MVH Executive Leadership and Board of Trustees

Sharon Fusco
Chief Executive Officer

Rebecca Gagnon
Chief Operating Officer

Lindsay M. Fitzgerald
Chief Workforce Officer

Kevin Brooks
 Chief Financial Officer

Board of Trustees

The administration of Maine Veterans’ Homes is vested in the Board of Trustees of the Maine Veterans’ Homes. The Board of Trustees is formally appointed by the Governor and is comprised of honorably discharged Veterans and non-veteran community members who broadly represent the various Veteran organizations, interests, and geographic regions of the state.

Donald O. Lagace, Jr. served for more than 38 years in the military and retired in 2020 as Maine’s Assistant Adjutant General – Army for the Maine National Guard. He previously served as Maine’s U.S. Property and Fiscal Officer, representing the Chief of the National Guard Bureau and as Deputy Commissioner for the Maine Department of Defense, Veterans and Emergency Management. A Persian Gulf War Veteran and U.S. Army War College Graduate, he commenced his military career as an enlisted Soldier in March 1982 and subsequently received an ROTC commission from the University of Southern Maine in May 1984. Don owns two property management companies in Augusta, Lagace Properties, LLC, and Capitol City Associates, LLC. He is also the President of the Board for UPLIFT, INC, serving individuals with developmental disabilities. He currently serves as Chairperson of the MVH Board of Trustees.

Steve SanPedro served more than 20 years in the U.S. Army and is a Veteran of both Operation Desert Shield/Storm and Operation Iraqi Freedom. He is a past Commander of the Department of Maine Veterans of Foreign Wars and is the current Senior Vice Chairman for the Eastern States Conference and a Silver Legacy Member of the VFW. He serves as the Vice Chairperson of the MVH Board of Trustees.

Emil P. Genest is a U.S. Army Veteran, having served as a communications and staff officer from 1981 to 1984. After his military service, Mr. Genest had a 33-year career in education, serving in leadership roles that included Assistant Superintendent for Business for school systems in Hampden and Lincoln, Maine. He currently works for the Maine Community College System and serves as Treasurer of the MVH Board of Trustees.

Julie Schwetz graduated from the United States Military Academy in West Point and served 13 years in the Army as a logistics officer, including two deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan. Her last Army assignment was at West Point where she managed a $28M budget and led core higher education functions, including marketing and human resources. She currently works for UNUM as an Assistant Vice President, Product Manager. Julie is the Secretary of the MVH Board of Trustees.

Heather Burr served in the Army Reserve and earned her nursing degree through the US Army Academy of Health Sciences.  She has 23 years of experience working primarily in long-term care specializing in geriatric and dementia nursing.  She joined the AMVETS in 2014 and was elected to the executive board of Robert W. Boyd Amvets Post 2 in 2016 currently holding the position of Adjutant.  Ms. Burr serves on the MVH board as an AMVETS representative.

David Richmond is the Director of the Maine Bureau of Veterans Services and an ex-officio member of the board.  He was commissioned in 1993 through Army ROTC and served on active duty as an armor officer, including tank platoon leader, heavy mortar platoon leader, and battalion adjutant. After leaving active service in 1997, he served in the Maine National Guard in various positions until 2004. He began working for the Maine Bureau of Veterans Services in 1998 and served as a construction project officer, superintendent of the cemetery system, and deputy director, before his appointment to director in March of 2019.

Sam Collins is a non-veteran appointee by the Governor to the board.  He is a Caribou native and president of the S.W. Collins Company, which he has led for almost three decades.  He is also a partner in two real estate development companies. He has taken an active leadership role in education and the community. He served as chair of the Caribou School Board, co-chair of the Regional School Committee for school consolidation, and chairman of the University of Maine Board Of Trustees. In his community, Collins has volunteered as chair of the United Way of Aroostook Campaign, as president of Leaders Encouraging Aroostook Development, and as president of the Caribou Rotary Club. In addition, he serves on the board of directors of MMG Insurance Company and of Aroostook Federal Savings and Loan Association.

Diane Jackson is a non-veteran appointee by the Governor to the board.  She has vast experience in community relations, business development, and government.  She most recently served as acting area state director for U.S. Senator Collins.  Previously, she served as the Governor’s Account Executive in the Maine Department of Economic and Community Development.  She was also regional representative for U.S. Senator Snowe and executive assistant to the Maine Senate President.  She is a native of Oxford.

Christopher Gardner is a non-veteran appointee by the Governor to the board. He is a Washington County native who has worked in various levels of public service throughout his professional career, including as a decorated sworn law enforcement officer with a career in the profession spanning four decades. He has served as County Commissioner for Washington County since 2004 and also as Executive Director of the Eastport Port Authority since 2007, where he has led the organization through $50M in capital construction and expansion projects.

Michael Pooler was commissioned through the ROTC program at the University of Maine at Orono in 1986. He served over thirty years in uniform with the US Army Reserves and the Maine Army National Guard as an infantry and field artillery officer. He held various command and staff assignments at the Maine National Guard state headquarters and with the 1st Battalion, 152nd Field Artillery, to include battalion commander. After command, Mike volunteered to deploy to Afghanistan, where he led a team that trained an Afghan infantry battalion. He returned in December of 2008, to become the Maine Army National Guard’s Deputy Director of Personnel, then Director of Personnel and retired as a Colonel in 2019 as the Director of Human Resource, Maine National Guard. Mike earned an MBA from Thomas College, a Master of Strategic Studies from the US Army War College and is currently enrolled as a graduate student in the Muskie School of Public Service at USM.

Angela Armstrong served in the U.S. Army from 1995-2000 as a military intelligence officer stationed in Arizona and North Carolina, including a deployment to Bosnia. Upon her discharge from the Army, she worked in the Chancellor’s office at the University of North Carolina at Pembroke. In 2004, Angela decided to move home to Maine to raise her daughters and was hired as the Deputy Executive Director of the Maine State Bar Association (MSBA). She was named Executive Director of the MSBA in 2013 where she continues to serve today. Angela is a 1995 graduate of the United States Military Academy at West Point and received her Master of Business Administration from the University of Phoenix in 2000.

Christine Brawn is non-veteran Governor appointee to the board and the spouse of a 26-year retired veteran of the US Air Force. Ms. Brawn is currently the Director of Human Resources for Kennebec County and spends her free time volunteering with the Veterans Administration alongside her husband. The majority of her career has been in HR with a focus on health insurance, working for several years as the Executive Director of Employee Health and Benefits for the State of Maine. During that time, she gained a great deal of understanding of the challenges facing the healthcare industry while serving on the board of the Maine Health Management Coalition, working directly with health systems across Maine. Ms. Brawn has an undergraduate degree in Health Administration and an MBA from the University of Bologna while living overseas. She also has a Master’s degree in HR Management. 


Bridget Miller is the Senior Director of Strategic Planning and Operational Development for MaineHealth – LincolnHealth where she leads a Strategy Alignment/Operational Excellence team.  Bridget has a B.S. in Behavioral Science from the Air Force Academy, an M.A. in Social Psychology from Regis University and is a certified Lean Six Sigma Black Belt and Problem Solving Decision Program Leader.  In addition to healthcare, Bridget has worked in a variety of industries including the military, education, consulting, and manufacturing.