2023 Fundamentals of Special Needs Trust Administration - Speakers

Megan Brand


Megan Brand is the Executive Director of CFPD-Colorado Fund for People with Disabilities.  Megan began her service at CFPD in 2003 and has been the Executive Director since 2010. Megan has a bachelor’s degree in social work from the College of St. Benedict and over 20 years of experience in working with people with disabilities, their families, service providers, attorneys, trustees, financial planners, guardians and other professionals.  She leads a staff of 25 in administering the largest and longest-standing locally managed pooled trust in Colorado, as well as providing myriad of other services that offer protection, personalized attention, access to our network of organizations and services, and financial and benefit’s guidance.  In addition to leading the staff, Megan currently serves as Vice President of the National Planned Lifetime Assistance Network, the Vice President of the Alliance of Pooled Trusts and is a frequent presenter in the community, both locally and nationally, on Special Needs Trusts and related topics.


Slade Dukes


Slade (he/him/his) is a Florida native, having lived and worked across the state. He has practiced law for over 16 years, serving in both the public and private sectors. Slade lives in St. Petersburg, FL, working out of offices in both St. Petersburg and Sarasota. He is a proud member of and advocate for the LGBTQ+ community.


Slade is continually building upon and further developing his diverse and extensive legal and managerial professional knowledge and experience, and currently focuses on the practice areas of Guardianship, Probate and Trust Administration, Estate Planning, and General Practice.


Roberta Flowers


Roberta K. Flowers is a professor of law at Stetson University College of Law. Within the Elder Law LL.M. program, Professor Flowers teaches Ethics in an Elder Law Practice. She also teaches Evidence, Criminal Procedure, and Professional Responsibility. While at Stetson, Professor Flowers has successfully coached trial teams, arbitration teams and moot court teams to national championships. She has served as the director of the Center for Excellence in Advocacy and as the William Reece Smith Jr. Distinguished Professor in Professionalism.


During her time at Stetson, Professor Flowers has received the university-level Excellence in Teaching Award, Most Inspirational Teacher Award from the Student Bar Association, and an award from the Student Bar Association for supporting student life. She also has received the university-level Homer and Dolly Hand Award for Excellence in Scholarship, the Dean's Award for Extraordinary Service, and been awarded the Distinguished Service Award four times. In 2005, the Florida Supreme Court awarded Professor Flowers the Faculty Professionalism Award.


Professor Flowers has lectured worldwide on the topic of ethics. She won a Telly Award for Excellence in Educational Films for having produced a series of educational videos on the ethical issues faced by prosecuting attorneys. Along with Professor Rebecca Morgan, she created a video series used to train and educate attorneys nationwide on the ethical dilemmas faced by elder law attorneys. The Florida Supreme Court awarded Professor Morgan and Professor Flowers the Florida Supreme Court Professionalism Award for their video productions. Additionally, with Professor Morgan, Professor Flowers designed the nation's first "elder friendly courtroom," which serves as model for courtrooms of the future. 


Mary Alice Jackson


Mary Alice is of counsel to the firm of Boyer & Boyer in Sarasota, Florida, a firm she helped found in 1995. She began practicing in elder law in 1992 and has been Florida Bar Board certified in Elder Law since 1998. Mary Alice is licensed to practice in in both Texas and Florida. She has an AV Preeminent rating from Martindale Hubbell and has been named a Super Lawyer in both Texas and Florida. She is a frequent speaker on elder law and special needs planning topics.


Mary Alice is a Fellow of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, and has been a member of NAELA since 1993. She is a member of the Florida and Texas Chapters of NAELA. Mary Alice is a member of the Special Needs Alliance and serves on its Board of Directors. She is a past President of Legal Aid of Manasota, the Florida Bar Elder Law Section (1999) and the Sarasota County Bar Association (2005). She also served as board President for Tidewell Hospice of Southwest Florida, Senior Friendship Centers, and the Area Agency on Aging for Southwest Florida chapter. She spent six years on the board of trustees of The Pines in Sarasota.


Mary Alice co-authored the initial editions of Planning for the Elderly in Florida, a Lexis Nexis publication. She currently teaches long term care planning in the Stetson Elder Law LL.M. program and serves on the Elder Law Advisory Board at Stetson. Mary Alice is a Florida native, having been born and raised in Winter Park. She holds a B.S. in government and a master’s degree in Public Administration from Florida State University. She received her J.D. in 1991 from her father’s alma mater, Stetson University College of Law. Her standard poodles, Henry and Shadow, and her husband, Bob, are never ending sources of amusement and help her keep life in perspective.


Yolanda Mazyck


Yolanda Mazyck, a native Pennsylvanian, and graduate of the University of Pittsburgh, relocated to the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area to manage Shared Horizons’ Pooled Special Needs Trust in January 2005. 


Yolanda has over 30 years of nonprofit experience, primarily in the fields of substance abuse, criminal justice, and disabilities. She worked as a certified addictions counselor and intervention specialist for nine years before accepting the position as Director of the Neighborhood-based Family Intervention Center (NBFIC) in Sharon, Pennsylvania. During her 12 years as Director, she developed new initiatives for delinquent youth, their families, and other “at-promise” populations, preserving and supporting families in crisis.


Yolanda is honored to work with a dedicated staff and committed Board of Directors that embrace Shared Horizons’ person-centered trust management model and looks forward to expanding services to meet the needs of an increasingly diverse population of people with disabilities and their families.


Kerry Tedford-Coles


Kerry Tedford-Coles is the Executive Director of Planned Lifetime Assistance Network of Connecticut, Inc. (PLAN of CT).  Kerry has spent her career serving those with disabilities through both Special Education and the non-profit sector.  She has been with PLAN of CT since 2004 and has been instrumental in its exponential growth. In June of 2016 she added the role of Executive Director of the National PLAN Alliance.  She is a frequent local and national presenter regarding Special Needs Trusts for community organizations, legal and financial professionals and disability providers. She is also a member of the Pooled Trust National Standards Committee, Center for Future Planning Advisory Council, Board member and Co-Chair of the Outreach & Education Committee of the Association of Pooled Trusts (APT) and served on the ABLE Act Advisory Committee through the Department of Treasury for the State of Connecticut. Kerry lives in Eastern Connecticut with her husband and 2 children, one of which is on the Autism Spectrum.


Shirley Whitenack


Shirley B. Whitenack co-chairs Schenck Price's Elder and Special Needs Law Practice Group and the Estates and Trusts Litigation Practice Group. She devotes a substantial portion of her practice to elder and special needs law, estate planning and administration, and trust and estate litigation. She is also on the State of New Jersey roster of approved mediators.


Shirley is a Past President of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA), a NAELA Fellow, and a member of NAELA's Council of Advanced Practitioners (CAP), an invitation-only group of elder and special needs planning practitioners, and has served as an adjunct professor of law in the J.D. and LL.M. in Elder Law Programs at Stetson University College of Law.


Shirley is a member of the Special Needs Alliance (SNA), an invitation-only nationwide alliance of special needs planning attorneys.


Shirley publishes and lectures extensively on topics related to guardianship, elder and special needs law, estate and trust litigation and probate mediation. She is quoted in publications such as The Wall Street Journal, Market Watch, Kiplinger's Personal Financial Magazine, Money and Consumer Reports.


Stuart Zimring


Stuart D. Zimring was born in Los Angeles, California, December 12, 1946. He was admitted to the Bar in 1972, and is admitted to practice in California and U.S. District Court, Central and Northern Districts of California and the U.S. Supreme Court. He received his B.A. degree in 1968 from UCLA and his J.D. degree in 1971 from the UCLA School of Law and is “AV” rated in Martindale-Hubbell. He is a member of the Los Angeles Superior Court Probate Volunteer Panel. Mr. Zimring is a Fellow of and Past President of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA), and a Charter Member of NAELA’s Council of Advanced Practitioners (CAP). He is a Fellow of the American College of Trusts and Estate Counsel (ACTEC), is certified as a Specialist in Estate Planning, Probate and Trust Law by the Board of Legal Specialization of the State Bar of California and is one of the 7 California members of the Special Needs Alliance.


Mr. Zimring serves on the Boards of Directors of a number of non-profit organizations, including Justice In Aging (formerly the the National Senior Citizens Law Center and is past-president of ONEgeneration in the San Fernando Valley, on whose Board he continues to serve. He is also a member of the Estate Counselors Forum, San Fernando Valley Estate Counselors Forum, San Fernando Valley and Los Angeles County Bar Associations (of which he is a past Chair of its Trust & Estates Executive Committee), State Bar of California and Southern California Council of Elder Law Attorneys.

He is an Adjunct Professor at Stetson University College of Law and California State University Northridge on issues in Elder Law and Special Needs Trusts. He is a frequent speaker and writer on Elder Law, Special Needs Trusts and related issues throughout the country. He is co-author of “Tax, Estate and Financial Planning for the Elderly – California Guide” and “Fundamentals of Special Needs Trusts,” both published by Matthew Bender/Lexis-Nexis, as well as a member of Matthew Bender’s Elder Law Editorial Committee.