The National Leadership Consortium on Developmental Disabilities Staff and Faculty

The National Leadership Consortium Staff

Caitlin Bailey, Ph.D.

Caitlin Bailey, Ph.D. ABD

Caitlin Bailey, Ph.D., is the Co-Director of the National Leadership Consortium. In partnership with Kristen Loomis, Caitlin leads and oversees the strategic development, coordination, and implementation of all National Leadership Consortium programs, services, products, and activities. Caitlin has worked with the National Leadership Consortium since 2010. Her work focuses on developing and supporting National Leadership Consortium research projects and creating and facilitating training and technical assistance for leaders across the disability services sector. In addition to her work at the National Leadership Consortium, Caitlin is the former Chair of the Board of Directors for the National Alliance for Direct Support Professionals, and she serves on the Board of Directors for the Alliance for Citizen Directed Supports. Caitlin has also been an instructor at the University of Delaware in the Department of Human Development and Family Sciences and the Leadership in Disability Services program. Caitlin received her Bachelor of Science, Master's Degree, and Doctorate at the University of Delaware. (Contact Caitlin Bailey at

Kristen Loomis

Kristen Loomis

Kristen Loomis is the Co-Director of the National Leadership Consortium. In partnership with Caitlin Bailey, Kristen leads and oversees the strategic development, coordination, and implementation of all National Leadership Consortium programs, services, products, and activities. Kristen has worked with the National Leadership Consortium since 2012. Her work has focused on developing and coordinating training and technical assistance for leaders across the intellectual and developmental disabilities field. Kristen received her Bachelor of Science degree in Human Services from the University of Delaware and is currently working towards her Master's in Business Administration with a concentration in Strategic Leadership. (Contact Kristen Loomis at

Cory Gilden

Cory Gilden

Cory Gilden is the Research and Evaluation Manager of the National Leadership Consortium on Developmental Disabilities. Cory manages the research team of the National Leadership Consortium that works on various organizational, regional, and national research and evaluation projects related to the organization's mission. Cory has worked with the National Leadership Consortium since 2017. Her recent research projects investigated future financial planning for people with disabilities, self-directed service delivery for people with disabilities, parent participation in special education, and program evaluation research focused on leadership training for professionals in the disabilities field. Cory holds a Ph.D. in Urban Affairs and Public Policy, an M.S. in Human Development and Family Sciences, and an M.Ed. in Education from the University of Delaware and works closely with national and state disability organizations promoting awareness and advocacy efforts for people with disabilities. (Contact Cory Gilden at

Nicole Jones

Nicole Jones

Nicole Jones is the Program Coordinator for the National Leadership Consortium. Nicole supports the planning and effective delivery of all of the Consortium's training sessions and programs, including the Leadership Institutes. She also serves as a liaison for participants and faculty. She is passionate about universal human rights and advocating that all people live a life of freedom, dignity, justice, and equality. Nicole received her Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology from Wilmington University. (Contact Nicole Jones at

Steven Eidelman, MBA, MSW

Steven M. Eidelman, MBA, MSW

Steven Eidelman is the Faculty Director of the National Leadership Consortium. Steven is the H. Rodney Sharp Professor of Human Services Policy and Leadership at the University of Delaware. He is a past President of AAIDD and serves as Senior Advisor to the Chairman of Special Olympics International. Steven also serves as the Executive Director of The Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr. Foundation. His recent efforts have focused on implementation of Article 19 of the UN CRPD, focusing on deinstitutionalization. He was the Pennsylvania state government official in charge when Pennhurst State School and Hospital was closed. He holds a MSW from The University of Maryland, an MBA from Loyola Baltimore, and a post-Master's Certificate in the Administration of Social Services from Temple University. (Contact Steve Eidelman at

The National Leadership Consortium Cofounder & Current Advisor

Nancy Weiss, MSW

Nancy Weiss, MSW

Nancy Weiss, MSW is an Advisor to the National Leadership Consortium. Nancy is the former Director of Disability Initiatives in the College of Health Sciences. Ms. Weiss has more than 35 years' experience in the field of intellectual and developmental disabilities. She was the former Executive Director of TASH, an international advocacy association committed to full inclusion for people with disabilities. Ms. Weiss has been an adjunct faculty member at Johns Hopkins University and the Director of the Department for Community Services at the Kennedy Krieger Institute in Baltimore. She also served as the Executive Director of Community Systems, Inc. an agency providing progressive supports for adults with developmental disabilities across Delaware. Ms. Weiss has worked extensively providing supported living services as well as positive behavioral supports. (Contact Nancy Weiss at

The faculty of The National Leadership Consortium’s Leadership Institutes includes nationally-known experts in disability services and public policy. They include:

  • Annette DowneyAnnette Downey, is the Executive Director of the Oakland Community Health Network in Michigan. She has 21 years of experience working with both children and adults with developmental disabilities. She is dedicated to increasing the demand for Self-Determination as a means of supporting ALL people with disabilities. She is frequently an invited speaker at conferences throughout the state of Michigan and nationally on topics including Person-Centered Planning, Self-Determination, Income Generation for All, and Community First service provision. Annette is a tireless advocate for systems change aimed at promoting people with disabilities' right to choose their own life paths and to control who, what, when, where, and how their supports are provided. Annette is a trainer and consultant for the National Center for Self-Determination. She is the past Executive Director of Community Living Services of Oakland County Michigan. Annette is a graduate of the 2009 Summer Leadership Institute at the University of Delaware.

  • Derrick F. DufresneDerrick F. Dufresne, is the President of CRA. Over the course of his career, he has delivered conference presentations, training, strategic board planning retreats, workshops, and management consultation to over eighty thousand people in forty-nine states regarding issues related to people with disabilities. Since entering the field in 1974, Derrick's dedication to the community has evolved from serving as a unit manager in an institutional setting to running a non-profit that provided housing to individuals with disabilities in the community to managing projects that close institutions and assist in the transition of individuals into the community.

    From 2003-2009, Derrick served as President/CEO of the Institute on Public Policy For People with Disabilities in Illinois. The Institute is a membership organization that focuses on promoting best practice and quality community supports for people with disabilities throughout Illinois.

  • Cathy Ficker TerrillCathy Ficker Terrill's career has included working in government, non-profit organizations, university teaching, advocacy and supporting and mentoring self-advocates. Before joining CQL as President and CEO on January 1, 2013, Cathy was President and CEO of The Institute on Public Policy for People with Disabilities and prior to that President CEO of the Ray Graham Association before joining CQL as President and CEO in 2013 where she worked until 2016.

  • Amanda Faulkner, M.A.Amanda Faulkner, M.A. became the Executive Director of Frontier Community Services (FCS) in 2015, which provides Developmental Disability services to the Central Kenai Peninsula and Valdez in Alaska. Amanda started at Frontier Community Services (FCS) in 2002, as a Developmental Specialist for the Infant Learning Program. She received her B.A. in education and psychology from Whitworth College in Spokane, Washington in 1997, at which point she relocated back to their hometown of Soldotna, Alaska. She was raised in Alaska and understands the unique challenges that are specific to the geography and weather that make Alaska both a beautiful and challenging place to live and work. In 2005, she graduated from the University of Anchorage Alaska with a Master's Degree in Education. Her passion for person directed services has been evident throughout her career. She has shared her agency's "Journey to Person Centeredness" throughout Alaska and national through ANCOR and the Leadership Consortium. In 2019, she became the president of Alaska Association on Developmental Disabilities (AADD). Amanda is transparent and invested in making the Alaska's Shared Vision a reality.

  • Marian Frattarola-Saulino Marian Frattarola-Saulino co-founded Values Into Action (VIA) with her partner Paul in 2005. She currently leads the organization in its support of people with disabilities in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. VIA is designed to enable self-direction within an agency context in partnership with people with disabilities, their families and communities. She has experience with developing and operating other models of service where people and their allies have control, such as support brokerage and micro boards. Marian is a graduate of the 2007 Winter Leadership Institute.

  • James Gardner, Ph.D. James Gardner, Ph.D. is currently President of J Gardner & Associates, LLC, an international consulting firm focused on improving non-profit organizational performance. He is also a consultant to Raffa/Transition Guides, The Sarasota Community Foundation, a member of the National Advisory Board of the Community Integration Center at the Technical Assistance Collaborative (CICTAC), and Board member and Treasurer of Shared Support Maryland, Inc.. Jim previously served as President and CEO of CQL, The Council on Quality and Leadership from 1989 to 2012 where he shifted quality metrics from measuring compliance and organizational process to measuring quality of life outcomes as defined by each person receiving supports. During his career Jim has served as a unit director at the Fernald State School (MA), as the Executive Director of the Greater Lawrence Educational Collaborative (MA), as the Vice President at the Kennedy Institute at The Johns Hopkins Medical Institutes (MD) and as Director of the Education Center at the Sheppard Pratt Mental Health System (MD).

  • Gail Godwin Gail Godwin is the Executive Director of Shared Support Maryland, Inc. Gail's MA is from the University of Pittsburgh, School of Education, Program in Severe Disabilities - educational, employment and community inclusion. For over 20 years she has been an advocate in collaboration with people with disabilities and has worked in service provision organizations at a direct support staff, middle manager, and administrator and in training and development. Her current professional affiliations include Maryland Developmental Disabilities Council Executive Member (end June 2014) and MACS Board Member. Gail is a graduate and faculty member of the Leadership Institute Consortium on Developmental Disabilities. She is the co-founder of the New York Downstate Person Centered Consortium. Gail's experience is in Positive Supports, Person Directed Planning and Individualized Supports Organizational Development. Gail is a graduate of the 2009 Summer Leadership Institute at the University of Delaware.

  • Joseph M. Macbeth Joseph M. Macbeth is the Executive Director at the National Alliance for Direct Support Professionals (NADSP) and has worked in the field of intellectual and developmental disabilities for more than 30 years - beginning as a Direct Support Professional. Macbeth is recognized as a national leader in the advocacy and advancement the direct support profession and is a highly sought after speaker on the workforce crisis affecting human service provider organizations. He has co-authored the series of publications titled "Voices from the Frontlines", produced an award winning Realistic Job Preview titled "Working as a Direct Support Professional: We Get It Done", and has partnered with the State University of New York (SUNY) and assisted more than 500 direct support professionals advance their college education through the "Disability Studies Certificate". He currently sits on the board of directors for the Council on Quality and Leadership (CQL), the Elsevier's College of Direct Support and Relias Learning's National Advisory Boards and most recently was appointed by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo as a Member of the Advisory Council for the New York State Justice Center for the Protection of People with Special Needs. Macbeth is also involved with AIEJI, an international organization based in Denmark that promotes the work of social educators. He lives in Albany, NY.

  • Diane McCombDiane McComb works with the Qlarant, a CMS Quality Improvement-like Organization, providing technical expertise on disabilities, self-direction, individual budgets, and community waiver programs. Previously, she worked with the American Network of Community Options and Resources (ANCOR) as the Liaison to State Associations, she served as the Deputy Secretary of the MD Department of Disabilities; the CEO of a statewide association of community organizations that support people with disabilities and their families; and the director of a community agency that supported people with developmental disabilities and their families.

  • Santa PerezSanta Perez is the Chair of the Nevada Governor's Council on Developmental Disabilities and sits on many committees, both State and National. She is a founding member of People First of Nevada and active President Emeritus of the People First of Nevada. She has been an Advocate with Cerebral Palsy for most of her life. Santa earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from Cal State Northridge and currently lives in Las Vegas, Nevada. In her personal life, Santa has accomplished many things, the greatest one in her eyes being her son Noah. Santa is a writer and blogger, and she is the author of Sitting At Eye Level: My Life as an Advocate, a Professional, a Woman, a Mom and a Person with a Significant Disability. Santa believes that people with developmental disabilities and intellectual disabilities need to become Active Advocates in every aspect of their lives. They need to make their mark on the world.

  • Rick Rader, MDDr. Rick Rader is the Director of the Morton J. Kent Habilitation Center at Orange Grove in Chattanooga, Tenn, where he serves as a medical "futurist" in ascertaining the future medical problems of people with intellectual and developmental as they age. He is responsible for the creation, initiation and evaluation of innovative community based healthcare programs that address the complex needs of this vulnerable population. Dr. Rader is cross trained in internal medicine and medical anthropology and has a strong interest in the cultural determinants of health and disease models. Dr. Rader is also the Editor in chief of Exceptional Parent Magazine and has contributed over 250 articles to the special needs literature. Under his tutelage the magazine has won numerous awards for excellence in healthcare journalism.

  • Amanda Rich, Ph.D., M.A.Amanda Rich, Ph.D., M.A. is an associate professor of Human Services at York College of Pennsylvania where she teaches course work related to direct practice, administration and public policy affecting human service organizations. She is the director of the Institute for Social Healing and owner of Open Roads Inclusive Community Consulting, LLC. Her work is rooted in the belief that human services have the potential to help make our communities more inclusive, diverse, fairer and stronger. She has a master's degree in Applied Behavior Analysis and Special Education from the Teacher's College at Columbia University and a doctoral degree in Human Development and Family Studies from the University of Delaware. Amanda is the author of Standing Together and Finding a Voice Apart: Advocating for Intellectual Disability Rights. She also has recently published an article in the journal of Intellectual Disabilities entitled "Trauma-informed care in the context of intellectual and developmental disability services: Perceptions of service providers."

  • Lynne Seagle, MPALynne Seagle, MPA is the Executive Director of Hope House Foundation in Norfolk, Virginia. Lynne began her career at Hope House Foundation in 1978 as the Director of Residential Services and has been the organization's Executive Director for more than three decades. Under Lynne's leadership, Hope House has become internationally known for its innovative, person-centered approach. Lynne is a member of the Arc of Virginia's Board of Directors and has served on the President's Commission on Intellectual Disabilities and is on the Advisory Board of the Joseph P. Kennedy Foundation. Lynne is one of the country's leading consultants on supported living services and organizational development, consulting widely throughout the U.S., the United Kingdom, Canada, and Asia. Lynne consults internationally on the topics of organizational and leadership development, strategic planning, and team building. Lynne is passionate about social justice and equality for all people, particularly those with intellectual or developmental disabilities.

  • Jesse Smathers, MSW, LCSWJesse Smathers, MSW, LCSW, Community Relations Regional Director for Vaya Health, is an established and forward-thinking expert in home and community-based services for people with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities (IDD). He has held various positions in the behavioral health field ranging from direct care to organizational leadership. In addition to over 25 years of experience working to improve services for persons with IDD, Jesse has multi-year experience working as a mental health and substance use disorder counselor in outpatient treatment programs specializing in medication assisted treatment for opioid use disorder. He is passionate about encouraging positive change at both the individual and systems levels.

  • Michael Smull Michael Smull is the Chair of The Learning Community for Person Centered Practices ( and a partner in Support Development Associates ( Mr. Smull is the co-developer of a person centered thinking curricula and of essential lifestyle planning. He has worked in 47 states, and 6 countries outside the US. He has helped found 3 community agencies, assisted existing agencies to convert from programs to supports, and assisted states, regions, and counties to change their structures to support self-determination. Mr. Smull has written extensively on issues relating to supporting people with challenging behaviors, person centered thinking and planning, and the challenge of changing to a person centered system.

  • Sue SwensonSue Swenson, MBA is the President of Inclusion International, the United Nations-recognized organization for children with disabilities, their parents, and adults with intellectual disabilities. She served as Acting Assistant Secretary in the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS). Ms. Swenson's middle son Charlie lived with profound disabilities for 30 years. Ms. Swenson is a graduate of Partners in Policymaking, was a Kennedy Fellow in the U.S. Senate, served as Commissioner for Developmental Disabilities in the Clinton administration, and has held the position of Executive Director at both the Kennedy Foundation and The Arc of the United States. She was educated at the University of Chicago and holds an MBA from the University of Minnesota.

  • Elizabeth VasquezElizabeth Vasquez is a Partner of Management Consulting Associates. She has over 30 years of experience as a management consultant for not-for-profit organizations, government agencies, and for-profit companies in the United States as well as internationally. She specializes in organizational development; typical projects involve her in strategic planning, partnership development, stakeholder involvement, culture change, leadership development, organizational problem solving, training, or program evaluation. In the field of services and supports to people with disabilities, she has consulted with many companies and nonprofit and government agencies including The Leadership Institute, University of Delaware Department of Disabilities Studies, Main Street Housing, The Council on Quality and Leadership, Crystal Run Village, Inc., The US Department of Education, The American Association of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities and others.

  • Jeanine ZlockieJeanine Zlockie has more than 18 years of experience working in the field of developmental disabilities (DD). She started her career as a waiver supports coordinator which provided her with valuable experiences and connections that laid the groundwork for a strong foundation and understanding of DD systems. Jeanine uses her background in Medicaid policy and system's transformation to shape NASDDDS communication strategy to ensure it meets the needs of NASDDDS members. She is also the writer and editor of both State News Briefs and the Community Services Reporter publications. Jeanine also serves as Faculty for the National Leadership Institute on Developmental Disabilities at the University of Delaware.