West Central Division
Marcie is the proud mother of four children. She is a veteran of the U.S. Army and has been working in the mental health field for eleven years. Marcie has worked as an ID Support Coordinator for Rockbridge Area Community Services in the past. She has also worked at two residential facilities specializing in treatment for those with mental disabilities.
Marcie enjoys being an advocate for those in need, as well as making sure everyone has the best care available. She believes in supporting the families too, as it can sometimes be difficult to understand all outlets and help that can be received.
Marcie enjoys teaching children's church at her local church. She also enjoys volunteering her time to community programs that help families who are less fortunate.
Sandi has been involved in helping since she began volunteering with Big Brothers/Big Sisters at age 13. She worked summers for the ARC and, as an adult, owned and operated a non-conventional preschool for special needs kids in the neighborhood. She volunteered for several years in the hearing impaired classroom to keep up her skills while working one on one with students who needed extra support.
Sandi is the mother of two grown children and has been married 29 years. In her spare time she enjoys gardening, hiking, crafts and traveling. Her education includes an associate’s degree in education, various credits at JMU, and the completion of an autism spectrum disorders program.
Maria has worked in the mental health field since 2004. She has worked in different positions in those years, but has maintained an affinity for helping those who cannot help themselves. She has used her inquisitive and compassionate nature to educate individuals on their rights and available services, thus enabling people to live the best life possible. She has experience in supported employment, group therapy, recreational therapy, as well as extensive experience dealing with mentally ill children in crisis. She is very excited to coordinate with Moms In Motion to ensure that individuals receive the best service facilitation available. She is self-motivated to empower those with disabilities to thrive.
Joleen was born in Washington, D.C., but has lived in Virginia since 2004. She is the mother of an exceptional daughter, Juliana. Juliana, a child abuse survivor, has impacted Joleen’s calling to serve children.
Joleen is a graduate of Liberty University in Lynchburg, VA. She currently serves on the board of directors for CASA of Central Virginia, an organization that advocates for abused and neglected children within the court system. Joleen’s daughter, Juliana, receives services through a Medicaid Waiver, making Joleen personally familiar with the trials families face when navigating care plans.Joleen looks forward to getting to know many new faces while partnering with Moms In Motion to improve the lives of children in the Central Virginia community.
Danielle lives in Stuarts Draft with her husband and seven children. She was introduced to the special needs community with the adoption of her middle daughter. Having a child with special needs has presented so many new daily challenges and struggles for her family, but the greatest struggle they have had to overcome is learning about all the different programs available to help. Danielle is so thankful for her daughter's doctor who introduced the EDCD program and, from that, Moms In Motion. She has grown very passionate about advocating for not only the children, but also the parents. Danielle understands the whole mix of emotions that come from caring for a special loved one, and now she has a passion to help other families.
In her free time, Danielle enjoys spending time with her family, camping, cooking, canning, and making soap!
Melynda comes to Moms In Motion from several different perspectives. She is the mother of two grown children. When they were younger, she was actively involved in their school and community activities. More recently she was a driver for special education students in Augusta County, ensuring their safety and wellbeing both to and from school. She has also worked as a sales representative for a promotional needs company which offers her a unique insight into the corporate world.
Melynda is so excited to continue helping her community through Moms In Motion by using her combined knowledge of the waiver system and its processes.
Mary has experience working in a community oncology center and has worked there for over ten years. She has had the opportunity to care for some amazing patients and gotten to know them and their families on a personal basis. With this experience, Mary looks forward to being able to help families within her community to ensure they are getting the best resources possible. She thinks it's truly wonderful that she can help families through Moms In Motion.
Toni lives in Harrisonburg, Virginia and received her Bachelor's of Science in Mathematics and Psychology from James Madison University in 2019. She's cared for several children with disabilities and has worked with mentally ill patients at Western State Hospital in Staunton, Virginia.
Toni's greatest passion is making people's lives better. She has seen the way the world treats its most vulnerable, and she's compelled to do her best for everyone. As a member of Moms In Motion, she brings her compassion, dedication, and knowledge to do just that.
Chastity previously worked as a driver for Augusta County for fourteen years transporting children with special needs to and from school. She developed special bonds between the children she transported, as well as with their parents. She was always encouraged when she saw the great progress they made from year to year - and even day to day.
Chastity looks forward to meeting and helping new people through her work with Moms In Motion and couldn't be happier to continue helping her community.
Vanessa has twelve years of experience working with individuals with disabilities. She graduated from the ECPI Tech in Roanoke, VA with a major in Medical.
After college, Vanessa married and now lives in Covington, VA with her husband and three children. She has worked in residential facilities, group homes, the public school system, in the homes of clients, medical facilities, nursing homes, and TeleaMedicine. Vanessa is passionate about working with individuals with special needs and their families, and she is excited to continue to enhance their lives through Moms In Motion.
Lucy is happily married, the proud mother of six children, and grandmother to thirteen grandchildren. She received her Bachelor's of Science degree in Education from Liberty University in 2013, as well as two graduate certificates in Autism and Preschool in 2014. After achieving these accomplishments, Lucy challenged herself to further her education and receive her Master's of Education degree from Strayer University in 2017.
Working in the education field has given Lucy experience working with children with Autism and other disabilities. She is incredibly passionate about individuals with special needs because her daughter was labeled with an intellectual disability when she was very young, yet she is a beautiful young lady. Lucy is looking forward to assisting other families in the community through Moms In Motion.
Jennifer is a graduate of both James Madison University (JMU) and Mary Baldwin College where she received her Bachelor's and Master's in Education and Special Education. She was previously a member of the Marching Royal Dukes at JMU, where she got the chance to march in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, as well as in Dublin, Ireland.
Jennifer has experience working with children and adults with disabilities through several jobs, including a non-profit, care jobs, and teaching. She credits her best friend of twenty years who has a disability as being the reason she got into Special Education. Watching her best friend go through her struggles and come out so strong is one of the reasons Jennifer can keep going.
Nancy "Mandy" Shepherd
Mandy is very excited about joining the Moms In Motion team and the opportunity it will afford her to give back and advocate for others. She comes with real-life experience gained from navigating this difficult, yet rewarding, world from having a son with disabilities. Mandy has leadership experience as her daughter's Girl Scout troop leader for the past 5 years and served as the Chairperson of the local Special Education Advisory Committee for 5 years.
Mandy grew up in Covington, VA and now resides with her husband, Tom, and their 2 children in Fishersville, VA. In her spare time, she enjoys crafting, shopping, traveling, watching reality TV, and spending time with family and friends.
Dana began her journey with several degrees, immediately working with special needs individuals, and found that she has a heart for helping others. She enjoys working with individuals who are unable to achieve in a conventional way. Dana has worked with special needs adults, mental health disabilities, at-risk youth, and child protective services. She has learned so much from the individuals she's worked with in these areas.
Dana decided that she wanted to become a mother, but was told that she could not have children. She held strong to her religion and was comforted, believing that she would eventually have a family. About 8 years later, Dana was pregnant and a single mom. Her daughter was premature and Dana quickly had to start making choices between her work and her child. Shortly after her birth, Dana’s daughter had difficulties with development and hearing concerns. She would have tubes in her ears and a continued difficulty in hearing. Dana then met her husband and moved from WV to VA to continue growing her family.
Dana has been looking for a job in which she could pursue her passions to help others, while being able to care and help her daughter grow. She looks forward to doing so through Moms In Motion.
Heather lives in Waynesboro with her husband and three children. Her oldest daughter was born with agenesis of the corpus callosum which has led to numerous disabilities. Ever since her daughter's diagnosis, Heather has become passionate about children with special needs. She has learned so incredibly much from her daughter through the years. It is because of her that she decided to leave her full-time job to become a stay at home daycare provider, which she has been doing for the past six and a half years.
Heather enjoys spending time with her family, as well as reading, knitting, cooking, and camping.
Brandi is a mother of three young girls. When she first became a mother, Brandi realized that caring and teaching others was her main goal in life. She has always had a passion for helping others. In the past, she has worked with children with disabilities, and is currently studying to be a teacher with a major in special education and American Sign Language.
Brandi has thirteen years of experience working in the medical field as a certified ophthalmologist assistant. The patients whom she has seen ranged from all ages. After she had her third child, Brandi began to stay at home with her and started back at college. She is currently the Competition Cheer coach at her local high school, as well as the Director at Churchville Elementary Schools C.A.R.E. program.
Suzanne moved to Amherst, VA in 2000 after finishing her PhD in cell biology at the University of California at Davis. For her very first job, she worked as a biology professor at Sweet Briar College. She has also worked as a researcher, as well as a diagnostic lab technician.
In the Fall of 2016, Suzanne's mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, and Suzanne decided that the best step for her family was for her to leave her full-time job as a scientist, so that she could be available to care for her mother. Suzanne is dedicated, not only to the well being of her mother, but also to the well being of all elders who might not otherwise have an advocate.
Suzanne's hobbies include horseback riding, cooking, and gardening. She enjoys sharing these activities as best as she can with her mother, as her mother is the one who taught Suzanne to have a great passion for enjoying life to its fullest.