VNA Health is staffed by an exceptional team of qualified, compassionate individuals who devote their energy and expertise to serving others. Their unique skills and diverse life experiences help them manage everyday challenges while offering care and companionship to patients and families.
Lynda Tanner is the President and CEO of VNA Health, an organization of 250 employees providing hospice, home health and palliative care service programs to more than 12,000 people annually across Santa Barbara County.
After successfully pressing for legislation to increase end-of-life inpatient beds, in 2011 Ms. Tanner oversaw VNA Health’s opening of a new state-of-the-art inpatient hospice facility, Serenity House. She also directed the acquisition of Community Home Health, which increased VNA Health’s delivery of home health services by 35%, and successfully obtained branch status for a satellite location in Santa Ynez. In 2012, Ms. Tanner oversaw a move to a new location in downtown Santa Barbara with more space to house the growing organization. Since 2014, Ms. Tanner has participated in VNA Health’s annual PHorum: Perspectives in Healthcare, providing leadership on key healthcare priorities in Santa Barbara. In late 2017, after five years of diligent work, Ms. Tanner announced that VNA Health had achieved Level 4 of the We Honor Veterans; a program of the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization in collaboration with the Department of Veterans Affairs. VNA Health is the only hospice organization in the Tri-County area (Santa Barbara, Ventura, and San Luis Obispo) to have achieved this level. In 2019, Ms. Tanner led the company’s rebranding efforts and name change to VNA Health.
Ms. Tanner graduated from Idaho State University with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and later earned a Master’s degree in Nursing Administration. She has more than 35 years of experience working in homecare, including working as a consultant and a surveyor for The Joint Commission and as Chief Clinical Executive at Sutter VNA and Hospice.
Ms. Tanner is active in many professional, service, business and community organizations and currently serves on the Board of Directors for California Association for Health Services at Home (CAHSAH), CenCal Health where she is also Vice Chair and Finance Committee Chair, and nationally on VNAA. In 2017, the Pacific Coast Business Times named Ms. Tanner the “Grand Champion of Healthcare.” The publication also distinguished VNA Health as one of the Best Places to Work for three consecutive years; and the Santa Barbara News Press awarded VNA Health the “Reader’s Choice Award for Senior At Home Services.” In her free time, she enjoys horseback riding, quilting, and spending time with family.
Karen Wallace manages all fiduciary concerns of the organization. She brings over 20 years of financial leadership excellence, specializing in healthcare and not-for-profits. Her philanthropic experience includes work with the Peace Corps, USAID and Development Bank of Western Samoa. Wallace graduated from California State University at Chico with a Bachelor of Sciences in Business Administration, Accounting/Finance and received a Master of Business Administration, Finance from California Lutheran University. Her professional affiliations include Healthcare Financial Management Association and Institute of Managerial Accountants.
Dusty Keegan is responsible for designing and implementing educational programs based on discipline, state licensing requirements, and community need. She has more than 15 years of clinical experience with in-patient, outpatient, and Home Health physical therapy. Keegan has a history with VNA Health, before coming Director, she held the positions of full-time physical therapist and Clinical Rehab Manager in Home Health. Prior to coming to VNA Health, she worked as a Therapy Supervisor at Mad River Community Hospital, Home Health. Keegan received her Bachelor of Science in Sports Medicine at Pepperdine University. She then attended Simmons College for her Doctorate of Physical Therapy. Research in Physical Therapy includes doctoral research project regarding lumbar stabilization and co-authored research article Backpack Intelligence which was published in WORK.
Andrea Garzón is responsible for overseeing all facets of Human Resources management of VNA Health. As a licensed attorney specializing in corporate and employment law, she has over 10 years of experience in employee relations and human resources. She graduated from California State University Northridge with a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology, Criminology and Corrections and received a Juris Doctor from Ventura College of Law. Her professional affiliations include the Santa Barbara and Ventura County Bar Associations, Association of Corporate Counsel, and Society for Human Resources Management.
Rick Keith began his fundraising career thirty six years ago at his alma mater – Hardin-Simmons University in Abilene, Texas. He has spent the majority of his career in higher education and healthcare development, and served at the highest levels of his profession to help individuals and organizations fulfill their philanthropic goals and objectives. He currently serves as the VNA Health Executive Director of the Foundation. Keith and his wife enjoy travel, spending time with their children, and being outdoors. He joined the VNA Health Board of Directors in July 2012.
Mara Sorkin is responsible for directing VNA Health’s regulatory compliance and integrity program in accordance with best practices to prevent illegal, unethical, or improper conduct. Additionally, Sorkin serves as VNA Health’s Safety Officer, HIPAA Privacy Officer, and supervises Medical Records and Licensing. Prior to joining VNA Health in 2014, Sorkin worked at CBS Interactive, NYC & Company, Whitman College, and the Girl Scouts. Sorkin received her Bachelor of Arts degree from Yale University and is currently pursuing a Masters in Business Administration at University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth.
Sena Woodall is the head of the overall direction for hospice services and establishes, implements, and evaluates goals and objectives for hospice services that meet and promote the standards of quality and contribute to the total organization and philosophy. She spent nearly ten years in the business world before making the move into clinical. She spent over eight years in clinical; with five years in nursing. Woodall received her Bachelor of Arts in Visual Communication and a Minor in Art History from the University of Arizona. In 2016, she received her Masters of Science in Nursing with an emphasis in Leadership in Care Systems and a Practicum in Nursing Leadership. Before joining VNA Health, Woodall was a Hospice Nurse Educator at the Hospice of Piedmont.
As Director of Home Health, Mary Beth Gomez establishes, implements and evaluates goals and objectives for home health services that meet and promote the standards of quality and contribute to the total organization and philosophy. She brings over 25 years of experience as a nurse and clinical manager with a track record of managing personnel, finances, facility operations and admissions while providing the highest quality of care. Gomez has a long history with VNA Health, most recently, she served as a Clinical Manager for the Home Health Department. Before that, she served as a Case Manager, Patient Care Supervisor, and Director of Patient Care Services. Since 2013, she has been an instructor for Personal Care Attendants at Santa Barbara City College. Gomez received her degree from Allan Hancock College and is currently pursuing a Masters in Nursing.
Jo Mason provides leadership for the overall operations, quality management and strategic plan implementation for VNA Health’s Home Health and Hospice at Home Services for the Santa Ynez Valley Branch. The Valley Branch serves the communities of Santa Ynez, Solvang, Buellton, Lompoc, and Santa Maria. She brings more than 30 years of experience in health care policy and cost containment implementation, operations, quality improvement, and compliance. Prior to joining VNA Health’s leadership team, she served as Director of Patient Services at Help Unlimited Home Health. Prior to that, she served as a Compliance Specialist for Accent Care. Inc. Mason has held leadership state government positions in Washington and Ohio. She received the Governor’s award for her contribution to the people of Washington State. She received her Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Massachusetts and her Master’s in Public Administration from The Evergreen State College.
Marcelle Coale is responsible for ensuring that patient care provided at Serenity House, VNA Health’s inpatient hospice facility, is coordinated and managed according to Hospice standards of Practice in a facility environment, compliance with regulations and Best Practices. Coale assures quality patient care and provides operational and staff supervision. She is a dedicated and skilled nursing professional with a versatile nursing career developed though experience as an outpatient infusion oncology nurse, SNF charge nurse, MDS coordinator for SNF, Home Health nurse Case Manager/field nurse and QA coordinator. Most recently worked as a RN administrator for Cottage Health System RCFE at Villa Riviera. Coale received her Bachelors of Science in Psychology at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, and attended Santa Barbara City College for her Associate Degree in Nursing.
Matthew Brown provides overall vision and leadership for the development and implementation of the organization-wide technology driven information systems program in support of business and clinical operations consistent with the direction provided by VNA Health. Brown is responsible for developing, planning, budgeting, coordinating, and managing all information systems and practices in accordance with present and future needs of VNA Health. He received his Bachelor of Business Administration in Information Science from the Pacific Lutheran University, and later obtaining his Masters of Business Administration at the University of Massachusetts. He has since then directed and managed Information Technology and Operations for several different organizations gaining extensive experience architecting computing solutions, managing IT operations, and employing value-added technology.
Rebecca Benard is responsible for maintaining and growing successful relationships with healthcare partners that result in improved population health for older adults through patient referrals, provision of home care services, and education. As well, she will develop and implement strategic initiatives to strengthen the agency’s core businesses and expand its reach and effectiveness. For the past four years, she was a key member of VNA Health’s Foundation team and helped raise significant funds and built trusted relationships in our community that advanced VNA Health’s reach and reputation. She worked as a development professional creating and executing fundraising strategies that have significantly increased levels of support for nonprofit organizations, specifically in the areas of healthcare, social services, and the environment. For 13 years as a small business owner, Benard managed professional associations and was responsible for transitioning these organizations from grassroots affiliations to nationally recognized membership chapters. In 12 years in the corporate aerospace industry, she worked as a financial analyst and strategic planner, evaluating technologies to develop and spin off into incubator businesses. Benard earned her MBA from Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles.
Easter Moorman provides leadership for VNA Health’s marketing and public relations efforts. She has more than 20 years of experience in strategic communications and marketing management. Prior to joining VNA Health, she served as Spokesperson and Marketing and Public Relations Manager for Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History for more than 10 years. She was Marketing Manager at Sansum-Santa Barbara Medical Foundation Clinic (now known as Sansum Clinic) where she was integral in managing the communications during the merger of the two clinics; and she was an Account Executive for DAVIES overseeing clients in the educational, financial, cultural, and healthcare industries. Moorman also previously served as PTO Vice President of Communications at Washington Elementary School and was the Parent Board Chair of the Santa Barbara High School Cheer Team. She graduated from Westmont College with degrees in Biology and Business & Economics, and she currently lives in Santa Barbara with her husband and two children.