Valley Mountain Regional Center (VMRC) is pleased to announce its recent hiring of Christine Couch (formerly Hager) to the newly formed position of Compliance Manager. Within this new role, Christine will be responsible for managing consumer complaints, fair hearings, and appeals, as well as monitoring VMRC’s management of regulatory compliance with all statutes with jurisdiction over the regional center operations.
“We’re excited to move forward with this redesigned approach to regulatory compliance and dispute resolution at Valley Mountain Regional Center,” said VMRC Executive Director Tony Anderson. “We feel this new approach allows us to be more intentional and systematic in our efforts to be fully transparent with our community and stakeholders, and at the same time be most welcoming and nonthreatening with our consumers when we have different views of what the Lanterman Act allows VMRC to do in meeting its obligations and maintaining the public’s trust.”
Christine will not be a new face around the VMRC offices. She comes to the agency with over 27 years of experience working alongside VMRC staff and the individuals served. She also spent 5 years on staff as a Community Services Manager and Service Coordinator. Since 2011, Christine has been a leader with Disability Rights California, Office of Clients’ Rights Advocacy providing advocacy services to persons with developmental disabilities who are consumers of regional center services. Christine also spent 9 years working as a Day Program Director, Quality Assurance Director and Regional Operations Director for Central Valley Training Center in Stockton.
“I’m excited to continue to serve people with disabilities and our community. VMRC has a sincere interest in protecting the rights and responsibilities of people while maintaining integrity by upholding their responsibilities as outlined in the Lanterman Act. It is a privilege to return to the VMRC team,” said Couch.
“Christine comes to VMRC with decades of experience from almost every perspective in the developmental services system, which will help us with fairness in considering the legitimacy of all perspectives in dispute,” said Anderson.
In addition to adding Christine Couch as the new Compliance Manager, we are also happy to announce that we have added attorney Matthew Bahr, our legal counsel under contract, who will support Christine in staffing state-level fair hearings, Board of Director’s support and training, and assist in other general legal matters for VMRC. Matthew’s father dedicated much of his career to working in the regional center system. Matthew has been General Counsel for Central Valley Regional Center for the past decade, and has been assisting Kern Regional Center for the past 3 years.
“Matthew has developed a strong affinity and appreciation for the purpose of the Lanterman Act in support of people with developmental disabilities and their families. His professionalism and personal integrity make him a perfect fit for our regional center,” Anderson said.
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