Our Leadership

Our Leadership

Executive Director

Karen Gager, MSW, LICSW. has a master’s degree in Clinical Social Work from Boston University School of Social Work. She has worked in the fields of social services and education for over twenty five years. In addition, she has been a Field Instructor for various Schools of Social Work in RI and MA. Karen was awarded a Women of Achievement Award in Program Development for “Improving the Lives of Children & Youth” by the YWCA of Rhode Island in 2007.

Board Of Directors                                                         


Constance Ball currently works as an Associate for the Center to Advance Consumer Partnership, Commonwealth Care Alliance.  She is a graduate of Rutgers University, with a Masters of Public Administration, and received her undergraduate degree in Health Policy and Management from Providence College.  Previously, she served as a fundraising ambassador for United Way of RI and is passionate about working with the downtown Providence population through 134 Collaborative.


Vice President

Dr. Anthony Fruzzetti, Ed. D. is currently a full time member of the faculty in the College of Business’ Marketing Department at Johnson and Wales University. He is a longtime active member of the Board of Directors of the New England Marketing Research Association. He is a graduate of Suffolk University in Boston, MA (MBA), and Johnson & Wales University (Ed.D.).



Joaquin Romero is the Associate Director of Major Gifts, Faculty of Arts & Sciences, at Harvard University.  He is a double graduate of Providence College with an MBA and B.S. in Applied Physics. He previously worked at Brown University’s Swearer Center, where he ran programming focused on community engagement through study away programs, and the Department of Institutional Advancement at Rhode Island School of Design as a Fund Officer.




Julianne Schwallie-Benoit is a Senior Accountant with Gray, Gray, & Gray, LLP in Canton, MA.  She is a graduate of Johnson & Wales University where she earned both a Bachelor’s degree in Business and an MBA in Accounting. She is a member of the Gray, Gray & Gray Charitable Foundation as well as the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the Massachusetts Society of Certified Public Accountants.


Board Member                                                                 

Audria Jennings holds a B.S. and a M.Ed. in Rehabilitation Counseling from Pennsylvania State University. She has worked in mental health group homes and rehabilitation programs including as Program Director at UCAP and FHR (Fellowship Health Resources). She is currently on the founding committee for Providence Cohousing.



Board Member

Bill Jennings is a graduate of Princeton University and Pennsylvania State University. He has over thirty years in banking beginning at RI Hospital Trust, ending in 2003 at Fleet Bank, then joining Newman Dignan & Sheerar, an Investment Advisory firm. Bill is currently also on the board of UCAP School and The Greater Providence YMCA. He is also the 134 Collaborative board liaison to Mathewson Street Church.



Advisory Board Members

Lisa Carter, MD, MPH. received her undergraduate degree, medical degree, and Master’s of  Public Health at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Lisa works at the Family Health Center of Worcester, a busy community health center that serves an ethnically diverse, low-income, urban population. She has been greatly inspired by the work of the Collaborative.


Peter T. Hahn is currently a member of the Faculty of the Gabelli School of Business at Roger Williams University.  Previously, Peter served in various senior management positions at the President and CEO level in the pharmaceutical, medical device and medical software industries. In addition to his teaching, he has organized and directed numerous RWU student project teams focused on social enterprise strategy, planning and finance with Social Enterprise Greenhouse (SEG) entrepreneurs.  He has been an adviser to the 134 Collaborative Executive Director and Board of Directors through his role as SEG Mentor. He holds an MBA and doctorate from Columbia University.


Matthew Kelly, Esq. is a lawyer with Ratcliffe, Harten & Galamaga, LLP in downtown Providence. He earned a B.A. from Marist College in 1996 and obtained a J.D. from the Villanova University School of Law in 1999. He is admitted to practice in Rhode Island and the U.S. District Court for the District of Rhode Island. Mr. Kelly is a member of the Rhode Island Bar Association, the Defense Research Institute (DRI) and the Defense Counsel of Rhode Island (DCRI). He has presented numerous writings and lectures on topics related to his practice to doctors, nurses and hospitals


Keith W. L. Rafal, MD, MPH is the former Medical Director of the Rehabilitation Hospital of RI.  He is on the clinical faculty at Brown University Medical School and the founder/director of Healing Choices, P.C., an integrative rehabilitation medicine private practice.  In addition, he is the founder of the nonprofit Our Heart Speaks, Inc., www.ourheartspeaks.org which supports the patient stories project where the power of the human spirit is revealed.  He is leading a transdisciplinary task force focused on supporting new abilities & awareness for those living with an acquired disability.