President & CEO
The “exceptional people” in our name come in two varieties: the folks who receive caring services from the agency and the staff who provide those services. These two groups of people are partnered in a way that shows humanity at its best. We’re all in this together and we know that we need each other to get through. I like the way that Maya Angelou puts it, “When we give cheerfully and accept gratefully, everyone is blessed.”

Tom Hopkins, a human services professional with more than 30 years of experience working with people with disabilities and their families, was born in Chicago and educated at Loyola University, the University of Illinois and the University of Hartford.  He began his career here in New York providing direct care in a group home in 1980.  He has been working his dream job as Executive Director at EPIC Long Island since 2008.



Chief Operating Officer

Paul began his career with the Epilepsy Foundation of Long Island (EFLI) in 1992 as a Direct Support Professional. His strong work ethic, drive, and commitment to quality care quickly led to a series of promotions. Under his direct leadership, the Residential Program that now includes 15 operational homes throughout Nassau and Suffolk Counties has grown by 50% since 1998. As the Chief Operating Officer, Paul works collaboratively with the Executive Director and the senior leadership team to facilitate strategic planning with a concentrated focus on program and workforce development; retention of service quality; and key stakeholder satisfaction. 

Paul earned his Bachelor of Arts in Psychology  and his Master of Science in Healthcare Administration from Stonybrook University. Paul’s intricate knowledge of direct services coupled with his ability to drive and develop a talented team of professionals has turned what was once a career stepping stone into a lifelong passion.   

Chief Financial Officer

Lawrence Boord, CPA has served as EPIC Long Island’s Chief Financial Officer since December, 2012. He had previously served as Controller of Children’s Health Fund, where he oversaw the financial management of a national program of health centers and crisis relief programs for underserved children. He brings over 20 years of experience to his position at EPIC Long Island, all of it in the Non-Profit healthcare sectors, including 9 years as Assistant Vice President of Finance Metropolitan Jewish Health System where he focused on their managed care programs. He earned his BA at CUNY/Queens College and is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and The New York Society of Certified Public Accountants. Larry lives in West Hempstead with his wife and 3 children.

Director of Intake Coordination

After earning an undergraduate Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and a brief stint working for the state of New Jersey, Gladys joined EPIC Long Island in 1977 as an Outreach Specialist.   Gladys quickly realized a passion for working in the human services industry, particularly with intellectually challenging adults and committed to a career at EPIC Long Island.  She moved into various management roles in the Day Habilitation Program, including serving as the Director of Day Services for over 13 years.  Gladys earned a Masters of Social Work degree from Adelphi University and is a New York State Licensed Clinical Social Worker.  Currently she holds the title of Director of Intake Services and is a therapist for the Agency’s Article 16 Clinic.  In addition to her role at EPIC Long Island, Gladys serves as a board member of a not-for-profit organization that aides economically disadvantage children.

Director of Clinical Services

Jennifer Colbert, LCSW has worked for EPIC Long Island since July, 1998. She has been the Director of Clinic Services since 2009 and before that her title was Clinic Administrator, a position she held from March 2001. This clinic provides neurological, psychiatric, psychological, social work, physical therapy, occupational therapy and speech services to the community. In March 2009, Jennifer along with CEO, Thomas Hopkins and Clinic Director Shari Lurie, developed and obtained a license for EPIC Clinical Care, a mental health clinic to provide services to individuals who were dealing with emotional and psychological problems.   Before that Jennifer  provided individual, family, group, and couples therapy, Jennifer runs the Parent Support Group, and the Professional's Support Group.   Along with her colleague, Irene Rodgers LCSW, she developed the "Teen Travel Camp" and other innovative programs. Jennifer trained at the Long Island Center for Modern Psychoanalysis. She is a member of NASW.   Prior to coming to work for EPIC Long Island, Jennifer worked with parents and children at The Early Childhood Development Center at Schneider Children's Hospital and also at the Long Island Breast Cancer Support Center and Hotline at Adelphi University.

Director of Development

Eileen Colletti has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from the Catholic University of America in Washington D.C.  While working with nonprofits in the New York area, she went on to receive a Master’s in Public Administration from New York University’s Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service.  Eileen has spent her professional career in the fundraising field.  Her background includes raising private support for social service agencies, health and higher education organizations, including Patient AirLift Services, New York Foundling, Manhattan Eye, Ear & Throat Hospital, New York University and as a consultant with J.C. Geever, Inc., a fundraising consulting firm.  She has more than a decade’s experience implementing both capital and annual campaigns. 

Director of Mental Health Clinic

Graduated with MSW from Adelphi University in 1987. Began ten years of experience working in outpatient substance abuse programs and an alcohol Day tx. Program in both clinical and supervisory positions. Began private practice within first year completing graduate school which continues to thrive.

Worked for ten years at Suffolk County Probation in the mental health juvenile justice program before moving on to working as a family therapist at a Residential School for emotionally disturbed girls. It was at that time that my affiliation at EPIC began; first as a consultant and then as Director of the Mental Health Program beginning in it’s infancy.

In addition to my LCSW,  I spent thirteen years training at Long Island Center for Modern Psychoanalysis and am a member of NASW.

Director of Quality Improvement

I have worked for EPIC Long Island for over 14 years.  In 1994, graduated from the Eastern Suffolk School of Practical Nursing and received licensure from the University of New York State Education Department, office of Professionals. I remain registered to practice in NYS as a Licensed Practical Nurse.

I started my career as a residential nurse in a 10 bed ICF.  Prior to this, I worked in the for-profit sector at a Hospital and a Long Term Care facility as a charge nurse.

The leadership and development I found at the EPIC Long Island has guided me over the years.  While working as a residential nurse my strengths were recognized and in 2005, I was promoted to a new position.  I began working as the Medical Regulatory specialist for the Quality Improvement Department.   While working in this capacity I continued to develop my skill set for compliance.  In 2008, I was promoted to the position of Director of Quality Improvement and Compliance/HIPAA Officer for the agency.  Currently I chair the Compliance Committee and the Incident Review Committee.

I am responsible for a team that develops, applies and maintains quality standards for the programs run, with adherence to both internal and external standards. I assist departments with the coordination of audit information, and recommend appropriate mechanisms, procedures, etc. to maintain these standards.

My personal commitments have guided my life in a direction that helped me make good career decisions.  The decisions have led me to continue to support the vision and mission of the EPIC LI.   I am committed to the values reflected here. These values are seen in the services provided, in the respect given, in the teamwork experienced, as well as in the integrity and the enthusiasm I have seen here.

Director of Community Services

Irene Rodgers is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker who oversees three programs at EPIC Long Island: Medicaid Service Coordination (MSC), Community Habilitation, and Community Education.

Irene began her career at EPIC Long Island in 2000 as a therapist in the Article 16 Clinic. She worked with individuals, families, and groups faced with challenges related to developmental disabilities and epilepsy.

Prior to joining the EPIC Long Island team, Irene had worked with people with developmental disabilities in the group home and day program settings. In addition, Irene was a Medical Social Worker in  a general hospital as well as physical rehabilitation centers.

Irene graduated from the State University of New York College at Cortland with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and earned her Masters of Social Work degree from the State University of New York at Albany, School of Social Welfare.

Director of Day Services

Allen has been working in the human services field since 1992 and has a vast knowledge of the people we serve.  He started working for EPIC Long Island in 2001 as an Assistant Manager at our Port Jefferson IRA. Allen shows an unwavering commitment and dedication to the people in our care.  Allen is particularly committed to finding ways to serve individuals with the most challenging medical and behavioral needs.  Among his accomplishments, Allen opened a residence for severely behavioral individuals.  The outcomes of this project have been so successful that the model has been endorsed for replication in future projects.

Allen is now our Director of Day Services.  Allen is a strong believer in the benefits of a positive corporate culture.  His favorite saying is that “happy staff equals happy consumers”.  His innovative ideas are currently being incorporated into the renovation of our new facility that both staff and consumers are looking forward to.  Allen earned a BA from Stony Brook University in 2008.

Senior Director of Human Resources

Sheryl joined EPIC Long Island (EFLI) in 2008 following a long career in the non-profit sector for both public and private entities.  She began her career working with the developmentally disabled population as a QMRP/Assistant Manager.  Sheryl soon realized that she could make a greater impact as an administrator.   She transitioned into the role of Director of Training and Staff Development, which was her entrée to the human resources field. 

With over 17 years of progressive experience in the human resources, Sheryl is well-versed in employee and labor relations, strategic management, and workforce development.  She has played a key role in implementing initiatives to support EPIC’s business strategies and enhance its corporate values. 

Sheryl earned a BA from Stony Brook University, and a Masters Degree in Business Administration from Dowling College.  She also holds a Human Resources Certificate from Cornell University and is certified as a Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR).  She is an active member of SHRM-LI and serves on the SHRM Council on Diversity and Inclusion committee. 

Director of Residential Services

Amy Walsleben has worked in the field of developmental disabilities for over 34 years.  She has been employed with EPIC Long Island since 1989 where she began as Treatment Team Leader in the Residential program.  Amy became the first Training Coordinator at which time she created an Agency Orientation program as well as developed various employee training manuals to educate new employees.  In 1998 she was appointed by the Executive Director to a newly established position at EPIC, Director of Quality Improvement, and continued in that position for over 9 years.  She developed and implemented quality assurance and quality improvement systems to ensure the highest level of quality care for all individuals.  Amy has been the Director of Residential Services since 2008.  She is committed to providing fulfilling and enriched life experiences in a 24-hour supervised setting for individuals with developmental disabilities who may be medically frail, have behavioral challenges, or have epilepsy. 

Prior to joining EPIC Long Island, Amy began her career as a Therapeutic Recreation Specialist at adult day treatment programs.  After several years of experience, she was promoted to Program Supervisor.  Amy served as a volunteer Chairperson on the New York State Surrogate Decision Making Committee, Commission on Quality of Care and Advocacy for People with Disabilities from the time of the program’s inception in 1999 until 2005. 

Amy graduated from the State University of New York College at Cortland with a Bachelor of Science degree in Therapeutic Recreation and earned a Master of Science degree in Therapeutic Recreation from Northeastern University, Boston-Bouvé College in Boston, Massachusetts.