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Leadership Team

Leadership at Cardinal Cushing Centers

Since 1947, the Cardinal Cushing Centers have been at the forefront of serving those with special needs. Today, our leadership team expands on that tradition, by continuing to pioneer new and better ideas in teaching, transition programs, employment, and community living through innovative facilities, curriculum, and programs.

Senior Leadership


Peter-HeadshotPeter O’Meara

President and CEO

Peter O’Meara joined the Board of Directors of Cardinal Cushing Centers in 2012.  In January of 2016 Peter became the Interim President and CEO and then in October 2016 he accepted the permanent role of President and CEO.

Peter retired from the State of Connecticut in 2011 after serving as the Commissioner of Developmental Services for over 16 years. After his retirement he provided consulting services to a number of organizations including the Perkins School and the University of Massachusetts Medical School.  Since 2012 he has also served as the national Director of Government Relations for Therap Services.

Peter attended Villanova University and Boston College and began his career with the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare where he worked for 17 years as a manager and Superintendent in the State School and Hospital system. He returned to Massachusetts and for ten years was the Superintendent of the Fernald School in Waltham, MA.


Jansi Chandler

Vice President of Development

Jansi Chandler has been a development professional for 30 years, specializing in public and private development. Since April 2012 she has held the position of VP of Development at Cardinal Cushing Centers, where she is responsible for all fundraising for the organization as well as overseeing its development projects. Prior to that she was the Director of Development at Grant Communications Consulting Group where she provided technical assistance in nonprofit development, specializing in capital and annual campaigns. She has also held the position of Managing Director for Economic Development for the Boston Redevelopment Authority, overseeing the day-to-day operations of the six departments and 70 staff that make up the Economic Development Division. For 11 years, she was the executive director of the Lynn (MA) Department of Community Development and obtained and implemented state and federal grants of more than $80 million for housing, community-and economic development programs. Ms. Chandler has a B.A. from Connecticut College and an M.B.A. from Suffolk University.


Sig Kozaryn

Sig Kozaryn

Vice President of Finance/CFO

Sig Kozaryn obtained his BS in accounting from Quinnipiac University, and has various experience in nonprofit and profit organizations.  He helped start a battered women’s shelter on Cape Cod, a Buddhist meditation center, and has served on the board of several nonprofit corporations.  He also serves on the MAAPS Contract & Reimbursement committee.

Sig oversees the overall financial and operation activities of Cardinal Cushing Centers Inc.  He serves as the V.P Finance and Treasurer for CCC Board of Directors as well.

Additionally, Sig supervises Maintenance in Hanover & Braintree, IT, Switchboard, Finance and Food Services. He is responsible for preparing and presenting quarterly and annual financial statements to the Board of Directors, as well as preparing the UFR and financial statements for the auditors.  Other duties include strategic planning, preparing budgets, analyzing and reviewing contracts, preparation of DDS contracts, and implementing financial controls over policy and procedures to ensure validity of the company’s financial statements and reporting.


Michelle Markowitz

Michelle Markowitz

Vice President, Admissions and Administration

Michelle Markowitz has a BS in Psychology from Bridgewater State College and has been at Cardinal Cushing for almost 15 years.  Michelle’s extraordinary passion and commitment to the field of Special Education began at an early age.  As a high school student, she volunteered at Braintree St. Coletta’s Day School where she did afterschool programming and summer camp with students.  Michelle has held various positions at Cardinal Cushing Centers including the Education and Residential Departments, rounding out her comprehensive knowledge of Cardinal Cushing’s program and services.

Currently as Vice President of Admissions and Administration, Michelle is responsible for the Admissions process including but not limited to: initial review of all applicants, touring and interviewing families and students for potential placements, facilitating discussions for acceptance at Board of Admissions meetings and completion of extensive admissions processes.  In her role, Michelle is responsible for national and international recruitment.  Michelle spends a lot of time cultivating and enriching relationships with not only families and students but also educational consultants, school districts, special education attorneys, advocates, and other referring agencies.  Michelle represents the organization at many conferences throughout the year and has served on the National Association of Therapeutic Schools and Programs National Conference Committee as well as represents the organization through the Independent Small Programs Alliance.   Michelle is an active member of the South Shore Young Professionals Group as well as a member of the Senior Leadership Team at Cardinal Cushing Centers.


Jean Rogers

Jean Rogers

Vice President of Community and Adult Services

Jean Rogers has an MS in Counseling and a BS in Human Services Administration, and has been the VP of Adult Services at Cardinal Cushing Centers for fourteen years.  Previously, Jean was the Program Administrator at the Kennedy-Donovan Center for eighteen years.

As the VP of Adult Services, Jean’s responsibilities include but are not limited to: Coordinating all aspects of Residential and Employment programs supporting over one hundred individuals.  She maintains the highest level of licensure through the Department of Developmental Services office of Quality Assurance and CARF.  To develop and monitor budgets for all Adult Services programs, as well as pursue additional funding sources beyond DDS and MRC. She is responsible for Quality of Assurance for all Adult Services programs, as well as overseeing upkeep and maintenance of all of the facilities. Jean actively pursues new referrals for our existing day and residential programs, and develops new programs including Day Habilitation and Individual Support.


Department Heads



Aindrea Benduzek

Director, Adult Service Residential

Aindrea Benduzek has been working at Cardinal Cushing Centers since May of 2011. Aindrea started with Cushing as a job coach at South Shore Industries in Braintree where she worked with adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Aindrea transitioned to Adult Service Residential in 2013 where she is now the Director of 14 adult homes and manages a staff of 14 Residential Supports Managers and a little over 100 Direct Support Professionals. In 2015, Aindrea completed her MA in Conflict Resolution which included an internship in mediation. She also has a BA in English and Sociology and a Graduate Certificate in Politics and Public Policy. Aindrea completed the DDS Leadership Series and has a strong passion for advocacy in regards to community inclusion, social role valorization and Human Rights. She also is a member of the Human Rights Committee.



Patricia Conley

Director, Adult Family Care

Pat Conley graduated from the University of Massachusetts with a BS in Marketing. She was the Central Logistics Manager at Honeywell for 8 years and then took some time off to raise a family and work in her husband’s family business. She made a career change in 2005 and started working as a Residential Direct Support Staff at the school. She worked for one year as the Health Center Aide and then transferred into Adult Services where she worked for 2 years as a Residential House Manager before taking the position of Residential Coordinator. In April of 2013, she was promoted to Director of Adult Family Care, a MassHealth program that provides care and financial support to help adults with disabilities live in a safe and often familiar home setting . Pat also serves as one of the coordinators for the Special Olympics Jolly Jaunt fundraiser.


kduhamel1Kristine M. Duhamel, LICSW

Director of Clinical Services

Kristine Duhamel has been in the field of social work for over 20 years with extensive knowledge in the mental health field. She believes strongly in education and advocacy for all people regarding mental health care and current trends in treatment.  Kristine holds an undergraduate and graduate degree in social work. She has a passion for working with children and families, comprising a majority of the clinical work she has done for the past 15 years as a psychotherapist. Kristine was previously employed at Cushing as a Student Service Coordinator which launched her interest in working with intellectually challenged individuals. Kristine is returning to Cardinal Cushing Centers as the Director of Clinical Services and is thrilled to be back!



Gerry Fanning

Food Service Director

Gerry has been in the Food Service Industry for over 35 years, the past 27 as the Food Service Director at Cardinal Cushing School. A career that started in the United States Coast Guard, where he served proudly for 4 years, before working in the health care industry and then to Cardinal Cushing School. Gerry’s culinary training began in the Coast Guard; he then preceded to Northeastern University’s, “Chefs Training Institute”, and also received a degree in Culinary Arts from Johnson and Wales University.

His primary duties at Cardinal Cushing are overseeing all aspects of food service, covering the day to day operations, as well as special events. Gerry and his wife Joyce, who also works at Cardinal Cushing School, reside in Rockland with their two children Amy and Patrick. Gerry and Joyce recently became the proud  grandparents of Liam Haynes, son of their daughter Amy and son- in- law PaulIn his free time, he enjoys coaching soccer and basketball for The Special Olympics Adult Service Program.


TaraTara Finn

Associate VP of Adult Services

Tara Finn has been working with individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities for over 16 years as behavior specialist and a residential director. Prior to her role as Associate Vice President of Adult Services, Tara held the position of Senior Program Director at Friendship Home, overseeing recreational, vocational and site based respite programs. Tara has her Master’s degree in Mental Health Counseling and currently serves on the DDS Regional Diversity Council, Leadership Committee and is on the Statewide Initiatitive “Creating Our Commonwealth” which advocates for inclusion of people who have disabilities. She is also chair of the Human Rights Committee at Cardinal Cushing Centers.



Doug Frazier

Director of Vocational Services

Doug Frazier has been in the field of education for 35 years. Twenty eight of those years have been with Cardinal Cushing Centers. He is currently the Senior Director of Vocational Services (CORE program) at Cardinal Cushing Centers – Hanover and has served in that position for six years. Doug oversees the vocational/educational program for students from the ages 18 – 22. This includes classrooms, on-site and off-site vocational/educational experiences for students. Prior to working in vocational services at the school, Doug worked in student services, teaching and admissions. Before working at Cushing he was in the field of college administration – student housing, activities and financial aid. Mr. Frazier has a B.A. from MCLA, a M.Ed. from Bridgewater State University and holds his teaching licensure in special education.


Angela Gokey

Director of Day Services

Angela Gokey has been working with individuals with intellectual disabilities for over 20 years. Prior to coming to Cardinal Cushing Centers, she was a Director for Vinfen Corporation and the May Institute, supervising both Day Habilitation and Employment programs. In her current position of Director of Day Services, she supervises the Life Opportunities Unlimited and South Shore Industries programs. Angela has extensive experience with program development, and she is currently working on the expansion of day supports in both the Hanover and Braintree communities.

Angela received her undergraduate degree in Sociology & Anthropology from Colgate University.


KHamilton2Katy Hamilton, M.S., LMHC

Director and Clinical Case Manager, ACE Program

Katy Hamilton is the Director and Clinical Case Manager for the ACE program. She has worked for Cardinal Cushing Centers  in various roles and capacities for over 15 years with a specialized interest in preparing students for fulfilling and meaningful adult lives.  She has served at Cardinal Cushing Centers as a Student Service Coordinator and the Director of Quality Assurance.  Within ACE Katy collaborates with the Special Education teacher and Speech and Language Pathologist to provide comprehensive services in the areas of transition, social pragmatics and self-advocacy.  Katy has an undergraduate degree in Fine Art from Flagler College in St. Augustine Florida and a MS in Counseling and Psychological Services from Salem State University. In addition to her work at Cushing Katy has presented at the Annual maaps Conference and the American Psychological Association’s Annual Conference. She has taught undergraduate psychology classes at Quincy College. As a Hanover resident, she provides therapeutic services to local families and adolescents at her private counseling practice, focusing on families navigating the Special Education System.


DonnaDonna Hillary, M.Ed

Director IEP Services

Donna has worked in the field of special education for over 23 years. She has a MS in Education from Molloy College and a BA in Speech Pathology and Audiology Queens College in Flushing NY. Donna was a Teacher of Speech and Hearing Handicap in New York Public Schools. She relocated to Massachusetts after she married and joined the Cardinal Cushing family as a teacher in the Pathfinder classroom from 2003-2005. She went on to teach a self-contained Severe ID class. (3rd -5th grade) at Leadmine Elementary in Raleigh, N.C.

After taking some time off to raise her family, Donna returned to Cardinal Cushing Centers in the fall of 2016 as a Student Program Coordinator. In her current position as Director of IEP Services, she is responsible for assuring all necessary compliance regulations are being met, serving as the direct liason between Cardinal Cushing and funding districts and supervising the IEP process.

During her time off, Donna enjoys spending time with her husband (Marty), 3 children (Jack, Leo and Maeve) and 2 crazy dogs (Winchester and Gertrude).



Tom Jennings

Facilities Director

Tom joined Cardinal Cushing Centers in 1998 but started his career in trades back in 1985. He is a licensed Plumber and Gas Fitter in the state of Massachusetts. He loves the outdoors and spends his free time camping, being in or on the water, and hiking in the mountains.


LaurieLaurie Maranian

Director of Development

Prior to starting her career in development as the Advancement Coordinator for the Cushing Centers in 2010, Laurie helped to found and subsequently coordinate social and recreation programming for Teens and Young Adults with Down syndrome, sponsored by the MA Down Syndrome Congress. Laurie, who currently resides in Hyde Park, graduated from Harvard College with a BA in Sociology. Laurie is on the Board of Women in Development of Greater Boston. She is a health and fitness enthusiast. A certified running coach through the Road Runners Club of America (RRCA), Laurie coaches the Cardinal Cushing Centers Boston Marathon team as a part of her development and communications duties.



Tom McElman

Director of Recreation & Community Programs/Director of Values Committee

Tom has worked at Cardinal Cushing Centers for more than thirty years, beginning as a Direct Care Worker, Weekend Supervisor before moving into the Recreation Department. He worked as the assistant Recreation Director for several years before becoming the director of Recreation. Tom went to Massasoit Community College obtaining an AS in Law Enforcement before going to Northeastern University with a degree in Recreation and Leisure Education. His main focus while in school was outdoor education and challenge course facilitating.

His duties include providing recreational services for Cardinal Cushing Centers, their Adult Services Program and individuals with intellectual disabilities from the surrounding towns. He coordinates all aspects of Cardinal Cushing Centers Special Olympic programs, responsible for overseeing our Challenge Course and facilitates community programs. He also works in collaboration with the Emilson YMCA running a Special Population program.

He lives in Hanover and is the father of two beautiful young ladies. His family is very involved with Cardinal Cushing Centers, volunteering to help out with many recreation activities. Their family enjoys spending time together camping, skiing and traveling.


Jude Morgan

Jude Morgan

Director of Education-Hanover

Jude Morgan has been in the field of education for 23 years. Fourteen of those years have been with Cardinal Cushing Centers. She is currently the Director of Education at Cardinal Cushing Centers – Hanover. Jude oversees the educational program for students from the ages 10 – 18. Prior to working as the Director of Education, Jude was the Technology teacher (7 years) and a classroom teacher (4 years) at the school. Before working at Cushing, she was an Elementary/Physical Education teacher for 8 years at Abbots Farm Junior School in Rugby, England. Jude has a B.Ed. from Worcester University, England and a M.Ed. from Bridgewater State University. She currently holds her teaching licensure in special education.


apurkis1Amy Purkis, M.Ed, BCBA, LABA

Director of Health and Behavioral Services

Amy Purkis joined Cardinal Cushing Centers in 2012 and currently serves as the Director of Behavioral Services.   Having started her career as a teacher, Amy holds an her undergraduate degree in elementary and special education from Boston University and a Masters in Education from the University of Maine at Orono. Amy has a particular interest in staff development and enjoys designing and presenting trainings for direct support staff.  Her current projects at Cushing include implementation of a program wide PBS model and a restraint reduction initiative.

Prior to Cushing Amy worked at Vinfen where she served as an assistant clinical director, overseeing programmatic and behavioral aspect of residences on the South Shore and Boston, including the emergency placement program. In this role she became a member of the DDS Peer Review Committee, a position she still holds. As a Board Certified Behavior Analyst who received her initial training in at the May Institute, Amy had presented at local and national conferences as well as having an article published in the Journal of Positive Behavioral Supports.



Gina Rosas

Director, Human Resources

Gina has over 15 years of experience working in Human Resources holding positions within the non-profit sector. Gina comes to us with a wealth of experience and knowledge and will be a wonderful addition to our community.  Gina is very excited to join the team at Cardinal Cushing Centers and looks forward to visiting each program to meet our staff, students and adults and to learn more about our programs and services.




Danielle Silverberg, RN

Director of Health Services

Danielle Silverberg has been a Registered Nurse for more than 12 years. Since January 2010 she has held the position of Director of Health Services at Cardinal Cushing Centers. Prior to this she was a staff nurse at Cardinal Cushing Centers, Cape Cod Collaborative and Riverview School. In her current position she oversees the daily operations of the Health Center including 24/7/365 staffing of the Health Center, keeping medical records and doctor’s orders current. Danielle has a BSN from Utica College of Syracuse University.


Ginger Sullivan

Associate Vice-President for Residential Programming

Prior to her role as AVP for Residential Programming, Ginger Sullivan worked for New England Villages where she served as the Director of Residential and Admissions.  Within her current and previous roles, Ginger is responsible for the operational, financial and administrative operations of residential services.  In her 20+ year career she has been involved in overseeing Medical Services, Transition/Turning 22 programs, Community Mental Health care and presently Education.  In addition; her years of work have provided robust experience in relation to Human Resources and employee professional development.  Ginger has dedicated her career to advancing services for individuals with disabilities.

Ginger has a Bachelor’s of Science in Health Education and a Masters of Business Administration.