The volunteer Board of Directors meets monthly and serves as the governing body of Yolo Hospice. Day-to-day efforts of Yolo Hospice are handled by our professional staff and by our pool of enthusiastic volunteers.
If you’re interested in volunteering with Yolo Hospice, and would like to know more about the organization, Board members would be happy to speak with you. To reach them, please contact: Janene Ramos at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Craig Dresang brings more than 25 years of nonprofit management experience to his post, including 15 years as a senior leader in healthcare. Prior to his role at Yolo Hospice, Craig was the vice president for community development and programs for Midwest Palliative and Hospice CareCenter in Chicago, a $30 million healthcare organization that ranked in the top 20 nation-wide for quality inpatient care, and was recognized as one of Chicago’s top 100 workplaces.
Under Craig’s leadership, Midwest CareCenter raised $13 million to build the State of Illinois’ first LEED® Gold certified hospice residence, which was awarded by the U.S. Green Building Council for successfully incorporating design, construction and operational practices to achieve cost-efficiency, energy savings and environmental sustainability.
“Much like Midwest CareCenter, Yolo Hospice was founded 35 years ago by grassroots volunteers and has, over time, become the region’s gold standard for hospice care,” Craig says. “As the first established hospice in the Sacramento Valley, we have the longest track record as experts in end-of-life care. In fact, our most recent physician satisfaction survey shows that 100 percent of our referring physicians are satisfied with the care we provide to their patients. I am truly excited to be part of this very special community treasure.”
A long-time resident of Davis and columnist for the Davis Enterprise, Marion came to Yolo Hospice as a patient volunteer. After eight years volunteering with one patient at a time, and writing occasional articles related to Yolo Hospice, she joined the Board in 2013. She says she used to avoid meetings, but not at Yolo Hospice where she believes passionately in the work being done and the people who do it.
Active with several nonprofits, Trish was touched by Yolo Hospice when her mother came under its care in 2000. Not only did her large family learn to help meet the medical needs of their mom, but they also received bereavement services during the tender period after her death. Trish is one of the Board’s longest serving members with expertise in marketing, finance, and construction management, the latter particularly helpful in maintenance and upgrading of our business office.
Keith Volkerts is on his third role with Yolo Hospice as a Board member. He served as Yolo Hospice’s CFO for seven years and as Executive Director from 2013-2014. He also worked in the past with Napa Valley Hospice and Adult Day Services and was the owner of Physician Billing Specialists. Keith and his wife Lynn are long-time supporters of Yolo Hospice, including as administers of the George and Lena Valente Foundation, established by Lynn’s late parents. Keith brings a strong knowledge of finance and hospice to the Board as well as extensive background with Yolo Hospice.
RoseMarie brings extensive experience in finance and fundraising to our Board. Until retirement in 2004, she managed departmental budgets at UC Davis. She also served for 10 years on the board of the Winters Health Care Foundation, and prepared and sold flowers for special events in Winters, where she lives. In 2002 Yolo Hospice cared for her father during his last illness, and she feels a desire to give back and to spread the word that Yolo Hospice serves not only Yolo County, but also patients from several surrounding counties.
A retired attorney in Yolo County, Tom has volunteered for nonprofit organizations since 1967. In 1998 he became a patient volunteer for Yolo Hospice. A year later he joined the Board, where he served six years, three as President. He rejoined the Board in 2013, and continues as a patient volunteer. He describes Yolo Hospice as a “phenomenal organization.” During his many years of of service, he has traveled to hospices around the country, learning about regulations, finance and management.
Sharon has been working in health care for nearly 30 years in a variety of roles, especially as an educator. She particularly enjoys teaching about disease, treatment and safety, as well as organizing community projects. In 1997, she was introduced to hospice through the end-of-life experience of her mother, who was well-served by a Bay Area hospice. That motivated Sharon’s deep commitment to pay her experience forward by educating others about the support services hospice offers to them and to their loved ones.
Sharon joined Yolo Hospice first as a patient care volunteer and then as an employee until November 2012. She brings to the Board a strong interest in fundraising. Nothing would please her more than to help keep Yolo Hospice self-sustaining over the long term.
Nancy Bramberg, Attorney
Nancy Bramberg had no special knowledge about hospice and no experience with Yolo Hospice when a friend asked her to consider joining the Board. Since getting to know the staff of Yolo Hospice, she describes herself as “bowled over by their intelligence, commitment and kindness.” In addition to serving on the Board, she has taken the training to become a patient volunteer and hopes to share her pet therapy dog with patients. Before retirement, she was an attorney specializing in workers’ compensation on behalf of injured workers.
Lynn Hillier Gore
Lynn was a patient volunteer with Yolo Hospice for six years before joining the Board. She has long-time Davis connections, working for UC Davis for 35 years. She was inspired to volunteer her time with Yolo Hospice after her family experienced their loving, attentive support during her father’s death. Her activism and interest in end-of-life care began in the 60’s with her involvement in the women’s movement. Overlaps between feminist efforts and the medical field led her to see that eldercare and end-of life models needed transformation too.
Virginia Joyce, M.D
After many years as a surgeon with a special interest in breast disease, Virginia is currently the Assistant Chief Medical Officer for the Sacramento Sierra region of Sutter Health. Personal and professional activities brought her in contact with Yolo Hospice, where her patients reported a positive experience. She feels that the organization is “supportive and very effective.” Her clinical understanding and medical expertise are valuable assets to the Board and to the Clinical Advisory Committee on which she serves.
Colleen Perry, FNP
Colleen has been in nursing for more than 30 years, first in critical care, then as a nurse practitioner, and now as Director of Nursing at CommuniCare Health Centers. When she was a student nurse in the 1970s, new ideas were emerging about how to treat dying patients. Colleen was immediately drawn to the hospice philosophy of offering people the opportunity to spend their final days among those they love and trust, instead of being placed in unfamiliar hospital surroundings.
Colleen offers extensive experience in leadership and public relations, and she uses her skills to get the word out about Yolo Hospice. She says, “I think that we’ve got to get more comfortable with end of life issues. The last days of life are such a special time.”
Pete has been a Yolo Hospice volunteer since 2011. He has an additional personal connection to Yolo Hospice because his late wife Mary was one of our patients. Pete is a long-time Davis resident who worked for more than 30 years with Hunt-Wesson Foods Inc. Pete also served as a 1st Lieutenant Infantry in the U.S. Army, Vietnam era, and has been an integral part of our We Honor Veterans program. He has provided special service as a volunteer for our veteran patients who appreciate having a volunteer with this shared experience.
Madalon was the Founding Executive Director of the Hospice & Palliative Nurses Association (HPNA). She moved to the Davis area in 2015. Madalon was an early American voice in the hospice movement, serving as the director of education and research at Forbes Hospice, and eventually founding the Pennsylvania Hospice Network. She is the co-author of Nursing Care of the Terminally Ill, the first American textbook on hospice care. She has received numerous national and educational honors in recognition of her caring work, including HPNA’s Leading the Way Award and the University of Pittsburgh’s Distinguished Alumni Award.
Dawn has been the program manager of Dignity Healthcare’s Yolo Adult Day Health Center in Woodland for more than 20 years. She is an influential figure in care for the elderly in Yolo County, and has worked alongside Yolo Hospice throughout her career. This closer relationship grew in part out of a shared vision of a new way to serve the community through an adult day care center in Davis. Dawn was honored in 2011 by Assemblywoman Mariko Yamada as Woman of the Year, for her long-time work with Adult Day Health Center.
Christye has been affiliated with Citizens Who Care (CWC) for over 25 years, and has joined the Yolo Hospice board as part of the joining of the two organizations. She has served many terms on the CWC board, including as vice president. Chris has been an In-Home Respite volunteer and a Senior Peer Counseling volunteer. She has been instrumental in all of CWC’s fundraising activities, but most especially contributing her time and organizational talents to the Annual Concert for more than 20 years and to the Davis Beer & Cider Festival for 12 years. Chris is retired from a management position and long career with Cal-Trans.
Julie is a local native whose family members were some of the original Davisville homesteaders. She received her BA degree from UC Davis and went on to have an eleven-year career with the university as a conference and event planner. She currently serves as the General Manager at SwimAmerica, a learn-to-swim school in Davis. Julie’s interest in Citizens Who Care was sparked by her parents’ involvement and she has volunteered for the Annual Concert and BeerFest for the past three years. Julie is looking forward to having a larger impact within the organization while serving on the board.
Rose is the owner of SwimAmerica-Davis, a learn-to-swim school in Davis. She has served 6 years on the Davis Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors and in 2012 she served as the Board President. She has also been an active Board member of the United States Swim School Association, helping plan their national conferences and currently chairs the Membership Connections Committee. Rose raised her daughter (now 22) in Davis and recently married her husband John. They both love living in Davis and remain quite active in the community.