Meet the Team

Meet our People

The Staff of L'Arche Cleveland

L’Arche communities require a lot of behind-the-scenes action to make community happen. L’Arche Cleveland is no different, and we owe it to the dedicated staff members who are committed to our mission.

Jennifer O'Malia

Community Leader
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Born and raised in the Greater Cleveland area, I started at L’Arche when I was 20 years old and have spent almost my entire adult life in the community. I have been both a live-in and live-out assistant, house leader at several homes, Program Director, Assistant Director, and now the Community Leader. Prior to starting at L’Arche, I worked with Fr. Jim O’Donnell in inner city Cleveland working in schools as a tutor, working with single mothers navigating the welfare system, and visiting the L’Arche community for dinner and Mass. The Community Leader at the time asked if I’d consider working in the homes for a couple evenings a week, and as they say, the rest is history. When I have time for hobbies between my L’Arche life and home life, I love to read. I have a great love of interior design and organizing, for both myself and family and friends. I have been married Dan for 21 years, and we have 4 children. I feel so blessed to be able to raise my children in L’Arche and to have a spouse that loves L’Arche as much as I do.

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De'Shaun Adair

Program Director
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I am born and raised on the west side of Cleveland, and originally learned of L’Arche as a student leader of the Friends with L’Arche program at St. Ignatius High School. After high school, I attended Cuyahoga Community College and Baldwin Wallace University. I returned to St. Ignatius as a partnership moderator of the Arrupe Neighborhood Partnership, and as a learning coach of The Welsh Academy. In my spare time, I love to journal and go for walks around downtown and Ohio City/Tremont neighborhoods. I love to sing and spend time with family and my close friends, but my favorite thing to do is go to Mitchell’s Ice Cream and enjoy a Cleveland Brownie Sundae! One of my greatest accomplishments is being a proud big brother to my baby sister who is in college in Atlanta. Jim Skerl was a big part of what drew me to L’Arche as a high school student and when I was looking to try something new professionally, L’Arche was the first place that came to mind. I love the importance of community, faith, and prayer. I have found in the time I have spent in L’Arche that the Core Members give so much to me, sometimes more than I can ever give to them. Jim Skerl put it best when I was in high school, “Being present with is sometimes more important than doing for.”

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Mary Hurley

Office Manager
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I was born and raised on the east side of Cleveland and have lived here most of my life. I began working in the field of developmental disabilities in 1979 as a direct service provider, and later became a Program Coordinator and Administrator for two different private nonprofit organizations.  In addition, I have served in the Peace Corps and traveled far and wide. I joined L’Arche Cleveland in 2004 and have been an Assistant, House Leader, and Program Director. With L’Arche’s blessing, I continued to travel and was welcomed back upon each return. In 2015, I took an extended break to attend to family needs and returned as the Office Manager in 2018. L’Arche and I have been a good match for each other through the years. Outside of L’Arche, I coordinate a small nonprofit program that supports and implements a variety of grassroots projects in Haiti. I enjoy gathering with family and friends for a meal, adult beverages and a long visit, watching the Tribe, travelling, reading, live theater and going to the movies.

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Lizette Hoevel

Medical Assistant
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I am originally from Fort Wayne, Indiana and moved to Toledo, Ohio when I became a Sister of Notre Dame 35 years ago. I received a Bachelors in Elementary Special Education and a Master’s in Special Education. I was an elementary teacher for 10 years. I also attended Clinical Pastoral Education at SVCMC to become a chaplain. I decided I needed a break from teaching and was already familiar with L’Arche from reading Henri Nouwen’s books. I came to Cleveland to visit and fell in love! In my spare time, I love to crochet, bake, cook, and spend time in nature hiking.

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Alex Bell

Communications Specialist
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I initially came to L’Arche as a music therapy practicum student in 2015. After graduating, I wanted to learn more about the living in community and became an assistant. I completed my music therapy education while working at L’Arche part-time and chose to come back full time in early 2019. L’Arche has become a second family to me, and I’ve loved seeing the community grow and change through the years. I’m the definition of an “animal person,” and I love drinking coffee, visiting new places, and being with my family, friends, and cats.

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Fran Richman

Financial Consultant
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Fran has been a part of the L’Arche Cleveland community since 2001.

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Rosalie Daley

Operations Manager
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Ro was born and raised in Cleveland, OH. She graduated from Notre Dame Academy and holds a bachelor’s degree in communications and public relations from Baldwin Wallace College and a master’s in human services specializing in blindness studies from Western Michigan University. She has worked with a variety of populations including physical and developmental disabilities, mental health diagnoses, and individuals who were deaf or blind. Ro has had her own business, as well as managed two non-profits. She is also a contributing writer for multiple magazines. She came to L’Arche through longtime friend Mary Hurley. After learning more about the position and meeting the community, she decided to become involved in L’Arche because “It seemed like something and someplace I would like to have my family members live if they needed it. I felt if I could help, it would be a good thing for me to do. Everyone I met was fun and nice.” Outside of L’Arche, Ro has a large family and is a life-long Girl Scout and a board of election poll worker. Ro loves gardening, photography and planning events and parties. She also loves to listen and dance to live music.

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Jylian Purtee

House Leader - Agape House
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I am from Delaware, OH. I came to Cleveland to go to school at Cleveland State University, where I graduated with a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance. I worked at Camp Echoing Hills, a Christian camp that serves individuals with disabilities, for the summers 2014-2017 and have been an active volunteer there since that time. I first learned about L’Arche when two of my close friends joined the community. In February 2019, I joined the community myself and have loved getting to know the community. I’m an animal lover, so I love spending time with my cats and working on my aquarium, and I foster for a local cat rescue.

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Samuel Thomas

House Leader - Mercy House
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Sam is a native North Carolinian but came to Cleveland to join the community. He knew of L’Arche through reading Henri Nouwen in grad school, and felt it was a logical place to serve others after graduating. Sam says, “I am obnoxiously enthusiastic about a good cup of coffee, my wife & son, watching old films, and punishing myself via a secondary master’s program.” 

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Stephanie M. Barnes

House Leader - Eugene's Hope House
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I was born and raised in Cleveland and have worked in this field for about 30 years. I first learned about L’Arche from an old coworker, who said L’Arche was a small, world-wide company and a great place to work. I decided to give it a try and have been working here ever since. I found a home in L’Arche and plan on staying here! My hobbies include bowling, hanging out with my family, and enjoying time with my grandkids.

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