The APS TARC team is available to assist state APS programs with a variety of technical assistance needs. Our team reflects an array of experience in working with APS programs, other social service programs, and beyond.
If you are a state APS program in need of technical assistance, please contact us.
Dorinda Adams served within the Maryland Department of Human Services for 32 years prior to joining the APS TARC team. She retired from the Department as the Director of the Office of Adult Services where she had administrative responsibility for the state’s Adult Protective Services (APS) Program and the programs that supported APS. Additional duties required her to provide Executive Staff Support to the Maryland Commission on Caregiving. Her time with the Department provided many opportunities to partner with other government agencies as well as private agencies, legislators, advocacy groups and individuals. One of her most passionate roles was as a Field Instructor to MSW Interns in partnership with the University of Maryland School of Social Work. This role inspired her to not only mentor the Intern assigned to the Office of Adult Services but it provided her with the opportunity to continually stay current within Social Work practice. She valued the learning exchange that would occur with all of the students that she worked with for almost a decade.
Krista Brown joined the APS TARC in August 2021 as a Training Specialist and oversees the design and delivery of training and related support to state APS programs and federal grant recipients. She has 20 years’ experience working in the aging and adult services field in both direct service and training. Most recently, Krista was the APS Leaders Institute Program Coordinator with the APSWI, Academy for Professional Excellence, where she oversaw the implementation of all facets of the ACL funded California APS Leaders Institute. In this role, she also worked with county, state, and national stakeholders and subject matter experts to begin development of APS Supervisor Core Competency curricula. Previously, Krista worked with the National Adult Protective Services Association on deliverables related to national grants and contracts, member professional development activities, and organizational development. She is also the former Director of Education at the American Society on Aging.
Jason Cannizzo has more than 20 years of experience in the IT industry with 13+ related to the Health and Human Services sector. He is a proven leader in managing the design and implementation of large and intricate information management systems. Jason is also familiar with regulatory requirements for designing, and deploying systems in a state government environment and is able to conform with shifting priorities, demands, and timelines through analytical and problem-solving capabilities. Adept at managing complex issues and reaching practical solutions in a cost effective and timely manner, he has strong familiarity with project management disciplines and tools, especially as they relate to the software development lifecycle. Jason is a Certified Project Management Professional (PMP), Professional in Business Analysis (PBA), and Scrum Master (CSM).
Andrew Capehart is a Senior Business Analyst/Subject Matter Expert at the APS TARC. He currently serves as the lead for technical assistance at the APS TARC. Andrew has over 20 years of experience in the vulnerable adult abuse field at the local, state and national levels. He has held investigatory, supervisory and administrative positions in Columbus, Ohio and Washington, DC and was a staff member at the National Center on Elder Abuse and the National Adult Protective Services Association, where he served as Assistant Director for over six years. He has had numerous appointments to aging related boards and commissions and has chaired both state and national elder abuse conferences. Andrew has worked and consulted with a wide variety of adult protective services programs across the United States.
Beth Engelking has extensive experience serving vulnerable adults and children. She has over 25 years of state government experience from direct casework to agency strategic planning. She served as the Assistant Commissioner for Adult Protective Services in Texas for seven years. In this capacity she was responsible for setting the vision and goals for the program. This included routine interaction with state legislators to set statutory guidelines and program improvements. Her passion is working to improve systems to better serve vulnerable adults.
André Feijóo, MPA, CSPO, is a Senior Research Associate/Subject Matter Expert at the APS TARC and a member of the team since the Center’s inception. Mr. Feijóo is the NAMRS liaison of 12 states including the 5 major U.S. territories and provides technical assistance, training, and guidance of their NAMRS data submission. Mr. Feijóo brings more than thirteen years of progressively responsible experience with programs and services for the protection of vulnerable populations working within the federal and community-based organization sectors.
Nicole B. Fettig, PhD is a Research Manager, Subject Matter Expert with the APS TARC. She is an applied developmental psychologist with more than 10 years of experience studying child development, child and adolescent mental health, and the experience of maltreatment across the lifespan. Specifically, her work applies a broad range of rigorous research and evaluation methodologies to better understand the incidence and prevalence of different types of maltreatment across the lifespan; risk factors associated with maltreatment; perpetrator characteristics; outcomes related to maltreatment; and prevention and interventions for individuals and their families. Dr. Fettig is also an experienced science communicator, serving as an adjunct faculty at two Universities in the DC metropolitan area, publishing in peer reviewed journals, and disseminating research findings to a wide variety of audiences including professional conference presentations and reports to Congress. Dr. Fettig’s recent research for the APS TARC has led ACL’s Predicting Risk of Adult Maltreatment project aimed to leverage artificial intelligence, machine learning, and other tools to investigate patterns of risk and protective factors across multiple data sources to identify associations with reported incidence of adult maltreatment.
Imogen Fua is a Senior Research Manager with the APS TARC with over 18 years of experience working in the health field. Currently, she holds management roles in evaluation studies looking at the impact of COVID-19 and opioids on clients and services under adult protective services. She is also the lead in several technical assistance tasks under the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program administered under HIV/AIDS Bureau (HAB) at the Health and Human Resources and Services Administration (HRSA). She has had various leadership roles under several HIV/AIDS contracts in evaluating practices of Ryan White recipients on delivering HIV/AIDS services. She has developed data collection instruments via online surveys and portals, telephone interviews and focus groups and site visits. Ms. Fua is experienced in program management, providing technical assistance, designing evaluation studies, developing data collection instruments, conducting interviews and focus groups, data analysis and preparing reports on the findings of evaluations. She holds a masters in public health from the George Washington University.
Jennifer Kirchen is a Senior Research Associate/Subject Matter Expert at the APS TARC. As a member of the APS TARC team, she provides technical assistance support to state APS programs and federal grant recipients. Jennifer is an knowledgeable program director with over 20 years of APS experience at the county, state and national levels. She began her career as an APS investigator which gives her tremendous insight into the needs of APS field investigators. She has a unique perspective having directed APS programs in both Minnesota and Arizona. Her national experience comes by way of the National Adult Protective Services Association (NAPSA) both as a member and previous Western Regional Representative.
Leslie McGee is Senior Research Associate/Subject Matter Expert with the APS TARC. She is a member of the APS TARC team, providing support and technical assistance to state APS programs and federal grant recipients. Leslie has more than 32 years of service in the protective services field, working in both child protective services (CPS) and APS. Her background includes direct service casework and supervision at the county level, as well as program administration at the state level. Leslie retired from the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services after serving for almost 20 years as the state program administrator for child and adult protective services. In that capacity, Leslie was responsible for the development and advancement of practice, policy and programming for both the CPS and APS systems.
Paul Needham retired from the Oklahoma Department of Human Services in 2015, after 36 years of service, 35 of those in APS. From 2000 to 2015 he was the Lead Trainer and Curriculum Developer for the OKDHS APS Academies. Paul is a 1975 graduate from Oklahoma Baptist University and obtained his MBA in 1990. Mr. Needham is the: Chairman of the Oklahoma State Council on Aging and Adult Protective Services; Chairperson for the (NAPSA) Education Committee and is on NAPSA’s Board of Directors. Paul serves on the steering committee for the National Link Coalition and served eight years on the (NSDTA) Executive Committee. In addition, Paul is a FLETC certified Trainer for “Domestic Violence”. In 2015, Paul helped draft the federal guidelines for State APS programs for (ACL/AOA). Prior to and after his retirement Paul has conducted training in 28 states and 38 cities and he continues to train, consult, & speak nationally for numerous state and local APS programs and conferences.
Barbara Pastirik brings experience as a subject matter expert in the field of aging from a variety of perspectives. She has thirty-two years of experience in Adult Protective Services in Georgia in the capacity of investigator, supervisor, trainer, curriculum/policy writer and consultant. Barbara served as the Administrator of Adult Protective Services for Georgia from 2009 to 2019. She has a master's degree in Gerontology. Barbara has served on the Board of the National Adult Protective Services Association (NAPSA), several advisory committees including chair of the Southeast states advisory board to NAPSA, the Georgia Aging and Disability Resource Connection, member of the independent dispute resolution review team for Healthcare Facilities in Georgia and has served with local advocacy organizations in both mental health and long-term care. Barbara has experience with relocations of vulnerable adults in crisis including the emergency closing of facilities, evacuations, and repatriations.
Theresa Peña, LMSW, recently retired from Texas Adult Protective Services where she spent over 26 years serving at multiple levels, starting her career as a caseworker and finishing as the performance manager. Ms. Peña is a subject matter expert on adult protective services program services, policies, planning, data collection, performance evaluation, and quality assurance activities. She received her master's degree in social work from Our Lady of the Lake University.
Kathryn Sapp is retired from Missouri Department of Health & Senior Services, Division of Senior & Disability Services, where she served as the Bureau Chief of APS Policy and Staff Development. She previously served on a national level as Missouri’s APS Administrator, Co-chaired NAPSA’s Central Region, and served on the NAPSA Board of Directors as Chair of the Regional Representatives. Ms. Sapp holds a Bachelors and Master's degree in Social Work. She has over 27 years of experience including previous employment history as a Child Abuse/Neglect Investigator, Child Abuse/Neglect Policy Manager, Quality Assurance Manager and Field Operations Manager for Bureau of Home & Community Services, as well as teaching Disability Rights and Advocacy at the University of Missouri – Columbia: School of Social Work.
Jennifer Spoeri has 18 years of Adult Protective Services (APS) experience in Philadelphia, most recently as the Director of APS. In Philadelphia she managed a staff of 70 and an annual operating budget of over $5 million. Jennifer’s program in Philadelphia was awarded one of the first VOCA grants designated for APS. Jennifer holds degrees from the University of Kentucky (BA in Psychology) and the Notre Dame of Maryland University (MA in Gerontology with a concentration in Health Care Administration.)
Karl Urban is a Senior Research Manager with the APS TARC, and is the Team Lead for the National Adult Maltreatment Reporting System, and leads or supports the Adult Protective Services Technical Assistance Resource Center technical assistance and evaluation projects. Before joining WRMA, Mr. Urban had a 25-year career in Texas state government, culminating in serving as a Director and Assistant Commissioner in the Adult Protective Services program. Prior to APS, Mr. Urban worked on aging and disability issues, including serving as Manager of Policy Analysis and Support at the Texas Department of Aging and Disability Services, Deputy Director at the Texas Department on Aging and as a member of the Texas Council on Developmental Disabilities, Statewide Health Coordinating Council, and Governor's Advisory Council on Physical Fitness. He has BA degree in Government from Abilene Christian University and a MA in Public Affairs from the LBJ School at The University of Texas at Austin.
Nancy Warren is a 45-year veteran of public social services, the majority of which was devoted to serving older adults and adults with disabilities in New York and North Carolina (NC). Before retiring from official public social service, she served as NC’s APS Program Administrator with the NC Division of Aging and Adult Services. In retirement Nancy spends her time advocating for improvements to NC’s APS program and adult guardianship through the NC Partnership to Address Adult Abuse (NCP3A) and Rethinking Guardianship Statewide Stakeholders. She served as Project Director with the NC Conference of District Attorneys’ Elder Abuse and Exploitation Resource Manual being developed for statewide use by local prosecutors. She is an active member of the Education and Public Policy Committees of NAPSA and represents NCP3A on the National Network of State Elder Justice Coalitions.