Darra Wray is a business professional with more than 25 years of practical business and finance experience and an MBA from the Anderson School at UCLA. In 2018, she became a Certified Senior Adviser (CSA)® and left her role as a finance executive to launch My Care Companions.
In addition to her business background, Darra also has over 25 years of personal experience as a family caregiver and patient advocate and has had a life-long interest in healthcare. She developed a true passion for family care giving and elder care services through her personal life experiences.
As the CFO of a large non-profit organization, Darra saw how reliant businesses have become on immediate and secure access to information. Yet, as the CEO of her family, she realized that she had failed to see how important this same access was for her family information. She learned the hard way that she often did not have the information she needed to manage and support her family.
Darra developed the My Data Diary+ family information management tool and set out on a mission to change the personal data management paradigm. My Care Companions provides education, tools and resources to caregivers so they can focus more of their time and energy caring for their loved ones. She invites you all to join her revolution to liberate your data!
Dee founded Life Changes Elder Care Consulting after experiencing the challenges of helping her parents move from an independent lifestyle to assisted living due to infirmity and memory loss. She saw very clearly what many others have seen — the lack of readily available information and resources for helping a senior family member. It became clear to her that with our aging population, many others would also find themselves feeling clueless and overwhelmed with the responsibilities of senior care giving.
Her training and background in both counseling and human resources management and first-hand experience with her changing role in family inspired Dee to turn her experience into a way to help others in similar situations. Life Changes Elder Care Consulting was founded to help those needing guidance and support on senior care issues by providing professional geriatric care management that helps with planning and coordinating the care of the elderly to improve their quality of life and maintain their independence for as long as possible. Life Changes works with families around the country to assess, select and manage the specific needs of our elders while giving family caregivers the professional help you need to manage and support the needs of those they love.
Dee is a NACCM Certified Care Manager (CMC), earned a BS in Psychology from the University of Utah and a MS in Marriage and Family Therapy from the Phillips Graduate Institute. She comes to this profession from 30 years in corporate America as a Human Resources Executive with extensive experience in interpersonal dynamics, crisis management, conflict resolution, mediation, benefits, and health and safety. She worked as a Marriage and Family Therapist for six years. She has been a caregiver for many years to her parents and others, and personally understands the demands and emotional turmoil of care giving and the tolls it takes on you, your aging loved one and the family. She is a court ordered Guardian and Conservator, experience with the legal and medical system. She is a certified Elder Mediatory and volunteer for the Alzheimer’s Association. Dee is currently the President of the board for the Idaho Guardians and Fiduciary Association. She previously served on the board for Friends in Action, a non-profit providing respite caregiving; JAVA, the Justice Alliance for Vulnerable Adults. She is an Advanced Professional member of the Aging Life Care Association™.
Julie Torresani is the Southwest Idaho Area Agency on Aging (SWIA3), Community
Care Program Supervisor. Texas born and raised, Julie has a Bachelor of Social
Work from Stephen F. Austin State University of Nacogdoches, Texas. Julie moved
to Boise, Idaho in 2003 and started her career with the Agency on Aging as a case
manager. A job transfer moved the Torresani family to Viginia for a few years
where Julie worked as a stay-at-home mom with the job title, “Household
Manager.” After receiving a job transfer back to Boise, Julie returned to SWIA3 in
2017. With the support from SWIA3 Executive Director, Raul Enriquez, Julie’s
primary focus is developing services to address caregivers’ needs. Julie is the
supervisor for SWIA3 Kinship Program which includes grandparents and relatives
raising kinship children. In 2022, The Community Care Program implemented and
serves caregivers across the state of Idaho taking care of an individual with
memory loss, dementia, or Alzheimer’s Disease.
Julie’s passion is serving and advocating for caregiver services and needs. She has
an incredibly supportive husband and two children who volunteer when asked to
help support her work. Julie is on the Board of Directors for LEARN Idaho and is
committed to serving seniors, caregivers, professionals, and the public in
achieving and maintaining their highest level of independence.
Tina Barnett is a Certified Senior Advisor (CSA®) and co-founder of Elderberry Care, a consulting firm with a focus on assisting older adults with technology. Tina has a passion for helping older adults and caregivers harness technology to enhance and improve their lives.
Tina is a trainer and administrator of LEARN’s technology pilot program delivering free technology training to older adults in the Treasure Valley. This program is in partnership with OATS and Senior Planet, charitable affiliates of AARP.
Texas born and raised, Tina has a BA in Business Administration from the University of Texas at Tyler. She considers herself a true outdoors-loving Idahoan after almost three decades of living and raising her family in Boise. As a co-founder of Creatures of Light Productions, Tina has consulted to numerous nonprofits helping raise awareness by engaging audiences through compassionate storytelling via film, social media and direct donor outreach, working with Ballet Idaho, Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Southwest Idaho, Ventana Sierra, and others, as well as serving on the Board of Directors of Idaho Media Professionals.
Karen Keyser is a 23-year veteran, Sr. Mortgage Advisor and Retirement Mortgage Specialist. She is “The Funding Master” and currently works for C2 Financial Corporation. She is personally licensed for Loan Origination in Idaho and California. Karen originates and advises on all residential mortgage loans both forward and reverse.
Karen implements a “discovery plan” approach when interacting with her clients, to determine what their goals are before suggesting mortgage-related strategy, so they are better positioned financially. She prefers working collaboratively with Certified Financial Planners, Financial Advisors, CPAs and Estate Planning Attorneys. She considers it “Vitally Important” that all consumers have a “Financial Wellness Team” in their court. Karen also “moonlighted” as a Certified Tax Preparer for the state of California, from 1994 to 2009. She worked in the office alongside Certified Financial Planners and Estate Planning professionals. It was here that she realized the importance of the “team” concept, in seeing the “bigger picture” and fulfilling the
needs for the clients she served. Prior to 2003, Karen served as a San Diego Police Officer/Detective for a total of 19 years; 3 of whichwere in the Sexual Assault unit.
Karen holds a BA in Criminal Justice, an NMLS for Loan Origination, Real Estate Brokers License with the DRE, is a C2 Certified Reverse Mortgage Specialist, is a Certified Cash Flow Advisor with the ICCA (Institute of Cash Flow Advisor) and is currently completing her RSSA (Registered Social Security Analyst) certification. Karen and her husband, Mark, moved from Southern California to Star, Idaho 5 yearsago. They have 3 sons, who live all over the world. Karen enjoys working out and travelling and is an avid golfer.
Kathy Lacina is a community outreach specialist for senior living communities. Most recently, she was the Sales Director for Revel Eagle, an over 55 senior living community in Eagle, ID. Her career has spanned decades of working in the retail and technology industries. She entered the senior care industry and discovered her passion for serving the seniors in the Treasure Valley. Her positions in home and health care have given her an added perspective on the challenges that seniors face as they continue on their life journey. Her position as sales director at Revel allowed her to draw from all those experiences when helping seniors find their forever home.
Kathy has served on several committees relating to senior care in the Treasure Valley including Idaho Guardians and Fiduciary Association, HAPPEN, Idaho Health Continuum of Care Alliance and LEARN.