Cherie Rosemond, Director
Cherie brings almost three decades of experience working on the social, physical, and political aspects of aging in the United States. Cherie views later life as a time for continued growth, contribution, and vitality. As such, she is a champion of interdisciplinary, intergenerational, community engagement as a way to ensure our homes and neighborhoods are great places for people of all ages to live. She also focuses attention on the arts and humanities as a way to expand and re-imagine new possibilities for later life. In 2009, Cherie completed her PhD in Health Behavior at UNC’s Gillings School of Global Public Health. Cherie also holds a master’s degree in physical therapy from Duke and a bachelor of arts degree in biology from Wake Forest. She has worked as a geriatric physical therapist within many practice settings, including large health systems, senior centers, nursing homes, and retirement communities. Since 2012, Dr. Rosemond has served as a consultant to the Orange County Department on Aging. In this capacity, she has worked with teams of aging services providers, UNC students, and community members to develop and implement Orange County’s Master Aging Plan. Her focus areas include senior housing, caregiving, and program evaluation. In her free time, Cherie loves to dance, bike, and make beauty out of second-hand “stuff.”
Jenny Womack, Associate Director
Jenny is a native of western North Carolina, a Professor in Occupational Science & Occupational Therapy in the Department of Allied Health Sciences, and a folklorist. She has worked in many settings that intersect with older adulthood across various levels of community, in medical settings and in the intimacy of home. She earned her BA at Wake Forest University in Biology & German, an MS in Occupational Therapy and an MA in Folklore from UNC and her PhD in Occupational Therapy from Luleå University of Technology in Sweden. She also holds a Certificate in Core Public Health Concepts from UNC’s Gillings School of Global Public Health, and has undertaken additional study in aging-in-place and dementia care. Jenny has a particular interest in caregiving situations, narratives of aging, all things related to home, and concepts of community. Jenny joined the PiAP team in September of 2018 and focusses on campus initiatives that connect students to older adults and conversations about aging.
Ryan Lavalley, Post Doc
Ryan is a post doctoral research associate positioned through an innovative partnership among the division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy at UNC, the Partnerships in Aging Program (PiAP), and the Orange County Department on Aging. He supports initiatives and projects across the three organizations. He graduated from Xavier University with a BA in Liberal Arts and a MOT in Occupational Therapy. Ryan supports older adults in the community by leading initiatives of Orange County’s Master Aging Plan to coordinate providers of home repair services for seniors. He is interested in community-based practice, community development, and coalition building across communities. Ryan is also responsible for PiAP’s organizational development.
Cass Dictus, Fellow
Cass is a doctoral student in UNC’s School of Nursing. She earned a BS in Biology from Denison University, an MPH with a focus on Health Management and Policy from Portland State University, and a BS in Nursing from UNC-Chapel Hill. She is interested in promoting health equity for adults with functional limitations and chronic illness, especially related to dementia and end-of-life care, and generally improving quality of life for those serving in and served by long-term services and supports. Cass is evaluating the implementation of Orange County’s Master Aging Plan and conducting program evaluation for PiAP initiatives.