Leadership

Our Staff Leadership

For years, The Villages has been a leader in our community. It’s all thanks to our dedicated statewide staff, who are tasked with the important work of making sure we stay true to our mission: providing children with stable, loving homes. Together, we’re able to help kids and provide assistance to families in order to ensure that children find the nurturing environments they need to thrive. By working to support everyone involved in the adoption and foster processes, we’re able to deliver better outcomes and build stronger families. Learn more about our team and ways you can get involved.

Executive Staff

Sharon Pierce has served as The Villages’ President and CEO since 1992. Before joining the organization, Sharon was the Deputy Director for the Indiana Division of Family and Children, overseeing Indiana’s state child welfare system. Her experience also includes positions with the Children’s Home & Aid Society of Illinois, Youth Advocate Program and Illinois Collaboration on Youth.

Sharon is a member of numerous boards and service organizations promoting the best interests of children. Among her many affiliations, Sharon serves on the National Board of Directors for the Child Welfare League of America and also acts as a National Child Welfare Trainer and consultant for the organization. She serves on the National Board of Directors of Prevent Child Abuse America, and chairs the IARCCA Institute for Excellence. In addition, she also serves on the IARCCA Public Policy Committee. Sharon has worked with the Indiana General Assembly on numerous legislative initiatives which impact children and families. She served on the Board for Child Care Coordination, the Commission on Abused and Neglected Children, and currently chairs the Healthy Families Indiana Think Tank.

Sharon holds a Master’s degree in Student Personnel Administration and Counseling, and a Bachelor’s of Science in English from Ball State University.

Pierce is married, and is the mother of four grown children and seven grandchildren.

Val Deckard has worked for The Villages since December 27, 1991. She holds a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Oakland City University, and was hired at The Villages as a bookkeeper for the Family-Model Group Homes Program. In the years since, Val has progressed from bookkeeper to staff accountant, director of finance, and finally her current position as vice president of operations.

Val enjoys the opportunities The Villages has afforded her to grow in her career, while also enabling her to contribute to a great cause—helping families and children. She has three nieces who have grown up with The Villages, and is popularly known as “Auntie Val” to the new generation there.

She loves the outdoors, particularly the beach; hiking (but not camping!); and is a 19-year season ticket holder for the WNBA Indiana Fever basketball team. So if she’s not out on the trails in the summer, she can likely be found at Banker’s Life Fieldhouse, sharing her support for the team from Section 20.

Brenda Chapin has worked for The Villages since 2006. She is a Licensed Social Worker who and has held positions in several programs including Foster Care, Supervisor of Monroe County Healthy Families, Director of Children’s Village Bloomington, Quality Assurance Manager, and Regional Director of Central Indiana. Brenda has also worked as a supervisor at the Department of Child Services, as well as school systems around the state. She has Bachelor Degrees in Sociology and Criminal Justice from Indiana University, as well as a Master of Social Work degree from Indiana University.  Her 18-year-old daughter recently started college and she is the “rescue mom” of a mutt named Reggie.

Regional Directors

Deb Brewer started at The Villages in December 1998 as the Statewide Program Director of Healthy Families and Childcare. She was promoted to Regional Director for Bloomington in 2003, and, a year later, added Regional Director for Evansville.  Prior to coming to The Villages, Deb worked as an administrator in a psychiatric hospital, as well as in the juvenile justice field and as a counselor in the school system. She has a MA in Counseling Psych from Boston College and a BS in Psychology from Purdue. Deb has been married for 30 years and has two children, a son and a daughter. Both have been active in school and community soccer so many of her “free hours” are spent on a soccer field, watching or volunteering. Their favorite family activity is skiing, which they do annually.

Crystal Wiley has over eighteen years experience working in child welfare and social service entities, in both the non-profit and for profit sectors. She graduated in 1999 from Marian University with her BA in Sociology, and obtained her MSW from Indiana University in 2004. In 2011, Crystal received her Master’s in Management and Leadership from Indiana Wesleyan University.

Jennifer Julian started at The Villages in 2008 as a clinical director for foster care and home-based services. She began managing the Children’s Mental Health Wraparound in the Howard County office in 2014. Today, Jennifer is the Regional Director for Kokomo and Lafayette. She participates on the PQI team for The Villages, and is a member of the Indiana University Kokomo psychology department advisory board. Jennifer enjoys spending time with her family and attending her teenagers’ band and choir events.

Betsy Kuhn has served as a Senior Regional Director with The Villages since 2008. Serving Northeastern Indiana, she works in Fort Wayne, Elkhart and Marion Offices in the areas of Foster Care, Adoption, Older Youth Services and Prevention Services. She has actively participated as a board member serving Homeless Youth through Pathways, Inc., as well as she currently serves on the Advisory Board for Allen County’s Great Kids Make Great Communities and Community Connection – Grant County’s System of Care. Betsy holds an Executive Master’s in Business Administration from the University of Notre Dame (where she is an avid Football fan – Go Irish!) and a Bachelor’s of Arts in Psychology from Ball State University.  She has been working in social work for over 30 years, happily married over 20 years, and is the proud mother of two college students, John and Rachael.

Julie Villarreal is the Senior Regional Director of the Northwest Indiana Region of The Villages. She received her Masters in Social Work in 2002 from Indiana University Northwest, with honors. She has worked in Child Welfare in various capacities since 1995. She is licensed in clinical social work. Julie enjoys spending time with family. She has two boys who participate in sports and she loves watching them play. In her spare time, Julie volunteers at a local food pantry and has a passion for working to improve the lives of children. Julie is also the recipient of the Ripple of Hope award for her dedication to youth and families.

Development Staff

Sarah Cline began working for The Villages as a volunteer, intern and Young Professional Board Member in July of 2010. She received her Bachelor of Science Degree in Tourism, Conventions and Event Management from Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis in 2012. She worked in catering and event planning before coming to The Villages full-time, as their first Community Engagement Director in 2015 to pursue her passion of serving children and families. In her current role as Director of Development, Sarah enjoys building relationships and connecting with community members who have a heart for championing children. In her free time Sarah enjoys spending time with her husband, three children, volunteering at her church, cooking and crafting — thanks to Pinterest.

Abbi Achterberg has served as the Director of Community Engagement for The Villages since July 2017.  Abbi received her Bachelor’s Degree from DePauw University and attended graduate school at Butler University where she graduated with an MBA in December of 2011. Prior to being on staff she served on the Young Professionals Board for The Villages for three years. Abbi has worked in marketing since 2003 and oversees much of the communications and marketing efforts for the agency. When not in the office Abbi enjoys time at home with her husband, three children and new puppy.

Executive Staff

Sharon Pierce has served as The Villages’ President and CEO since 1992. Before joining the organization, Sharon was the Deputy Director for the Indiana Division of Family and Children, overseeing Indiana’s state child welfare system. Her experience also includes positions with the Children’s Home & Aid Society of Illinois, Youth Advocate Program and Illinois Collaboration on Youth.

Sharon is a member of numerous boards and service organizations promoting the best interests of children. Among her many affiliations, Sharon serves on the National Board of Directors for the Child Welfare League of America and also acts as a National Child Welfare Trainer and consultant for the organization. She serves on the National Board of Directors of Prevent Child Abuse America, and chairs the IARCCA Institute for Excellence. In addition, she also serves on the IARCCA Public Policy Committee. Sharon has worked with the Indiana General Assembly on numerous legislative initiatives which impact children and families. She served on the Board for Child Care Coordination, the Commission on Abused and Neglected Children, and currently chairs the Healthy Families Indiana Think Tank.

Sharon holds a Master’s degree in Student Personnel Administration and Counseling, and a Bachelor’s of Science in English from Ball State University.

Pierce is married, and is the mother of four grown children and seven grandchildren.

Val Deckard has worked for The Villages since December 27, 1991. She holds a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Oakland City University, and was hired at The Villages as a bookkeeper for the Family-Model Group Homes Program. In the years since, Val has progressed from bookkeeper to staff accountant, director of finance, and finally her current position as vice president of operations.

Val enjoys the opportunities The Villages has afforded her to grow in her career, while also enabling her to contribute to a great cause—helping families and children. She has three nieces who have grown up with The Villages, and is popularly known as “Auntie Val” to the new generation there.

She loves the outdoors, particularly the beach; hiking (but not camping!); and is a 19-year season ticket holder for the WNBA Indiana Fever basketball team. So if she’s not out on the trails in the summer, she can likely be found at Banker’s Life Fieldhouse, sharing her support for the team from Section 20.

Brenda Chapin has worked for The Villages since 2006. She is a Licensed Social Worker who and has held positions in several programs including Foster Care, Supervisor of Monroe County Healthy Families, Director of Children’s Village Bloomington, Quality Assurance Manager, and Regional Director of Central Indiana. Brenda has also worked as a supervisor at the Department of Child Services, as well as school systems around the state. She has Bachelor Degrees in Sociology and Criminal Justice from Indiana University, as well as a Master of Social Work degree from Indiana University.  Her 18-year-old daughter recently started college and she is the “rescue mom” of a mutt named Reggie.

Regional Directors

Deb Brewer started at The Villages in December 1998 as the Statewide Program Director of Healthy Families and Childcare. She was promoted to Regional Director for Bloomington in 2003, and, a year later, added Regional Director for Evansville.  Prior to coming to The Villages, Deb worked as an administrator in a psychiatric hospital, as well as in the juvenile justice field and as a counselor in the school system. She has a MA in Counseling Psych from Boston College and a BS in Psychology from Purdue. Deb has been married for 30 years and has two children, a son and a daughter. Both have been active in school and community soccer so many of her “free hours” are spent on a soccer field, watching or volunteering. Their favorite family activity is skiing, which they do annually.

Crystal Wiley has over eighteen years experience working in child welfare and social service entities, in both the non-profit and for profit sectors. She graduated in 1999 from Marian University with her BA in Sociology, and obtained her MSW from Indiana University in 2004. In 2011, Crystal received her Master’s in Management and Leadership from Indiana Wesleyan University.

Jennifer Julian started at The Villages in 2008 as a clinical director for foster care and home-based services. She began managing the Children’s Mental Health Wraparound in the Howard County office in 2014. Today, Jennifer is the Regional Director for Kokomo and Lafayette. She participates on the PQI team for The Villages, and is a member of the Indiana University Kokomo psychology department advisory board. Jennifer enjoys spending time with her family and attending her teenagers’ band and choir events.

Betsy Kuhn has served as a Senior Regional Director with The Villages since 2008. Serving Northeastern Indiana, she works in Fort Wayne, Elkhart and Marion Offices in the areas of Foster Care, Adoption, Older Youth Services and Prevention Services. She has actively participated as a board member serving Homeless Youth through Pathways, Inc., as well as she currently serves on the Advisory Board for Allen County’s Great Kids Make Great Communities and Community Connection – Grant County’s System of Care. Betsy holds an Executive Master’s in Business Administration from the University of Notre Dame (where she is an avid Football fan – Go Irish!) and a Bachelor’s of Arts in Psychology from Ball State University.  She has been working in social work for over 30 years, happily married over 20 years, and is the proud mother of two college students, John and Rachael.

Julie Villarreal is the Senior Regional Director of the Northwest Indiana Region of The Villages. She received her Masters in Social Work in 2002 from Indiana University Northwest, with honors. She has worked in Child Welfare in various capacities since 1995. She is licensed in clinical social work. Julie enjoys spending time with family. She has two boys who participate in sports and she loves watching them play. In her spare time, Julie volunteers at a local food pantry and has a passion for working to improve the lives of children. Julie is also the recipient of the Ripple of Hope award for her dedication to youth and families.

Development Staff

Sarah Cline began working for The Villages as a volunteer, intern and Young Professional Board Member in July of 2010. She received her Bachelor of Science Degree in Tourism, Conventions and Event Management from Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis in 2012. She worked in catering and event planning before coming to The Villages full-time, as their first Community Engagement Director in 2015 to pursue her passion of serving children and families. In her current role as Director of Development, Sarah enjoys building relationships and connecting with community members who have a heart for championing children. In her free time Sarah enjoys spending time with her husband, three children, volunteering at her church, cooking and crafting — thanks to Pinterest.

Abbi Achterberg has served as the Director of Community Engagement for The Villages since July 2017.  Abbi received her Bachelor’s Degree from DePauw University and attended graduate school at Butler University where she graduated with an MBA in December of 2011. Prior to being on staff she served on the Young Professionals Board for The Villages for three years. Abbi has worked in marketing since 2003 and oversees much of the communications and marketing efforts for the agency. When not in the office Abbi enjoys time at home with her husband, three children and new puppy.