Community Advisory Council

Residents of Pierce County with diverse backgrounds who come together with a shared goal of elevating the voices of the people around them. They help guide the work Elevate Health is doing to improve healthcare in our region.

Council Members

Ann B Mumford

Ann has worked as a Case Manager with at risk children, youth and families in employment/ training and specialized foster care programs in Pierce County for over 50 years. Ann worked for a local AIDS Service Organization as a Community Health Educator coordinating outreach activities in the faith community on prevention of HIV/AIDS. Ann coordinated “National Week of Prayer for the Healing of AIDS”, formerly known as “Black Church Week of Prayer for the Healing of AIDS” locally for over five years. Ann continues to work with the faith community on the prevention of HIV/AIDS through her own non-profit organization “Keepers of the Flame NW”. Ann was elected President of Ladies in Women’s Health and we exist to fight health inequities in the African American community.
Ann is a member of the Pierce County ACH Community Advisory Committee and the Tacoma Ministerial and several other organizations serving the residents of Pierce County.

Anthony Blankenship

Coming soon

Barbara Kaelberer

I worked as a nurse for over 40 years. My experience took me in to work in the hospital, clinic nursing home, and home health. My last experience took me to care for my husband. He had heart disease that started in his 40’s then started having strokes in his 60’s. We had private insurance and always owed money for medical bills and never qualified for medical assistance. On his 65th birthday, he had a bad stroke and started Medicare all on the same day. Even with me working in the health care world. It was difficult to understand that way insurance and doctor’s office worked for those that are ill.
I started being an advocate for him and others. With my years of experience, it made it more of a passion for helping change the broken system.
Now that my husband is gone, I spend more time involved in an organization that is working to make a change. I found the community accountable for health in Pierce County. And have been on the Community Voice at evolved into the Community Advisory Council.

Cheri Coleman

Cheri Denise Coleman, MBA is the Founder of PartnerCafe-Bridging the Gap across Sectors. A consortium of City, State, and Federal agency decision-makers joining nonprofit organizations and Community Leaders & Activists- working interdependently to collectively impact social issues.
A native New Yorker, Cheri’s passion for transforming the lives of Vulnerable Populations was a result of her work at United Indians of all Tribes Foundation, the City of Seattle, Washington State, Neighbor Care Health Clinic and United Health Care.
Cheri received her MBA with a specialization in Organizational Leadership at New York Institute of Technology, BS in Integrated Marketing at Fashion Institute of Technology and Graduate Certificate in Human Resources from Keller Graduate School at DeVry University.
Cheri currently works as a Community Engagement and Resource and Service Provider, contracted by DSHS/DDA. She sits on the Board of Directors for Exceptional Families and is a committee member of the Community Advisory Council for ACH, CHW Coalition, Pierce County ACAC and Human Services Coalition.

Cheri Profit

I currently work at Coordinated Care as a Program Specialist ll (Case Manager / Social Worker). I was born and raised in Tacoma, WA. I have been on both sides of the fence; many years ago, I was on Welfare and utilized Section 8. I have family members with mental illness that I’ve assisted in community mental health. In my career, I have experience working with underserved and vulnerable populations. I have made my life’s work about working and advocating for clients that are low income to help them navigate the system to get the results they want. I previously worked as a Peer at Recovery Innovations, assisting clients in crisis, and providing resources in the community. I also worked at Greater Lakes Mental Healthcare as a Peer and then as a Therapist on the Community Re-entry Program assisting clients with mental health issues to reenter the community and reduce recidivism before coming to Coordinated Care to work as a Program Specialist. As a Program Specialist, I work with a diverse group of clients, assisting them with medical issues as well as providing resources in the community to help them in their goals. Advocacy is key to assisting many clients in navigating the medical system where I sometimes find that their voices are not being heard, and it is evident that sometimes individuals that are low income or have mental health issues are not receiving the care they deserve due to misconceptions about them as human beings. Hopefully, one day this situation is no longer an issue. Still, until then, I plan to continue collaborating, advocating, and assisting our most vulnerable populations in getting the care they deserve. I hope to be a part of the change that needs to happen for quality care to be available for all participants and not just the privileged few that have the means and voice to demand it.

Doreen VanderVort

Doreen is a Tacoma native-born and raised here. She attended Bellarmine and went on to Eastern Washington University to become a social worker. Working in the field of developmental disabilities for the past 20 years. She and her husband Darren own a home in Tacoma are raising their two girls, one who was born with Spina Bifida is a wheelchair user and Medicaid recipient. Doreen works at Wa PAVE, supporting adults and children with disabilities or special healthcare needs and their families. She comes from a large Irish family that has battled with many challenges, including homelessness, behavioral health challenges, opioid addiction, and a system that lacks good access points to health care. She is committed to the community and has volunteered for her church, Tacoma schools, local moms club, project trunk run, rescue mission, metro parks, and more.
She brings passion and personal experience with systems access. Doreen will say, "my first role is I am a Mom of a child on Medicaid who works to access these services, but also I am a bridge builder and community advocate. I care about all people in our Pierce County family having access and a voice. I am most excited about the pathways hub that is supporting pregnant women and people with multiple health concerns. This model that provides 1:1 community-based human supports is what I believe works best."

Emily T. Reed

Emily entered the Women's Army Corps (WAC) and served for three years. After serving the Military, she went to school to become a Surgical Technologist.
She moved to Ft. Hood, Texas, where I met and married my current husband. We have four children and eight grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.
Several Military moves and working in different hospitals; later, they finally returned to Washington, and her husband retired from the Military. Emily joined the American Red Cross, where she served for two years; worked on the Disaster team. She continued to work in local hospitals until her retirement in 2016.
Emily serves on several organizations: Leader's In Women's Health, Treasurer, (LIWH) Women Men Youth of Purpose (WMYP) Community Advisory Council(CAC), and Health Minister at my Church. She also works in the community as a health advocate to help improve disparities in the medical arena to build Pt/Dr relationships through education and communication. It is an honor to be able to serve in the communities.

Jaime Stout

I am a business professional with over 30 years of progressive management, disability program management, recruiting, and HR experience across all business lines. Strong decision-making skills, knowledge, and real-world experience required to support business objectives and work with executive management in building strong teams to meet outlined objectives. Excellence in working with cross-functional teams in developing solutions that align with strategic corporate goals. Hands-on program design and management in the disability and non-profit sectors.

I am also an 11-year late-stage cancer survivor. I have been part of the recovery community for over 20 years. I am passionate about serving marginalized populations and am currently serving as the Program Manager of Disability Services for Goodwill of the Olympics and Rainier Region. I have over ten years of experience working with individuals with disabilities in various settings. I am most interested in finding solutions through collaboration and partnership. I believe that together there is nothing that a collective cannot solve.

My first experience with healthcare in Pierce County was when I relocated here five years ago and needed to find an oncologist to oversee my cancer treatment. Over the course of my time here in Washington, I have received my health care through Washington Apple Health and my employer. Both experiences provided the healthcare that I required.

Janine Colletta

Coming Soon

Kirby Pollard

Kirby's career of service began as a volunteer firefighter for the Lake Tapps Fire Department at the age of 17. He went on to a career with the United States Army as a combat medic, EMT, Paramedic, and Licensed Practical Nurse. He returned home to Washington after retirement to serve the clients of Rainier State School as an LPN and returned to the fire department serving as a volunteer firefighter/EMT for seven years. Kirby was hired as a full-time firefighter at the age of 43, serving as a firefighter for nine years.
In 2011, Kirby had a near-deadly scuba diving accident. He lost most of his vision due to a severe stroke and was forced to retire. Kirby chooses to continue to serve his community in the only way he is able.
He volunteered and was elected as a precinct committee officer, State Committee Man, Pierce County representative for his legislative district, Trustee at his church, and even ran for Fire Commissioner. Kirby served as a steering committee member for Whole Washington, promoting health care for all.
Kirby joined his local grange and took the office of the executive board member, gatekeeper, and Steward of the Pierce County Grange.
He serves as a member of the Buckley and Prairie Ridge community coalitions, taking an active role in community dinners, a community garden, and the summer youth programs.

He is a proud father of three and a grandparent of five boys from ten months to 15 years old. Kirby still married to my 9th-grade sweetheart, and they will be celebrating our 40th anniversary this December.

Melanie Garnica

I come from a mother who didn’t know English as I was growing up and didn’t know all the resources and benefits she could have obtained with having insurance. Community work is close to my heart, and I love to help members of the community get informed on what they and their family members qualify to have state insurance. And helping them get connected with Community health workers that can help them with other resources.

Pamela Draper

My youngest son, ‘32 years old, has allergies, so I had to read ingredients and pay attention to how he reacted to certain foods, which I shared with family and friends. Because of it, I have been involved with the public on physical movement and moderation when it comes to processed foods. I am a WSU Master Gardener since 1996, practice and teaching Tai Chi Chih since 1997, Tai Ji Quan, since 2003.

I now work with Beecher’s Foundation teaching the public to understand processed food labels better and also with Mercy Housing and CHW with GEN Health. I am a member of Amvets Ladies Auxiliary, Americanism,
and teaching Tai Chi to Veterans.

Shandi Dailey

I was born & raised in Hawaii, moved here about 4 years ago due to military orders for my spouse. In Hawaii I worked for Kaiser Permanente as a Marketing Rep and often found myself volunteering in the community at shelters and hospitals as I was always someone who wanted to give back/help my people. When we moved here, I tried to do the same by volunteering at Tacoma Rescue Mission and Nativity House. I am currently employed by Coordinated Care and have been for the last 3 years. I am a Community Relations Coordinator for Pierce, Thurston-Mason and King County and have been in this role for about 1.5 years. In a nutshell, my duty is to assess the needs of the communities we serve and see how we can help meet those needs by attending collaboration meetings/events/sponsorships/volunteer. Also, I am a Board Member of Pacific Islander Health Alliance NW, a new dba under Samoan Nurses Association of WA. This organization was created specifically for outreach to all Pacific Islanders in Pierce County with some assistance to the PI group in King County. With both of these roles I have seen/met many Pierce County Residents/Community members who’ve voiced their concerns of SDOH. Most of which are Transportation, Access to healthy food & Financial Assistance/Education. I’ve learned that some cultures who rely on their cultural staple fruits and veggies, find it hard to find or at an affordable price which leads them to buying fast food meals for their families. I’ve learned that having no bus lines out of Orting often leads bored teens to substance abuse. I’ve also learned that having no Family support/resource center in Springbrook leaves that community helpless unless they head across the bridge to Tillicum Community Center. I believe there are a lot of needs in Pierce County and those needs are highly based on the demographics of each area/community. I would love to be a part of the CAC as an advocate to help voice the concerns/needs of my neighbors & friends.

Yuni Medlin

In 2017, I began working with households at risk of experiencing homelessness in Pierce County. In assessing the needs of a family or individual, it became apparent that many were receiving or eligible to receive Medicaid benefits. Still, we're struggling in navigating the healthcare systems on their own.
Instead of just looking at Homeless Prevention as a program to help pay rent and utilities, it seemed necessary to serve people as a whole, which meant identifying additional factors affecting housing stability. As more individuals shared their stories about accessing healthcare, transportation was the most common barrier, and care coordination was the most common frustration.
Being a member of the Community Advisory Council allows me to empower individuals who feel that their voice is not heard. When I participated in the previous Community Voice Council, individuals appreciated knowing that someone was willing to share their concerns with those who are able to drive and influence change to existing systems and policies.
Participating in a collaboration that focuses on improving health outcomes has been a positive impact on the program I manage. Being able to navigate individuals to healthcare programs and services they are eligible for has been a great contribution to improving housing stability. The ability to better inform individuals on how the programs operate beforehand has increased. They are follow-through in accessing needed services. For the past year, I have been able to navigate mothers to organizations participating in the Pathways Community HUB for pre-pregnancy and post-birth services. As I continue to address transportation and housing barriers for individuals, I look forward to working with others to create solutions to remove these barriers that can affect an individual’s healthcare and improve health outcomes for Medicaid recipients in Pierce County.