State Rehabilitation Councils create opportunities for people with disabilities to shape the services that support them in going to work.

Jennifer Bean

Bellingham, WA

Council Chair

Client Assistance Program (CAP) Representative

Serves on the Executive Committee, the Policy & Planning Subcommittee, and as Chair of the Consumer Satisfaction & Program Evaluation Subcommittee.

Jennifer Bean is the Director for the Client Assistance Program (CAP). She has worked in the Vocational Rehabilitation field for 20+ years. Her work experience includes being an Independent Living Counselor, Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor, Benefits Specialist and Regional Trainer at Washington Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR). Additionally, she was a Rehabilitation Coordinator with the Washington Client Assistance Program and will be the Executive Director of the Client Assistance Program starting August 2021.  Jennifer has a MA degree in Rehabilitation Counseling and has years of experience with training and teaching.  She was Adjunct Faculty at Western Washington University teaching in the undergraduate Human Services Program and was a staff trainer on Independent Living and Benefits Planning for 10+ years.  She is known for having a "Yes we can!" approach and enjoys collaborating and finding creative, outside the box solutions to problems.   

Peggy Frisk

Lake Stevens, WA

Council Vice-Chair

Community Rehabilitation Provider Representative

Serves on the Executive Committee and the Consumer Satisfaction & Program Evaluation Subcommittee

Peggy has been in the employment services field for over 20 years, providing and supervising services up and down the I-5 corridor. She has also peer surveyed for CARF, which accredits employment service providers and is a requirement of DVR. Peggy has a keen interest in sharing the CRP perspective for the council.

Aimee Elber

Spokane, WA

Disability Advocate Representative

Serves on the Partnership Subcommittee

Aimee Elber is an Equity, Diversity, Access, Inclusion, & Belonging Administrator and Pro-Equity, Anti-Racism Consultant at DSHS. She has worked with people with disabilities since 1994. While pursuing her college education, Aimee began her career with DVR as a Governor’s Intern and was later hired as a Rehabilitation Technician. Working with DVR inspired her to seek out opportunities to support people with disabilities in successfully entering the workforce. Building on her experience, she worked as a Career Counselor and Academic Advisor and later sought employment as a Disability Services Specialist in various colleges throughout Washington and Oregon. Her most recent job as Director of Disability Access Services and Workforce Education at Spokane Community College blended her interests in both career development and disability services.

Aimee brings a diverse skill set to the table including a broad knowledge base surrounding ADA compliance, Universal Design, disability identity, career counseling theory, strategic planning, and workforce education. She is committed to equity, diversity, accessibility, inclusion, and fostering a safe and accessible learning environment for all. As a person with a disability herself, Aimee works to remove barriers and align with the “Nothing About Us Without Us” concept of shared governance.

Working with people in a variety of roles has allowed Aimee the opportunity to guide individuals to become empowered advocates for themselves, their communities, and their education.

Alexandra Toney

Olympia, WA

OSPI Representative

Serves on the Executive Committee and as Chair of the Partnership Subcommittee

Alexandra is a Special Education Program Supervisor for the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI), supporting students with disabilities, families, educators and systems. Her work experience includes being a Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA) and supporting regional transitional care programs as a Program Manager. Alexandra is passionate about supporting equity and inclusion as well as aligning systems to support student outcomes and readiness for their post-secondary goals.

Dana Phelps

Lacey, WA

DVR Director, Ex-Officio

Dana Phelps serves as the DVR Director. She has worked at DSHS for over 30 years and previously held various leadership roles including the DSHS Legislative Director and the Deputy Chief of Staff. Dana saw the powerful impact of vocational rehabilitation early in her career as she worked with youth with disabilities who were able to access DVR services. She spent many years providing direct counseling and treatment services to youth as well as developing statewide treatment programs. Dana sees now as a critical moment to break down barriers and to build more opportunities for people with disabilities to reach their career goals. 

Ed Nicholson

Camas, WA

Business Representative

Serves on the Consumer Satisfaction & Program Evaluation Subcommittee

Ed currently works for TSMC Washington, LLC as their Senior Recruiter. Ed is a retired military veteran where he spends over 25 years in the Marine Corps and Army. He also is a disabled veteran and a military spouse and is passionate about military initiatives and helping other veterans to navigate to find their next mission. Ed is always striving to teach job seekers on how to navigate through their next career paths and how to develop those skills that employers are seeking. Ed and, his wife Julie, along with their 7 children reside in Vancouver, WA.

Jen Chong-Jewell

Everett, WA

Parent Training Representative

Serves on the Customer Satisfaction & Program Evaluation Subcommittee

Jen Chong-Jewell is a representative for parents of children with disabilities. Jen is a strong advocate for diversity, equity, and inclusion. She also serves on the Special Education Advisory Committee and the Council appreciates the intersectionality of knowledge Jen brings to the Council’s work. 

Katrina Simmons

Tacoma, WA

Recipient of DVR Services Representative

Katrina’s career trajectory highlights, Human Services and Education via Administration, Healthcare and the Military sectors. She has worked with Service Members and Veterans who had disabilities that were physically seen, while others' disabilities were invisible, as Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), anxiety, pain or chronic depression. Katrina is familiar with the underserved and impoverished populace, as she managed the Department of Social and HealthServices (DSHS) and private pay accounts. Likewise, she partnered with the Workforce Innovation Opportunity Act (WIOA) providers, various wrap around supports, and community partners to gain valuable insights and help communities thrive.  

Equally, Katrina encompasses a healthy attitude and has a malleable mindset for life-long learning. A few of her accomplishments heralds: featured motivational speaker, emboldens the younger generation, served on the Pierce County Aging and Disability Resources, as an Advisory Board member, acquired the Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) certification, and retains an Entrepreneurial Spirit for writing services. Katrina enjoys participating in her local church and believes in the importance of leaving a legacy for her family and community.

Laurae MacClain

Nespelem, WA

Tribal VR Representative

Serves on the Policy & Planning Subcommittee

Laurae is the Vocational Rehabilitation Program Manager for the Colville Tribe. She is responsible for effective planning and management of the VR program through leadership and by directing appropriate and quality services to eligible Tribal Vocational Rehabilitation (TVR) clients. Laurae has also worked with families and within the school system supporting individuals with disabilities. She has her BA in Psychology and masters in social work from the University of Alaska Anchorage.

Lesa Dunphy

Colville, WA

VR Counselor Representative, Ex-Officio

Serves on the Executive Committee and as Chair of the Policy & Planning Subcommittee

Lesa brings 22 years of vocational rehabilitation experience to WSRC, having served as the Director of Employment Services at Skils’kin (CRP) for 6 years and with DVR since 2009 starting as a Rehab Tech and moving into the counselor position in 2011. Over the last two years, she worked as a Lead Counselor training new VR staff as they started their new career, and seasoned staff as new policy and procedures were instituted. She is currently serving as the Community Program Manager serving statewide partners and DVR staff. Her expertise and advocacy work in both urban and rural VR bring a unique perspective to the council.

Matt Newton

Tacoma, WA

Business Representative

Serves on the Consumer Satisfaction & Program Evaluation Subcommittee

Matt currently works for as the Global Quality Manager for Amazon Disability & Leave Services.  Matt’s previous work experience in private and public sectors include medical management in the railway transportation industry, as well as working as a Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor for the State of Washington and the State of Iowa. Matt is passionate about equity and inclusion, as well as developing public and private partnerships to improve employment outcomes for people with disabilities. Matt, his wife Megan, and daughter Charlotte live in the South Puget Sound region.

Michele Stelovich

Everett, WA

Labor Representative

Serves on the Policy & Planning Subcommittee

Michele is currently the President of the NW WA Central Labor Council, AFL-CIO, 2nd District Vice President of the Washington State Labor Council, AFL-CIO and Vice President of the Local 1060 Washington Federation of State Employees AFSCME, AFL-CIO. She also serves on her local Workforce Development Council and works as a Case Resource Manager at Developmental Disabilities by assisting adults with disabilities to gain and retain employment. Michele’s cross-section of skills and experience allow her to see the big picture of employment for individuals with disabilities and believes it is important to work together to promote Social Equity, Economic Development and Healthy Environment.