MANHR Board of Directors
Arlene Germain, MANHR President
Karen Dobak, MANHR Vice President
Greater Boston Legal Services Elder, Health and Disability Unit
Katie McCargo, MANHR Treasurer
Founder Family-Run Council
Kenn Cameron, MANHR Secretary
Leader Family-Run Council
Phyllis Ayman, MS/SLP, MANHR Board Member
PMA Speech Solutions, LLP
John J. Ford, J.D., MANHR Board Member
Northeast Justice Center
Arlene Germain is President and Co-founder of the Massachusetts Advocates for Nursing Home Reform (MANHR). As MANHR’s President, her duties include guiding the work of MANHR, presenting testimony to legislative and other policy-making committees, participating in numerous coalitions and stakeholder committees advocating for nursing home residents, and serving as an expert on various long-term care issues.
Arlene began her elder advocacy efforts over 20 years ago when her mother entered a nursing home. Since that time, Arlene has been involved in the care of 8 loved ones in 7 Massachusetts long-term care facilities. These relationships and care experiences are the driving force behind her passionate advocacy efforts.
In 2016, Arlene received the Arthur Stavisky Award, an honor that the Massachusetts Chapter of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys bestows each year on an individual who has dedicated herself to promoting elder causes in the community. On a national level, Arlene currently serves on the Leadership Council of the National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care. In 2013, she received the Consumer Voice’s Janet Tulloch Award for her dedication to nursing home resident advocacy.
After graduating magna cum laude from Boston University, Arlene had a career in accounting, including serving as a controller of a prestigious venture capital firm and senior accounting positions with the Boston Symphony Orchestra and New England Deaconess Hospital (now Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center).
Arlene retired from accounting in 2011 and now devotes herself full-time to MANHR.
As Senior Advisor to MANHR, Alison is focused on building MANHR’s organizational structure, including Board development and fundraising.
Alison has been an active member of MANHR since 2013, starting when she was on a panel testifying before the Elder Affairs Committee at the State House regarding the misuse of antipsychotics. Yet Alison was already a strong advocate for nursing home resident rights prior to joining MANHR. Alison initiated Massachusetts legislation mandating informed written consent before the administration of psychoactive medications to protect long-term care residents from the misuse of those drugs. Largely due to her efforts, this legislation became law in 2014.
Alison’s mother endured Alzheimer’s disease for 17 years. Alison saw first-hand how her mother suffered from the misuse of antipsychotics, and Alison fought for informed consent rights to protect others from the same fate. In addition to over drugging, her mother suffered many injustices in long-term care facilities during the progression of her disease. Alison took an active role in advocating for her mother’s rights throughout her illness.
In addition, Alison volunteers on the following Boards to protect elders and low-income individuals: Area Agency on Aging (AAA) Advisory Board at North Shore Elder Services, Danvers (joined 2009) and Board of Directors at Northeast Justice Center (NJC), offices in Lynn, Lowell and Lawrence (joined 2015). The NJC serves low-income and elderly clients by providing high quality legal representation.
Previously, Alison was a Sales Executive for 15 years for 3M Company, managing sales and marketing of Optical and Magnetic Media in an East Coast territory. Alison graduated magna cum laude from Bentley University with a bachelor’s in Marketing Management.
Alison was born and raised in Billerica, MA. Alison has made her home, with her husband and son, in Beverly, MA where she is an active community volunteer.