Donna L. Belusar, Ph.D. was named President and CEO of ADEC in the fall of 2013 after her hire as CFO in 2012. Prior to her tenure at ADEC, Donna served as a senior vice president with CTS Corporation in Elkhart for four years. In this role, she acted as CFO and oversaw Human Resources and IT. Belusar spent 26 years climbing the ranks at International Business Machines Corporation. In the last eight years of her time with IBM, she worked as the corporate headquarters program manager, executive director of internal audits for corporate, Americas and Asia Pacific and executive finance director for global financing in the United States, Brazil and Mexico. Donna holds an honorary doctoral degree in corporate enterprise management from Binghamton University, an MBA in finance from Binghamton University and a BS in business engineering from Michigan Technological University.
When asked why she enjoys working at ADEC, Donna says, “Being part of ADEC and our community is professionally and personally rewarding. I feel all my prior work experience and my personal achievements have led me to be where I am today – here at ADEC – connected with the community and raising the dreams and aspirations of those who we serve. The lasting positive impact ADEC services provides is so rewarding – in the lives of the individuals we serve to the families that count on us to be there and provide guidance, to the extended communities where we are engaged every day, to our donors who trust and see where their generous gifts are going, to the local businesses who hire and provide work, and to our staff who know everything they do is genuinely supported and believed in. We truly are an organization that provides choice to all and our possibilities are endless. It’s an honor and a privilege to work here.”
Mitch Walorski oversees ADEC’s financial and information technology operations. He joined ADEC in November of 2013 from CTS Corporation in Elkhart where he most recently held the role of Director of Investor Relations. Prior to CTS, Mitch worked in a variety of financial management roles mainly in the Elkhart community. He holds an Executive MBA from the University of Notre Dame, a BS in accounting from Indiana University South Bend and received his CPA certificate in Indiana. He graduated from the Elkhart Chamber of Commerce’s Leadership Academy in 2015. When asked why he enjoys working at ADEC, Mitch enjoys seeing how his work meaningfully impacts the people served by ADEC. He also enjoys playing guitar for the clients.
Lisa Kendall oversees ADEC’s Human Resources department, which includes staffing, benefits, training, safety and corporate compliance. She came to ADEC in June of 2002 and held a variety of positions within Human Resources before receiving a promotion to Vice President. Lisa spent seven years at Kelly Services as an Office Manager for their Elkhart offices. Prior to this, she spent one year as a staff liaison at the Elkhart Chamber of Commerce. She holds a BA in Communications and Business from Bethel College and a Professional Human Resources certification. When asked why she enjoys working for ADEC, she describes ADEC’s mission and the staff’s commitment to the people ADEC serves.
Michelle serves in an operational role at ADEC, leading ADEC’s family, day and employment services. Within Family Services, Michelle oversees summer camp, after school programming, transitions, Guiding Parents to Services, Sibshops, therapies, autism services, respite and young adult group. ADEC’s Employment Services include ADEC Industries and Community Employment. She came to ADEC in January of 2001 to oversee the First Steps program and serve as a case manager for waiver services. When the First Steps program was discontinued at ADEC, she grew the Family Services department to offer the wide range of services listed above. In 2016, due to her experience and knowledge of transitions and waiver processes, Michelle took the helm of Employment Services as well. In 2017, Michelle also stepped up to lead ADEC’s five day service locations, where individuals with disabilities learn new skills. Prior to her time at ADEC, Michelle spent 19 years as a behavioral counselor at Behavioral Healthcare Services. She holds a Master of Public Health degree from Cambridge State University and a BA in psychology from Indiana University. When asked why she enjoys working at ADEC, Michelle cites watching families and children develop due to the programs we implement.
Brenda Falcone is ADEC’s Vice President of Residential Services, overseeing the agency’s supported living and supervised group living operations. Brenda started working with people with disabilities in the early 1990s while attending Tri-State University, where she double-majored in criminal justice and psychology. Brenda came to ADEC in 2000, where she has held a variety of positions serving individuals with disabilities. She is also a licensed-level MSW, graduating from IUSB in 2002. The defining moment of Brenda’s career happened in 2010 when another agency in St. Joseph County was shut down suddenly and the state asked ADEC to provide care to the 28 individuals left without a home. Under the leadership of Brenda, ADEC answered the call and provided dignity to those individuals when no one else would. When asked what she enjoys most about working for ADEC, Brenda says: “It is the relationships I have made with the people we serve and the people who serve them.”
Jeff Schrock oversees maintenance for ADEC’s 28 locations and coordinates transportation for all group home clients, ADEC Industries and client attending day services within Elkhart County. He came to ADEC in July 1985 as the fleet mechanic for ADEC’s transportation department. He spent 27 years in this capacity as his maintenance responsibilities increased. Jeff holds a degree in auto and truck technology from Lincoln Technical Institute. When asked why he enjoys his work at ADEC, he says, “The clients, the staff, the variety, and mostly the fact that we do something that makes a difference for people in our little part of the world.”
Cherri Peate serves as ADEC’s Vice President of Community Outreach and is responsible for managing, coordinating and executing ADEC’s community outreach initiatives, including advocacy, community education, social enterprise, fundraising, development and grants. Cherri’s commitment to serve the community spans more than 15 years. For two terms, she served as the director of community outreach for the Office of Mayor Pete Buttigieg. In this role, she served as an advisor to the Mayor and developed the Office’s standards in many areas including community initiatives, corporate social responsibility and youth activities. Prior to her work in local government, Cherri served as volunteer coordinator for The Salvation Army/Ray & Joan Kroc Corps Community Center (South Bend), program designer for IU South Bend’s Civil Rights Center (South Bend) and statistician for the Center for Community Justice (Elkhart).
Cherri received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Indiana University Purdue University of Indianapolis (IUPUI) in sociology. She received a Master of Science degree in public service management from DePaul University in Chicago. Her studies at DePaul led her to courses in government and international policies. During her post-graduate work, she traveled to Dublin, Ireland where she received a Certificate of Completion in community and voluntary services from All Hallows College. At DePaul, she was inducted as a member of the Golden Key International Honour Society—an honor given to top-performing graduate students.
Cherri serves as an advisory board member at IU South Bend’s Center for a Sustainable Future. She is a member of the Young Professionals Against Poverty at the Center for Homeless and a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated.
In her pastime Cherri enjoys mentoring, spending time with family and friends, and has invested several years in the arts as a professional spoken word artist.
Tobi Weirich serves as ADEC’s Director of Protective Services and Guardianship and also leads ADEC’s CARF accreditation processes and Quality Assurance program. Tobi investigates all reports of alleged abuse, neglect and exploitation while also leading ADEC’s guardianship program, which is designed to protect individuals with disabilities and help them make important medical and personal decisions. ADEC has been a part of Tobi’s life since she was a child, when she volunteered for Ride-A-Bike and other events with her mom and sister. Because Tobi’s aunt worked at ADEC, Tobi also remembers spending holidays with individuals from ADEC who had nowhere else to go. As soon as Tobi turned 18 and met the requirements to work for ADEC, she applied to begin her career in 1993. She started at ADEC as a direct support professional and then transitioned to the role of a guardian advocate before being promoted to her current position in 2017. “It’s not just a job. It’s a way of life. It’s what we do. We’re here for a reason, and that is to serve the people who deserve the best life possible,” Tobi said of her calling to work for ADEC.