email@example.com | (734) 217-4453
President and Chief Executive Officer Alison Foreman has worked with Ypsilanti area non-profits as an employee and volunteer for more than 15 years.
She is a graduate of Eastern Michigan University, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in juvenile justice and a master’s degree in public administration. Alison worked with the Michigan State Housing Development Authority and the Book Industry Charitable Foundation (formerly the Borders Group Foundation) before joining YMOW in 2013.
Alison serves on the boards of the Ypsilanti Area Community Fund, Washtenaw Leaders Advisory and the Area Agency on Aging 1B Diabetes Program Advisory Group and is a member of the Ypsilanti Kiwanis Club. She is a former 8-year member of the SOS community services board, an organization which provides transitional housing, food and therapeutic programs for local children.
In recent years Alison has shared her knowledge of senior services funding as a guest on NPR's “All Things Considered” and CNN's “The Lead” with Jake Tapper.
Alison lives in Ypsilanti Township with her husband, Nate, and their two Devon Rex cats, Ray and Jen. Alison and Nate enjoy hiking, fishing and spending time outdoors.
firstname.lastname@example.org | (734) 547-3202
Kelly Schwartz began her role as Operations Director in July 2020, but her relationship with YMOW began in 2002. A longtime supporter of the YMOW mission, Kelly was serving as chairman of the YMOW Board of Directors when she joined the YMOW staff.
As Operations Director, Kelly manages the day-to-day operations of YMOW, supervising the CCAs, volunteer coordinator and managing client services.
Having previously worked in leadership roles at Food Gatherers, Ann Arbor Area Transportation Authority and Huron Valley Humane Society, Kelly brings a long history and vast knowledge of non-profit work and community service to her role. While serving as Director of Operations at the Humane Society, Kelly helped to initiate the Bountiful Bowls program through which YMOW supplies pet owners with food and other necessities.
She holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Detroit College of Business and an MBA from University of Alabama at Birmingham.
As YMOW board chairman, Kelly said she was committed to helping the staff and volunteers of YMOW find new and better ways to enhance and improve the lives of the community’s homebound neighbors. As Operations Director, she continues that mission.
“I’m thrilled to serve YMOW and the community in this new role,” Kelly said. “Access to food and other supportive services is paramount for our aging and disabled population and I’m proud to be part of an organization that makes that happen.”
Kelly lives in Ann Arbor with her wife, Kristin, and their dogs, Molly and Lewis.
email@example.com | (734) 217-4454
Keegen Carty Meranuck brings a background in business management and a passion for food equity to his role as office manager at Ypsilanti Meals on Wheels.
“I’m a big believer in everyone having access to nutritious food,” said Keegen, who became a delivery volunteer with YMOW in late 2020 before stepping into the role of office manager in February 2021.
As the point person between YMOW and the people served, Keegen enjoys getting to know each and every client and doing what he can to meet their needs as efficiently as possible.
Keegen graduated with a degree in business management from Johnson & Wales University in Rhode Island. He now lives in Ypsilanti and enjoys theater, yoga, being outdoors and gardening. He has two cats, Mowgli and Lola, and a dog, Max.
firstname.lastname@example.org | (734) 557-8241
After a career in social justice, Kellie’s career switched gears when she witnessed the progress her own son made while working with an occupational therapist. She earned her degree, taught OT at Eastern Michigan University, and now has found a home on the YMOW team.
“The home is a natural environment for occupational therapy to happen,” said Kellie, who has practiced occupational therapy for 12 years.
Raised by her grandparents, older adults have long been an important part of Kellie’s life. She said she’s pleased to find a way to use her OT skills and knowledge to make aging easier and to help people age in the comfort of home.
Kellie also holds a degree in women’s studies from EMU. She lives in Saline with her husband, son and daughter.
email@example.com | (734) 217-4769
Bridget Daly came to YMOW in September 2021, bringing with her more than 26 years of experience in occupational therapy. Bridget, who works part-time for the Henry Ford Health systems, spent the last eight years providing people with in-home therapy. As part of YMOW’s CAPABLE team, she will continue to help people remain safe and independent in their own homes.
“I enjoy problem solving and brainstorming what can work best for a person to succeed in their lives,” Bridget said.
Part of a large, close-knit family, Bridget also helps her mother navigate memory changes and supports her uncle as he battles Parkinson’s disease.
Bridget shares a home with her husband and their dog, Dalai. She enjoys hiking, kayaking and being outdoors.
firstname.lastname@example.org | (734) 557-8241
Amber Dallwig is new to the YMOW staff, but she’s been an important part of the team since 2012. Through her roles as Clinical Quality Assurance Manager at Area on Aging 1B and as an instructor with the community health program at the University of Michigan and Eastern Michigan University, Amber helped to drive the YMOW mission for years before joining the team in March 2021.
“I have watched YMOW grow,” said Amber, who holds a doctorate in nursing practice from Indiana Wesleyan University. Now, she will contribute to that growth as she helps clients age longer and more safely at home.
“I love older people,” said Amber, who is looking forward to providing one-on-one attention to those in need of care. She said she also looks forward to the day when more in-home aging care is covered by insurance.
“I want to be part of that,” she said.
In addition to her part-time role with YMOW, Amber continues to instruct nursing students at Eastern Michigan University. Her students spend most Fridays learning through their assistance at YMOW.
A lifelong Michigander, Amber lives in Carleton with her husband, Dave. She loves painting and spending time with her granddaughter.
email@example.com | 734-557-8259
Lauren Halter knows the challenges that come with being medically homebound. Her own mother’s experience, and the help of her local Meals on Wheels program, influenced Lauren’s decision to enter social work, and ultimately, to join team YMOW.
“YMOW’s mission really resonated with me personally,” said Lauren, who joined YMOW as a social worker in July 2022.
Having earned her undergraduate and master’s degrees from University of Michigan, Lauren worked at University of Michigan Medicine’s Child Health Evaluation Research Center prior to coming to YMOW.
Show more... “The pet program particularly really caught my eye,” said Lauren, an animal lover who believes that pets can have a positive impact on peoples’ lives, including the lives of seniors. As YMOW’s social worker, Lauren said she wants to provide homebound adults and their families with peace of mind that support and help is available. A lifelong Michigander, Lauren enjoys outdoor activities such as kayaking, hiking and biking. She shares her home with her dog, Oliver, and her cat, Dirt. Show less...
“The pet program particularly really caught my eye,” said Lauren, an animal lover who believes that pets can have a positive impact on peoples’ lives, including the lives of seniors.
As YMOW’s social worker, Lauren said she wants to provide homebound adults and their families with peace of mind that support and help is available.
A lifelong Michigander, Lauren enjoys outdoor activities such as kayaking, hiking and biking. She shares her home with her dog, Oliver, and her cat, Dirt.
firstname.lastname@example.org | 734-557-8254
Cat Fernando-Rizzo said she knew YMOW would be a perfect fit for her even before she learned of its need for a social worker. When a search of the website revealed an opening on the social work team, Cat said she knew she had found the job she was looking for.
“I just align with this mission so much,” said Cat. “My goal is to use each client’s strengths to keep them living as autonomously as possible for as long as they can.”
Cat’s interest in working with older adults goes all the way back to childhood, when she began volunteering at a respite care center.
Show more... “I went every week through my senior year of high school,” she said. After graduating from Fordham University, she took a job as food justice coordinator for a rooftop farm and food pantry in Manhattan, New York. Those two experiences, along with her master’s degree in social work from the University of Michigan, prepared her for the role she now fills at YMOW. A native of the east coast, Cat came to Michigan in pursuit of her master’s degree. “We just fell in love with Ypsilanti,” she said, where she now lives with fiance Rosie and their pet rabbit, Puppy. Cat enjoys playing flute and piano, writing letters, crocheting, and doing jigsaw puzzles and playing board games with Rosie. Show less...
“I went every week through my senior year of high school,” she said.
After graduating from Fordham University, she took a job as food justice coordinator for a rooftop farm and food pantry in Manhattan, New York. Those two experiences, along with her master’s degree in social work from the University of Michigan, prepared her for the role she now fills at YMOW.
A native of the east coast, Cat came to Michigan in pursuit of her master’s degree.
“We just fell in love with Ypsilanti,” she said, where she now lives with fiance Rosie and their pet rabbit, Puppy.
Cat enjoys playing flute and piano, writing letters, crocheting, and doing jigsaw puzzles and playing board games with Rosie.
email@example.com | 734-217-4441
Traci joined the YMOW team in March 2019 after a search for volunteer opportunities in her community led her to YMOW.
“I just needed something else,” said Traci, who works as a tax accountant and paramedic in addition to her work at YMOW. She said her work at YMOW allows her to get out from behind a desk and offer hands-on help to her neighbors in need.
Food delivery is important, she said, but often the most important thing she does all day is listen.
“Sometimes, that’s all they want,” she said.
Traci also spends time caring for elderly Ypsilanti neighbors by helping with cleaning, shopping and even preparing their favorite meals.
The mother of three sons, Traci looks forward to Sunday dinners with her family.
Chris Brown joined YMOW in August 2022 after several years as a member of the Habitat for Humanity team.
“I really want to build a career of service,” Chris said, and to help others give back to their community as volunteers for YMOW.
“Volunteers are critical to carrying out the mission of any non-profit. Without the time and effort that volunteers generously give, non-profits can't reach their full potential to serve the community,” he said.
Chris said he is interested in knowing the people that YMOW serves and the people who give their time to the organization.
Originally from Ohio, Chris moved to Ypsilanti in 2011 and grew to love the character and quirkiness of the city. He holds a master’s degree in historic preservation from Eastern Michigan University.
Chris now lives in Monroe with his partner and their cat. He loves cooking, gardening and Michigan history.
firstname.lastname@example.org | (734) 217-4578
Dannielle “Danni” Murphy joined the YMOW team as marketing and development manager in November 2022. Danni’s background includes event planning and extensive community engagement through her work with Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Washtenaw County.
Danni said she’s eager to put her experience and skills to work for YMOW.
“I’d like to create engaging events that bring in new donors, reach new people and spread the mission,” Danni said.
A graduate of Eastern Michigan University, Danni holds a bachelor’s degree in art history and a minor in fine arts. She has served on numerous Ypsi committees, including the 4th of July Parade, the Juneteenth Celebration, Downtown Association of Ypsilanti (DAY), and the Holy Bones Festival, which brought in over 1,500 people and raised over $12,000 to restore The Ypsi performance space. Danni is a founding member of The Renaissance Project, which raised thousands of dollars to establish a scholarship fund for kids to attend Center Stage Productions Drama Camp in the Riverside Arts Center theater.
Danni resides in Normal Park with her husband, three children and two cats. She loves to paint and create and hopes to develop opportunities for YMOW clients to stretch their artistic muscles for the good of the YMOW mission.
email@example.com | (734) 217-4578
Sandy stepped into her role as communications coordinator at YMOW in 2018. It is a job that pairs two of her favorite things – writing and serving the senior population.
After a long career in community journalism, Sandy left her job as a reporter in 2014 to pursue a long held desire to work with older adults and to help them age safely in their homes.
Sandy uses her writing and communication skills to share the story of YMOW with the community, donors and supporters, and with those who might be in need of the organization’s many services.
“YMOW is an organization that the entire community should be proud of. I want people to know about the good we do and the people who make that possible,” Sandy said.
Sandy also works as a freelance writer. She and husband Dave have two grown children and welcomed their first grandchild in 2021.
Eric Gill joined the YMOW team in September 2018, fulfilling his need to help others in his community.
“I believe that helping those in need is the right thing to do,” Eric said.
In his previous job at the Detroit Institute of Arts, Eric worked with a diverse population of all ages and from a wide range of demographics and socio-economic backgrounds, including senior citizens and people with Alzheimer’s disease and their caregivers.
Eric lives in Ann Arbor with his husband and two dogs. During his free time he enjoys baking, gardening and staying active. He also loves to travel and to explore nature.
After caring full time for his grandmother through the last years of her life, Joey Granath knows firsthand the needs of someone aging in place.
His job at YMOW is a chance to continue helping people age at home, with the dignity they deserve.
“It feels meaningful,” said Joey, who joined the YMOW team in May 2022.
Until joining YMOW, Joey said he thought Meals on Wheels was just about delivering food. He was pleasantly surprised to learn just how much “more than a meal” he provides as a CCA. In addition to providing food and other necessities, Joey said listening is a big part of his job.
“Some of these folks don’t get out much,” he said, and they enjoy a chance to talk and be heard.
A resident of Ypsilanti, Joey enjoys hiking, disc golf and being outdoors.
Ron Hinz joined YMOW’s team of client care associates in May 2022 as part of his retirement plan to spend time helping his community.
“I just thought it was a really good opportunity to help people,” he said.
He said the best part of working at YMOW is the people and the gratitude they show.
“Everybody is just so appreciative,” he said, and he takes that gratitude with him throughout the day.
Several years before joining YMOW, Ron ended his long career as an accountant and started a series of what he calls “fun” jobs, one of which involved test driving cars for Hyundai.
An Ann Arbor resident, Ron and wife Leanne have two grown children and enjoy traveling throughout the United States.
Randi became a client care associate with Ypsilanti Meals on Wheels in 2015.
“I enjoy every aspect of my job - delivering food, sharing a few moments with the clients, their kids, pets and getting to know the volunteers and interns,” she said.
Randi enjoys delivering meals to clients because it gives her the opportunity to ensure they are safe in their homes.
“Every meal I deliver comes with a greeting, a smile, a look into the eyes. It lets each client know someone is there, that someone sees them and is concerned about their well-being,” she said.
Randi said working with YMOW has provided her with a deeper humility, patience, sincerity, compassion and an overall interest in others, especially seniors. In addition to her passion for her work, Randi enjoys walking her dogs, listening to music, gardening and spending time with friends.
Brett Snyder has missed YMOW ever since he left back in 2016.
“I’ve always wanted to come back,” he said. And he did from time to time, as a volunteer.
When the opportunity arose in 2020 to return to YMOW, Brett didn’t hesitate. He now delivers meals as a client care associate and also uses his master’s degree in social work to assist with data collection for the CAPABLE program.
“I love it,” Brett said. “I like seeing the clients every day and building a relationship, a couple of minutes at a time.”
Brett lives in Ypsilanti with his wife, Caren, a professor of social work at Eastern Michigan University. He and Caren have two rescue dogs.
New to the area, Richele Taylor was searching for her place in the community when she found it at Ypsilanti Meals on Wheels.
“I was called to it,” said Richele, who started delivering meals to YMOW clients in November 2021. Just weeks into her new job, Richele had already grown to know and care about the clients on her route.
“I look forward to going to work,” she said, and to doing small things for her clients, even if that small thing is as simple as a smile. “It’s not just a food delivery service. It’s a lifeline. It’s about community. It’s just about being there.”
Richele lives in Ann Arbor with her partner, Brent, and their blended family of four children. They have a German shepherd/Alaskan malamute named Penny and a cat named Batman.
Joe remembers how his mother-in-law looked forward to her daily meal delivery from her local Meals on Wheels. So when the opportunity arose to join the YMOW team, he knew it was his chance to return the favor.
“I was always impressed with people who brought her meals. They made her day,” Joe said. Now, he’s happy to be that person for the people on his YMOW route.
After several years of retirement, Joe said he’s happy to find a role that allows him to interact with people while contributing to his community.
Joe lives in Ypsilanti Township with his wife and their two Chihuahuas, Pixie and Hazel.