Leadership Committee Member Bios


Mark Melanson, Chief Executive Officer, California Community Living Network 

Mark is originally from the North Shore Area of MA. He has been working with people with disabilities since 1985 and has an Associate’s Degree in Human Services specializing in Counseling Psychology. In the span of his career he has worked in institutions, group homes, and 1:1 inclusionary and fully integrated settings. He has worked in a variety of settings in this field including Direct Care, Physical Therapy Aide, Recreational Therapy, Adult Day Programs, Inclusion Specialist, Family Support, Intensive Family Support, Respite Care worker, Employment, Community Services based programs and in Non-Profit Senior Management positions. After relocating to California in 2001 and working for a large Bay Area service provider for 18 years Mark became the first paid staff for the California Community Living Network as the Chief Executive Officer in 2019.

Sarah Burgett, Chief Operations Officer, California Community Living Network  

Sarah was born in Minnesota and raised primarily in Fresno, California. After moving to the Bay Area to attend Saint Mary’s College in 1993, Sarah began working in a Supported Living pilot program. For the last 22 years, Sarah has worked for Toolworks, Inc., located in San Francisco, in various roles within the Community Living Department. Sarah currently serves as Toolworks’ Vice President of Services overseeing the organization’s Community Living, Community Integration and Employment Services programs. Sarah has a SHRM-CP human resources credential and is passionate about developing workforce development initiatives and policies that both enhance an employee’s experience and strengthen our organizations as a whole.


Jacquie Dillard-Foss, President 

CEO and Executive Director, S.T.E.P. Inc.

Jacquie has been a part of the CSLN Board of Directors since 1996. She has served with Carol McKinney as Co-Chair of the Network. She currently serves with Carol as Co-Chair of the Governmental Affairs Committee. In 2009 she represented CSLN on the Budget Advisory Group for the state of California, and has also been a Provider Representative for ACRC, Alta California Regional Center. STEP has been providing SLS since 1994. Currently, STEP serves 165 consumers in SLS with a majority receiving 24/7 support. STEP has 500 employees and has worked diligently to provide a comprehensive benefits package to the employees of the agency. STEP specializes in serving folks that are Deaf and/or Deaf/Blind.

Over 125 of STEP's employees are Deaf and they provide the support to their Deaf and/or Deaf/Blind consumers. STEP has made a concerted effort to focus on its Vision and Values in all of its training. STEP is proud of its Human Resource Department, and has become proficient in labor laws, IHSS issues and Workers Compensation. STEP also provides a Supervisor Training Course to ensure its staff have the tools they need to meet the needs of consumers while still having a full understanding of the labor laws.

Sharon Francis, Secretary 

Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Channel Islands Social Services

Sharon Francis, MBA

Sharon is the co-founder and CEO of Channel Islands Social Services since 2004. The organization provides independent living skills and in-home respite care to regional center families, as well as respite care to Ventura County kinship and foster families. Sharon began working in the field of intellectual and developmental disabilities in 1993 working for a supported employment nonprofit until 1997 when she was hired by Tri-Counties Regional Center. At TCRC, she held management roles including the Director of Community Development overseeing provider quality assurance, resource development, rate and contract negotiation, and community placement efforts to close the developmental centers. Sharon is a lifelong advocate for strengthening families and expanding community living options.

One of Sharon’s passions has been volunteering with the Autism Society over the years. She helped the Ventura County chapter launch their annual charity race and resource fair, for which she was recognized as Professional of the Year. Her volunteerism and community involvement also drew the attention of President Obama’s administration who honored her with a lifetime achievement award. Channel Islands Social Services is a family-operated organization with her husband and two adult sons working as part of their administrative team to help other families get the respite break they need.

Carol McKinney, Treasurer 

Co-Founder, Harmony Home, Associated

Carol is the co-founder and Executive Director of Harmony Home, Associated.  She began working with people with developmental disabilities in 1976 when she was a high school volunteer in a Special Day Class.  It was during that time Carol realized her lifework would be to advocate and provide services to people with developmental disabilities.  Carol's plan was to teach; however, while working her way through college as an aide in a Special Day Class she realized the classroom was not for her; the community was where she wanted to be.  Harmony Home was co-founded in 1982, originally to provide residential services.  In 1990, Harmony Home started providing Independent Living Services.  In 1994, Harmony Home participated in the Community Supported Living Arrangement (CSLA) pilot project and began providing SLS in 1996.  Currently, Harmony Home supports approximately 300 people. Carol served as co-chair of CSLN, with Jacquie Dillard-Foss, for four years, and currently continues working with Jacquie as Governmental Affairs Co-Chair.  Carol’s education includes a Bachelor’s Degree in Liberal Studies, with an emphasis on Special Education, from San Francisco State University, and a Master’s Degree in Business Administration (MBA) from St. Mary’s College.

Kimberly Mills, Vice President 

Chief Executive OfficerA Better Life Together, Inc.

Kimberly Mills has over 30 year of experience providing social services to youth, adults and their families.  Kim is the founder and CEO of A Better Life Together, Inc.(ABLT) to supports individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities to realize their dreams. Kim is the proud mother of 3 amazing sons Antoine, Naeem, and Jaleni.  Naeem passed away unexpectedly in 2016 at the age of 22 due to a seizure.  Naeem’s death reignited Kim’s passion to continue advocate for the rights of everyone. Kim believes everyone has a purpose in life and it is our responsibility to help individuals find their purpose and fulfill it.  Kim has been working to close the disparity gap amongst people with intellectual and developmental disabilities of color who are underserved.  Kim originally from Ohio and holds a Master’s degree in Community Counseling from Kent State University.


California Community Living Network
Contact Info:

Mark Melanson
Chief Executive Officer
California Community Living Network

166 Geary St

STE 1500 #1802

San Francisco, CA 94108

Phone: (415) 505-5975

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