Oklahoma Rehabilitation Council members are appointed by the Governor with the majority having a recognized disability.
All members serve on committees and have active responsibilities.
Membership includes representatives from:
- Disability and advocacy organizations
- Business, industry, and labor
- Community rehabilitation service providers
- Client Assistance Program
- Vocational Rehabilitation/Visual Services Counselors
- Current or former consumer of DRS Services
- Parent Training Information Center
- OK State Department of Education
- Statewide Independent Living Council
- American Indian VR Program
- Director of DRS
Program Manager, Oklahoma Rehabilitation Council
Carolina Colclasure began her role as Program Manager in March 2018. She has experience working with underserved populations with disabilities in Oklahoma and the fact she is bilingual in Spanish helps her communicate with a larger number of citizens. Carolina's work experience includes serving as Grant Coordinator for Oklahoma Durable Medical Equipment Reuse Program (OKDMERP) since 2016 and working at the Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services prior to that.
Associate Director for
Department of Wellness, Oklahoma State University
Linda Jaco is the Associate Director for Sponsored Programs, Department of Wellness, Oklahoma State University. She received her M.S. in School Psychology from Columbia University in 1977 and her B.S. in Secondary Education and Child Development from the University of Houston in 1974. In February 2006, Linda was appointed Assistant Director for Sponsored Programs in the OSU Department of Wellness where she oversees a number of private, state, and federal grant programs totaling in excess of $4 million annually. Linda has served on a number of national, state, and local task forces and boards related to disability and agricultural issues.
Kelli Bates has over a decade of leadership experience in the fields of staffing, communications, and employee development. She currently works as a Regional Staffing Manager for the Galt Foundation, an organization that provides, promotes, and expands employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities. Kelli oversees the Staffing Departments in the states of Oklahoma and Pennsylvania. This includes supervising the Service Managers, Coordinators, Payroll and office support staff. The Staffing team recruits, educates, retains, and finds the “right matches” for Galt’s clients.
She is the proud parent of a National Honor Society high school student. Her leisure time is spent reading, laughing with her daughter, and perfecting her craft. Kelli’s favorite quote: “I don’t have a dis-ability, I have a different-ability.” – Robert M. Hensel
Secondary Transition Specialist
Special Education Services
Oklahoma State Department of Education
Oliver Hodge Building
2500 North Lincoln Boulevard
Oklahoma City, OK 73105
Lori Chesnut has a Master’s Degree in Special Education. As a former Special Education teacher, Lori has worked with students with many types of disabilities. She has served on the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC), the Division on Career Development and Transition (DCDT), and the Oklahoma Transition Council. Lori and her husband, Darren, have two children and two dogs. They all enjoy hiking and camping and Lori also enjoys reading, decorating for the holidays and Pinterest.
Melinda Fruendt, was appointed as Executive Director of the Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services on Monday, November 5 2018. Fruendt was previously DRS chief of staff for DRS’ seven divisions with 25 statewide programs focused on employment, education, independence and the determination of medical eligibility for disability benefits. Her past positions include executive-level project coordinator for DRS and program manager of the Oklahoma Rehabilitation Council, a DRS partner. She earned a Master’s of Science and Bachelors of Science degrees from Oklahoma State University. Fruendt and her husband Paul farm and ranch in Guthrie where they have a cow-calf and stocker operation, as well as diversified crops production.
William Ginn has a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Oklahoma. Within the Office of Disability Concerns, William has served for as program specialist and as director of CAP (Citizens Advisory Council). He has also worked for the Oklahoma Department of Human Services as a case manager (10 years). And, recently, he has volunteered with People First, an organization that promotes socialization and self-advocacy by, and for, adults with a cognitive disorder. William enjoys reading, vegetable gardening, riding his bicycle and his two cats!
Shelley Gladden joined Oklahoma ABLE Tech in May 2012. As a Grant Coordinator, her primary role is the financial loan program for consumers to purchase assistive technology, Shelley assists in numerous roles with ABLE Tech, including the demonstration and loan program, fire safety grant,state department of education contract, and is a hearing support specialist to consumers, teachers, and professionals. She is a statewide trainer for Hearing Loss Association of America through the N-CHATT program, Network of Consumer Hearing Assistive Technology Trainers in which she collaboratively provides training to consumers with hearing loss, as well as professionals who work with consumers with hearing loss, on understanding Hearing Assistive Technology that can be used when hearing aids are not enough. She has spent her career working with individuals with disabilities in various settings in both Oklahoma and Texas and graduated from Oklahoma State University with a B.S. degree in Therapeutic Recreation. She is currently seeking a Graduate Certification in Non-Profit Management through Oklahoma State University in Stillwater, OK.
Advocate, Oklahoma Council of the Blind.
Bio coming soon
Sharon, a native of Northern Ireland, has lived and worked in Oklahoma for over 20 years. She has a long and established career in training and development and consulting. Sharon has worked in many industry sectors, including Hospitality and Tourism in the US and UK, Finance in the US, and over the last ten years she has focused on Manufacturing in Oklahoma. Sharon is the founder and President of Harrison Consulting, a Workforce and Training company. Harrison Consulting facilitates the Oklahoma Manufacturing Alliances Workforce strategies as the Director of Workforce and Community Partnerships was and is responsible for focusing on facilitating employer driven workforce solutions among manufacturers in partnership with key state stakeholders. In addition, Sharon and her team conduct workforce research, grant applications and program implementation. Additionally, Sharon is a business Professor at Rose State College, where she teaches management, project management and supply chain.
Angelamarie Jaworski has been a Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor/Specialist with DRS since 2016, working primarily with adult consumers with hearing loss in Tulsa but recently transferred effectively in June to Oklahoma City taking over the transition caseload. Angelamarie is hard of hearing and reads lips fluently with the use of American Sign Language as her preferred mode of communication. She obtained her Bachelor’s in Business Administration from Idaho State University and a Master’s from Western Oregon University in Rehabilitation Counseling with over 10+ years of experience in the counseling and rehabilitation fields, not limiting to life and job coaching in three different states: Washington, Texas, and Oklahoma. You will find Angela as a committed individual with pride in being direct, spontaneous, and communicative with focus serving or providing services to the deaf and hard of hearing but not limiting to teaching and educating the community, employers, educators, and many more on how to work in collaboration to better serve this unique population.
Jeff holds a Bachelor's degree in Education from Northeastern State University and a Master's Degree in Special Education with an emphasis in Transition from the University of Oklahoma. Jeff has been a Transition Specialist for Oklahoma City Public Schools since 2009. Previously, Jeff was a Transition Specialist for Cherokee Nation. Jeff and his wife, Kendra, have two children. He enjoys hiking, camping, concerts, movies, swimming, and spending time with his family.
Shelly Rentz has been dedicated to providing employment opportunities for people with disabilities for more than 25 years. She currently serves as the Program Coordinator for the Central Tech Employment Services program. Central Tech’s “Project Worth” was the first Oklahoma school-to-work program funded by The Department of Rehabilitation in March 1988. Since that time, thousands of clients and students with disabilities have prepared for, obtained, retained or returned to work through their involvement with this vital program. Shelly and her staff of six employment consultants have the opportunity to, assist those in the community realize their employment goals.
Shelly and her husband of 35 years are the proud parents of three children and five grandchildren. She enjoys spending time with her family, boating, fishing and gardening.
Steven C. Shepelwich is a Senior Community Affairs Advisor at the Federal Reserve Bank, Oklahoma City Branch. In this role, he leads the Branch efforts to promote economic development and fair and impartial access to financial services in Oklahoma’s low- to moderate-income communities. Mr. Shepelwich has worked in the community economic development field with financial institutions, microenterprise funds, and affordable housing and currently leads the Bank’s workforce development portfolio.
Amy Synar received her BA in Political Science in 1993 from Northeastern State University and her Masters in Human Relations in 2008 from the University of Oklahoma. Amy has served on multiple local boards related to philanthropy, education, and organizations dedicated to disenfranchised individuals. Amy and her husband are proud parents of three young men and are learning to navigate "empty nested."
Mr. Yeahquo is the Director of the Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes Vocational Rehabilitation Program. He says of his work, "I was unfamiliar with disability work until I began working for the tribes. My goal was to find employment that would allow me to help Native Americans in any way and it turns out VR is perfect for that goal. I strive to serve my Indian people in a good way."
Timothy has ties to the Consortia of Administrators for Native American Rehabilitation (CANAR) and Oklahoma Tribal Vocational Rehabilitation (OKTVR).
He is married and has 6 children. He loves the outdoors, camping and watching Netflix.