals with dementia, who I found were often overlooked and misunderstood. I have devoted the past 35 years to developing alternative environments and programs where older adults, and especially those with dementia, can live their best life possible and thrive.”

BensonSarah Benson, CMCAgingLifeCare_Member_Logo_Spot
Lead Care Manager

Sarah has worked in the field of aging for over 20 years. She is highly skilled in working with elders with memory impairment as well as training caregivers and families on this topic. As a Senior Program Manager for a national senior living company, Sarah provided leadership and training in dementia care for over 130 senior communities. Sarah currently leads support groups for Alzheimer’s Association and presents on many eldercare topics. She has been certified through the National Association of Long Term Care Administrators Board.

I’m passionate about caring for our elders because I grew up in a multi-generational family.  Both sets of grandparents were very involved in my life and helped shape the person I became.  I’ve always valued their insight and unconditional love.  Serving my clients is a way to honor my grandparents’ memory.” 

YoungSusanne Young, MPH, CMCAgingLifeCare_Member_Logo_Spot
Lead Care Manager

Susanne’s graduate work focused on the needs of the growing geriatric population, their families, and caregivers. She has experience caring for and treating individuals within community and clinical settings, including dementia care, assisted living, skilled nursing, senior recreation, and rehabilitation. Susanne worked for years as a Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist facilitating therapeutic, educational, and social activities for older adults. Susanne is a Certified Dementia Practitioner (CDP), a Certified Physician Orders for Scope of Treatment (POST) Facilitator, and Certified in Mental Health First Aid USA.

“I always thought I would work with children, but an internship at an inpatient rehabilitation center opened my world to the senior population. Every elder has a story to tell. I believe it is my job to hear their story and ensure their quality of life supports that story.”

Colleen Rogers PhotoColleen Rogers, LCSW
Care Manager

Colleen has over 10 years of experience working with older adults, adults living with disabilities, and caregivers in a variety of settings. She has worked for a local county’s adult and aging division as well as a regional program that serves older adults living with mental illness in assisted living facilities and nursing homes.

I first became aware of aging issues during elementary school, when my mom began working at a long term care facility. I used to volunteer there on holidays and visit with residents. I think that those experiences, though not seemingly impactful at the time, played a large part in my choice to dedicate my career to helping individuals to live with dignity at all ages.”

Colleen Duewel PhotoColleen Duewel, MPHAgingLifeCare_Member_Logo_Spot
Care Manager

Colleen has worked in health care and community health for over 20 years. She was the Manager of Senior Services for Virginia Hospital Center and served on the steering committee of Arlington Agency on Aging. With her experience as a nursing home ombudsman and hospice volunteer Colleen’s goal is to foster autonomy, relieve family caregiver worries, and help older adults thrive.

“I enjoy working with older adults and their families and being in a position to impact someone’s life in a positive way. I feel very fortunate to have found a career that affords me this opportunity and allows me to follow my passion. Every day I feel grateful for the time I get to spend learning from and helping elders who have so much experience and wisdom.“

Judith ShapiroJudith Shapiro, MAAgingLifeCare_Member_Logo_Spot
Care Manager

Judith has a wealth of management experience in long-term care, assisted living, dementia care, and hospice. Her extensive expertise in therapeutic yoga and other wellness modalities informs how she approaches working with elders and families.

“I was raised with unconditional love by a woman fifty years older than I was. Perhaps it was the influence of my gentle, brilliant grandfather, my pen-pal from the time I was a tiny girl, who came to live with us when he was 92. Maybe it’s the wisdom that my 90-year-old friend shares with me as we garden together. What I know is that my own life is greatly enriched by working with seniors. It is an honor and a joy every day.“

Liz Idris PhotoLiz Idris, RN, BSN
Care Manager

Liz is currently pursuing a Doctor of Nursing Practice degree at George Mason University. As a nurse, she has experience working with individuals across the lifespan. She worked for 7 years as an RN in acute-care hospitals. In addition, she has experience as a home health nurse making home visits in the community.

As a nurse, I have worked with patients across the lifespan from the tiniest of babies through to end-of-life care. As the mother of three children, I always assumed I would work with children, but through my work as a home health nurse with seniors, I began to develop a passion for working with older adults: they bring such perspective, insight, and humor to life.“

Heidi Travis PhotoHeidi Travis, MMT, CDPAgingLifeCare_Member_Logo_Spot
Care Manager

Heidi has worked in the field of health care for over 20 years. She holds a Master’s Degree in Music Therapy from Loyola University and is a Certified Dementia Practitioner.  She has a background in acute care and rehabilitation. Heidi served as the Program Director for a traumatic Brain Injury/neurological inpatient program.   She also served as the Life Enrichment Director of a local assisted living community in which she executed impactful educational, social, and spiritual programming in the community to meet the diverse needs of the residents.  Heidi developed an innovative transitional program using 1:1 support systems to orient new residents to the community. In addition, Heidi brings strong assessment skills and extensive experience working with individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder and Mental Illness.

“As a child, my grandparents and extensive multigenerational family were a big part of inspiring my love for the senior community. Through my personal experience of my grandmother’s dementia diagnosis and navigating her care, I learned the key to successfully navigating dementia is by fully understanding the individuality of the person with dementia and their family. It is one of my great privileges to work with the elderly.”

Lisa StettlerLisa StettlerAgingLifeCare_Member_Logo_Spot
Care Manager

Lisa has worked with seniors for over 10 years. Her experience ranges from skilled nursing facilities to working as an ombudsman and a court appointed guardian. She has educated and assisted seniors and their families requiring placement in community settings while matching their individual, unique needs.

“My love of seniors grew out of the love and respect for my Grandma Vi. When I was little and grandma visited she would insist on helping with chores from mending, to matching socks, and setting the table. What I learned is that we all need to feel needed and valued no matter our age.”

Beverly O’Brien PhotoBeverly O’Brien
Client Relations Manager

Beverly has provided excellent personalized service to her clients and customers for over 20 years. For the past seven years she has worked to educate hospitals, physician offices, nursing homes, and the broader community, about the benefits of hospice and palliative care.

As a young child my mom would take me to nursing homes and facilities for the disabled to celebrate holidays and sing ​for the residents.  At 91, she is still leading sing-a-longs at Alzheimer’s units as she did for my dad when he was dealing with end stage dementia. Although not the singer she is, I believe it is in my genetic makeup to want to bring comfort to elders and their families.”

Pushpita Casey PhotoPushpita Casey, MA
Assistant Care Manager

Pushpita’s interest in multigenerational family interactions stems from her research on the evolving parent-child relationship across the lifespan.  Through her personal experiences, she has seen how thoughtful long term planning allows seniors to maintain an enjoyable quality of life with respect and dignity.  She strongly believes in the value of respecting each individual’s cultural beliefs regarding aging and proper long term planning.

I find it inspiring to work in the field of elder care because I have always been fascinated by intergenerational interaction, and this starts with learning from the experiences and stories of the elder generation.”

 

ElderTree Care is a member of Aging Life Care™ (ALCA), previously known as National Association of Professional Geriatric Care Managers. Our care managers are certified or in the process of getting certified by the National Academy of Certified Care Managers (NACCM).


Contact us today: (703) 424-7575 or email info@eldertreecare.com