DRM advocates through a team approach.

DRM teams:

  • Executive Office
    Michelle Roberts, Executive Officer
  • Finance, Human Resources, Information Technology, and Office Management
    Michele Brand, Director
  • Legal Advocacy
    Kyle Williams, Director
  • Community and Institutional Advocacy
    Rebecca Kasen, Director
  • Education Advocacy
    Kris Keranen, Director
  • Employment Advocacy
    Elham Jahshan, Director
  • Intake, Information and Referral
    Chris Davis, Supervisor
  • Representative Payee Monitoring
    Sara Koroniotis, Director
  • Public Policy and Media Relations
    Mark McWilliams, Director

DRM Executive Director

Michelle Roberts

Michelle Roberts is the Executive Director of Disability Rights Michigan. She brings passion and knowledge of disability rights from her long-time demonstrated commitment to the work of DRM and over 25 years of experience serving people with disabilities.

In 2002 Michelle joined DRM as an advocate on the Community and Institutional Rights (CAIR) team. She was promoted to Director of Advocacy in 2005 and has managed in this capacity until her appointment to Deputy Executive Director in 2018 and then Executive Director in 2019.

She holds two Bachelor of Arts degrees, in Psychology and Social Psychology, from Western Michigan University. She has served in the mental health field as a support coordinator for Community Mental Health, a psychiatric care specialist for a private psychiatric hospital, and a provider running independent living programs for adults with mental illness.

Michelle is a member of the National Human Trafficking and Disabilities Working Group, the Behavioral Health Advisory Committee, the Brain Injury Association of Michigan Conference planning committee, and the Michigan Dept. of Health and Human Services Home and Community-Based Services Implementation Advisory Group. She is co-chair of the National Disability Rights Network Advocacy Work Group.

Michelle has presented for many regional and national organizations, hospitals, conferences, and universities.

Officers

John McCulloch: President, Royal Oak
Hansen Clarke: 1st Vice President, Detroit
Jane Shank: 2nd Vice President, Interlochen
Mark Stephenson: Treasurer, Troy
Paul Palmer: Secretary, Lansing
Thomas Landry: Immediate Past President, Highland

Members-at-Large

Selena M. Schmidt, Shelby Township
Mark Wiedelman, Troy
Melody Arabo, West Bloomfield
Davin Hemmila, Negaunee
Jill Busha, Alpena
Brian Calley, Portland
Malkia Newman, Waterford

The Board of Directors

The governing board for DRM is comprised of 12 individuals who are diverse in terms of age, ethnicity, geographical location, gender and disability. A majority of the governing board members must be individuals with disabilities or have an immediate family member with a disability.

By law, the agency implementing the federally mandated protection and advocacy systems must be independent from providers of services to persons with disabilities with the exception of providers of legal advocacy services. Occasionally individuals who have a service provision role may serve on the governing board. In such cases, their potential conflicts of interest must be disclosed.

The board oversees and approves budgetary, priority, and policy issues and generally meets four times a year. The board committees sometimes meet in between board meetings, and often the day of the board meetings.

DRM posts meeting schedules and approved minutes from the board meetings, and also allows an opportunity for members of the public to attend and provide public comment at these meetings. We understand the full value of transparency and we post our information to remain accountable and provide the public with an additional opportunity to offer input. DRM is not an agency exercising governmental authority or functions, so it is not subject to the Open Meetings Act or the Freedom of Information Act.

Approved Meeting Minutes

PAIMI Advisory
Council (PAC)

The responsibilities for PAIMI Advisory Council members include:

  • Advising the Disability Rights Michigan Board of Directors on policies and priorities to be carried out in advocating and protecting the legal rights of persons with mental illness.
  • Jointly developing annual priorities with members of the DRM Board of Directors and DRM staff based on input from individuals throughout the state.
  • Educating the public and eligible individuals about the DRM mission, statutory requirements, priorities, and activities.
  • Each year, creating an independent report to the federal funders on PAIMI work for the fiscal year.

DRM posts meeting schedules and approved minutes from the PAIMI meetings, and also allows an opportunity for members of the public to attend and provide public comment at these meetings. We understand the full value of transparency and we post our information to remain accountable and provide the public with an additional opportunity to offer input. DRM is not an agency exercising governmental authority or functions, so it is not subject to the Open Meetings Act or the Freedom of Information Act.

Council Members

Malkia Newman: Chair, Waterford
Marie Jackson: Vice Chair, Southfield
Amanda Absher: Spring Lake
Mark Reinstein: Ann Arbor
Kevin Fischer: Plymouth
Davin Hemmila: Negaunee
Selena Schmidt: Shelby Township
Lois Shulman: West Bloomfield

The council is mandated to have members from the following groups:

  • An Attorney
    Individuals from the public who are knowledgeable about mental illness, the advocacy needs of persons with mental illness, and who have demonstrated a commitment to improving mental health services
  • A Parent of a Child (under 18) with a Mental Illness
    The family member shall be a primary caregiver for an individual who is currently a minor child or youth who is receiving or has received mental health services
  • A Mental Health Professional
    Individuals from the public who are knowledgeable about mental illness, the advocacy needs of persons with mental illness, and who have demonstrated a commitment to improving mental health services
  • A Mental Health Service Provider
  • Mental Health Consumers
    Individuals who are receiving or who have received mental health services and family members of such individuals

To Apply

Please contact Theresa Diebolt at tdiebolt@drmich.org or call 517.487.1755 to learn more about this opportunity and receive an application.

Approved Meeting Minutes  PAC Meeting

How Can We Help?
Contact Us Anytime

We want to hear from you! Whether you're looking for advocacy, have a question, or just want to connect, please reach out.

Online

Contact Us