skip to content
Primary navigation

Staff bios

Lead Agency Review (LAR) team 


Image of Lizzette

Lizzette (Liz) is the Supervisor of the Lead Agency Review (LAR) team with over two decades of Human Services experience working specifically with County, Managed Care, and State administered programs. She holds Master of Social Work (MSW) degree from the University of North Dakota and a Bachelor of Science in Social Work from the College of St. Scholastica. Liz is proud of the work done by the Lead Agency Review team. Although monitoring compliance is a major part of their role, they also strive to bring a strength-based approach to each review, sharing best practices, and encouraging data driven decision making. When she’s not working, Liz enjoys spending time with her family and staying active.


Image of Steve

Steve is a Lead Evaluator on the Lead Agency Review team. Prior to working at DHS, Steve worked for several years as a Case Manager and Assessor for all of the HCBS waiver programs. He has a degree from the College of St. Scholastica in Social Work and has an active LSW license. During the lead agency review process, Steve enjoys creating working relationships with lead agencies, fostering a learning environment, and learning how ongoing policy change effects the “real world” application of the HCBS waiver programs. Outside of work, Steve enjoys coaching his two children in sports and doing all of the outdoor activities Minnesota has to offer.



Cate is a Lead Evaluator on the Lead Agency Review (LAR) team with over a decade of research and evaluation experience in human service programs and organizations. Prior to coming to DHS and the LAR team, she worked on evaluations of HCBS policy implementation with the Improve Group and several human service program implementation research projects at the Humphrey School. She holds a Master of Social Work (MSW) and Master of Public Administration from Arizona State University and a bachelor's degree from the University of Colorado — Boulder in psychology. In her free time she enjoys gardening, exploring new places, and trying new foods with her husband and son.


Image of Mandy

Miranda is an Evaluator on the Lead Agency Review team who brings more than 10 years of experience working in social services roles across various capacities with HCBS service programs. She graduated from the University of Wisconsin — River Falls with a social work degree. Prior to stepping into the evaluator role at DHS, Miranda worked with a contracted case management agency that partners with multiple counties across Minnesota to provide waiver service case management. Miranda enjoys using a strengths-based evaluation approach when working with lead agencies and collaborating with internal and external partners to make a positive impact with the communities we serve. Outside of work, Miranda enjoys watching the Minnesota Wild, playing card games, and cuddling up on the couch with her husband and Basset Hound.


Image of Thanh

Thanh is an Evaluator on the Lead Agency Review team. Prior to coming to the Minnesota Department of Human Services, he had 7 years of HCBS waiver case management experience, first as a contracted case manager, a contracted case management supervisor, then finally as a case manager at a metro area Lead Agency. Prior to working with case management services, he had almost 18 years of experience working in various HCBS programs including vocational, residential, and in-home services. He graduated from the University of Minnesota — Twin Cities with a BA in psychology and did some post graduate work in marriage and family therapy at Alfred Adler Graduate School in Richfield, MN. Outside of work, Thanh enjoys playing volleyball (both indoor and sand), going camping (including preparing his own dehydrated meals), exploring new foods to try and/or to cook, making homemade soaps, watching anything on The Food Network or HGTV, and spending time with his husband and cat, Pearl.


Image of Ashlyn

Ashlyn is an Evaluator on the Lead Agency Review team. She received her B.S. in Health Sciences from the University of Minnesota Rochester with a focus in public health and health equity. Prior to becoming an evaluator, Ashlyn worked for DHS and the MN Department of Health supporting HCBS providers and coordinating outbreak response throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Ashlyn is excited to share best practices and learn alongside lead agencies to improve health outcomes for elders and people with disabilities in Minnesota. Outside of work, Ashlyn enjoys watching movies, tending to her indoor garden, and spending quality time with her partner and cats.


Image of Christina

Christina Kollman is an Evaluator on the Lead Agency Review team. She has two decades of experience working as a social worker with disability non-profits and lead agencies. She has worked with multiple stakeholders throughout the state building partnerships. Christina received her Bachelor of Social Work from Concordia College in Moorhead, MN, and her Master of Social Work from St. Cloud State University. With a spirit of collaboration, Christina enjoys providing support to lead agencies by recognizing innovative practices and strengths. In her free time Christina enjoys time with her family traveling, going to concerts and gardening..


Image of Anne

Anna is an Evaluator on the Lead Agency Review Team. Prior to coming to DHS, she worked as a Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor at State Services for the Blind. She has previous experience working with HCBS waiver programs as a case manager and program manager, as well as experience in clinical mental health settings serving children and adolescents. Anna holds a Master of Social Work degree from the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities. Outside of work, Anna enjoys fostering cats for a local animal rescue, baking, playing board games, and spending time outside.


Image of Gwen

Gwen Wright is the Administrative Program Coordinator for the Lead Agency Review team. She is a dedicated professional with over a decade of experience within Human Services, contributing administrative and technical expertise across various administrations. Gwen finds fulfillment in supporting the LAR team through reviews and working with Lead Agencies. Outside of work, Gwen enjoys traveling with her children, cooking and spending time with her family.



back to top