Honorary Board

Southern Oregon Friends of Hospice is extremely grateful for the support of our distinguished Honorary Board.

Toni Adams, CPA


Southern Oregon State College, B.S. Business

Southern Oregon State College (now Southern Oregon University), M.S. Business Administration

Work History

Toni is a Certified Public Accountant.   She is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accounts (AICPA) and Oregon Society of Certified Public Accounts (OSCPA).

She was employed by Arthur Anderson & Co. as an auditor; was an Instructor in the School of Business at Southern Oregon State College, worked in Private Industry in Finance and Accounting, and owned her own CPA Firm starting in 1992.

Board Service and Community Involvement

Board Member, Southern Oregon Humane Society

Source of Passion for the Holmes Park House Project:

“The Hospice residential care facility project is fulfilling an important need in our Southern Oregon community and I’m honored to be contributing my skills in health care finance to such a devoted organization of people supporting compassionate care at end of life.”

Other Interests

Toni enjoys traveling, gardening and spending time with friends and family. Toni has been working on her first novel and hopes someday to finish it.

Kathy Apple

Shirley Chater, RN, PhD


B.S. Nursing, University of Pennsylvania

M.S. Nursing, University of San Francisco

PhD, Education, University of California, Berkeley

Certificate in Management, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Work History:

Shirley is the former Commissioner of the U.S. Social Security Administration, serving during the Clinton administration.  Prior to that time, she was President of Texas Woman’s University in Denton, Dallas and Houston, Texas for seven years, and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs at the University of California, San Francisco for five years.  She served as Professor of Nursing and Education, joint appointments at the University of California San Francisco and Berkeley.  For the past 15 years she has held the position of founding Chair of the National Advisory Committee for the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s program for Executive Nurse Leaders.

Other Honors:

Dr. Chater is the recipient of thirteen honorary doctoral degrees from various colleges and universities, including her alma mater, the University of Pennsylvania. Other honors include distinguished alumna awards from the Hospital School of Nursing at the University of Pennsylvania, the School of Nursing of the University of Pennsylvania and the School of Nursing at the University of California, San Francisco.  In 1997 she received the University Medal from the University of California San Francisco, the highest award given by the University.  She was honored as a University of California Regents’ Professor in 1997-1998.  She also received the John P. McGovern, MD, Annual Award from the American Association of Colleges of Nursing in 1996 and the Sigma Theta Tau Honor Society Lucia S. Kelly Mentor Award in 1995. Dr. Chater is a new resident of Oregon and lives in Medford.

Dan Decena, MBA

B.S. Chemical Engineering, UCLA

MBA in Finance from UCLA

Certificate in Securities and Investments from New York University

Senior Executive Service Certification from the U.S. Department of the Treasury awarded by the George Washington University in Washington, D.C.

Work History:

Dan worked with the Ford Foundation and Morgan Stanley in portfolio management and investment banking (15 years). He worked for the U.S. Department of the Treasury in Washington D.C. (25 years) and oversaw the major Trust Funds, including Social Security, Medicare, Unemployment Insurance and Native American Trust Funds. He was a Senior Fiscal Affairs Official with his office having oversight responsibilities for the Bureau of the Public Debt and Financial Management Service. He established the Community Investment and Adjustment Grant and Loan Program in the Office of Domestic Finance.  He represented the Treasury Department in the Boards of the National Archives and the Library of Congress.

Board Service and Community Involvement:

Dan has been involved in the Rotary Club of Ashland Lithia Springs, the AIFF, the National Trust for Historic Preservation, and the Museum of Fine Arts in San Francisco.

Source of Passion for the Hospice House Project:  

Dan supports the Hospice House Project in honor of his mother, and obstetric gynecologist in the Philippines and his partner’s parents Bill and Peg Sammons and their family friend and founding Southern Oregon Friends of Hospice Board Chair, Catherine Church.

Other Interests:

Dan and his partner, Morgan Sammons, are avid travelers, long-time art and antique collectors, and architecture and interior design enthusiasts. They love operas and have attended major art shows and auctions all over the world. They love to cook and entertain and consider themselves as foodies.

Frank De Luca

Don Felt, JD


Yale University, B.A.;

Yale Law School, J.D.;

Pacific School of Religion, M. Div

Work History:

Don was a partner in a large San Francisco law firm specializing in business and financial law. He served as Interim Minister at the United Church of Christ.

Board Service and Community Involvement:

Don served on the Boards of Marin Community College District, several spiritual organizations, and a San Francisco Tenderloin care organization.  He was the volunteer chaplain of Hospice of Marin.

Source of Passion for the Hospice House Project:  

“The nurses and chaplains of Hospice of Marin were the purest souls I have ever worked with.  The effect of their work with patients and their families was life enhancing.  An earlier experience visiting a dying friend at the Zen Hospice in San Francisco still affects me deeply.”

Other Interests:

Family, good causes, the arts, the sea.

John Forsyth, MD

Washington University in St. Louis, Medical School (’65)

University of Washington Hospitals (’65-’70), post graduate training

Work History

John practiced Internal Medicine and Cardiology in Medford, Oregon from 1970-2004.

Board Service and Community Involvement

Since 1994, he has been a volunteer clinical consultant (17 years), board member (6 years) and president (2 years) at Community Health Center. He has served on the Ethics committees of both Rogue Valley Medical Center and Providence Medford Medical Center since 1980. In 1994, he helped form VOLPACT, a collaborative venture between three local hospitals two safety-net clinics and 90% of the practicing physicians of Jackson County, Oregon to provide necessary charitable, specialty care for low income, uninsured patients. In 2008, he was elected chairman of Jefferson Regional Health Alliance. In 2010, he joined several community leaders to form COHO (Choosing Options, Honoring Options), a collaborative fostering community-wide education about end-of-life care options.

Previous Honors

1998- Oregon Medical Association, Physician Citizen of the Year 1998- Providence Health System, Mother Joseph Award

2003- Rogue Valley Hospital Foundation, ASV Carpenter Distinguished Citizen Award

Source of Passion

The reintroduction of palliative and hospice care into mainstream American medicine over the last twenty years is finally being recognized as a great benefit by the vast majority of those near the end of life and their families. Admittedly, my own profession (which holds the keys to those therapies) has only recently begun to incorporate the many blessings of both palliative and hospice care into the care of dying people.  I, myself, have personally seen such care transform the end of life for many friends, patients, and families.  Unfortunately, now, nearly half of those who elect hospice care are unable to accomplish such care in their own homes (the most preferred place). Hence the concept of a hospice house, a home-like place that focuses squarely upon providing superb 24 comfort care, facilitating meaningful conversations, closure of human relationships and spiritual support for those who wish it, makes abundant sense.  Current plans for the Celia’s House will address this great need in our local community. It will also elevate the level of end-of-life care for all Southern Oregonians. For all these reasons and many more, the Celia’s House for hospice care has become the great passion of my late retirement years!

Judy Hilyard, RN

Secretary; Patient Care Policies and Caregiver Training Committee Co-Chair and Executive Facility Committee

Diploma in Nursing, Norwalk Hospital School of Nursing, Norwalk, Connecticut B.S.N., Nursing, Pacific Lutheran University,
M.S., Nursing, University of Washington M.P.A., Evergreen State College

Work History
Judy held nursing positions at Norwalk Hospital then Huntington Memorial hospital 1966 – 1975.
She was a staff RN in ICU, Nurse Manager of ICU, and Critical Care Educator at Multicare Medical Center 1975 – 1987. She was the Director of Critical Care at St. Peter Hospital and Medical Center 1987 – 2001, Clinical Nurse Specialist in Cardiology at Providence St. Vincent Hospital and Medical Center 1995 – 2001, Administrative Director of Education/RN in SVICU 2001 – 2006, and Lead RN in ICU and House Supervisor at Ashland Community Hospital 2006 – 2013.

Board Service and Community Involvement
Board President, WinterSpring Center. She volunteers for Riding Beyond, a local initiative to help breast cancer survivors heal through connection with horses. She served on the Southern Oregon Friends of Hospice Facilities Committee before becoming a board member.

Source of Passion
The SOFOH hospice home will provide a deeply loving and compassionate human-to-human benevolent support for those at the end of life, and it is my profound joy to be part of that effort.

Other Interests
I have a practice as an Anam Cara, soul friend, to those who want support in moving to the end of life. I love taking my dog, Sophie, for walks and grooming, hugging and loving my rescue horse, Shasta. No more riding in my future. I also practice and teach healing touch and Reiki.

Carolyn Johnson, BSN, RN


B.S. Nursing, Southern Oregon State College (now Southern Oregon University)

Work History

Carolyn worked for Ashland Community Hospital in a variety of management positions for 25 years, retiring as Vice President of Ancillary and Support Services in 2007. She was also the Executive Director of Commit, a research project for the National Institutes of Health and Director of Healthy

Start for the Jackson County Health Department.

Board Service and Community Involvement

Over the years Carolyn has served as the Board President for Ashland Meals on Wheels; Interfaith Care Community of Ashland; Jackson County Medical Auxiliary; Soroptimist International of Ashland; Chapter FC PEO. She has served as an Elder and Deacon at First Presbyterian Church of Ashland. In 2004 the Ashland Chamber of Commerce named her Citizen of the Year.

Source of Passion

“One of my roles at Ashland Community Hospital was to implement new programs to allow the hospital to meet community needs. In 2005 I started the Ashland Community Hospital Hospice and Palliative care Program. As I attended the National Hospice Association conferences, I toured Hospice Residential Care Facilitys all over the country and dedicated my efforts to building a Hospice Residential Care Facility in the Rogue Valley.”

Other Interests

Carolyn enjoys traveling, hiking, reading, volunteering and spending time with friends and family.

Bruce Johnson, MD


B.A., Carleton College, Minnesota,

M.D., University of Nebraska College of Medicine

Work History

Internship and Family Practice Residency, San Bernardino County Hospital, CA 1967-1970 USAF BEALE AFB, California, Chief of Family Practice Clinics, 1970 – 1972

Began solo practice in Ashland 1972, and eventually developed Southern Oregon Family Practice. Hospice Medical Director, Ashland Community Hospital Hospice and Palliative Care, 2005 -2010

Board Service and Community Involvement

Bruce served as President of Jackson County Medical Society. His has also served on the Boards of Rogue Valley Physician Services; Board of Trustees for the Oregon Medical Association; ACH Board; ACH Foundation; Ashland YMCA, “Distinguished Service Award” 2007, ACH Foundation

Source of Passion for the Hospice Residential Care Facility Project

“Although during all of my early training I received no training regarding death and dying, after moving to Ashland, Elizabeth Kubler Ross gave a series of talks in Medford and that was the beginning of my interest in end-of-life care. The interest mushroomed as we began organizing the Ashland Hospice and I attended multiple training programs to prepare to become the Medical Director.”

Other Interests

Bruce has enjoyed sailing in the San Juan and Canadian Gulf Islands, as well as the British Virgin Islands, and golfing with friends. More recently he has enjoyed traveling overseas.

Christine Karchmer

Rich Karchmer, MD

Gates McKibbon

Jed Meese

Laura Naumes


Oregon State University, BS in Business Marketing 1981

Work History:

Laura is Vice-President of Naumes, Inc. (Fruit Production, Cold Storage Operations, Fresh Packing and Shipping). She has been with Naumes Inc. since 1987.

Current Board Service and Community Involvement:

President, Boy Scouts of America – Crater Lake Council, Pear Bureau Northwest Member, Fresh Pear Committee Member, Oregon State University Board of Trustees, Winter Pear Control Stewardship and Technical Advisory Committee, Asante Foundation Board of Trustees

Previous Board Service and Community Involvement:

Past President Pear Bureau Northwest Board of Directors, Rogue Valley YMCA Board Member, South Valley Bank & Trust Board of Directors, Northwest Horticultural Science Advisory Council, Advisory Council 12th District Federal Reserve Bank, St. Mary’s School Board of Trustees, Oregon State University Foundation Board.

Mike Naumes


Santa Clara University, B.A. in Economics, 1968

Cornell University – M.B.A. 1972


Honorable Discharge – Specialist Five – 14 Months in Vietnam

Work History:

President, Naumes, Inc.

Board Service and Community Involvement:

Current member of: Pear Bureau Northwest Executive Committee; Oregon Community Foundation Walker Fund; St. Mary’s Endowment Fund; Boy Scouts of America Advisory Committee; Santa Clara University Agri-Business Advisory Board; Oregon State University Campaign Cabinet- College of Agricultural Sciences; Secretary of the Joe and Frances Naumes Family Foundation; Gorilla Capital, Inc. Board of Directors; Essential Holdings, Inc. Board of Directors. Past Community Involvement: Pear Bureau Northwest Executive Committee; Medford Pear Shippers; Rogue Valley Marketing Association; Winter Pear Control Committee; Northwest Fresh Bartlett Marketing Committee; Boy Scouts of America Executive Board; Providence Hospital Foundation Board; First Interstate Bank of Oregon Board of Directors: PacifiCorp Advisory Board of Directors; Pacific Northwest United States Tennis Association Board of Directors.

Harry Oliver

Shirley Patton


Stanford University, B.A., Speech and Drama

Portland State and SOU, post-graduate work for teaching certificate

Work History:

Shirley was a member of the acting company of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival for thirty seasons. She has also been a guest artist at SOU as well as working for Actors’ Theatre, New Playwrights, Oregon Stage Works, Lyric Theatre and currently, Camelot Theatre.  She taught English at Medford High School for one delightful, challenging year.

Board Service and Community Involvement:

Shirley as served on the boards of the Carpenter Foundation, League of Women Voters, Ashland, Tudor Guild, and the Junior Service League (President).  She is a founding board member and performer with the Extended Circle, which for 24 years has provided weekly variety shows in care and retirement facilities in the Rogue Valley. She is a leader with Presbyterian Women on the national, synod, presbytery and local level, synod representative on Global Exchange to Brazil. She is an Elder and Deacon (co-Moderator) at the First Presbyterian Church in Ashland. Shirley’s voice is also familiar to many as the voice of “As It Was” on JPR.

Honors include:

Aubrey Watzek Award (Lewis & Clark College); President’s Medal (SOU); Citizen of the Year (Ashland Chamber of Commerce); Inclusion in Ellen Nichols’ book, Images of Oregon Women

Reasons for my desire to be involved in hospice:

“In the span of two years I experienced hospice first hand during the preparations for my mother’s and then my husband’s deaths.  We were all cared for by wonderful, caring teams of people from hospice.  Any program that benefits the work of hospice and extends its reach has my support.”

Other interests:

Shirley enjoys travel, especially with friends and family; attending cultural events; reading; and showing up on behalf of peace with justice concerns.

Chuck Reiling


Colorado School of Mines – Mining Geologic Engineer – 1959

University of Chicago Graduate School of Business – MBA – 1972

 Harvard Business School – short courses in business – 1973

Work History

Superior Oil – petroleum geologist – 1960/1965

IBM – system engineer, regional mktg rep, development mgr, sr sales rep – 1965/1982

Masstor Systems – Director of Development – 1982/1984

Tandem Computers – Sr Product Manager, Database Systems – 1984/1990

PHAMIS Inc – Director of Development, Sr VP Client Systems – 1990/1998

Connext – VP Development – 1999

Woods Creek Consulting – consultant on organizational effectiveness – 1999/2001 John L Scott Real Estate – realtor – 2002/2022

Community Service

Sharon Heights Homeowners Association – 1986/1989

Phoenix (Oregon) Urban Renewal Association – 2017/2020

 Southern Oregon Friends of Hospice – member, President (2018) – 2014/2022

Source of Passion for Hospice

My mom died in a low-end nursing home; I couldn’t get there in time to hug her goodbye. My dad died in a sterile hospital environment; at least I was there to say goodbye. I think hospice and its environment of caring attention is a much better way to go. I am proud of my part in bringing Celia’s House into existence.

Other interests

Skiing – 60 great years of good skiing with great friends, had to give it up in 2022

Reading–science fiction,murder mysteries,Economist(weekly),Scientific American(monthly)

Rockhounding – rock collecting and attending gem & minerals shows with my son, Steven

Management book club – weekly discussions with my son on chapters in a book of interest

Sarah Seybold, RN, MS

Registered Nurse training & RN licens,e Mercy College of Nursing, San Diego, California B.S., Nursing University of San Francisco
M.S., Nursing University of California, San Francisco Certification as an End-of-Life Counselor.
Sarah’s life-long interest in spirituality and world religions was deepened through studies at Mercy Center in Burlingame, California (1996-1999) where she became certified as a Spiritual Director.

Work History
Sarah spent eighteen years of her professional career as a nurse educator, most recently teaching Mental Health/Chronic Illness at OHSU on the SOU campus. Sixteen years of Sarah’s career was spent in starting, developing, and sustaining a national mail order business, Dove Professional Apparel.

Board Service and Community Involvement
Volunteerism is woven into Sarah’s life in the international arena with the Peace Corps-Turkey and Brazil 1963-1967 and citizen diplomacy with the former USSR 1985-1990, and domestically with faith community nursing and the Hospice Unique Boutique.

Source of Passion for the Hospice Residential Care Facility Project
“I deeply believe that Southern Oregon, with its growing retirement population, is an ideal community where compassionate care at the end of life will become the norm.”

Other Interests
Sarah spends her leisure time in fitness activities, walking Riley her golden retriever, and playing golf with her husband Jack and friends.

Jeannie Taylor

Work History:

Before retiring, Jeanne owned a Farmers Insurance Agency in Denver, Colorado.

Board Service and Community Involvement:

Jeanne serves on the SOU Foundation Board, Southern Oregon Land Conservancy Board, and is the current President of the YMCA board. She served on the Ashland Hospital Foundation Board for six years and on many boards in California before moving to the Rogue Valley.


Jeanne and Jerry Taylor were high school sweethearts in North Platte, Nebraska, before life took them in different directions. Twenty-five years later, they reconnected, married, and have been together ever since. Jeanne and Jerry became involved in local philanthropy, creating the Taylor Family Foundation that today is managed by the Silicon Valley Charitable Foundation. In 1996, the Taylors bought a second home in Ashland and began spending time in southern Oregon. It was when they moved to Ashland permanently in 2003 that they realized the great reward of living in a small community. “People are inclusive. People are generous,” says Jeanne. “This is a great community with wonderful people.”

Bill Thorndike


Medford Senior High, 1972

Lewis & Clark College, BS in Business Administration, 1976

Work History: 

Bill Thorndike operates his family business, Medford Fabrication, a custom steel fabrication company that has been in operation for over 70 years.

Board Service and Community Involvement:

Mr. Thorndike currently serves on the boards of Southern Oregon University, Oregon Business Council, Regence- Oregon BlueCross Blue Shield, Crater Lake National Park Trust, Southern Oregon Regional Economic Development, Inc., Oregon Economic Forum, State Board of Higher Education, Jefferson Regional Health Alliance, Philanthropy Northwest, Northwest Health Foundation and the Northwest Area Foundation. He has served on a number of Oregon boards and commissions, including the Port of Portland, The Oregon Community Foundation, Asante Health System and the Portland Branch of the San Francisco Federal Reserve Bank.

Honors include:

SOLV / Tom McCall Leadership Award and the Glenn Jackson Leadership Award from Willamette University

Roy Vineyard

Davis Wilkins, MD


Duke University, B.A., Comparative Literature

Monash University, Victoria, Australia, M.A. in Bioethics at with a focus on end-of-life issues

University of Washington, medical school and internship

Virginia Mason Medical Center, Seattle, Internal Medicine residency

OHSU, Portland, Hospice & Palliative Medicine fellowship

Work History:

Davis is board-certified in Internal Medicine, Hospice & Palliative Medicine.

Davis and her husband, Matt Oliva, MD, moved to Ashland in 2008.  She began the first inpatient palliative medicine consultative practice here in Southern Oregon. She went on to champion inpatient palliative medicine service implementation grants from the Cambia Foundation at both Rogue Valley and Providence Medford Medical Centers and was the founding medicine director for Rogue Valley Medicine Center’s palliative care service from 2010-2012, where she served on their hospital ethics committee.  She currently works as the medical director for Ashland Community Hospital’s Home Health, Hospice, and Palliative Care service.

Board Service and Community Involvement:

She has worked with hospices and palliative care units in Kathmandu, Nepal, while there with her husband who works overseas with the Himalayan Cataract Project.

Source of Passion for the Hospice House Project:  

Davis seeks to bring excellence in both care and communication to the bedside and champions the movement to build a residential hospice house to Southern Oregon, where she looks forward to caring for patients and their families one day.