Senior Options Partner Warm Hearth Village Alzheimer’s Advocacy Team meets with U.S. Congressman Griffith on Dementia Issues

On January 31, The Alzheimer’s Advocacy Team and board members from Warm Hearth Village hosted Congressman Morgan Griffith to share experiences and their vision for helping seniors throughout the New River Valley with Alzheimer’s Disease and dementia. Heather Gearhart, Warm Hearth’s V.P of Health & Wellness and Volunteer Ambassador for the Alzheimer Association, thanked the Congressman for his support of the BOLD Act, asked him to get behind The PCHETA Act and to consider the Congressional Task Force for Alzheimer’s research.  The team talked about the growing numbers of seniors affected by this disease and the impact it has both financially and on community resources. They relayed Warm Hearth’s desire to be a leader among providers as these numbers are expected to spike with the aging of the Baby Boom generation.

Michelle Narramore, Administrator for Warm Hearth at Home shared some of the innovative programs on the team’s to do list and they include:

  • The Memory Café – a safe and welcoming environment for seniors learning to deal with Alzheimer’s Disease is held monthly. “Members of the group share experiences and coping mechanisms and offer support to one another, which has proven to be highly effective in helping them maintain normalcy in their day to day lives,” she said.
  • The Purple Table – an effort to create space at local restaurants where staff are trained to create the same welcoming environment and how to work with seniors with dementia.
  • Dementia Friends – involves being a resource for our community by reaching out to educate business owners, volunteers, family, students…anyone about the issues surrounding dementia and how to support those in our community with the disease.
  • Alzheimer’s Association Support Group – “This group is a judgement free space where caregivers can lean on each other for support and gain insight from one another with the hope that they will learn new strategies to help with their loved ones,” said, Marie Swink, Social Worker at KHCC.

The Memory Café and support group are open to the public and we welcome them to join.  Warm Hearth Village is a nonprofit senior living community in Blacksburg that provides a full continuum of living options on our campus and in the home.  Visit to learn more about Warm Hearth Village.

Photo:   Left to right: Row 1 Hing-Har Lo, Elaine Smith, Ferne Moschella, Heather Gearhart. Row 2: Jonathan Tate, Michelle Narramore, Congressman Morgan Griffith, Amy Webb and Ed Lawhorn


As our Director of Health Information Technology, Devyn provides management and support for all health information systems use and performance for the Senior Options national network. Additionally is responsible for the technical, clinical and financial operational procedures of the electronic health record and all ancillary information systems.

Devyn has over 10 years of health information technology and project management experience inclusive of managing and supporting electronic health record systems including implementation planning and maintenance of both physician practice and senior living systems. Devyn has a Master of Science in Healthcare Administration MSHA from Southern New Hampshire University and Bachelor of Science in Health Services Administration from Auburn University. Devyn is a Certified HIPAA Professional (CHP).
Devyn developed a passion for Senior Care while volunteering at a local hospice, skilled nursing facility and Area Agency on Aging during her undergraduate years. She enjoys traveling and outdoor activities and Calligraphy.

Joan is the President of Senior Options, a Home Health and Hospice advisory group, and Westminster-Canterbury at Home, a home health and hospice agency in Virginia Beach. She previously served as Vice President of Operations & Clinical Services for Senior Options. Joan has over 30 years of experience in Home and Community-Based Services (HBCS), Hospitals, and Life Plan Communities.

Joan’s compassion, energy, and focus have been evident throughout her career. She has expertise in implementing new Home Health and Hospice operations as well as supporting existing agencies in operational and financial improvement. In addition, she is an expert in operational audits, consulting, and leadership for Home Health and Hospice. Also, Joan is mission-focused on leadership and creating healthy organizations that bring out the best in people.

Joan has a Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing from The University of Cincinnati and a Master’s Degree in Organizational Development and Positive Change Management from the Weatherhead School of Management, Case Western Reserve University. Joan is Certified in Appreciative Inquiry.

Karen started her medical career in 1984 as a registered nurse working in the intensive care unit and medical surgical. In 1999 she began working in home health, hospice and long term care earning various certificates as a Certified Nurse Executive, CNE; a Certified Wound Care Nurse, CWCN; a Certified Oasis Coder, COS-C; and in 2006 became a Licensed Nursing Home Administrator, LNHA. Before joining Senior Options in 2022, Karen also served as a Nursing Home Administrator for CCRC a skilled nursing facility, a Director of Operations for Home Health and Hospice, a Senior Executive Director for Long-term Care, a Preceptor for the Virginia Board of LTC Administrators and as a Nursing Instructor.

Karen has a bachelor’s degree in Nursing from Excelsior College in Albany NY and a Legal Nurse Consultant Certificate from Kaplan University.

As our Senior Director of Finance and Operations, Melinda is responsible for the finance, accounting, and billing team at Senior Options. And, she works with our current and prospective partners on budgeting, strategic initiatives, reimbursement, cost reports, and pro forma development.

Melinda brings over 25 years of financial management experience in the senior care environment. She has led the overall operations for six healthcare living centers, and two assisted living communities. She also has experience collaborating with multiple healthcare and state associations. Melinda currently serves as the Vice-Chair for the Virginia Society of Certified Public Accountants Board of Directors and is a member of the America Institute of Certified Public Accountants.

Melinda enjoys reading, traveling, walking, attending plays, and concerts.

Michelle’s experience in health care leadership spans for over 13 years. Before joining Senior Options, she served as the Administrator for Columbus Colony (the only deaf Nursing Facility in the country) where she was responsible for quality assurance and regulatory affairs, memory care, activities, policies and procedures, and resident care. Before that, Michelle served as the Vice President of Business Development for Senior Independence, now Ohio Living Home Health and Hospice, where she was responsible for growing home health and hospice by over 200% in seven owned and four partner home and community services agencies. Michelle also has 20 years of leadership experience in many Fortune 500 companies, including Gap Inc., IBM, and GTE, where she served in senior leadership positions in Sales, Marketing, and Client Services.

Michelle has a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Grand Valley State University, a Certificate of Economics from the University of Krakow in Poland, and a Master of Business Administration from Franklin University. Michelle is a CHAP, Certified Consultant.