Katherine Krause joined the Visiting Nurse Association (VNA) in May 2009 and prior to her appointment as President and CEO in 2013, served as Chief Administrative Officer and Vice President of VNA Meals on Wheels. Before coming to VNA, Katherine served as Executive Vice President of Advocacy and Programs at the national headquarters of the American Heart Association (AHA) which included oversight of the AHA’s Advocacy office in Washington D.C. Previously, she was Regional Director of Home Medical Support Services, directing operations for eight home health agencies in four states. She holds a Bachelor of Science in biology from New Mexico State University and an MBA from Southern Methodist University in Dallas.
Tom Ricciardelli is the vice president and general counsel at the Visiting Nurse Association. Having joined our organization in 1980, Tom has managed legal affairs for the Visiting Nurse Association for over 40 years. As general counsel, Tom has had a hand in human resources, legal, marketing, clinical operations, accessibility and more. His dedication to legal and compliance has enabled the Visiting Nurse Association to safely and effectively deliver top-notch care to our patients and families. Tom earned his MBA at the Amos Tuck School of Business Administration in 1972 and his J.D. from the Boston College Law School in 1979. Tom is licensed as an attorney and counselor-at-law in the State of Texas.
Carlton Holland joined the Visiting Nurse Association as controller in September 2002. After just 7 months with the organization, Carlton’s keen financial knowledge and stewardship became evident and he was promoted to vice president of finance and chief financial officer in April of 2003. He came to the Visiting Nurse Association with 20 years of experience in accounting, including 12 years with health care organizations. Carlton obtained a B.B.A. from Texas A & M University and an MBA from St. Mary’s University. He has been a Certified Public Accountant since 1987.
Chris Culak is the vice president and chief of strategy and development at the Visiting Nurse Association. Chris has more than 27 years of experience in nonprofit management and came to the Visiting Nurse Association in 2015 after implementing and managing programs for Dallas Children’s Advocacy Center, the National Audubon Society, Planned Parenthood, North Texas Food Bank and the American Heart Association. Chris is a former member of the Dallas Citizens Homelessness Commission, a member of the 2020 DISD Bond Committee, the Finance Committee at Kessler Park United Methodist Church, is a past board member of The Kessler School, Twelve Hills Nature Preserve, and is past a Board Chair of Preservation Dallas. Chris holds a Bachelor of Science degree in health care administration with a minor in psychology from Texas State University in San Marcos. Chris and is wife Nichole live in Dallas and have two school-age children.
After graduating from UT-Houston Health Science Center with a bachelor’s degree in nursing, Olivia spent the majority of her nursing career in critical care, specifically ICU/CCU with an emphasis in cardiac care. She left the hospital world in 2010 to join the Visiting Nurse Association Hospice and has been with the Visiting Nurse Association since that time as a field nurse, case manager, branch manager in Collin County, and now as the vice president and chief nursing officer for Visiting Nurse Association. Hospice care truly encompasses everything Olivia loves about nursing from critical thinking to direct patient care, family support and collaboration with many different disciplines and physicians. The Visiting Nurse Association embodies what it means to care for people well and provide meaning, expertise and support at the end of life, and this is Olivia’s passion.
Sonia joined the Visiting Nurse Association in March 2020 as the Managing Director of Human Resources and currently serves as Vice President and Chief of Human Resources. Prior to joining the Visiting Nurse Association, Sonia served as a Senior Human Resources Consultant for the Strategic Corporate Services team at Baylor Scott and White, the largest nonprofit healthcare system in Texas. She also served as the lead North Texas division Business Partner for one of the region’s largest providers, Medical City Healthcare. In addition to her healthcare experience, Sonia has more than 15 years of diverse experience in multiple HR disciplines from other Fortune 500 companies such as Accenture, FedEx and Texas Instruments. Sonia earned a Master of Science degree in Organizational Human Resource Development, a Graduate Certification in Conflict Resolution and satisfied the Texas Roundtable Mediation hours from Abilene Christian University. She enjoys coaching other professionals, facilitating, training, and is a dedicated writer, empowering and motivating individuals to be successful business partners and entrepreneurs.
Jennifer Austin joined the Visiting Nurse Association in December 2013. Jennifer brings more than 25 years of experience in fundraising and communications in the nonprofit sector to her leadership role as the Visiting Nurse Association’s Managing Director of Development and Communications. Prior to joining the Visiting Nurse Association, she served in various nonprofit and ministry roles providing expertise in fundraising, nonprofit leadership, program development, internal and external communications, marketing/branding, media relations, strategic planning, event planning, as well as board and donor relations. Jennifer holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Public Relations from Texas Tech University as well as an Executive Nonprofit Management Certificate from Southern Methodist University. Jennifer lives in Frisco with her husband, Eric, youngest daughter, Jordan, and beloved black lab, Charlie. She enjoys spending time with their blended family of six daughters, two sons-in-law, and four grandchildren.
Sarah Harris joined the Visiting Nurse Association in August of 2012 as a community liaison. Before taking the role as director, Sarah served as the marketing manager. She transitioned into the director of marketing role in June of 2018, bringing with her 21 years of marketing experience, 10 of which are in health care. Sarah is driven by a passion for helping seniors in need and promoting dignity and grace at the end of life. Sarah lives in Collin County with her husband, Craig, and two teenage daughters, Madeline and Ally. They enjoy spending their free time as a family participating in horse shows, cheer competitions and swim meets.
Inga Wilson is the managing director of Meals on Wheels and population health at the Visiting Nurse Association. Inga brings 15 years of higher education and volunteer management experience to her role leading the Meals on Wheels program. She was an integral team-member tasked with development and implementation of the Visiting Nurse Association Meals on Wheels Volunteer Portal (launched November 2018) and mobile app (launched March 2019) technology systems. It brings her great joy to be able to work with such a compassionate group of team members who truly care about taking care of our senior neighbors in Dallas County. Inga holds a Certification in Volunteer Administration.
Sarah Miles joined the Visiting Nurse Association in 2009 as a hospice and home care case manager. Her attention to detail and desire to “always do it right” made her the ideal candidate for managing the Clinical Education Department in 2017. She was chosen to lead the Visiting Nurse Association’s new Care Choices Palliative Care Program in 2018, breaking new ground in offering compassionate and supportive care for those with terminal illnesses who are still seeking aggressive therapies. Most recently, she was promoted to director of quality, where her responsibilities include continued oversight of the education and palliative programs. Sarah is dedicated to ensuring the Visiting Nurse Association remains compliant with all regulatory requirements, while also developing programs to promote overall clinical quality and client satisfaction. She considers Visiting Nurse Association her “forever home” and considers it a privilege to serve our most vulnerable population as a member of the Visiting Nurse Association.
Megan Vick is the director of production, distribution and facilities management at the Visiting Nurse Association. Megan joined the Visiting Nurse Association in 2009, bringing with her over 10 years of experience working in senior nutrition and food systems administration. Before coming to the Visiting Nurse Association, Megan helped manage nutrition programs at Parkland Hospital and multiple skilled nursing facilities. She holds a Bachelor of Science in nutritional sciences from Texas A&M University and an M.S. in food systems administration from Texas Woman’s University. Visiting Nurse Association Meals on Wheels’ mission to help keep seniors independent at home is what compelled Megan to eventually switch careers and has been happily working with Meals on Wheels to provide social nutrition to seniors in Dallas County ever since.
Randy Broadway joined the Visiting Nurse Association in June of 1995 in the data department. Later that year, Randy was promoted to imaging system lead. In this role Randy successfully led the conversion of patient and client documentation to an imaged electronic record. The Information Management Department was created, and Randy was named Director. In 2005 Randy was named director of patient clinical systems where he successfully led the conversion of office and field staff to electronic health records. This allowed field staff to enter information directly into patient and client records, eliminating the need for data entry staff or scanning paper documentation. Randy was named managing director of information technology in 2009. Randy has continually added new technology, with updated software, hardware and cloud-based services to make the Visiting Nurse Association staff more efficient with remote work capability. In 2018 Randy wrote an RFP for custom Meals on Wheels Software and a mobile application. The software has replaced the manual paper-based delivery process for thousands of Volunteers use in the daily delivery of home delivered meals. Randy has a Bachelor of Science in information technology and a Master of Science in management and leadership.
Michelle Donnell, managing director for the Visiting Nurse Association started her nursing career working as an emergency room nurse in 2010. After her mother received hospice care from a team of VNA Hospice workers, she quickly found that her true calling as a nurse was providing hospice care with the Visiting Nurse Association. She began working with the same Visiting Nurse Association team as a case manager in the Visiting Nurse Association’s East Texas office in 2012. She has served as the manager for the Kaufman and Dallas teams and now serves as the managing director for the southern region of the Visiting Nurse Association Michelle and her teams strive to provide a holistic approach to caring for every patient and their family, understanding that hospice is not only about the patient but the entire family. Michelle’s goal in leading teams is to ensure that the quality care that she received as a family member during that trying time is the same care that is provided under her watch.
As the director of operations for Meals on Wheels, Joyce manages the Client Intake Team as well as the client experience, including assessment, enrollment, referrals and client data management. Prior to joining our team, Joyce worked as a teacher for at-risk youth, served in the Army Air Force Exchange as administrative and contract tech support, and also spent time as an accountant at Mobil Oil Corporation. During her tenure with the Visiting Nurse Association, Joyce has worked in a variety of programs utilizing her more than 20 years of experience in customer service and process improvement. She is passionate about helping those in need, leading the onboarding of more than 1,000 new clients in a six-month period, and using her analytical skills to help problem solve. Joyce studied accounting at El Centro College, attended the Duke University Fuqua School of Business for cash management, and graduated from the Allstate Business School as a business receptionist and secretary. In her spare time, Joyce enjoys spending time with her family and watching movies.
Cheryl Jones, LMSW is a Licensed Master Social Worker who strives for excellence as the director of donor relations for the Visiting Nurse Association, and compassion as a medical social worker. Cheryl has always believed in helping others and sought a career in which she could utilize her diverse talents to strengthen individuals and the community. With a brief stint in the PR, marketing and advertising world, Cheryl possesses a unique perspective in her work with an ability to frame issues so they are approachable, actionable and positive. Her business background coupled with her work in the nonprofit and health care sectors provide real-world understanding of complex social problems. Cheryl holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from Indiana University and a Master of Science in social work from The University of Texas at Austin.
Lainie Caldwell joined the Visiting Nurse Association in 2006 as an ESU nurse and has continued to grow her professional career with the organization for over a decade. Prior to joining the Visiting Nurse Association, Lainie received her Bachelor of Science in nursing at Texas Woman’s University. She worked for more than 10 years in oncology nursing in the hospital. Lainie wanted more one-on-one time with patients and families and remembered her nursing school clinical rotation at the Visiting Nurse Association, which drove her to pursue her interest in home care where patients can die with dignity and independence. Lainie has grown at Visiting Nurse Association as a field nurse, case manager, branch manager and now managing director. Lainie has a loving and supportive husband John, and two teenagers, Sydney and Noah. They live in McKinney with her favorite dog Bentley.
Aaron Richey joined the Visiting Nurse Association in 2019 as the Meals on Wheels Supervisor where he managed the routing department and staff of paid delivery drivers. After receiving promotions to Manager and subsequently Director, he continues to lead daily routing efforts, manages meal delivery execution, logistics, assists with large event planning and has recently taken on management of our Title XX client base. Before joining the Visiting Nurse Association, Aaron spent 16 years with the nation’s largest home and office bottled water provider managing logistics and leading efficiency improvement projects. Aaron resides in East Dallas with his wife and two sons.
Sonya joined the Visiting Nurse Association team in 2017 as a Client Intake Clerk. Sonya developed relationships with her teammates and quickly learned her new role. As Sonya mastered her role, she earned the respect of her peers and the gained the confidence of her Manager, as she demonstrated leadership qualities found to be worthy of promotion. In 2018, Sonya was promoted to Manager of Intake, Crisis Care and Back Office Operations. In her new role, Sonya continued to support the Client Intake team and, additionally, added value to the organization by developing process improvements that would best service VNA’s great assets, our patients. As a Manager, Sonya was an effective leader of her team, for the greater good of VNA. In 2020, Sonya was promoted to Director of Intake, Crisis Care and Back Office Operations. Sonya is a Licensed Vocational Nurse. As a nurse, some of Sonya’s greatest qualities include the compassion and energy that she brings to “get it right” for the patients and families that VNA serves. Sonya completed her nursing education at Texarkana College, in Texarkana, TX, and has been a Licensed Vocational Nurse since 2009. Sonya’s healthcare and nursing experience includes Medical/Surgical, Home Health, Geriatric Care, Memory Care and Hospice. Over the course of her professional experience, Sonya’s greatest joy is bringing quality care and smiles to the faces of her patients and their families. Sonya’s personal greatest joys are her two children and her two grandchildren.
A list of surrounding Meals on Wheels locations outside of Dallas County are provided below. Additional Meals on Wheels locations may also be found by visiting Mealsonwheelsamerica.org.
Our care team is specially trained and certified to care for patients with Alzheimer’s or dementia. Our goal is to ensure our patients have pain control, are comfortable and safe, helping to reduce trips to the emergency room or hospital. Hospice care can also provide a great support to loved ones and caregivers.
VNA manages complex patients with multiple contributing conditions such as renal failure, pulmonary disease, etc. Our symptom management experts help patients with symptoms often found in end-stage heart disease such as chest pain, shortness of breath, edema (swelling), and blood pressure concerns. Our experienced RNs can also manage supportive intravenous cardiac medications, as well as infusion lines and complex oxygen needs.
Your VNA care team is trained to provide the care and education needed for patients and families facing difficult treatment decisions. In coordination with your physician and our hospice physicians, our team will address any treatment-related symptoms, as well as complications that may arise from stopping treatment. To ensure symptoms are treated quickly, your team will work with specialized pharmacists to have the necessary medications delivered right to your home.
Music has been determined to be a highly effective therapeutic tool for healing and wellness. It can help remind patients of cherished memories, alleviate pain, promote relaxation and enhance one’s quality of life. Each music therapy session is individualized to fit the patient’s requirements. Depending on the needs and abilities of the patient, the therapy may involve composing a new song, singing old favorites or even improvising new music with an instrument.
Music is used as a tool to facilitate wellness in a target area such as mental, physical, spiritual, emotional or cognitive functioning.
Pets have a unique way of providing companionship and unconditional love for people. They can help reduce anxiety, stress, depression and loneliness that can come with facing a terminal illness. When appropriate, pet therapy also promotes active movement to help improve overall range of motion and strength of our patients. Pet therapists and the animals we work with are all specially trained and certified to provide safe companionship as part of a care plan.
Bereavement is the process of coping with grief and loss. Feelings of grief and loss can happen at any time during the course of facing an illness. Dealing with personal grief is unique to each person. Having experienced, trained professionals to help you navigate change and loss can help establish a foundation of healthy grieving. Our bereavement team may visit you in person, reach out to you over the phone, or host group events and activities.
VNA SafeHaven is a free grief support program in Denton offering emotional support to families with children and teens who have experienced loss through the death of someone significant in their lives. VNA SafeHaven is open to any child ages 5 to 18 and their family who have experienced the death of a loved one. Adult professionals and highly trained, caring volunteers lead small groups of children of similar age in age-appropriate activities and discussions on grief and coping skills.