Staff

Valerie Melroy

Valerie Melroy

The Co-founder (1997) and Chief Executive Officer of Voice and Vision, Inc. Valerie has a history of serving people who have labels of mental illness, addiction and/or disability since 1975. As a social entrepreneur, Valerie has developed and implemented unique and creative tools and programs that address the needs of youth, adults and families. Her love of people and desire to see justice and freedom takes her to various places in the USA and to many countries. A Bachelor of Ministry Degree and a Master of Human Service Degree from Lincoln University helped to prepare her to serve others and persevere through the triumphs and trials of operating a non-profit organization. Valerie enjoys gardening, traveling, and especially loves to spend time with her family including playing with her 15 grandchildren.


Karen Plumber

Karen Plummer

Associate Director/IM4Q Coordinator. Karen has worked at Voice and Vision since 2003. She’s worked in all departments as well as developed and implemented the Family and Youth Connection initiatives, which were both focused on peer support and education. She created the Family Advisory Committee to engage the voice of families and young adults so that the child serving systems would better understand their needs and wants. Her latest adventure is the development of a comprehensive Resource Guide for families, which was published in June 2016. Karen was educated in England where her focus was Business. She lived overseas and traveled extensively. Currently, she lives with her husband and has three children. Her desire is to see that all people are accepted as people first and that their voice be the driving force in the development of their futures and the supports necessary to live a fulfilling life. She wants to see communities embrace this need and be part of the solution in creating support and acceptance.


Susan Benzie

Susan Benzie

Director of Data, Research and Design. Susan led the Consumer and Family Satisfaction Team (CFST) in Bucks County since 2002, while using the Appreciative Inquiry philosophy of Quality Management. Currently, as Director of Data Research and Design, she provides support and mentoring to the Coordinators of Bucks, Chester, and Delaware County C/MFSTs.  She is also responsible for analysis and trending of data gathered across all three Counties. Sue is the mother of five children and has lived in many areas of the country and overseas. As a licensed Social Worker, Sue brings both professional and personal experience with the behavioral health system to Voice and Vision. Her vision is to see that services and supports are truly “strengths-based” and “consumer and family driven”.


Michael Harper

Michael Harper, Esquire

Director of Advocacy. Michael supports family and systems advocacy initiatives that are dedicated to improving systems of care so families are empowered to overcome challenges and build better lives.   He oversees the Family Advocacy Clinic, a program where college and graduate student interns are trained to provide advocacy support to individuals and families.  He also supports regional initiatives to ensure that the “Family Voice” is heard by policy makers and family serving systems.  Michael has been practicing law since 1990, primarily around issues related to recovery and special needs.  He feels privileged to have worked with many families and professionals over the years to address difficult cross-system issues related to behavioral health, education and criminal justice.  Michael is the father of five beautiful children and enjoys spending time with family, reading, the outdoors, traveling and prayer/meditation.


Akua Ajarko

Akua Ajarko

Delaware County Member/Family Satisfaction Team (M/FST) Coordinator. Akua began working at Voice and Vision in March 2018 implementing the new MFST Program and supervising a team of Field Staff Specialists. For over fifteen years Akua Ajarko has made a personal commitment to improving the lives of marginalized individuals. Akua possesses a thorough understanding of diverse client populations, including those facing socioeconomic hardship, individuals with a history of incarceration, LGBTQ-identified persons, HIV positive individuals, substance users, and other high-risk groups.

Akua has held diverse positions within the nonprofit sector as an Employment Specialist, Housing Coordinator, Community Integration Coordinator, HIV/Prison Linkages Coordinator, Team Leader and Training Director. Akua has worked directly with participants to get housing, health care, advocacy support, educational programs and linking HIV positive incarcerated individuals with the necessary outside services and supportive services upon release. Akua is a self-proclaimed “grower of things” has two children, enjoys creating meals and travel.


Paige M. Neuman

Paige M. Neuman

Bucks County Consumer/Family Satisfaction Team (C/FST) Coordinator. Paige comes to Voice and Vision from her former position as Pantry Coordinator and Operations Director (2011 – 2018) of the Pennridge FISH Organization in Perkasie, PA, where she served low-income families who receive food, clothing, financial assistance, and resources. While her greatest joy in her former role at FISH was personal one-on-one advocacy and resourcing for vulnerable FISH clients who presented with a wide range of physical, behavioral, housing and financial needs, her role as CFST Coordinator will involve advocating for improvements in the Behavioral Health systems utilized by many of those same individuals and families. Paige is currently working toward finishing her Bachelor’s degree in Social Work. She holds an Excellence in Non-Profit Management certificate from La Salle’s Non-Profit Center. Paige was the former secretary for the Hunger and Nutrition Coalition of Bucks County and Co-Chair of HUBBUB (Helping Upper Bucks Be Universally Better), a social service networking group in Upper Bucks County meeting monthly at Penn Foundation. On a personal note, Paige spent 21 years home-educating her five children. She enjoys playing with her grandson and kayaking, traveling, photography, writing, reading and Bible study. Her primary passion is to continue to work toward giving all vulnerable populations, especially those facing behavioral health challenges, a chance at having their voices heard and validated in order to affect real change in the services they receive throughout Bucks County.


Marcia Griffy

Chester County Consumer/Family Satisfaction Team (C/FST) Coordinator. Marcia has a strong background in mental health/behavioral health services and has served the mental health community for over 6 years as a TSS, Family-Based Therapist, Mobile Therapist and Outpatient Therapist. Marcia also holds a Master’s degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling Psychology with School Counseling Certification. She is a strong believer in helping individuals find their voice in the community and help build stronger relationships. Marcia is the proud mother of two adult children. Her daughter is studying social work and criminal justice in college. Marcia’s son struggles with a severe mental illness, which prompted her to pursue her education and career in the mental health field.  Her compassion for her children gives her the desire to advocate for those who may not be able to advocate for themselves in the Chester County and surrounding areas. Additionally, Marcia enjoys serving the Lord and is the Superintendent of the Sunday School Ministry at her Church in Philadelphia Pa. She serves on several other ministries as well.


Kate Boyce

Kate Boyce

College Plus Coordinator. As Coordinator, Kate is tasked with managing all aspects of the College Plus Program in addition to offering support, guidance, and hope to the College Plus students. Kate thrives on helping others overcome any obstacle in order to achieve their dreams. Kate brings with her 6 years’ experience in education and holds a master’s degree in the Science of Instruction. She also spent a year working with at-risk students who had been displaced from their home school. There, she mentored, encouraged, and supported the students to help them succeed in completing their academic goals. Kate loves spending time with her children, hiking, and exploring or watching them play in their various sporting events.


Olga Antonyuk

Olga Antonyuk

Program Director of Compeer of Suburban Philadelphia. Prior to serving as the Program Director for over a decade, Olga served on the program’s Advisory Board. She has been in a Compeer match herself for nine years. Olga joined Voice and Vision in August of 2014 when Voice and Vision began providing oversight for Compeer of Suburban Philadelphia. As the Program Director, Olga interviews and trains all volunteers and matches each of them with an individual referred to the Compeer Program in one-on-one, co-equal friendships; she speaks to groups throughout Delaware County to recruit additional volunteers who can share their friendship; and she also plans several outings and events throughout the year for all of the Compeer Friends. Olga believes strongly in the program and has a passion for people recovering from mental illness. Olga holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Management and Marketing from Pennsylvania State University. She enjoys cooking and spending time with her two children.


Benjamin Nelson

Benjamin Nelson

Men’s Outreach and Education Leader. Benjamin was born and raised in the Cobbs Creek section of southwest Philadelphia. He was raised by his grandparents with two older siblings. After graduation he enlisted in the U.S. Navy and served as a Hospital Corpsman (medic) attached to a Marine Corps combat unit during the on-going middle east conflict.  He worked in insurance for several years as a successful retail sales manager.  Benjamin also worked several years in a men’s shelter and has various experiences with mental health and addictions recovery and support.   

Benjamin, who goes by Ben, has endured some adversities in his life including a diagnosis of cancer. However, he was able to overcome as he strived to find God’s purpose for his life.  Following a new path, Ben received his Associates degree in Biblical science at Lancaster Bible College while he was battling cancer.  He obtained a bachelor’s degree in human services in 2019 and is on track for graduating with a master’s degree in counseling in 2021.  Ben is the Assistant Pastor and Outreach Coordinator of Philadelphia Baptist Church providing outreach and a food cupboard assisting 150-200 families weekly in West Philly with food and clothing.  Ben was blessed with his wife Marcia, who works by his side in the ministry.  Together they work with the outreach team of the church with the goal to help alleviate the suffering of others as they serve with the love of Christ.


Susan Ireland

Susan Ireland

Regional InReach (RIR) Team Leader. Susan initially joined Voice and Vision on the Consumer Satisfaction Team in 2007. While working at Voice and Vision, she is proud to say she now drives on her own and has obtained her Certified Peer Specialist (CPS) Certification training. As a Regional InReach (RIR) Team Peer Mentor since 2010, she has been co-leading peer support groups and education at Norristown State Hospital (NSH). Given Susan had been a patient at NSH for 11 years, she provides a unique perspective while sharing her story of hope. Susan is a Certified Peer Specialist and uses what she learned in that training to help support others with their recovery. After living in a supported living program with eight other individuals for about 20 years, Susan reached her goal to move out on her own in 2019. She enjoys life, helping people, spending time with her family and friends, playing games and playing the piano. She also is quite an artist. Susan says Voice and Vision has changed her life, and she believes in the work we do.


Sheri Shifman

Sheri Shifman

Office Manager and Human Resource Coordinator. Sheri joined Voice and Vision, Inc. in January 2012. She oversees the various day-to-day office operations and is involved in all aspects of Human Resources for all four offices, including hiring, payroll administration, employee policy training, and maintaining employee and business files. She also provides computer training/end-user assistance and is the IT liaison. She brings strong, valued gifts of administration and organization. Sheri has a Master’s degree in Biopsychology and comes from a background working in clinical research. Sheri is married and a mother of two children and enjoys cooking, reading, and participating in bible study.


Other People Supporting Voice and Vision Programs


Jonathan Bittner

Jonathan Bittner

Program Director, CompeerCORPS. Jonathan, who served on the Voice and Vision, Inc. board from 2018 to 2019, is now providing his experience as a veteran to support CompeerCORPS by connecting with other veterans. Jonathan is currently working on his Masters of Science in Clinical and Counseling Psychology, with a Trauma Concentration, from Chestnut Hill College and is looking forward to working with those who struggle with Mental Health. Jonathan was Medically Retired from the United States Army in 2013 after serving close to nine years and has been actively involved with helping veterans since then. Since getting out of the Army, Jonathan has also been actively involved in the PA Veteran of Foreign Wars organization where he has served in several leadership positions in both local and state levels. Previously he was an Executive Director for a Veterans non-profit before leaving to work with an organization that focuses more on Crisis Intervention for Veterans. Jonathan volunteers for Operation Ward 57 as the back up to their Crisis Hotline and has the opportunity to talk to Veterans and their families during some dark moments in their lives. Jonathan currently resides with his wife Lauren in Harleysville.


Dr. Kia Everett

Kia F. Everett

Outreach and Education Leader. Kia F. Everett is a native Philadelphian. Always excelling academically, Dr. Everett graduated from Abraham Lincoln High School in 1990. She then went on to study Criminal Justice at West Chester University; receiving her bachelor’s degree in 1995. Later she pursued a Master of Human Services degree Lincoln University graduating in 1998. Dr. Everett then received another master’s degree in Human Services with a concentration in Public Service Leadership at Capella University. With 20+ years of counseling and therapy experience, Dr. Everett holds a Certificate in Family Life Counseling and has completed a Ph.D. in Christian Counseling at Grace Bible College and Seminary.  She is also a certified Functional Behavior Analysis Consultant, and a licensed Behavior Specialist.  Dr. Everett opened the first MH Walk-in Urgent Care Clinic in the region and in addition is a Licensed Minister. She works with Voice and Vision’s Outreach and Education Program assisting religious leaders and communities through behavioral health training and education. 


Pastor Kevin Hunt

Outreach and Education Regional Leader. Rev. Kevin McCoy Hunt felt the call to preach the gospel at age 11.  Pursuing that calling led to June 15, 1980, when he preached his trial sermon and was ordained as a minister. He became the founding pastor of the Trinity United Bible Church of Coatesville, PA in 1987 and has served in that capacity for over 30 years. He holds a Geneva University B.A. degree from the Center of Urban Studies, of Philadelphia. He is also the Board President of Life Transforming Ministries, Inc., which offers people in Coatesville and vicinities a Harcum College partnership site, prison outreach, free tax preparation, and counseling services through The Peacemaker Center.  Pastor Hunt has written two books, in which the last one, “44 Degrees: Unveiling the Mystery and Magnitude of the Life of Joseph” shares truth about the season of time in which we are now living; with signs and wonders to affirm that truth. He has been counseling and leading religious services at the Chester County Prison for over 30 years.  Rev. Hunt was also a counselor for troubled youth and a certified drug and alcohol counselor. He has been blessed with 40 years of marriage to the former Lynette Marie Hyden, and they have 5 children, and presently 7 grandchildren. 

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