Get to know our Board of Directors
Carol Paquette has over 45 years of varied management and research experience. She was a founder of Operation BRAVO Foundation, which explored technology options for more reliable overseas voting. As the first Executive Director of the
Election Assistance Commission, she headed the team setting up the organization and oversaw the development of national voting machine testing standards. Her work at the Federal Voting Assistance Program resulted in significant improvements in the timeliness and reliability of overseas voting. As a National Security Council senior manager she was in charge of the modernization of the White House Situation Room, among other projects, and managed the turnover of the entire professional staff during a presidential transition.
In the private sector, Ms. Paquette worked on information technology projects in a variety of domains including health care education, the environment and regulatory compliance. Early in her career she led an analysis of retirement cooperatives funded by the National Institute on Aging, under the guidance of its Director, Dr. Robert Butler.
After retiring Ms. Paquette became a founder and first President of Arlington Neighborhood Village. Although the retirement cooperatives concept didn’t catch on, she believes Villages are here to stay.
Hilary Lenz, MPH, is the Executive Director of A Little Help, a village connecting neighbors to help seniors thrive throughout Colorado. Hilary has over 11 years of experience as a director for various organizations and businesses, including six and a half years as the Program Director and one and a half years as the Board Treasurer with A Little Help before rejoining the team as the Executive Director in January 2020. Previously, Hilary served as the Vice President of Finance for a software startup and as a Senior Consultant. In addition to her professional experience, Hilary founded an LLC to perform financial analytics services for over five years, has served as a board member for several organizations, and has been active in her community. Hilary earned her bachelor’s degree from Duke University in Psychology and English and earned her Master of Public Health degree from the University of Pittsburgh.
Peggy Simpson is a founder and former president of Dupont Circle Village where she helped create a vibrant community to engage villagers and equip them with key medical and legal information – before they need to use it. Simpson is also a board member for WAVE (Washington Area Village Exchange). She spent 50 years as an editor and reporter, including 15 years at the Associated Press in
Texas and Washington, covering political and economic issues and the dramatic evolution of “women’s place” in society. She worked 10 years in Poland and Eastern Europe as a freelance business reporter tracking the emergence of countries after the collapse of communist regimes. She was president of the Washington Press Club and created a national oral history program to interview women who broke barriers in journalism for the WPC Foundation. She held a Nieman Fellowship at Harvard and was a journalist in residence at Indiana and George Washington Universities.
Peter Fitzgerald is the Executive Vice President for Policy and Strategy at the National PACE Association. In this position, Peter guides the association’s policy and advocacy efforts, at the federal and state level, to support its strategic priorities. Prior to NPA, Peter served as the SVP for Integrated Care Strategies at Volunteers of America, where he was responsible for the planning and development of new PACE programs nationally. Peter has a Master of Science in Health Care Planning and Finance from the London School of Economics and the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. He earned his Bachelor’s degree in Public Policy from the College of William and Mary.
Pazit Aviv works at Montgomery County Area Agency on Aging as a Village Coordinator. She consults grassroots community organizations on nonprofits startup and developments and facilities the growth of all active and developing Villages in the County. One of her top priorities is capacity building for aging in place in diverse communities. Prior to this position, Pazit worked at Montgomery County’s housing authority, where she developed innovative programs for independent low income older adults through partnerships and collaborations. Pazit holds a Certificate of Nonprofit Management from the George Washington University, an MSW degree from Salem State University with a focus on Aging and end of life care and two undergraduate degrees from the Hebrew University, Jerusalem: one in Social Work and one in East Asian Studies and Communication.
Emily Miller, LMSW, is the Director of Training and Client Care at ACES$ Financial Management Services, a Center for Independent Living. In addition to training and coaching, Emily creates and implements a broad range of training materials, from in-person to webinars, on topics including self-direction, HIPAA compliance, program changes and new employee orientation. Emily serves as a Certified SAGECare trainer where she helps organizations become more inclusive of LGBT Older Adults. Emily develops programs, trains adults, and writes curriculum in person-centered planning, customer service, and best practices in the fields of aging and disability. Emily holds a Master’s Degree in Social Work from the University of Maryland, Baltimore and a Bachelor's Degree in Human Services with a minor in music from Millikin University.
Edgar (Eddie) Rivas
The New York Times once listed Eddie as one of the six most powerful aging-policy lobbyists in Washington. As part of a long career, he served on the staff of the U.S.
House Select Committee on Aging and also held positions at state and area offices on aging and national aging organizations including AARP. Eddie is a planner and policy analyst with project management skills and hands-on experience in advocacy and coalition building, with an emphasis on working on behalf of underserved communities, as well as extensive experience in the aging and disabilities field. He is a board member of his local Village, Potomac Community Village.
Wendy Zenker is the Executive Director of Arlington Neighborhood Village, a Village providing services, support and engagement activities to 230 members in Arlington, Virginia, a suburb of Washington D.C. Prior to joining Arlington Neighborhood Village in 2017, Wendy was the Senior Vice President for the National Council on Aging, where she directed the implementation of nationwide programs to improve the health and financial well-being of older adults, especially those with low incomes; and had a 30+ year career with the Federal Government, her last position as the Chief Operations Officer of the Corporation for National Service, which oversees the AmeriCorps and Senior Corps programs.