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Board of Directors

Rebecca Dunn, President

Becca started her accomplished career as a social worker, then a state prosecutor and is currently an attorney with the US Navy. She holds a Master’s degree in Social Work from the University of Kentucky and earned her Law degree from Hofstra School of Law. Becca’s five-year-old son has Down syndrome, and he benefited from receiving services from the Kidsteps Birth-to-Three Program.  Thanks to the dedicated team at Kidsteps, her son is flourishing both academically and at home. The program not only contributed to her son's success but also taught Becca how to advocate for him. Becca currently resides in Niantic, CT, with her husband and children.

Colin Dugan, Vice President

Colin has over a decade of experience in the financial services industry, where he has spent his career servicing high-net-worth individuals and families. Colin’s positive and encouraging attitude is evident whether he is serving clients, assisting their business partners, or giving back to his community. He works directly with clients, attending to their day-to-day financial needs, and works tirelessly behind the scenes to help clients reach their goals. Prior to Principle Wealth Partners, Colin held relationship and operational management positions for boutique, Connecticut-based wealth management firms. Colin and his wife, Liz, reside in Old Saybrook with their two young children, Jack and Isla.

Suzanne Walsh Erno, Treasurer

Suzanne Walsh Erno has an accomplished career in the financial industry.  She currently serves as Vice President, Senior Commercial Real Estate Lender at Union Savings Bank.  She is responsible for the development of new business with a focus on industrial, multifamily, medical office, and retail.  Suzanne received both her BS in Real Estate and Urban Economic Studies and MBA with a Finance Concentration from the University of Connecticut.

Throughout her career, it has been important to Suzanne to stay active in the community.  Some of her former civic activities include participating on other Boards, including Safe Futures in New London and the Big Brothers and Sisters of Southeastern Connecticut.  As a lifelong Connecticut resident, Suzanne is familiar with the services that we provide.  Now engaging as a Board member, she is excited to help us by furthering our mission and helping those in our programs.

James Baron, Secretary

James Baron is the William S. Beinecke Professor of Management at the Yale School of Management (and Professor of Sociology, by courtesy). Jim joined the Yale faculty in 2006 after 24 years on the faculty at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. He received his B.A. from Reed College, an M.S. from the University of Wisconsin, and a Ph.D. in sociology from the University of California, Santa Barbara. His research focuses on the determinants and consequences of organizational structures and human resource policies, particularly their effects on organizational performance and on workers’ careers. Jim teaches M.B.A., executive MBA, and doctoral courses on leadership, organizational behavior and human resources, as well as lecturing on those topics to audiences in the United States and abroad. Jim consults on strategic, organizational, and human resource issues to corporations, law firms, government agencies, and nonprofits. He resides in New Haven with his teenage son.

Deb Palmer, Director

Deb is an accomplished Senior Executive and Board Member with more than 40 years of success across the legislative and domestic international insurance industries. Throughout her executive career, Deb has held leadership positions at MassMutual Financial Group, PAL Associates, LLC, and Aetna, Inc. She has been responsible for leading the turnaround of strategic people practices for a Fortune 500 Company. Thanks to her work, that company earned national recognition including ranking as a “Top 50 Company for Diversity” by Diversity, Inc., and a “Top 10 Company for Female Executives” by the National Association of Female Executives. Deb holds a B.A. in Spanish and Education from Manhattanville College, as well as an M.B.A. in Organizational Effectiveness from the University of Hartford. She has held board positions with various nonprofits and was awarded the Women of Excellence Award as a Corporate Women’s Champion by the National Association of Female Executives.

Christoper Lofaro, Director

Christopher Lofaro is a Connecticut native and is committed to being involved in the community. His broad experience contributes to many facets of our organization, including human resources, marketing, and executive management. Chris currently runs Berkeley Exteriors, a home improvement firm serving New Haven and Fairfield County, specializing in exterior renovations. His life experiences have given him insight into the support networks and challenges faced by families with individuals with differing abilities. Enthusiastic about his role on the board, Chris is dedicated to positively impacting the lives of individuals and families throughout Connecticut. In addition to his commitment to SARAH Inc., he also leads as the director and head cook for the Feel of Warmth program at nOURish Bridgeport.

Karen Gerboth, Director

A strategic communicator and longtime marketing professional, Karen Gerboth has devoted her career to helping colleges and universities communicate their stories with creativity, precision, and confidence. A collaborative leader with a heart for making education accessible, Karen has enjoyed a progressive career at Wittenberg University, where she currently serves as Vice President of Marketing and Communications. She also brings experience in philanthropic communications through her prior work at Connecticut College and with various nonprofits. Karen earned her M.A. in journalism from the University of Missouri and her B.A. in English from Wittenberg University. She also holds a certificate in marketing strategy from Cornell University. When time allows, Karen enjoys traveling, writing, serving, and spending time with her family in Waterford, CT. Karen says she is deeply inspired by our mission and looks forward to helping the organization achieve its goals as it continues to change lives.

Luis Olmo-Rivera, Director

Luis Olmo-Rivera is the Development Director at Downtown Evening Soup Kitchen in New Haven, CT. He received his BSc in public policy and government from Eastern Connecticut State University. After having the opportunity to intern at the CT State Legislature and US Congress, he has spent the last two decades working in the nonprofit sector. His experiences working for nonprofits on the city, state, and national levels led to extensive knowledge in fundraising, communications, operations, and board governance. He has held board positions for various nonprofits over the years. He is excited to be a part of our Board and to continue to make a positive impact on individuals and families in our communities.

Elizabeth Beaumont, Director

Elizabeth Beaumont has thirty years of experience in the field of education. Her career began as an early childhood educator at a private school in Massachusetts.  Following that, she taught elementary students and spent the next decade as a regular education teacher in various states. She also had the opportunity to teach in Okinawa, Japan, with DoDEA (Department of Defense Education Activity). In 2012, she completed her Sixth Year Certificate in Special Education and worked as a resource teacher at the Regional Multicultural Magnet School (RMMS) in New London, CT.  In 2018, she joined the East Lyme Public Schools, where she established the Therapeutic Learning Program, providing services for elementary students. Most recently, Elizabeth accepted a position back at RMMS as their new assistant principal.  In addition to her educational career, she has also worked with various organizations such as ARC of New London, Unified Sports, and Eastern Connecticut Ballet as a consultant for their adaptive dance program.  Elizabeth is passionate about ensuring that all individuals of differing abilities have access to experiences that enrich their lives.