Chief Executive Officer
Debra is the Chief Operating Officer and she brings over 25 years of experience in home care industry management. Debra brings her background as Regional VP of Olsten Kimberly Quality Care, where she was responsible for their California offices. She also served as Area manager for Southern California and the Central Coast and as Branch Director for Olsten Kimberly Quality Care in Santa Barbara. She managed an Interim Home Health and Staffing Agency in Seattle, WA. and has extensive experience working with clients and families facing varied health challenges. Her goal is to provide exemplary customer service to families and individuals. She received her B.A. from UCLA and her M.S. from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. She is a founding member of the Association of Senior Care, where she served as President for 7 years. She has served as a board member and Secretary for the Ventura County Home Care Association. Debra is a Master Reiki Practitioner and has been a Complementary Therapy volunteer for Hospice of Santa Barbara since 2008. She also enjoys jewelry making, hiking and camping. Debra is married with two children.
Cassi Noel Gilkeson, MS, CSA
Originally from Texas, Cassi brings to Senior Planning Services a wealth of experience in Public Health Administration, Senior Care, and Behavioral Health Care. She worked in Administration and Management in various Public Health Departments for almost 20 years, and most recently has worked with Seniors in home care and behavioral health environments since 2009. In fact, Cassi worked as the Community Liaison for Senior Planning Services for almost 4 years previously. She holds a Master’s Degree in Allied Health Science (Public Health) from the University of Texas and a Bachelor’s Degree in Foods & Nutrition from Texas Christian University, and is also a Certified Senior Advisor. Cassi is excited to work with the compassionate and friendly folks at Senior Planning Services again! She is very involved in community activities including the Association of Senior Care and the Goleta Valley Chamber of Commerce, and Co-Chaired the Entertainment Committee for the GVCC Lemon Festival for 9 years. Cassi loves live music, dancing, her dog Mona Lisa, and traveling with the love of her life, David.
Lenda Smith, RN
Lenda brings over 20 years of experience in many areas of home care, from direct care in the home to being Administrator of HealthStaf Home Care in Minnesota. Lenda relocated to California with her husband and 3 daughters in 1997, and can now say she has survived the teenage years! She has the uncanny ability to stay calm in the most challenging situations and demonstrates creativity in coordination of caregivers and client care. Lenda has been part of the Senior Planning Services team since October of 2000.
Deborah Brown, MA, CCC-SLP, CMC
Certified Care Manager
Originally from the Chicago area, Deborah began working for Senior Planning Services as a Geriatric Care Manager in 1999. She holds a nationally recognized certification in Geriatric Care Management through the National Academyof Certified Care Managers and is a member in good standing of both the National Association of Professional Geriatric Care Managers and the Western Region Chapter of NAPGCM. In addition, she has over 30 years experience as a licensed Speech Pathologist working with adults with neurological communication disorders, developmental delays, traumatic brain injuries and dementia in outpatient, rehabilitation and home settings. Deborah has served on the Board of the Central California Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association and she continues to facilitate a support group for spouses of those with dementia. She also volunteers with the Santa Barbara Wildlife Care Network and enjoys the outdoors, swimming and making jewelry in her spare time. Deborah and her husband Steve live in Santa Barbara and are owned by 3 feisty parrots.
Edie Jeffery brings many years of experience in the health care industry where she provided varied operational support functions including AR/AP, billing, computer support and overall trouble shooting. As an Administrative Assistant, Edie brings her incredible organizational skills to support the staff. Edie also brings an old time work ethic and never wants to be idle. She surveys the staff daily looking for projects she can help with. Edie is from Lafayette, Indiana and moved to California with her family in 1969. Edie and her husband Darel have been married 41 years and have one son. Edie loves spending time with her grandson, gardening, crocheting, crafting, fishing and motorcycle riding. She describes herself as a simple country girl.
Lead Staffing Coordinator
Norma brings over 12 years of customer service experience, along with a few years in the Healthcare Industry, to her role as Staffing Coordinator. She is a Certified Nurse Assistant, which helps her better understand our caregivers’ and clients’ needs. She has the ability to stay calm and patient under pressured circumstances, and has important problem solving and critical thinking skills. Norma is a caring and compassionate individual who will go above and beyond to meet clients’ needs.
She loves spending time with her husband and son, watching movies, traveling, amusement parks, listening to music and shopping.
Norma has a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Criminal Justice from ITT Tech. She looks forward to expanding her knowledge in the healthcare industry and bringing her previous Lead position skills to Senior Planning Services to increase their future success.
Katherine is a returnee to Santa Barbara, having grown up here and later moving to San Luis Obispo County. There, she raised her two children while working in the fields of construction and education. She has also coached the unemployed public on how to re-enter the workforce, both in San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties. Today, Katherine is the HR Coordinator for Senior Planning Services, which includes the recruitment and orientation of our wonderful caregivers.
Katherine has a BA and a Teaching Credential – both from UCSB. Her passions include art and music, Hispanic and Victorian literature, hiking and bicycling.
Amy was born and raised in beautiful Santa Barbara. She has been married for nearly 27 years and is the proud mother of two adult sons. After her boys were grown, she re-entered the work-force and enrolled in college. In 2017 she graduated from California State University – Sacramento with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Criminal Justice (with honors). In her free time, she and her husband enjoy tending to their koi and turtle pond which is the focal point of their aquaponics vegetable garden.