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Trio of laughing older adults in leafy green setting

Jewish Community Housing for the Elderly (JCHE) is now 2Life Communities.

Why the name change?

Amy Schectman watching Brighton resident Tatyana play piano

Leadership

Our seasoned, thoughtful leaders make every decision with the well-being of our residents topmost in their minds.

Amy Schectman
President & CEO

president@2lifecommunities.org

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For over 35 years, Amy has worked in the public and nonprofit sectors to advance affordable housing and social justice. Recognized for her ability to forge effective partnerships, Amy is a thought leader in holistic approaches to elder housing and care. Amy also plays a state and national advocacy role. She serves on Governor Charlie Baker’s Council to Address Aging in Massachusetts, and is on the board of CHAPA, MHIC, MHAC, and other nonprofits. She has been invited to The White House four times and has hosted U.S. Congressmen, U.S. Senate staff, and state legislators numerous times. Read more.

Karen Edlund
Chief Financial Officer

finance@2lifecommunies.org

Karen brings over twenty years of experience in the affordable housing and real estate industries to her position as 2Life’s Chief Financial Officer. Karen has significant experience in tax credit housing and investment finance. She is a past president of the Boston Chapter of Financial Executives International, a board member of the Women's Institute for Housing and Economic Development, and on the finance committees for The Dimock Center and Respond, Inc. In 2017, she was recognized by the Boston Business Journal as the Nonprofit CFO of the Year. Karen received her M.S. in Finance at Boston College and her B.A. at Middlebury College.

John Lutz
Chief Operating Officer

operations@2lifecommunities.org

John comes to 2Life with more than thirty years of management experience garnered across the private, public, and nonprofit sectors. The last twelve years were spent in the elder services world serving as associate and executive director at two Western Mass ASAPs (Aging Services Access Points). Prior service included work in the areas of homeless services, child and family services, local government, cultural arts, and consumer products.

John has an M.S. in Public Policy and Management from Heinz College at Carnegie Mellon University, as well as a graduate diploma in business and industrial administration from the University of Auckland (NZ) and an undergraduate degree in Economics from Wittenberg University.

Lizbeth Heyer
Chief of Real Estate and Innovation

realestate@2lifecommunities.org

Lizbeth brings to 2Life more than thirty years of professional experience in affordable housing development, planning, policy, and advocacy in both the nonprofit and public sectors. Her housing career began in 1986 as a community organizer with the Massachusetts Tenants Organization where she led local, state, and national efforts to preserve expiring-use housing.

After receiving her Master’s in Urban Planning from MIT, Lizbeth worked for the Jamaica Plain Neighborhood Development Corporation (JPNDC), eventually becoming Associate Director of Real Estate Development, where she led numerous community planning efforts and affordable housing and mixed-use development projects totaling over $80M. Before joining 2Life, Lizbeth served as the Associate Director of Public Housing and Rental Assistance for the Massachusetts Department of Housing and Community Development, where she led gubernatorial initiatives to reform and preserve the state’s public housing system, expand the Massachusetts Rental Voucher Program, and create the HomeBASE program, which provided housing instead of shelter for over 6,000 homeless families. 

Meet our Real Estate Team

Deborah Edison
Chief Development Officer

development@2lifecommunities.org

Deborah has spent more than thirty years raising funds for nonprofit organizations that help disenfranchised children and adults, starting in New York City with Gay Men’s Health Crisis. In 1993, she co-founded Classical Action: Performing Arts Against AIDS, which became a program of Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS and continues to raise funds for this cause nationwide.

In Seattle, Deborah headed development and communications for Lifelong AIDS Alliance, Treehouse (serving foster children and their caregivers), National Court Appointed Special Advocates, and YouthCare(serving homeless youth). Prior to joining 2Life Communities in 2016, she served as the VP for Development and Communications at YouthBuild USA and Thompson Island Outward Bound Education Center.

Leah Bloom
Director of Communication

comms@2lifecommunities.org

Leah brings nearly twenty years of experience in communications and marketing for mission-driven organizations to her oversight of 2Life's external communications, including managing PR and advertising, serving as webmaster, and supporting fundraising and events. She has a B.A. from Brown University and an M.F.A. from Emerson College. Leah has spent her career working for mission-driven organizations, and loves being the “brand boss” for an organization that tackles so many social justice issues at once.

Deborah Cutler, LICSW
Director of Programs and Health Care Integration

programs@2lifecommunities.org

Debbi has more than thirty years of professional experience providing social work services and supervision to clinicians working with older adults, as well as experience in program management in affordable, supportive housing. Debbi came to 2Life from Brigham and Women’s Hospital where she was a social work manager. Prior to that, she was the Director of Behavioral Health at Hearth, Inc., an organization whose mission is to end elder homelessness. Debbi received her M.S.W. from Boston University.

Gaye Freed, MSW, LICSW
Director of the Training Institute

training@2lifecommunities.org

Gaye has worked for 2Life Communities for thirty-six years. During this time, she has served in various capacities, including Director of Resident Services and Executive Director of the Brighton campus. In 2018, Gaye launched 2Life’s Training Institute. As Director of Training, Gaye supervises graduate student interns from a variety of human services fields. She also arranges workshops for residents and for staff members from 2Life Communities and our partner agencies on topics relevant to their lives and their work.

Francine Godfrey
Director of Fitness and Wellness

fitness@2lifecommunities.org

Francine joined 2Life in 1988. She manages Brighton’s fitness staff and multilingual wellness nurses. Francine created our Fall Prevention Initiative and has introduced specialized classes and programs for older adults, many of whom are frail or experiencing cognitive decline. The fall and fitness programs that Francine created have been replicated at Beit Baruch, an assisted-living facility in Ukraine, home to sixty poor, frail, and previously isolated seniors. She also provided consultation and staff training to doctors, nurses, and aides in Ukraine.

Cindy Katzeff
Director of Village Centers and Community Engagement

villagecenters@2lifecommunities.org

Cindy is a member of the Massachusetts Bar Association, and practiced law for twenty-two years before joining 2Life, first as the Director of Resident Services at our Coleman House, and then as the Director of Village Centers for the organization. She also served as the Manager for all Senior Adult Programming at the JCC from 2008 to 2014. Cindy has a B.S. from St. Anselm College, a J.D. from Suffolk University Law School, and a Certificate in Change Leadership from Cornell University.

Marian Milbauer
Director of Foundation Relations

foundations@2lifecommunities.org

Marian joined 2Life Communities in 2016, bringing more than thirty years of professional experience in grant writing, program planning, evaluation, research, data analysis, strategic planning, and training in the nonprofit and public sectors. Marian has worked on issues ranging from health promotion and disease prevention to elder services, adult basic education, and more, with clients ranging from state and city agencies to major nonprofits. Marian earned a BA from the University of Michigan and an MPH in Health Services from the Boston University School of Public Health.

Kerri Schmidt
Director of Intergenerational Programs

intergen@2lifecommunities.org

Kerri is the Director of Intergenerational Programs for 2Life Communities. She oversees Generations Together, 2Life’s' award-winning and innovative program that promotes positive connections and builds meaningful relationships between older adults and younger generations. She and her team work with residents and staff at all of our campuses.

Nate Vaughan
Major Gifts Officer

giving@2lifecommunities.org

Nate brings a passion for helping people put their values into action through philanthropy to his role at 2Life. Originally from southern Kentucky, Nate is actively involved in Boston’s Jewish community, playing a leadership role in several local organizations. He is an avid fan of basketball and bluegrass music. He is a 2019 winner of Combined Jewish Philanthropies’ “Chai in the Hub” award.