Executive Staff

Independence Association's executive staff have chosen to work in this industry because of their commitment to compassionate service and support to individuals with developmental disabilities.

 Ray Nagel, MBA Executive Director

Ray hails from Chicago. He graduated from Eastern  Illinois University and received his MBA from American Intercontinental University, Atlanta.  He is a retired Lieutenant Colonel having served 22 years as an Army Medical Services Corps Officer.  In 2003 Ray became a Board Certified Associate Behavior Analyst.  Ray has over 20 years experience managing nonprofit organizations, mostly working with agencies that serve individuals with Intellectual Disabilities and the elderly.  Ray resides in Brunswick. Ray desires to stay in this career field until retirement. Inspired by an individual in Florida who was abused as a child by his family and again in the children’s group home where he resided, Ray is committed to ensuring that individuals with Intellectual Disabilities exercise their rights to the fullest extent possible. Today that individual and Ray speak frequently and Ray serves as his advocate and sounding board.  It is Ray’s ultimate desire to ensure that all individuals with disabilities advocate for themselves or have someone who can advocate on their behalf.

SANYO DIGITAL CAMERACheri M. Hurst, M.Ed., BCBA Director of Behavior Science

Cheri began working at Independence Association in May of 2010. She holds a BA in Sociology from the University of California Santa Barbara, and a M.Ed. in Special Education from Lesley University in Cambridge, Massachusetts.  Cheri is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst earning her certification in Applied Behavior Analysis through the University of Southern Maine. Cheri’s primary experience over her career has been focused on children with autism working as a teacher and administrator in both public and private schools. Having experienced the amazing results of the application of evidence based practices in her work with children, Cheri came to Independence Association with the desire to bring Applied Behavior Analysis into the services Independence Association offers to adults. Cheri chose to work at Independence Association specifically because of the focus placed on the individual needs of each person served.

SANYO DIGITAL CAMERAHolly Randall Director of Home and Community Based Supports

Upon obtaining her Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology from Skidmore College, Holly has dedicated her career to empowering individuals with intellectual disabilities to lead self-directed, meaningful and inclusive lifestyles. Originally from Monmouth, Maine, Holly has worked at Independence Association since 1990. During her tenure at the organization Holly has been employed in a number of capacities to include the positions as Director of Residential Services and Director of Policy & Quality Assurance. Holly lives in Lisbon Falls with her husband Jeff.  They have two children; both of whom are in college.  In her spare time Holly enjoys reading and photography. Holly’s dedication to the people Independence Association serves is both a professional and personal avocation. Knowing many of the extended family members of people served by the organization, Holly is often thought of as the “go to” person for any questions regarding the agency or DHHS.

SANYO DIGITAL CAMERAColleen Gilliam Director Home Based Services & Case Management

Colleen has been working for Independence Association since 1998. She oversees all Home-Based Services, Case Management, and the agency QA program.  Prior to her work at Independence Association she worked at Mid Coast Mental Health and Mobius, Inc. Colleen graduated from the University of Maine with a Bachelors Degree in Social Science. Colleen obtained her board certification as an Associate Behavior Analyst in 2012. Colleen is also very active as a partner in education at her children’s local grammar school. Colleen strives to be a leader focused on teaching, coaching and mentoring all support workers so that they in turn can help individuals with Intellectual Disabilities become more independent. Her ultimate goal is to actively engage members of the community into collaborations that fulfill these same result oriented goals into becoming realities for those individuals Independence Association serves.

Alli Vercoe, LSW Director, Residential Services

Alli Vercoe graduated from the University of Southern Maine in 1997 with a bachelor’s degree in Therapeutic Recreation. She is a Licensed Social Worker through the State of Maine. With over 20 years of experience in supporting adults with intellectual disabilities and their families, she has worked in variety of leadership roles at nonprofit, state and university settings in the areas of supported employment, home based services, community building, case management, policy and advocacy. Alli’s passion is providing support and advocacy to individuals with intellectual disabilities and their families so that they are integrated members of their chosen communities. She brings with her a wealth of community experience, relationships with mid coast families and solid relationships with providers as well as the DHHS. She enjoys volunteering in the Brunswick community, where she grew up and where she lives with her two children and husband.

IMG_3990Terri Cross Director of Finance and Administration

Terri joined the Independence Association team in 2000. Terri has an Associate’s Degree in Business Administration from Casco Bay College and holds course certificates in Accounting from USM and Beal’s College. Before coming to Independence Association Terri worked in many areas of finance at LL Bean for twelve years holding several different analytical positions. Terri wanted to work in an industry that focused on helping people. Terri’s search landed on Independence Association whose vision and mission were in directly in line with hers. Since being with Independence Association Terri has taken on responsibilities that have enabled her to make greater contributions to the agency. Terri believes the work she does every day with “numbers and personnel” may not have a direct impact on the individuals served by Independence Association, but believes her work has indirectly provided a better quality of life and security to the individuals served by Independence Association.